Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Review: Where Life Takes You by Claudia Y. Burgoa

18443722Rating:  ★★★★ stars
Date published: July 31st, 2013
Publisher: Literally Alpaca Illustrations, LLC
Synopsis: Becca Trent lived her childhood next to a cruel woman — her mom —who lived to torment and neglect her. During her high school years, her mother married; bringing home not only a new husband, but a step sister her same age. The latter took over her Mom's role — making Becca's life miserable. Including stealing Ian — Becca's best friend and boyfriend — Lisa treated her worse than her mother had for the previous fifteen years. A couple years later, thing ended up in tragedy. 

Becca buried that part of her life in the deep corners of her psyche, caught between sanity and nightmares. Between therapy, work and her constantly looming past she can't seem to find room to breathe. The memories of her late step-sister, Lisa, are her closest company. 

Her best friend, Dan gives her that family love she always lacked. Everything was close to perfect, until everything and everyone from her past came back. Now she's trying to figure out how to survive and keep that bond which seems now to be held together by a thread.
What I Thought:

This book is a surprise.  The cover hints at desolation and loneliness, but it doesn't encompass every thing this story had to offer.  I was expecting to be shocked by some of the revelations, but at the end of the book I had no idea how Becca could be functioning after all she went through.  Becca is one tough mamma jamma.  

Claudia Burgoa has written a tale that's easy to get drawn into and very hard to put down.  It's full of twists you may or may not see coming.  I liked that chemistry between Becca and her love interest was very much a slow burn.  For a while I was wondering if anything was going to happen at all between them and if I was setting myself up for a big let down.  

This book really deals with the mental issues left behind after sustained abuse.  I loved Becca but felt like she was too much of a martyr.  I wish she'd handled things earlier and more aggressively.  I hurt as I read about what she went through growing up.  It made me think about all the kids who slip through the cracks with people who shouldn't be parents and how they handle all the nasty stuff that comes at them.  I'm still trying to internalize everything I read.  Basically this book is really good and I'd strongly recommend you read it if you're a fan of realistic fiction.  Oh and the book does end on a cliffhanger, so considered yourself warned and have the second book handy so you can find out what happens next!

Purchase Links:

About the Author 
Claudia lives in Colorado with her family and three dogs. Two beagles who believe they are human, and a bichon who thinks she’s a beagle. While managing life, she works as a CFO at a small IT Company. She’s a dreamer who enjoys music, laughter and a good story.

* I won a signed paperback of this book.  All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for them in any manner.*

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