Saturday, June 13, 2015

Never Let You Go

This review may contain SPOILERS

Never Let You Go by Katy Regnery

Never Let You Go
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Date of Publication: 6.12.15
ISBN: 978-0-9912045-8-8
ASIN: Available on release day
Number of pages: 450
Word Count: 141,298
Book Description

Regret, betrayal, kidnapping, loss, madness, abuse, passion, love.

In this modern retelling of Hansel and Gretel, thirteen-year-old foster children Griselda and Holden escape from their abductor after three years of brutal captivity, and try to cross the Shenandoah River on foot. Tragically, one of them makes it to safety, but the other is left behind.

Ten years later, Griselda’s boyfriend drags her to a fight club grudge match, and her world is turned upside down when she watches Holden step into the ring.

Though the connection between them is fierce, bitter regret, simmering rage, and a tangle of physical and emotional scars lie between them, just as dangerous as the white water of the Shenandoah.

Never Let You Go is a story of fear and hope, defeat and survival, and two people—once profoundly broken—who discover that love is the only thing that can make them whole again.

Excerpt from Never Let You Go

This girl. Everything about this girl made him want, made him long, made him yearn to change his life, start his life, finally live his life after a decade of going through the motions. He wanted to get a better job to take care of her. He wanted to stop fighting because she disapproved of it. He wanted enough money to have every tally mark lasered from his arm. He wanted some sort of guarantee that she’d never, ever leave him again. And he wanted all of it now. Yesterday. Ten years ago, and every day since.

Standing up slowly, he let his body settle into an upright position before taking his time crossing the hall to the bathroom and then heading out into the common room.

She stood at the stove with her back to him, her feet bare, her hair in a ponytail, the mouthwatering smell of fried chicken filling the entire cabin with goodness. Holden leaned against the wall, crossing his arms over his chest, a grin taking over his face as he watched her.

“It’s just the thought of you—the very thought of you, my love,” she sang, using a fork to transfer a golden leg to a paper towel–covered plate.

As she reached forward to turn off the stove, some of the leftover grease in the frying pan spat up at her and burned her wrist.

“Ow!” she yelped. “Damn it!”

With a sudden rush of adrenaline, Holden crossed the kitchen in two strides. He turned on the faucet and grabbed her arm to thrust her wrist under the cold stream. He held it there, wincing at the red blotch developing on her white skin. When he lifted his eyes to hers, she was staring at him with a surprised, curious expression.

"It’s just a little burn.”

He shrugged, still holding her arm, staring down at the burn.

“You were asleep,” she said.

“You were singing.”

“Too loud?”


“You remember that song?”

“I remember.”

He slid his palm down her arm to cradle her wrist from below.

“The stove’s still on,” she said.

Without dropping her hand, he took a step closer to her, reached around her waist with his free hand, and flicked the burner off.

“I made fried chicken,” she said softly, her cheeks flushed.

“I can smell it.”

“You like fried chicken. I mean . . . you must have mentioned it to me a hundred times when we were—”

“It’s still my favorite.”

They were both silent for a few seconds, and Holden knew he should drop her hand and step away from her, but he couldn’t. She’d hurt herself doing something kind for him, and it just about shredded his heart.

Just another moment, he told himself. A few more seconds touching her and then I’ll move away.

“Sorry about the singing,” she whispered, unmoving, her breath kissing his throat.

He jerked his neck to face her, his thumb curling into her palm, his eyes searching hers for mercy.

“I loved it,” he murmured.

She stepped forward, closing the distance between them, her lips parting, her breasts grazing his chest through his T-shirt as she stared up at him.

“Holden, I . . .”

Every breath she took seemed to draw him closer to her, as if she was breathing him, not air.

He leaned forward, into her, his free hand reaching for hers.

“Griselda . . .”

Her eyes, dark blue and churning, flicked to his lips, lingered there, then slid back up his face and seized his.

His self-control snapped.

After all, he was only human.

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About the Author

Award-winning and Amazon bestselling author Katy Regnery started her writing career by enrolling in a short story class in January 2012. One year later, she signed her first contract for a winter romance entitled By Proxy.

