Happy New Year guys! I can’t believe that in the space of a week, the UK has gone back into a full National Lockdown with a ‘stay at home’ order being imposed for the next six weeks. Does anyone else feel like we haven’t left 2020 behind yet?! However, I’m coming to you today with a wonderful blog tour having finished my first book of the new year! Exciting stuff.
What if with every person you met, after just one touch, you have a vision of the last time you’ll see each other? Ever. Normally, these visions are innocent—two friends just drifting apart, a random stranger that brushed past you then never crossed your path again.
But not today.
When I accidentally touch him, within only moments of our first meeting, I’m bombarded by visions of his death.
And from what I can see, I’m the reason he dies.
Now I just need to figure out why, and how to stop this from happening. Because not only am I to blame, but his very last words to me are…I love you.
To Whatever End was a gripping read that somehow managed to demolish within my hour lunch break a few days ago. Having been intrigued by the synopsis when originally offered the chance to read this a few weeks prior (thanks to Netgalley and Entangled: Teen for the opportunity), I found myself hooked on the first chapter. The story focusses around Quinn, protagonist and sort-of ‘seer’ of how people will leave her life. A quick brush is all it takes for her to see that the strange yet attractive new guy in town will both fall in love with, and die in her arms. We follow Quinn’s journey as she grows closer to Griffin and watch as she her future and her past collide.
Quinn was a really likable character, I found. She was simple, modest and humble. Quinn felt like ‘the-girl-next-door’. I really empathised with her situation and completely understood her moral dilemma. Despite this, the way in which we are introduced to Quinn seemed a little dramatic. There is a lot of emphasis on how she can’t touch Griffin and how it would be the worst thing in the world. In reality, it happens very quickly and that kind of concern isn’t shown with any of the other characters, though limited in their numbers. Griffin was your stereotypical heartthrob – mysterious, handsome and flirty. I did have a little chuckle at how textbook Griffin appeared to be when we are first introduced to him. For the life of me, I can’t stand the name Griffin and have struggled on several occasions to actually remember his name while writing this review. Though it’s a small criticism, it’s just me being very nit-picky about things.
The author limits the number of characters we’re introduced to in the story, which I felt was a good thing. It allowed me to grow attached to the characters and really understand their thoughts and feelings. When Quinn was suspicious about something, as was I. As events unfolded, I felt like I was stood there watching it all happen before my eyes. Of course, however, the downside to this is that we are limited in terms of the plot and it grew pretty predictable. I already suspected what was going to happen mid-way through the book.
That brings us nicely to the plot of the story. I don’t tend to read as many fantasy novels as I probably should, mainly because I feel the ‘Young Adult’ category is very overly-saturated with fantasy books. Eventually the same plot is recycled and there is little to no authenticity anymore. This was the first time that I’ve read a book where the teenage protagonist has a superpower
which is quite crazy in itself. That allowed me quite a bit more freedom in terms of being very interested. There is definitely a thriller vibe to the book, though it’s not particularly heavy. Even though the book is listed as a romance, I wouldn’t say the romance is super full-on either. It was a comfortable, young type of romance.
Considering I managed to read the book in just over an hour, maybe two tops, the pacing was pretty good. Some parts of the book felt a little unnecessary and Quinn did waffle on a little at times, but I overall felt like the book progressed naturally. I wouldn’t say that any part of the book seemed rushed and I would be more than happy to pick up any of Lindsey Frydman’s further work to see if it’s to the same standard. To Whatever End was a good little read and helped boot me out of the reading hangover I was in. It wasn’t perfect, but it also wasn’t too far off so to justify anything lower than a four-out-of-five would feel wrong. I recommend this book for anyone who enjoys contemporary romance novels with a little bit of a twist.
*I was gifted a copy by NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I have since purchased a commercial copy on my Amazon Kindle.
I knock on Griffin’s matching door, then wipe my hands against my jeans while I wait. An entire minute passes, so I knock again. Maybe I’ll have to resort to texting him after all. Of course he doesn’t spend every waking moment at his apartment.
I’m about to turn away when I hear shuffling behind the door. Then it swings open, Griffin’s head poking out. His hair is extra messy today, and I don’t think it’s intentional. There’s an unnatural paleness to his skin and faint circles beneath his eyes.
“Oh, hey,” he says, opening the door farther.
I get a full-on shot of him shirtless, wearing only low- hanging jeans. And holy shit, I was not expecting that. His muscles are on full display. It’s no perfect six-pack, but who needs that when you’ve got muscles everywhere? More than the shirtless-ness, I was not expecting to see the tattoos. One of them is huge, along his right side, most of it hidden from sight by his muscular arm. God. I don’t think a guy is allowed to be this hot. It doesn’t seem fair. But then, maybe this is the universe’s way of repaying me for my stupid curse.
