Rule #1 Do NOT ignore the signs.
Rule #2 Pay attention.
Rule #3 The less they know about you, the harder it is for them to hurt you.
Rule #4 Comfort is dangerous. It can be taken away.
Rule #5 Need is a handicap. It can cripple you.
Rule #6 He isn’t what he seems. Don’t trust him.
Simple rules made for a simple purpose. Nina Ryan learned early on in life that if you want to avoid being hurt, you need to be proactive. If you pay attention the Universe will always steer you in the right direction. It will help keep you safe. So, she follows the rules, and she is safe. Until Connor Wright barges his way through all her carefully laid defenses and threatens to destroy the comfortable life she has created. Faithfully following her #1 rule, Nina tries to accept that the Universe has pushed Connor and her lives together for a purpose. Determined to make Nina his, Connor chips away at the walls Nina has placed around her heart and her secrets. Is Nina following the signs that will lead her down the right path, or does Connor hold secrets of his own that will ruin Nina for good? Only the Universe knows.
I sit with my knees against my chest and my arms wrapped around my legs, hoping that if I make myself small enough I will just disappear altogether. My whole body is shaking and the tears rolling down my cheeks are like acid. I look down at the cotton sheets where the last part of myself I had control over was ripped from me. I can’t think or breathe or feel, my body is no longer my own. The space around me is quiet and still, but I feel as though there is carnage and chaos surrounding it, and eventually, me, closing in will crush me.
All I want to do is call my mom. I want her to tell me that I can get through this. That if I’m strong enough, it won’t matter, that it won’t define me and my life is still my own. I reach over to the drawer of my nightstand and pull on the knob with shaky hands. I fumble with my fingers until I feel paper crinkle beneath them and grip the note containing my mother’s last words. I read it for the millionth time and close my eyes against the unforgiving thoughts that scroll through my mind. Why couldn’t you have just stayed for me? My mother can’t tell me to be strong when she wasn’t, to get through it when she didn’t. She let one terrible event in her life strip her of her identity. She let it break her. For the first time since I was given this note, I understand why.
I look around my room and the scene replays over and over in my mind. The pain. The degradation. Everything is tainted. I look at the note one last time and crumple it in my hands and stand. My legs protest, but I fight through it. My stomach rolls, but I ignore it. Once I’ve regained control over the parts of me that were still reacting in fear, I rip the sheets from my bed and the clothes from my body and shove them in the middle of the mattress. Reaching into my closet I pull clothes that I have never worn from the back and dress again. Still clutching the note in my fist, I grab the pile of filth from my bed and carry it to the kitchen and toss everything in the sink.
My hands finally stop shaking when I extract a match from the box on the window sill. I strike the match and watch the flame turn indigo to orange to gold and let it drop into the remnants of my innocence. The flames spread and grow and the colors dance and twist in a destructive composition, turning the evidence of my disgrace to embers. As the flames start to shrink and slow, tears once again roll down my cheeks and this time they’re cleansing. Inside the fire I find my clarity. This night happened because I didn’t trust what I believed. I was blind to what I saw right in front of me. Though a part of me had always screamed that he couldn’t be trusted I had disregarded the warning signs, too desperate for what he offered to protect myself. I took a risk and I lost.
The final flames flicker and I look down at the ball of paper in my hands, then throw it into the ashes to be burned with the rest of it. I will not make the choices she made. Not while I can start over and learn from her mistakes and mine. This will not be my undoing. I never want to be blindsided again, to hurt like I’ve hurt again. From now on, I will pay attention to the world around me. I will see the signs and protect myself from the risks. Nothing and no one will ever hurt me again, because I’ll know. I’ll be ready for it.
Amazon US - http://www.amazon.com/Sapphire-Universe-The-Series-ebook/dp/B00B9L2B56/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1371612537&sr=1-1&keywords=sapphire+universe
Amazon UK - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sapphire-Universe-The-Series-ebook/dp/B00B9L2B56/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1371615615&sr=1-1&keywords=sapphire+universe
About the author...
Goodreads Author: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6913170.Devon_Herrera
Twitter: https://twitter.com/DevonMarieHGoodreads Book: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17887015-sapphire-universe
Review ~ 3.5 Stars
Sapphire Universe is a story of love and fate. I am definitely a believer in fate and signs, which was an underlying theme in the story that I loved and wished there was more of.
Nina is a music teacher who has been through some terrible experiences in her life, causing her to swear off relationships. An accident on the bus one day throws her life off course, and makes her rethink the "rules" she has set that govern her life. She also refers that she speaks to the Universe, which gives her signs about which path to take in life. I liked the concept, but the author didn't expand on it as much as I would have liked.
Connor is her love interest, who is staying in town to take care of his father. He's originally from New York, but he doesn't want to discuss much about his life there. Even though she tries to deny her feelings for him from the start, he never gives up, pursuing Nina despite her apprehension and insistence that she does not want a relationship. They start as friends, but quickly decide that they both want something more.
I don't want to give away spoilers to the story, so let me just say that there are other elements in the story to throw in some drama and intrigue, including Lo, Nina's hilarious best friend.
I enjoyed Nina and Connor's relationship, finding their interactions to be realistic and genuine, not forced as in some stories. He breaks down her walls, and she finally opens up to someone about her past, listening to all the signs the Universe gives her regarding her and Connor's relationship. Some parts in the story were predictable, but overall I was pleased, especially with the ending. I recommend to any contemporary romance lover.
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