Monday, February 18, 2013

Blog Tour: Pieces by Michelle Davidson Argyle - Review, Giveaway


Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Pieces by by Michelle Davidson Argyle, hosted by Xpresso Book Tours.  Today's stop features a review of The Breakaway (book #1) and Pieces (Book #2), and also a giveaway for a paperback copy of The Breakaway, which you can enter below.  You can check out the rest of the stops on the tour here.  
Thanks so much for stopping by.


THE BREAKAWAY - Rhemalda Publishing / May 1st, 2012
When Naomi Jensen is kidnapped, it takes her parents two days to realize she’s missing. Escape isn’t high on her list of priorities when all she has to return to is an abusive boyfriend and parents who never paid much attention to her. For the first time in her life she’s part of a family—even if it is a family of criminals. But she’s still a captive. In a desperate attempt to regain some control in her life, Naomi embarks on a dangerous plan to make one of her kidnappers think she’s falling in love with him. The plan works too well, and when faced with the chance to escape, Naomi isn’t sure she wants to take it.


My Thoughts:  As the story begins, Naomi Jensen find herself waking up in a motel room with a strange man looking at her.  She doesn't understand why she is there, but soon realizes she has been taken because of something she might have seen.  What that may be, however, she has no clue.  Unfortunately, her kidnappers don't believe her.  Eric is the rougher of the two captors and hits her when she doesn't give him the information he wants.  Jesse, however, is not, and he is very kind, wanting to make sure she is okay.  In fact, Jesse is the reason Eric didn't kill Naomi in the beginning.  Naomi soon finds herself the unwilling guest at the home of Eric, his sister Evelyn, her husband Steve, and also Jesse. The Breakaway chronicles her experience, thoughts, and feelings during the year she was  held captive, and the events shortly following.  

Though Eric is gruff and threatens to kill her if she tries to leave, he also has a kind side.  His sister Evelyn is also very kind to Naomi.  She is kept in a locked bedroom and gradually, as she earns the trust of her kidnappers, is allowed more freedom.  Naomi is an only child and her parents are very wealthy.  They have provided her with everything she needs and wants, except their time and love.  This confuses Naomi even more when her captors tell her and show her how much they want her and care for her, causing her to have mixed feelings about them, and eventually caring for them and trusting them to.  Naomi has always been a bit of a loner, and the only real friendship/relationship she has had is with her boyfriend Brad, which was really dysfunctional.  Brad loved Naomi, but he was very rough and abusive, first sexually, and then he eventually hit her.  In her naivety and denial, she always justified him.  Jesse, one of her captors, is very, very kind to Naomi and they end up falling in love, and she enters into a relationship with him.  During the course of her time there, Naomi comes to think of these people as her family, believing her parents don't really care about her anyway, using this twisted analogy to justify things in her own mind.  

It isn't until almost a year later when she accidentally sees her mom on the television, that she comes to the realization that her parents actually do care for her.  Distraught and confused, she has to rethink everything about who she really trusts and who she really wants to be, but when the opportunity presents for her to finally escape, Naomi isn't sure that is what she wants anymore.  

I found The Breakaway to be an interesting story and even though Naomi was labeled as having Stockholm Syndrome, the circumstances were different than you would see in a typical case where this occurred, because her captors truly did care about her.  I found Naomi's character to be a little too gullible, but her circumstances also could have caused this, along with her background of being in an already abusive relationship.  As far as the love interest, I could see the good side of Jesse and was rooting for him to do the right thing.  The irony of it all was that Naomi never saw anything related to the crime her kidnappers committed, which was the reason she was taken.  In fact, it was quite some time into her kidnapping before she even realized why she was there.  The ending was bittersweet, setting things up for the second book in this two-part series.  

PIECES - Rhemalda Publishing / February 14th, 2013
Two years after watching her kidnappers go to prison, Naomi Jensen is still in love with one of them. Jesse will be released in a few years, and Naomi knows college is the perfect distraction while she waits. But when her new friend Finn makes her question what is right and what is wrong, she begins to wonder if Jesse is the one for her … until she discovers he's out on parole. Naomi must sort through her confusion to figure out where love and freedom truly lie—in Finn, who has no connections to her past, or Jesse, who has just asked her to run away with him.

