Maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1Gt7jsy
I wanted to jump.
He made me fall.
As a celebrity, I lived in the public eye, but somewhere along the way, I’d lost myself in the spotlight.
Until he found me.
Sam Rivers was a gorgeous, tattooed stranger who saved my life with nothing more than a simple conversation.
But we were both standing on that bridge for a reason the night we met. The secrets of our pasts brought us together—and then tore us apart.
Could we find a reason to hold on as life constantly pulled us down?
Or maybe there’s only one direction to go when two people fall in love at rock bottom—up.
“Thank fuck!” Sam said, swinging the door open before Devon even had the car in park.
“Oh, this isn’t my place. We’re just dropping Devon off. I’m about twenty minutes across town?” I tossed him a sugary smile then boldly shifted my hand into his lap, purposely brushing the bulge under his denim.
Grabbing my wrist, he narrowed his eyes and called out, “Devon, I’m gonna need to borrow a bedroom.”
I burst out laughing as Devon cursed loudly.
“Fine. This is my place. No smoking inside though,” I snipped as I climbed from the SUV.
“You better have some seriously exciting extracurricular activities to keep me distracted, then.”
“I have Ping-Pong!”
“Not exactly what I was thinking.” He mischievously cocked his head. “But I guess paddles and balls are as good a start as any.” Dipping down, he hoisted me over his shoulder. “Point me to the Ping-Pong table, my lady.”
I didn’t. I laughed hysterically as he carried me inside. Then I directed him to my bedroom instead.
I heard Devon locking up the house as Sam deposited me on the bed.
“Jesus. This view.” He pushed the curtains back. “Why the hell would you ever go up to the bridge when you have this here?”
“I don’t know,” I answered, pulling my earrings off and placing them on my nightstand.
Oh, but I knew. It might not have been what had originally sent me up that bridge, but it was why my feet carried me back every night. And that very reason was currently standing in front of me with entirely too much clothing on.
“You want a beer?” I asked, sliding my shoes off.
“Nah, I’m good.” He faced me, and I could tell something was off with his demeanor. He didn’t inch any closer. Instead, his lips were tight and his eyes uncomfortably flashed around the room.
It suddenly didn’t feel like Sam standing in front of me at all.
He felt like a stranger who had just come face-to-face with Levee Williams.
“Why are you looking at me like that? Are you about to freak out?” I whispered, nervously moistening my lips.
He shoved his hands into his pockets. “I’m not really sure yet. But I’m gonna need you to stop licking your lips long enough for me to figure it out.” His mouth cracked into a wide grin, and my shoulders relaxed.
Now that was a flash of my Sam.
“Want to tell me what’s going on?” I asked.
“It’s just… I think this is the first time I’ve realized that you’re some big-time celebrity. I might be in over my head here, Designer Shoes.”
“I just make music, Sam.” I returned his smile and very slowly prowled in his direction. “Imagine how I feel though. You’re Samuel Nathan Rivers. A tough, tattooed furniture designer who makes six figures a year but is too afraid to tell his mommy he votes democratic.” I giggled as he frowned humorously. Stopping in front of him, I dragged a fingernail down his chest then teased the waistband of his jeans. “Have you considered that maybe I’m the one who’s in over her head here?” I leaned forward to nip at his lips, but he spun us around.
“Excellent point. I’m going to need you to try really hard to keep it together, Levee. You haven’t even seen my six-pack and huge cock, yet.” He smirked and attempted to return my nip, but I stepped out of his reach.
“You brought beer and chicken?” I feigned excitement.
That one corny joke was all it took to bring my Sam back completely.
With a sexy smile and a coy shrug, he seductively backed me toward the bed. “What can I say? I like to be prepared.”
“Clearly,” I breathed.
He moved in close so his lips were only a centimeter away, but for as much as I wanted him, it was agonizing. “Clearly,” he repeated, his smoky yet sweet breath breezing across my mouth.
His strong arm looped around my waist, tugging me against his chest, while I stared into his hooded eyes, eagerly waiting for him to make a move.
“You’re overdoing it, Lev. I know this job isn’t exactly nine-to-five, but it’s not twenty-four-seven, either. You have to stop being Levee Williams all the time and just be you.”
“I know,” I responded.
I didn’t though. I felt like a robot parading around in a lost woman’s body.
Toss in the occasional song.
What little time I did manage to carve out for myself was spent at various children’s hospitals across the country.
