Love and war. Two words that should have little association, but to me the two go hand in hand. Both are a tragedy. They rip you open and spit you out. The war killed my husband, Connor, shattered my will to live, and took my best friend. Brandon may not have physically died in that war, but his soul did. And now we’re left to pick up the wreckage. Expected to move on when all that is left is the ruins of a life we once had.
War. It took everything from me, even myself. When you’re only able to exist, death seems like a blessing. Pain…a welcome distraction. I ran from everything associated with my past, and then she found me, fighting, drowning myself in whiskey, trying to forget. She reminds me of Connor, of what I’ve lost—what we’ve lost. In the midst of destruction, she’s a salvation I don’t deserve.
I shouldn’t love him.
I shouldn’t love her.
Love is a war we never should have fought.
War Poppy was painful to read. It hurt me bone deep. It was difficult and perhaps a little controversial, but beyond all of that, it felt very real. Not everything gets tied up in a pretty, pink bow in real life. Not everyone gets whole and healed because someone else hopes they will. Life is messy, love is messy and all of it tends toward the painful. War Poppy portrayed the truth of living in a very authentic way.
Not all wars are fought on battlefields, tons of the are fought within ourselves and others are battled in homes where the enemies take up residence within the souls of the people we love. This was the case for Brandon and Poppy. Watching them both battle an enemy they couldn’t control, one who was literally changing the core parts of who Brandon was, was gut-wrenching. Even more so than seeing them struggle with the ghost of the person who was both his best friend and her husband, the person who they both loved and lost in the most tragic of ways.
The message in War Poppy, beyond the effects of war and that type of loss on a person, was poignant, it told of the consequences of making choices based on the wants and needs of another instead of looking out for your own. It illustrated how damaging not considering your own well-being can be, no matter how altruistic your intentions. It was devastating to watch the fall-out of those types of decisions.
War Poppy was wonderfully written. I found it to be a wildly compelling story and a departure from most romances. As painful as the story was, it was wonderfully refreshing to see something out of the normal romance tropes, I loved reading something that felt so true to life. I was won over by the words, the writing, the reality of this book and will definitely be reading more books by LP Lovell and Stevie J. Cole.
AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER
#2 War Hope – releasing May 2, 2017
STEVIE J. COLE
Stevie J. Cole lives deep in the woods of Alabama with her husband and two precious daughters. She studied Epidemiology concentrating on cancer research but has always had a passion for writing. Some of her stories will strip you bare, some will give you nightmares, but the one thing she can promise is that she will always give you stories that make you feel.
Raw. Gritty. Love.
Because sometimes characters need to be flawed.
P.S. Stevie’s greatest fear is the impending zombie apocalypse. Think about it: swarming armies of decaying, oozing corpses stumbling around with clicking teeth, trying to eat your face. Nothing about that is good. NOTHING!
Lauren Lovell is an indie author from England.
She suffers from a total lack of brain to mouth filter and is the friend you have to explain before you introduce her to anyone and apologise for afterwards.
Lauren is a self-confessed shameless pervert, who may be suffering from slight peen envy.
LP loves to hear from readers so please get in touch.
20 signed paperbacks (selection of Stevie J. Cole’s and LP Lovell’s books)
$50 Amazon gift card
2 x $25 Amazon gift cards