2/03/2013

Book Review: After Forever Ends by Melodie Ramone

Title: After Forever Ends
Author: Melodie Ramone
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Format: ebook, 462 pages
Published: October 1st 2012
Published by: Gingersnap Press
Buy It: Amazon

Orphaned by her mother and brushed off by her dad, fifteen year old Silvia Cotton has lived a lonely life. That is until her father moves the family from the Highlands of Scotland to the Midlands of Wales. It is there she is enrolled in Bennington, a private boarding school, and meets the charming and rebellious Dickinson twins, Oliver and Alexander. Her regrettable life is changed forever. 

Locked into a fierce friendship with Alexander and lost to a whirlwind romance with Oliver, Silvia finds herself torn away from everything she thought she knew. Married too soon, she moves with Oliver to a rustic cabin deep in a Welsh wood and embarks upon a life she'd never planned for, surviving on hope she never knew existed and faith she never knew she had. Through the years of laughter, joy, sorrow and tears, she makes her way through university and onto a career, only to surrender her ambition to raising her children and living a life that was strikingly "normal". But what is normal? Certainly not what ensues in the wood.

True love, faeries, friendship, loves lost and gained. Fate, doubt, friendship, strength and courage, Silvia's story could belong to anyone, but it is her own. Simple yet extraordinary, told with wit and candor, Silvia unravels the tangled web of her days as she reveals the secrets that exist in an ancient wood, how hearts given freely can become the stuff of magic, and how true happiness is never any further than one's own back garden.

There are love stories, there are Nicholas Sparks books, and then there's THIS. This masterpiece by Melodie Ramone. This has got to be one of, if not the most touching books I've ever read. I enjoyed every page, every detail, every minute I spent reading it. 

Before everything else, I think it's only fair that I warn you, dear reader, that this book is quite long. At 3% I was already complaining about how long the book was. But the further I got into the story, the more I appreciated it. At some point I wished the story wouldn't end. It's that good!



Now I know the synopsis pretty much says what happens in the book. My blogger friend Charlie was wondering what the twist was but then I told her, "That's the point - there is no twist." It's true. Unlike most books, After Forever Ends isn't hinged on some game changing twist. It's so much more than that. It's about life; life made whole by love in all forms.

At first I thought it was going to be some epic love story ala Nicholas Sparks because of all the reviews I've read saying After Forever Ends is a real tearjerker. I did cry a lot, I'm not going to lie. 
My face hurts from all the crying.
What made the experience different for me was how the story touched me deeply. I didn't cry because the story was sad. No! I cried (a lot) because the story was real. The synopsis reads, "...Silvia's story could belong to anyone, but it is her own." The story was real in a sense that I was able to see Silvia's story through her eyes but it could also belong to anyone. Maybe that's the very reason why I was so touched by the story - I didn't feel detached from it. Everything about it was real - even all the magic that occurred in the wood. I laughed with them, I cried with them. Every bit of raw emotion the characters felt, I felt it too. 

A big part of the story's magic were the characters. Silvia. Just Silvia Cotton, as Oliver would lovingly call her, is such a strong character. I loved her from start to finish! She's attractive, strong, witty, and very relatable! There was never a moment where I felt like she was too good to be true or she was downright annoying. I loved that in every chapter of her life, you can see how much she's grown and yet she was still Just Silvia Cotton all throughout. As for the twins, Oliver and Alex... boy oh boy oh boy. What a delightful duo! I know twins are connected in every possible way but this book took that on a whole different level. More than their being twins, I loved that their brotherhood was also emphasized. They complimented each other so well that when Silvia became a part of their lives, it was simply... beautiful. 

When I was finished, I felt so attached to the characters that I just thought, "It's over. I can't believe it's over." Melodie Ramone's writing truly brought everything to life. From the character building to the flow of the story, her writing was superbAfter Forever Ends is a captivating story about love and its magic and everything else in between. This is the kind of book that I'll want my future children to read. This is the kind of book that leaves a lasting impression. This is the kind of book that, once it's over, you'll look back at your own life and contemplate. I know I did. 

My Rating:

(Refer to rating system)

P.S. 

I'm still hungover.
About the author
Melodie Ramone

I'm a wife, mother, keeper of fuzzy critters, author, speaker and certified Kitchen Witch. When I'm not creating Culinary magic, I can usually be found writing stories, reading books, relentlessly tweeting, knitting or delving into fringe Physics. Super geek? Oh, yeah. 

What else? Well, I’m funny and quick tempered, older than I look and young enough to be able to fall on roller skates and still move the next day. I’m short. I have curly, red hair. My favorite color is emerald green. I like Japanese Anime, rainy days, cats, kids, and any movie that includes Simon Pegg. 

I'm obsessed with the Science of Physics, particularly Particle Physics, although in the last few years I am drawn more and more toward Astronomy. I’m fascinated with Outer Space and what’s going on out there. Hubble and the Mars Rovers have sparked a passion in me that goes back to the first time I saw Star Wars. And that was a long, long time ago. I’m a curious person by nature. I want to know everything about everything, I want to see it. I want to understand it so I can understand the origins of our universe. But, then again, I want to understand everything in general. 

Some things I never will. I will never understand hate. I will never understand ignorance. I try to let them wash past me, but sometimes it’s hard. I think, in some ways, it’s why I write. So I can leave behind a world I don’t always understand, one I sometimes find too painful to stay in, and create my own universe. One that parallels this one, one that is similar, but one which I, ultimately control. One where everything, at least to me, makes sense.

In short, I’m a happy person. I’m not perfect and I’m not entirely sane, but I don’t pretend to be. In the end, when I look back at my life I will see an amazing smear of color. All the good and the bad, the beautiful and the ugly, the strength and weakness that was me. I’ll see all I did and all I failed at. And I will sigh and I will say that I lived. I really, truly lived. I was real. I wrote books. And that, I think, will be good enough for me. 

CONTACT INFORMATION

***I received an e-copy of this book for review.***
 This review is based solely on my opinion.

3 comments:

  1. I'm scared to read this, to be honest. I think I need to schedule this when I'm free to just stay and bed and cry. Scary but intriguing.

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    Replies
    1. It's too long, you're going to need more than a day to read it. Haha! Like I said, it's not sad, it's just... touching. ;-)

      ...that and maybe I was just looking for a reason to cry that day. LOL just kidding!

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  2. I loved it!! It's magical very different from your soppy love story.. I highly recommend it to every one! Must read.
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