Monday, March 2, 2015

Review: Sweet Sound of Silence by Melanie Dawn

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Ryder Hawkley swallows his words the way he swallows his guilt. A life-altering tragedy keeps him locked away in a silent prison—a self-imposed punishment for a horrific mistake. His reputation…


Alexis Honeycutt arrives at college craving one thing—independence. Now, away from home and free from her family's overprotection, she attends a party with friends that will ultimately change her life. The moment she spots Ryder Hawkley sitting across the room, Alexis is intrigued.

They whisper.

The intensity shimmering from Ryder’s haunting eyes beckons her, but Alexis vows to stay away from him. Only, she can’t seem to get Ryder’s unnervingly quiet stare out of her head.

Ryder is determined to ignore Alexis’s contagious smile the instant she strolls into the room. Despite his efforts, he is drawn to her and finds himself questioning everything he’d been holding on to for the past two years.

Although this book is part of a series, it CAN be read as a standalone. This book is intended for readers 17+ due to some language and mature themes.

I absolutely adore this book! Melanie Dawn has blown me away with each book she has written.They are each beautiful books where the characters are beautifully written and the emotions on each page suck you in. Sweet Sound of Silence is book 3 in the So Much It Hurts series. It can be read as a stand alone, but I suggest reading the first two books because they are wonderful.

From the very first page of this story I was sucked in. In the very first chapter the author had my heart pounding with sorrowful anticipation. I knew something heart wrenching was about to happen, and I was right. Ryder is just a teenager when tragedy strikes his household, and he blames himself. As such, he is stuck in a self-imposed prison of guilt, self hate, and anger. He doesn't know how to climb out of these emotions, and they cause him to be silent. When I say silent, I mean he cannot talk. Try as he might, he cannot get words out. He is filled with so much anxiety when he tries. And he does try, so hard, but to no avail. He is in his second year of college. Though he doesn't talk, he attends parties, goes to bars, and maintains his grades, all while keeping everyone at a distance.

We met Alexis in book 2, Then There Was You. Again, you don't have to read the book to get a good grasp on her, but I HIGHLY recommend it. She is in her first year of college. She is excited and scared to be away from her mother for the first time. Her roommate, is pretty awesome. I really enjoyed her fun, loyal, and protective personality. Alexis "meets" Ryder one night at a party. Not really meets, but sees him. They make eye contact and there is instant attraction. However, she pushes her feelings aside because of his reputation around campus. He pushes his feelings aside, because he doesn't want to feel. Then, they have class together and are partnered up. Alexis has the ability to see deeper into Ryder's actions and mannerisms. Ryder doesn't like it. He keeps trying to push her away, but there is something about her that keeps sucking him in. 

I really enjoyed these two characters together. Alexis brings hope, understanding, and light to Ryder's dark world of guilt. You can gradually see the change that she brings about in him. Alexis life isn't all perfect, though, and Ryder always seems to be her dark knight in shining, brooding armor. Their fall happens gradually, and you can FEEL every second of it. Melanie Dawn has a way of bringing the emotions to life. I was rooting for these characters. I so wanted Ryder to break through his silence. I was yearning for it as he and Alexis were. This heart twisting, beautiful story is one that you do not want to miss!

I cautiously reached out to him. Grasping the back of his neck, I pulled him toward me again. Despite his fury, he let himself get tugged into my space. His angry breath was hot on my face. His narrowed eyes bore holes into mine. And yet, there was something else—something indefinable.
As I ran my fingers through the soft hair around his hairline, his breathing began to slow, and the muscles in his neck began losing tension. When his lips parted, I thought he might say something. Instead, he glanced down at my lips then back up again.
My mouth suddenly felt very dry, so I licked my lips. “To be here like this with you…” I moved closer to him, closing the gap between us. “To see the steps you’re taking for me....I just…I’m sorry…I just can’t help what I’m feeling. About you. For you. With you.” I held my breath for a second, partly thinking he’d fling me off of him and bolt for the door. But he didn’t.
Instead, he reached up and curled a strand of my hair around his index finger, gently tucking it behind my ear. I watched out of the corner of my eye, anticipating the moment his fingers would graze my skin. When his forefinger brushed against the edge of my ear lobe, I shivered beneath his touch. A flash of heat pulsed through my body, lighting my insides on fire. The hair on the back of my neck stood at attention. Every nerve ending on my skin ached to be touched by his gentle fingers. He must have noticed me quivering because his stormy, brooding eyes flicked toward the delicate skin of my neck, where I could feel my heartbeat pounding in the hollow crevice between my collarbones.
The way he looked at me, craving something and yet denying himself the pleasure, made me feel light-headed. Kiss me already, my mind demanded. He looked at me like he could do much more than kiss me. The quickening I felt down below was proof that I’d let him.

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So Much It Hurts (So Much It Hurts, #1)

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Melanie Dawn is a thinker, a dreamer, and a hopeless romantic. She's an avid reader who recently discovered her love of writing as well. When her head isn't in the clouds, she spends her time as a a jack of all trades to her family. Melanie resides in the hills of North Carolina with her husband, her three children, and her cat.

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