October 12, 2014

REVIEW: Pieces of Me (Cedar Mountain University #1) By, Ann Garner

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For Delaney Roberts, moving across country and away from everyone who knew her darkest secrets, was the last chance she had at normal. When she starts her freshman year at Cedar Mountain University, she isn't focused on making friends or falling in love. She just wants to pick up the pieces of her shattered life and fit them back together the best she can.

Cole Marsh hadn't settled down since getting his heart broken three years before. But one look at the sexy brunette with the sad blue eyes and he’s lost. But can he convince her to trust him enough to put the past behind her?

This is Ann Garner’s first book and what a first book it was. I loved reading this one. It was filled was beautiful and heartbreaking emotions. This book is one big complex situation. There really isn’t a right way to go about it and Ann makes you feel that. She gives you all of the complex, uncertain emotions that Delany and Cole feel.

“Maybe you will never put them back together the way they were, but you can make some semblance of a whole person, some patchwork of everything you’ve managed to save and whatever you can collect on your way out. You dream about the day you will no longer be pieces of yourself.”

Delany Roberts has spent her life feeling broken and alone. Her parents have left her emotionally and she can’t walk down the street without someone looking at her with pity in their eyes. She needs to get out. She doesn’t want her past to define her so she picks a point on the map as far away as she can get and applies to college. She is slowly moving out of her comfort zone when it comes to being around people. She lucked out with the best roommate possible. She didn’t expect to make friends and she never in her wildest dream thought that she could fall in love. And then she met Cole.

Delany was a really complex character. She has been through some of the most horrible things. She doesn’t want to be the scared little girl anymore but she also can’t handle letting anyone get to know the real her. She has panic attacks when people touch her and intimacy scares her. She makes huge strides in fixing that though. Her character is stronger than she ever thought and her even being able to function is a surprise to me.

“I hadn’t been able to control a lot of things in my life, but history was already in the past and unchangeable. It didn’t matter where I was, or what method of information I was using, I could rely on the fact George Washington had been the first President of the United States.”

Cole Marsh has had his heart broken. The minute he left for college his high school sweetheart forgot the meaning of fidelity. So he became the love ‘em and leave ‘em type. Until Delany walked into his apartment. Cole can tell she has secrets. To Cole, Delany is lost and sad but all he wants to do is get to know her. So he tried until she finally lets him in. He is not used to having to work for a girl’s attention before. But he knows Delany is worth the wait. Cole wants everything with Delany, he just has to wait for her to want it too.

Cole Marsh is so great. He is sweet, attentive, understanding, and patient. He works with Delany and all of her little quirks until she feels she can trust him with her secrets. I feel like Cole took the whole situation in stride. Pushing someone to open up doesn’t work but by letting go he made her feel safe enough to tell him everything. Even if it didn’t fix anything. Cole became a safe haven for Delany.

“He was the last piece that I needed to put myself back together.”

The other characters really made this book as well. Grace was a real best friend. She tried to help Delany through her problems even when she didn’t know what they were. I was kind of disappointed with the way she acted even after she found out about what happened to Delany. I think her character could have handled that better but I still love her. Robby, Holden, and Grant were interesting as well. I can’t wait to learn more about them in future books.

I really loved this story. My only thing is that I wish it had been dual POV. I feel like we didn’t get much from Cole. Having dual POVs would have made him be more of a figure in the book. Other than that I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who wants a sweet love story about a broken girl who learns how to love and be loved.

“I want you. I want us.”

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