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352 pages, ebook
First published October 17, 2017
Choice is such a loaded word, isn’t it? Choices, though our own, were so weighted down with all the things that had come before, so stained with the messes of our past.This one took me a while to get into, which isn’t normal for a Mia book. That’s the only reason it’s not a five star read for me. The beginning felt a bit on the slow side and it struggled with keeping my interest. Once the story picked up (maybe around 30-40% for me) I was completely captivated. There wasn't a thing about the last half I would change.
And, maybe, I thought, that was what love was supposed to do—peel your layers back and uncover all your tender spots so they, too, could be healed.
“You can’t fix me, you know.”
“No, I can only love you.”
“I liked her. I liked the way she looked at me, the way she teased, the flash of keen intelligence behind her eyes, her quick wit, the way she seems so hard, and yet was somehow soft at the same time. I did, I liked her…”
To Gabriel, finder of beauty, rescuer of souls.
“If she’s amazing, she won’t be easy. If she’s easy, she won’t be amazing. If she’s worth it, you won’t give up. If you give up, you’re not worth it. Truth is, everybody is going to hurt you; you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for.”
“It’s my belief that the wisest and most sensitive souls are those who have been broken themselves and found a way to put their pieces back together. For who can know the true meaning of light unless they’ve been immersed in darkness? Who else can say, “I’ve been there, and I promise you — I promise you — there is life after this. Yes, even this.” Who else can determine with love and wisdom who’s worth suffering for? … MOST OF ALL YOU is a story about the power of love such as this. Love that comes from a place of light, of hope, of knowing. Love that says you are worth suffering for, but even more so, love that promises: Your heart will heal — it was what it was made to do.”
“I’d known a few handsome men in my time. Each one had a mean streak three miles wide. Handsome got you a big fat nowhere in the end… No, it was something more than that. I twas his eyes. His eyes held some sort of innocence I hadn’t seen before. Gentleness I certainly wasn’t used to. HIs expression was hopeful, but not desperate, and I didn’t detect lust in his eyes. He looked… sincere.”
“Because of my history, which it sounds like you know a little about, I, uh, find it difficult to tolerate… closeness.”
… “Okay, what is it I can do for you?” …
“You can help me practice being touched by a woman.”
“I can teach you what I do when someone gets close to me. I remove myself completely, and it makes it bearable.” She bit her lip, her brow furrowing as if considering something. “I think I can teach you how to do that.”
My body stilled as I stared at her. Her words caused my heart to ache. Oh God. “That’s not what I want, though. I know how to remove myself. I know how to do that. I want to stay present. That’s what I need you to help me with. Staying.”
“I’m not giving up on you. I’m coming back.”
She shrugged one delicate shoulder. “It’s a free country. You do whatever you want. But I suggest you get out of here and go find the right girl.”
“What if I still think you’re the right girl?”
“Then you’re wrong.” She turned and walked away.
A stripper. God, what was I doing?
What about you, Gabriel? How would people describe you if they were only going by the few things they knew? If they only met you once, only read the newspaper articles, what would you be called?
“I’d never try to control you.” Oh God. His voice. I could hear the pain. I wanted to turn away, but I didn’t. He paused, even deeper torment skating over his expression. “Someone did that to me, and I’d never do it to someone else. I only want to help you. If there’s somewhere you’d rather be where you’ll be safe and cared for, tell me and I’ll drive you there myself. I’ll make sure you get here no matter how far away it is. I don’t ever want you to feel like I’m trying to take away your will. I couldn’t live with that.”
I loved the expression on her face — cautious awe — as if she wasn’t sure she should allow herself to fall in love with anything beautiful, even the sunrise.
Sometimes it hurt me to watch her, hurt me to see that she was so lonely inside, so sure that the whole world was a dangerous place for her. I longed to show her that it didn’t have to be, but for now, I offered her the sunrise and a safe place to watch it. I prayed that someday soon she would trust that she deserved this beauty.
I don’t create beauty, I just reveal what’s already there.
I was spellbound, caught once again in his gaze. No one had ever looked at me the way Gabriel was right then, not in all my life.
And you, most of all, you. You get my heart. You. And, God, I hope you want it. But if you don’t, I still won’t regret giving it to you. Even then, I won’t regret loving you because it means I win.”
I’ve always pretended I was made of stone, but the truth is, I feel more like I was formed from sand, as if I might crumble at any second.”
“His breath against my neck was a calming wind, his smile the sunshine, his touch was a thousand rainbows dancing on my skin, and I loved him so much I thought my heart would burst.”
MOST OF ALL YOU was such a heartbreakingly beautiful love story!
Run to your nearest amazon for your own Gabe! This one is MINE!!! But hurry, he'll be sold out in no time! ☺