Watch a child die.
With every day that passed, the smile became less and less genuine, the pose more and more forced, and the turn took me further and further away from who I really was.
My career was soaring while, personally, I was plummeting. Every single day felt like a terrifying free fall in no particular direction. I was stuck in the middle with no way up—or down.
“You remember that girl, right?” Henry asked, tucking a hair behind my ear.
I did remember her. She was fun and carefree. She loved going out and dancing at nightclubs until the very last song played. She slept until noon if she could. Then, fueled by coffee alone, she’d spend the day with a guitar strapped around her neck and a notepad at her side. She had a huge heart, but she knew her limitations.
Oh, I remembered that girl. I just couldn’t figure out how to get back to her.
Title: The Fall Up
Author: Aly Martinez
Release Date: October 30, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Humor
Series or Standalone: Standalone Series (The Baby Saga #5)
Rating: ★★★1/2 Stars (Rounded to 4* for Goodreads & Amazon)
Until I came across this book in my blogging travels, I hadn’t had the pleasure of reading a book by this author before. There was something about this book though, the idea presented in the blurb and just what that would mean for the characters within the pages that demand that I read it.
Now that I’ve finished the book though, and have had time to mull over my thoughts on the entire thing, I have to say that I’m glad I took the chance.
With this story we have two people dealing with their own unresolved feelings with losses they have suffered in their lives. Both similar in the sense of loss, but different in terms of manner and how in the end they chose to deal with it as time moved on. These are not perfect people, but when they are placed together, there can be no denial that they offer something to the other that I do not believe they would have found anywhere else. They are imperfectly perfect together.
As far as characters go, I have to say that Sam came across stronger to me than Levee did. That’s not to say that I didn’t feel for her, because from the very start I did. I knew there was something deep seeded going on there and I was intrigued to find out just what that was. I felt for her then, but it wasn’t with the same ferocity as Sam.
Right from the very beginning, even if there was sarcasm and jokes thrown around, you can see that deep down inside and even right on the surface, he’s an inherently good guy. Sure, he has some of the typical male traits that you see in books and even in real life, but apart from those, his heart was pure. He wanted to save Levee even when he didn’t understand why. When he didn’t even have her name or know who she was.
And it never let up. Not once. Even when there were points where he could have washed his hands of her, the fame and everything that came along with it, he hung in there. He stayed and he fought and while doing so, he showed her another way of being. Levee was able to step away from the way her life had been up until that point and see the real her underneath. Even if the parts weren’t all that pretty.
This book in my estimation was paced very well. It all flowed along nicely and there wasn’t any parts where I felt that things were too drawn out or dragging. In fact, the opposite happened here, which is part of the reason the rating is the way it is.
I felt that with the mental illness backdrop here, it was glossed over more than it was developed. With the way Levee was acting, her reasoning for doing some of the things she does, I was expecting to see it delved into a little more. An explanation for the way she is, or at least a realization of what was truly going on with her and I didn’t get it. While I did understand a lot of her motivations in this and I enjoyed being inside of her head when she wasn’t openly talking about them, I still felt like something was missing. Something that would have connected me deeper to the story and to her as a character. A connection I had no issue with whatsoever with Sam.
Her bodyguard. I should have seen how it would all turn out in the very beginning when Sam made the joke about him being her Costner, but I didn’t. As time wore on though, it became painfully apparently how this aspect was going to play out in the end and I didn’t enjoy the predictability of it. I think time and attention could have been given in other areas instead of this and because of that, it caused me to lose a bit of the original feel of the book when I started.
Overall though, there were more hits than misses. There were points at which I swooned over Sam, laughed at their natural humorous banter back and forth and even teared up a little. (Sam’s background was especially rough to get through emotionally).
Would I read this author again? Yes. She has a unique story telling ability and the words do flow quite effortlessly. I’m interested to see what she comes up with next as this story did contain one hell of an original idea.
If you’ve read this author before, you’ll love this. If you’re looking for a romance that’s not picture perfect and is more of a journey, but ends happily for both people involved, again, you’ll definitely enjoy this. I’m just sad that I didn’t love it as much as some of the other people that have read it.
My thanks to the author and all others involved in letting me read this before the official release. It was a pleasure and I’m glad I got the chance to find a new author.
About the Author:
Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in South Carolina, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.
After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. Five books later, she shows no signs of slowing. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.