“Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere,
They’re in each other all along.”
They say that life is full of choices. When you’re young and idealistic, you believe that the path you choose is the road that will lead you to your destiny.
But what if, along the way, fate decides to step in, and no amount of logic or rationality or even prayers can save you from your fortune? When the sacrifices you make, the love that you find, and the bright promise of the future are all snatched away from you, you’re left alone to pick up the pieces of your life.
This is a story about love, found in a faraway place by two very unlikely people. It is also a story about friendship and loyalty and fighting for what you have despite the illogical mystery of fate. It is a story of faith and acceptance, and learning that even the best-laid plans are powerless against the alignment of the universe.
From the beaches of Thailand to the streets of New York, three friends, Anna, Dante, and Jude will learn the hard way that once providence steps in, there is nothing in the world that can change what is truly meant to be.
Author: Christine Brae
Part of a Series: No. Standalone.
Release Date: January 22, 2016
Publisher: To be sold exclusively by National Book Store
No. of Pages: 289 pages
Price: None. (Copy provided by author)
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Fiction, Faith
The whole book was centered on the life of a certain Anna Dillon and her struggles in trying to find forgiveness, repentance, happiness and her faith in the Lord. I loved this book so much and I’m so glad I’m one of the few who read it before it was out in the world. I’m more than happy to be able to share my thoughts with my readers.
The characters in this book were all impressive. Anna, Dante, and Jude were all very relevant in telling the story of a troubled woman with a troubled life. They complemented each other, contributing to the developments of each character so as to showcase great character development. Anna started out as an elite protagonist who couldn’t find it in her heart to forgive, but as the story progressed, she turned out to be one mature lady who could speak her mind about important matters. On the other hand, both Jude and Dante also had their own impressive improvements, even if the book didn’t focus on them as much as it did on Anna. As they followed through with the story, I saw how in a span of a few years, both Jude and Dante became such mature men capable of loving truly and they lived their lives as if it was their last day. I loved the three of them so much.
Christine’s way of writing got a lot more poetic after her past three novels. I don’t know if this is the effect of writing a book that’s related to Christian faith, but there’s something about the way she wrote In This Life that made me tear up in reading page after page. The way the whole book was written was breathtaking, and yet it was still basically comprehensible. Christine used beautiful words that even Young Adults could understand, and she pulled it off! Just like her other books, In This Life is a great piece of art. If you actually set aside the steamy scenes that’s meant for only Adults to read, this could actually pass for a Young Adult Novel.
The turn of events were absolutely interesting as well. The scenes felt like a lot of technical and creative imagination went into it. From the adventures that Anna, Dante, and Jude went on, to the scenes that took place in New York City, everything about the arrangement of the scenes were perfectly well written. This, then, led to an incredibly breezy pacing, and you know how I feel about this. After realizing how fast the story was going, I slowed my reading down to a minimum so as to savor this wonderful book. Seeing that it’s just a standalone and I didn’t want for it to end, I had to slow down. And you know what? That might have been the best decision I made while reading In This Life. It should not be read in one seating for you to be able to appreciate every page, every detail of it. It is meant to be savored.
And lastly, with regards to the ending, this book gave justice to a roster of well-developed characters and a unique story line. As the story came to a close, readers are then, given closure after having known Anna, Jude, and Dante. Christine really pulled it off. It’s not the type of ending that will leave a fan completely happy about, but it was satisfying and fulfilling. Questions were answered. Relationships became final. And proper closure was given to those who were given insufficient back stories. I say that it was a great way to end a great book. Although, just to give everyone a glimpse as to how it was for me, I was actually in a bus en route for home when I finished In This Life. I was crying and sobbing uncontrollably and people noticed. It was embarassing, yes, but I don’t regret shedding tears for this book.
“In This Life is a great New Adult novel from Christine Brae, and it’s a great read to start your 2016, that is if you’re into tear-jerking and heart-shattering stories.”
Characters – 4.5.00
Plot – 5.00
Writing Style – 5.00
Pacing – 4.50
Ending – 5.00
TOTAL – 4.8 / 5 Stars
Also, there’s a song that I associated with this book, because I feel like the lyrics of the song actually speaks to Anna, with regards to how she feels after having her heart broken by one of the men she’s involved with.
“Look, don’t get me wrong,
I know there is no tomorrow.
All I ask is if this is my last night with you,
hold me like I’m more than just a friend.
Give me a memory I can use.
Take me by the hand while we do what lovers do.
It matters how this ends,
cause what if I never love again?”
Listen to the official playlist of In This Life! Click here.
So for this giveaway, Christine is going big! Up for grabs are 3 Signed Copies of In This Life, and a trip for two (2) to Cebu, Philippines including hotel accommodations of up to Php15,000.00! Click the links below and join the giveaway! 🙂
“Secrets ruin lives. And lies are born simply to protect them.” – Anna
“Sometimes, we think we can be with someone forever but that’s not always the case.” – Anna
“Interesting. You leave your problems behind at home only to come to a place with bigger problems.” – Dante
“What kind of rage could emerge so suddenly, damage everything in its path, when all I’ve seen of this sea is its serenity, its tranquility? What happened to make it so angry at the world?” – Anna
“They say that love is found in the darkest moment, when you’re lost and alone, in desperate search of answers.” – Anna
“You are beauty and love and religion all wrapped up in one.” – Anna
“No matter your faith, I truly believe that there is a plan that’s written in the stars and each one of us is merely a part of that constellation.” – Anna
“The thing about the clouds is that they never stay in one place for very long. The winds will come and carry them far away from you and me. And when that happens, the sun will come out and the sky will become blue once again. And our lanterns, you will see them, Anna. Dante is holding on to them just for us.” – Jude
“There is sacredness in tears, someone once said. What I learned that day was that without pain there could be no deliverance; without sin, no salvation. That in this life, it is only through sadness that one could truly experience joy. And although you are shaped by experience, you are ultimately defined by your destiny” – Anna
About the Author:
Christine Brae is a full time career woman who thought she could write a book about her life and then run away as far as possible from it. She never imagined that her words would touch the hearts of so many women with the same story to tell. In This Life is her fourth book, and is set to come out on January 22, 2015.
When not listening to the voices in her head or spending late nights at the office, Christine can be seen shopping for shoes and purses, running a half marathon or spending time with her husband and three children in Chicago.
This book tour is hosted by yours truly and Rafael of The Royal Polar Bear Reads in cooperation with Christine Brae’s Philippine Street Team!