Thursday, August 8, 2013

[Quick Interview and Review] - The Redemption of Callie & Kayden by Jessica Sorensen

Today I am thrilled to be the blog tour stop for Jessica Sorenson's fantastic The Coincidence series.  I previously reviewed The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden here.  I knew immediately after finishing that book that I would be begging for a chance to read book number 2, The Redemption of Callie & Kayden I have a quick Q&A with author Jessica Sorenson, followed by my review of The Redemption of Callie & Kayden!  Enjoy!

Q:  The second book in the series, THE REDEMPTION OF CALLIE & KAYDEN, is available now! What can readers expect from that story?

The Redemption of Callie and Kayden picks up right where The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden left off. Kayden is struggling with recovering and refuses to talk about his secrets. Callie is a little stronger in this book and she sort of helps Kayden finally speak up about his horrible past and the abuse he went through. In this one, their journey is about falling in love, healing, and letting go of their secrets.

Q: Without giving too much away, what was your favorite scene or chapter to write in The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden?

My favorite scene was the rain scene, which is on the cover.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I read, travel, watch television, go to movies.

The dark secret Kayden has kept hidden for years is out. Worse, he's facing charges for battery. The only way he stands a chance against the charges is if Callie speaks up, something he'll never ask her to do.  Callie knows Kayden is going back to his dark place and desperately wants to save him. But saving him means admitting her secrets aloud. Callie and Kayden are stronger than they think, especially when they're together. Together they move forward, face their demons, and finally start to heal from their traumatic pasts

The Redemption of Callie & Kayden picks up very soon after the events at the end of The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden unfold.  Kayden is separated from his friends and his life as his mother (if you want to call her that) directs his recovery.  Callie, Luke and Seth are all forced to return to school without Kayden, which leaves a bit of a hole in each of their hearts.  It's not until Luke and Callie decide that they have had enough with the lack of communication with Kayden that they return to Wyoming.

Kayden is not the same young man that he was in The Coincidence.  He's still gorgeous and vulnerable, but the light seems to have been snuffed from his eyes.  Before The Coincidence, Kayden had a relatively happy existence apart from his family:  he finally had a girl he had deep feelings for, a spot on his college football team, and great friends to help him make new memories outside of the house of horrors he grew up in.  In Redemption, we find a broken down Kayden.  A Kayden that doesn't believe he deserves anything, especially the one thing that can save him - Callie.

Now Callie, on the other hand, has changed for the better.  She is becoming more and more confident with each passing day.  She has come to the realization that she is not at fault for the things that have happened to her, and she has become a much stronger character.  She refuses to give up on Kayden, no matter what he says or does.  This tenacity is what drives the plot throughout this book.  Callie is still dealing with a cold mother.  Seriously - her mom isn't quite as bad as Kayden's, but she's a bitch in her own right.  It isn't until the end of this book that we see Callie's mom soften and act the way a mother should act.  I still cannot fathom how Callie's mom never suspected that anything bad had happened to Callie while growing up.  Her mom is oblivious to so many things that go on around her!  

"I didn't want to leave Afton, but my mom threatened me, saying if I failed the semester, she wasn't going to let me back in the house for Christmas break.  I'd have nowhere to go."

Seth is the voice of reason in this book.  He continues to push Callie in a positive and healthy direction.  He challenges her to try new things and to come outside of her comfort zone.  He also becomes an integral part of this little group of friends, developing tight bonds with both Kayden and Luke.  I like that he has his own life with Greyson, but at times, I kind of felt like he was sacrificing himself (or hiding from his own problems) by being with Callie through every step of her journey.

"I believe in irrational, fleeting decisions that keep life interesting.  And life needs to be interesting because we've got only one of them to live."

When Kayden and Callie finally get some alone time, they burn up the pages.  Kayden is completely owned by Callie, even though she doesn't know it.  He tries to make decisions based on what is good for her, instead of what is good for him, but is able to make a well-informed decision about his life by the end of this book.  As lovely as Callie is, Kayden's main attraction to her is her mind and her heart - and the way he believes she saved him more than once.  Kayden's journey is tortuous in this book, and he deals with demons that he thought he'd never have to dig up again.  And just when you think his parents can do no more wrong...BAM!...he is faced with one last shitty thing that they do to him.

"He tastes like mint and need."

There are only a few things that made me knock off a star for this review.  One is the idea that Callie begins to sacrifice herself a bit too much for Kayden's well-being.  I get it - she's willing to be selfless to the point of hurting herself because she loves him.  It's almost like she lost a part of her barely existent identity in parts of this book.  I like a strong Callie not a Callie repeating that she'll do whatever Kayden wants.  

"We can be insane together."

I was both happy and sad with the ending on this book.  I was happy in regards to where Callie and Kayden are in their relationship, I'm happy where Callie ended up in regards to her secret and her family, and I'm happy with the trip Kayden took to reclaim a part of his past.  I just think that the execution of the final pages felt abrupt.  I don't know if I necessarily wanted more, but I know that I felt like the book just kind of ended.  I feel more Callie and Kayden coming to us in the future, though!

This is a story about love, faith, friendship, and recovery.  If you are a fan of the New Adult genre, then Jessica Sorensen is a must-read author.  She writes beautifully and is able to take a very hard subject matter and give it depth and life.  Jessica has a knack for writing damaged characters that have faced horrible events in their lives, and she makes it all feel very real.  I can't wait to see where she takes The Coincidence series in the future.

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Beautiful Disaster said...

Cool interview and thanks for the review. I will add to my TBR stack. It sounds like a great read.
Thanks :-)

erin said...

sounds awesome!!! Thanks for the great post!

bn100 said...

Very nice review

BookLady said...

Thanks for sharing the great interview and review!

Anonymous said...


Mary Preston said...

It sounds like I need to read the first book. I'm going to enjoy these.

megblod said...

I'll have to put this on my TBR list.

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