Monday, March 9, 2015

[Early Review] - Confess by Colleen Hoover

Release date: March 10, 2015
Published by: Atria Books
Buy Links: Amazon  | B&N | Kobo

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover, a new novel about risking everything for love—and finding your heart somewhere between the truth and lies.

Auburn Reed has her entire life mapped out. Her goals are in sight and there’s no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to find a deep attraction to the enigmatic artist who works there, Owen Gentry.  For once, Auburn takes a risk and puts her heart in control, only to discover Owen is keeping major secrets from coming out. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything important to Auburn, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it.  The last thing Owen wants is to lose Auburn, but he can’t seem to convince her that truth is sometimes as subjective as art. All he would have to do to save their relationship is confess. But in this case, the confession could be much more destructive than the actual sin…

OMG!  Words cannot explain how much I absolutely adore this book!  Amber's and Owen's story is sweet and romantic, laced with self sacrifice, true love and loyalty.  There is betrayal, manipulation, incredible sadness and happiness, true love and goodness in the pages of this book.  And the idea behind this book?  Pure.  Genius.  Seriously.  I don't know how Colleen Hoover came up with the theme of "confessions," but it is artfully woven throughout the pages of this entire book.  The confession theme is not superficial - it is many things and everything and inspiration, all rolled up into a grand slam of a love story.  The best part for me, by far, was the way this book comes full circle by the end.

Amber is struck by tragedy at a young age.  Being the oldest daughter of many siblings to parents that didn't have much in the way of money or power, Amber fell in love with a boy named Adam.  This boy became ill, and she followed him and his family to Texas where he was treated for his illness.  Amber is forced to return home to Oregon, much to her and her boyfriend's horror. Unfortunately, at the age of 15, there wasn't much Amber could do.

Flash forward four years, and Amber has made her way back to Texas.  She is a hairdresser, but it's not her passion in life.  It was a quick fix for her.  She needed to get to Texas as soon as possible and start her adult life.  Realizing that she needs to get a second job to make ends meet, she wanders past a doorway that is littered with other people's confessions.  Some are light-hearted, others are deep and heavy.  Intrigued, she accepts a job from Owen, the gallery owner.  Owen is only 20, but is an incredible talent.  The confessions are a very big part of Owen's life.  He has a troubled past, as well, and has flitted from girlfriend to girlfriend, never finding a person that he wanted to risk anything for.  His father is an attorney, and has a huge problem that Owen is constantly dealing with, out of love, loyalty and guilt.

I love the characters so much in this book.  Amber and Owen were so realistic and dealing with real world problems.  Sacrifice is a main theme in this book, portrayed by both main characters.  Amber sacrifices everything for the love of her life, including her happiness and love, while Owen sacrifices for his family on numerous occasions.  Amber and Owen are both selfless characters that I was really rooting for.  They just needed one break to make their lives complete, and it is a long time coming.

Trey is a great villain.  He is connected to Adam, and is the complete opposite of Amber.  Trey is selfish and cruel, willing to commit any crime to get what he feels he deserves.  The relationship between Amber and Trey creeped me out.  I just felt nauseated reading about them and the actions of Trey.  I don't think Trey had one likeable trait.  Trey's mother, Lydia, is also a selfish, manipulative bitch.  This woman would do anything, and use anyone, to get what she wants.  I really couldn't stand either of these characters, but they made for great villains.  

The one thing I can criticize about this book is the similarity in story line between Miles from Ugly Love and Amber from Confess.  By no means do these two characters in the Hoover-verse share the same back story, but there were many similarities in my opinion.  I don't want to spoil the connection I saw, but would love to discuss with anyone after they have read both books.

Colleen Hoover has proven that she is the top writer in her genre.  This book blends fantastic writing with deep emotion and great continuity.  The characters were lovable, believable, intelligent and intense.  Hoover has a gift for writing characters that are fearsome and vulnerable at the same time.  Everything in this book is explained in time, and I felt that this story was woven together masterfully.  I enjoyed the plotting and the change in PoV.  The creativity in this book abounds - from the idea of the confessions to the art work, I was in love with the artistic side of this story.  I loved how the story was structured and how it came full circle in the end.  

If you are a Colleen Hoover fan, this book is an absolute must.  I can't say if I liked this more than Ugly Love, but it is definitely in the same league.  Confess and Ugly Love are a tie for my favorite Hoover books.   If you are a fan of new adult books, you must give Hoover a try.  I keep reading her books and thinking that she couldn't possibly write anything better, and then I prove myself wrong when I get a new Hoover book.  She really is that good.   


Melissa (My words and pages) said...

Wow. Great to hear! Sounds like the author did everything right on. :D Thank you!

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