Pieces is a companion to The Breakaway and can be read independently, if desired.

My Thoughts:  Though Pieces can be read independently, I am glad that I read The Breakaway first, because it helps you to truly understand Naomi's mental state and where she is coming from.  The story begins a couple of years after Naomi's kidnapping incident.  Naomi is finally going to college at Harvard, though still in counseling and trying to sort out the emotional train wreck of her life with the help of her counselors.  She is still in love with Jesse, and has convinced herself to wait 5 years for him, until he is released from prison.  When she makes a new friend, Finn, she begins to question her feelings for Jesse.  Finn is hot, he understands her, and she is very attracted to him.  He also causes her to really look at and question her true feelings for Jesse.  Her friendship with Finn grows, as do her feelings for him, but everything changes when she receives a call and finds out that Jesse is out on parole.  Part of his parole stipulates that he can have absolutely no contact with Naomi whatsoever.  Naomi can't get Jesse out of her mind, and it eventually begins to affect her school work.  

While on summer break back home in California, she breaks the rules and drives to Berkley where Jesse is staying, winding up seeing him, if only briefly.  A few months later she receives a text from Jesse asking her about having a passport.  Soon after this, he contacts her and informs her that his parole has been lifted, and that he has gotten a wonderful job opportunity in Italy, and wants her to come with him.  Even though her friends find the fact that Jesse is off parole and able to contact her so soon rather fishy, she choose to allow herself to be blinded to this fact, leaving it all behind to go with him, but when she gets there, things aren't what she expected.  Jesse is secretive and she knows he is keeping things from her.  She soon begins to wonder just how different this situation is from when she was held hostage before.  Then, whens she sees Jesse with some questionable men, everything is turned upside down and her world begins crashing in around her.  Forced with some very difficult choices, Naomi finally must face the truth of what is going on, but when she does, will this realization come to late? 

I enjoyed Pieces a lot more than I did The Breakaway.  I also liked Naomi's character a lot better in this book.  I especially liked Finn.  He was just an all around great guy, and hot to.  Though Jesse grew on me in book one, I found his character to be much less likable in this book.  I felt bad for the things Naomi was going through, but was glad to see her begin to overcome her weakness and pain, and try to put the pieces of her life back together again.  The story also ended well and I was pleased and satisfied with where and how the author closed things out.  

Goodreads  |  Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble

AUTHOR BIO
Michelle lives and writes in Utah, surrounded by the Rocky Mountains. She loves the seasons, but late summer and early fall are her favorites. She adores chocolate, sushi, and lots of ethnic food, and loves to read and write books in whatever time she can grab between her sword-wielding husband and energetic daughter. She believes a simple life is the best life.

Author Links:
Website  |  Goodreads  |  Twitter  |  Facebook  



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16 comments:

  1. Yay happy you enjoyed it, love! I plan to read Pieces soon and it's exciting to hear you enjoyed it even more! Stockholm Syndrome is such a fascinating concept to read about I didn't even know what it was until a couple years ago! Glad to hear that Naomi has some good character growth so she's able to move on. I think it's going to be an emotional read for me! Thanks for being on the tour, dollface!

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    1. I did enjoy both of these book so much and I enjoyed being on the tour.

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  2. I've been so curious about Breakaway since I first saw it. And I love that there's another book. So glad you liked this. Thanks for the informative review!

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  3. Hi *waves*! Thanks for being a part of the Pieces tour. I am so glad you enjoyed the books.

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  5. I have heard a lot about these books and I am so glad you enjoyed them. I am still not sure if I will be able to read them, ones like that are always so hard emotionally. But, I admit, your reviews makes me really want to now!

    Great reviews!

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  6. Wow, these sound amazing! I'm definitely dying of curiosity and hopefully I can find time to read them this year!

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  7. I just read another review on this over at Some Like it Paranormal. This book has been on my radar for awhile. All the psychological drama and PTSD and Stockholm Syndrome fascinate me. Thanks for the chance to win it. Happy Monday!

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  8. i like the info on the book and then the cover you are new to me

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  9. I read The Breakaway, and I never considered reading Pieces. But it sounds pretty good, and you liked it better than The Breakaway so I think I'll give it a try!

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Thanks for your comments. I love hearing from you!

Entangled Teen Weekly


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