Griffin makes a soft noise, his gaze casting down as if he just now realized he’s shirtless. But all he does is cross his arms and tip his gorgeous face to the side.
“Hey.” I try out a smile. “What’s up?” Because that’s a perfect opener.
He shakes his head, looking at me.
It’s now that I see what’s missing. He’s not donning his signature smirk. In fact, his eyes are hard, and he looks more than just tired. He looks…pissed.
“What’s wrong?” I ask. That would have been a better opener. But I’d been too distracted by his hotness—and really, Quinn? That’s not okay. I am not that girl. And this guy might one day tell me he loves me, but that’s impossible. Real love isn’t in my cards.
He lowers his arms, and I don’t pay any attention to the half-sleeve tat on his left arm. No more distractions. Then he steps back, ushering me in with one hand, opening the door fully.
My heart is shouting in my chest, and the blood between my ears screeches at me. I swallow, try to keep my face neutral, and step inside.
I see his guitar. Smashed into pieces.
Fragments of the once beautiful golden instrument lie scattered across the carpet of his living room. Blades of fractured wood lie everywhere, like blood splatter, creating a twisted piece of art.
“What…happened?” I ask, wondering how the hell anyone could smash a guitar into that many pieces. I didn’t think guitars even had that many pieces to break into.
He groans, raking both hands down the sides of his face, and in this moment, he looks haunted beyond an emotion I can name. And it truly doesn’t matter that he’s shirtless anymore. “I came home today from a trip to the grocery store and…I found this.”
I blink at the fractured pieces, then at him. “Did you just get home?”
“No. About two hours ago.”
“Did you call the police?” I twist toward him, dare a step forward.
His lips tip downward, and you’d think I asked him to jump into a disgusting dumpster. “They can’t help.”
“How could you know that? Someone broke into your house. What else did they destroy? Did they take anything?” Griffin lowers his hands slowly, staring at me with fire in his eyes and sadness pulling at his forehead. “Nothing is missing. Nothing else was touched, as far as I can tell. Just this.” One hand motions to what used to be his guitar. “This is the only thing that…” His fingers clench into fists, the veins in his neck pulse, and I’m fairly certain he wants to hit something. I wonder if he already has.
“Why would someone do this?” It’s a question mostly to myself, but he responds anyway.
“Fuck if I know. That guitar. It’s the only fucking thing
I own that means a damn thing to me, and someone came in and smashed it to goddamned smithereens.” His voice rises, tense and hurt and mystified.
I wrap my arms around myself, chewing on my lip as I consider. “Why won’t you call the police?”
He doesn’t look at me. “I told you. They can’t help. There’s no sign of forced entry. My door was still locked when I got home. It’s not like the cops are going to care or be able to do anything about it.”
His door was locked? “And I’m guessing no one else has your key, right?”
Griffin shakes his head. “No. But I left my bedroom window open. All the windows, actually. I checked them all. The screens are still there—or were at least put back. It’s the only way someone could’ve been able to get in and out without breaking down the door. God dammit.” He steps over to the couch, careful not to crunch any of the pieces, and flops onto the tan loveseat.
My insides are twisting with a sick, nauseating feeling. My heart is responding in kind. I feel lightheaded and dizzy and my veins tingle with anxiety.
This is it. The beginning.
Yesterdays Blog Tour Stops
Lindsey has been writing since she was nine years old, when she discovered the awesomeness that is Harriet the Spy. Her books always include a romance, though sometimes there’s an added sci-fi or magical realism twist. She lives in Columbus, Ohio (where the weather is never quite right). Her BFA in Photography and Graphic Design has granted her a wide assortment of creative knowledge that serves as inspiration (and not much else). When she’s not crafting YA and NA stories, you’ll likely find her spending waaay too much time on Pinterest, playing a video game, singing show-tunes, or performing in a burlesque show—because she enjoys giving her introversion a worthy adversary. (Plus, it’s the closest to Broadway she’ll ever get.) Lindsey was a proud 2016 Pitch Wars Mentee and thoroughly adores being a part of the wonderful writing community. THE HEARTBEAT HYPOTHESIS is her debut novel.
Another book down, another review uploaded! Can you name a book you want to know more about but can’t find on my blog? Something stuck on your TBR list? Leave me a comment below and let me know what you think. All read requests are acknowledged and appreciated! Until next time guys,