Title: Never Let You Go
Author: +Chevy Stevens
TW: Mental/emotional abuse
TW: Mental/emotional abuse
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Eleven years ago, Lindsey Nash escaped into the night with her young daughter and left an abusive relationship.Her ex-husband was sent to jail and she started over with a new life. Now, Lindsey is older and wiser, with a teenage daughter who needs her more than ever. When her ex-husband is finally released, Lindsey believes she’s cut all ties. But she gets the sense that someone is watching her. Her new boyfriend is threatened. Her home is invaded, and her daughter is shadowed. Lindsey is convinced it’s her ex-husband, even though he claims he’s a different person. But can he really change? Is the one who wants her dead closer to home than she thought?
This is the first book I've ever picked up by Stevens and I was not disappointed at all. The story is told through each character's perception of what happened all those years ago. 11 years have passed, and Lindsey Nash suspects that her ex-husband has come back to punish her after doing all that time in prison. He claims that he has changed (like every abuser does), but has he really? She thinks not. After all, people don't really change at their core, right?
A part in the book that really stuck out to me was when Lindsey's daughter was younger, after her husband comes home drunk one night and knocks her over onto the coffee table, her daughter begins to make excuses for him, that young. It really goes to show how abuse can become so normal after awhile it begins to not only affect you, but everything else in your life.
One of the other parts I really dislike about this book is the fact that Sophie, Lindsey's daughter goes behind her mother's back to write letters and even go as far as meeting up with her father, and lies to her mother about it. She is aware of how scared her mother is of her father, but she completely disregards it as if Lindsey should just "get over" the fact that he abused her. I do have to put myself in Sophie's shoes, though. She grew up without a father because of his alcoholism and the twisted events leading up to his arrest. Of course she's going to wonder why alcohol was more important than staying and being a good father and husband to his family. Even though she doesn't understand the emotional toll that abuse can take on someone, she has a right to wonder about her father regardless of the things that he has done in the past.
Another issue that I have with this genre is the abuse of animals. I've read two other books with the same subject matter and they all three have something to do with animals being mistreated, which hurts my soul a little more than hearing about the abuse of another human being. I have no idea what it is with these authors and animal abuse, but it's killing me!
ALSO, the twist in the book took me by surprise. Every time I thought I knew what the hell was going on, I was so terribly wrong. It was a literal jaw-dropping twist that I had no idea was coming. Kudos to Stevens for being able to actually leave me slack-jawed!
Stevens can create an immensely immersive story that leaves you turning page after page. I absolutely refused to turn it down. I needed to get to the very bottom of what was happening and nothing was going to stop me from finishing this book. Although the book does deal with a hard topic like abuse, and it made me cringe at times, and other times made me blindingly angry, I got through it.
DISCLAIMER: I received this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not sway my opinions in any way whatsoever.