"Carnage" by Lesley Jones
This book put me through the ringer; I’m not going to lie. We meet Georgia Layton at the tender age of 11 almost in the exact moment that she lays eyes on Sean McCarthy and in that moment, the rarest of rare happens – they recognize each other for the once in a lifetime love that they are. They both know with one glance that the other is their forever soul mate.The rest of the book is a 20+-year journey with them as they figure out exactly what it means to live their everyday lives and love as if they’re in a fairy tale. And it’s not easy. People often think that if they could just find their one great love, everything else just falls into place. But Gia and Maca are here to show us all that loving each other is the easy part. Living is hard.
This book has an extensive cast of characters that includes the entirety of Georgia’s family (3 brothers, her parents and an uncle), her best friends, another potential love interest for both of them and several other people who play pivotal roles in different parts of each of their lives. The story is told in such a way that none of these characters feel in the least way trivial – they all have a very specific role to play and they play it to the best of their ability. But always at center stage are Georgia and Sean. Georgia is mostly wise beyond her years with a wicked sharp tongue. Sean is every girl’s dream – sensitive and sweet, a rock star (he’s the lead singer for the band, Carnage) and deadly handsome. Together they are the essence of what a fairytale should be – perfection balanced out with a little humor, a little sarcasm and a lot of great sex. Lesley Jones crafts this book beautifully. It’s easy to read, but every single page just pulls you deeper and deeper into the story; demanding larger and larger investment from you as you walk with these characters through their lives. She brought big, boisterous laughs out of me just as easily as huge, ugly-cry-fests with a good portion of cheering, yelling, screaming and gasping all thrown in for good measure. Sean and Georgia have an epic love story. You know it from the very beginning. You know that it’s going to be a ride you won’t soon forget. And I can guarantee that you won’t.
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