Title: Fighting to Start
Author: S.L. Ziegler
Genre: New Adult Contemporary
Heat-O-Meter Rating: R
Reed “Riker” Collins is my story… The beginning, middle, and end.
Our love was intense, emotional, and raw, the kind that sticks with you forever. I thought we had it all, the thing that would make us last… Until we didn’t.
Reed promised me forever, and I believed him with everything in me. But it’s never that easy. Without a second thought, Reed left me to follow his own dream of becoming a professional fighter. Five years of going through life without him has left me only drifting through life, never truly living, leaving me more damaged than ever before. But then, Reed walks back into my life when I needed him the most. Will I be able to forget all the pain he caused? Will he be able to heal the emotional wounds his love had left me with?
Can I fight to start? Or will I end up forfeiting it all just to make it go away?
So, what did I love? Here’s my list:
- Its dual POV. I love that anyway, but in this book getting to know what both Hadley and Reed were thinking is critical for this story to work.
- This story is so real to me. The author touches on drug use in an upperclass white girl. Her life looks perfect on the outside and people can’t imagine why a girl like her would do drugs. I know a lot of people in this category so reading about it was so real for me. She wasn’t poor, she wasn’t a gang banger, she wasn’t any of the stereotypical things that too many people think of when they think about drug abusers. She had terrible things happen to her and she made one bad choice after another until it snowballed and cost her everything. Its so real. If you have every had someone in your life with a drug problem who still tried to function-have a job, family, etc and keep it all hidden, you will ‘get’ Hadley. You will also understand her family. They don’t enable her and they fight for her but they have no idea how to help her. Its heartbreaking. This aspect of the story touched me so much.
- Both characters are messed up and have done some seriously dumb $#!t. Its not your ‘perfect girl meets bad boy’ trope. Initially, Hadley was that girl, but you only see that part of her briefly and she becomes just as messed up as Reed. It was a very engaging twist on the story. No one is perfect; you can’t hate Reed for what he did because you see that Hadley did some awful things as well.
Cliffhanger. Be forewarned. Now I have to impatiently wait for the next book. I don’t do patiently very well (except at work-being patient is kind of my job as a special education teacher so I think I use up all my patience during the day!).
This book is not for everyone. There are triggers in there that some people won’t want to read (drug use, abuse). However, I think everyone should read it because the issues are handled so well.