Now a hybrid author who publishes both independently and traditionally, Katy claims authorship of the six-book Heart of Montana series, the six-book English Brothers series, and a Kindle Worlds novella entitled Four Weddings and a Fiasco: The Wedding Date. Katy’s short story “The Long Way Home” appears in the first Romance Writers of America anthology, Premiere, and she has published two stand-alone novels, Playing for Love at Deep Haven and the Amazon bestseller The Vixen and the Vet, which is book one in Katy’s a m o d e r n f a i r y t a l e collection. The Vixen and the Vet was nominated for a RITA® Award in 2015.

Katy lives in the relative wilds of northern Fairfield County, Connecticut, where her writing room looks out at the woods, and her husband, two young children, and two dogs create just enough cheerful chaos to remind her that the very best love stories begin at home.

Connect with Katy

Katy LOVES connecting with her readers and answers every e-mail, message, tweet, and post personally! Click below to connect with Katy!

My Review

I was lucky enough to receive a copy of this book from the author, Rock Star PR and NetGalley.

First off let me start by saying this author has become an automatic read for me. Her writing style is great, and I love her stories.

Griselda is a 23 year old nanny, shes an ex-foster kid and shes a survivor. When she was ten she was kidnapped while on vacation with her foster family in West Virginia, near the Shenandoah river. She volunteered to go for new supplies and her foster brother Holden went with her. They never got to the store, Caleb Foster took them and he didn't let them go.

Holden knew that something was wrong with the man insisting that he and Griselda go with him. His parents had taught him about stranger danger, but he wouldn't let Griselda go without him. After the door shut on the truck the terror really began. They lived in a cellar shrouded in complete darkness and by day they worked the field of vegetables, then canned them. Caleb Foster was crazy. He called them Seth and Ruth, his long dead brother and sister that he was convinced were doing incestuous things together. He beat them daily, made them scrub the floors and just in general worked them to the bone.

Griselda knew that they would die if they didn't get out of there. One day he would kill them. One night she told Holden that they had to run the next day. It hadn't rained and if they made it to the river they would be free, the Man (thats they what they called Caleb) would be gone for church and he'd never know until he got back.  So they ran, and ran. It seemed like they'd never get to the river. All of the sudden, Cutter (the Man's dog) could be heard coming behind them.

Griselda relives that day all the time. The day that they ran and she got away and Holden was caught by the Man. She has been looking for Holden ever since. Nothing has ever hit her radar, the PI she hired couldn't find him either. She doesn't feel like she can live her life in a good way because he sacrificed himself for her. Now her jerk boyfriend Jonah wants her to go to West Virginia, the same area she was kidnapped in, to a cabin.  Even though she can't stand the thought of going back to that place she does. She even goes to a backwoods fight club, under protest.

Caleb told Holden that he killed her, and in that moment Holden's life was over. He loved Gris, and now she was dead, what else did he have to live for? Now he was Seth and he didn't care what happened to himself. When he was 17 he made his way back to West Virginia and stayed. He fights in a fight club on the weekends to make extra money and works at a glass factory.  One night he notices a girl in the crowd, its her. It's Gris and he doesn't know how that happened, she died 10 years ago!

Griselda can't believe that he's been this close to her for so long, and that he's going by Seth! She has to stay and understand what's going on, what went on after she got away.

This story was dark and deep. It's a long story and detailed but I inhaled it in a day, all 450 pages of it. I loved it so much. Holden and Griselda loved each other from first sight, and I think that's what kept them strong during the three years they were held by Caleb Foster. Their feelings after she escaped, the devastation of being told that there was no sight of Holden or Caleb Foster after Griselda made it to the police could be felt, it jumped off the pages. The utter sense of loss Holden felt when Caleb told him he killed her was palpable.  You feel like you're watching a story reading the words.  Happiness is in this story too. Their love after they find each other again is like fireworks. They spark against each other. Another beautifully written story by this author. Please check it out and leave her love in the form of a review.

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