Friday, May 29, 2015

Book Review: Letting Go by Jessica Ruddick

Letting Go

Jessica Ruddick

May 26, 2015

Entangled Embrace

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eARC from publisher for a honest review

GR's Summary:

How long do you hold on? 

Cori Elliott likes order. Her schedule, her social life...even her GPA is perfect. Then she finds out her high school boyfriend's death wasn't an accident—it was suicide. The devastating revelation is enough to fracture her perfectly structured life, sending Cori in a downward spiral of self-doubt and impulsive decisions. 

And right into the arms of Luke Evans. 

But Cori's life isn't perfect anymore. In fact, it's all coming apart. The only way she can save herself is to let go of everything—including the girl she used to be. Even if it means losing the one guy who might just be perfect for her in the process... 

My Thoughts:

Letting Go by Jessica Ruddick was a story about grief from loss, being stuck in limbo, and struggling to heal and move forward.  Cori is in her second year of college.  She is the perfect student, needs to have everything in its proper order and place, and excels in academics.  She is in a sorority, and shares a room with her best friend, Amber.

Cori has been grieving over the passing of her high-school sweetheart Tyler.  She carries a lot of guilt due to the fact that the last conversation that they had ended badly.  In order to avoid thinking about Tyler she is constantly studying and doing schoolwork.  However, Cori ends up getting a call that causes her emotional distress when she learns that Tyler's death wasn't an accident, but a suicide.  

That night, she can't focus on anything, and finally agree's to go out with Amber to a fraternity/sorority mixer.  While there she meets gorgeous and sweet fraternity brother, Luke.  They hit it off, share an attraction and connect.  Pretty soon Cori is seeing Luke all the time on campus, in class, and at his fraternity house.  Moving forward with her life makes her feel guilty.  Will Cori be able to heal enough to move forward with Luke, or will she lose him?

I have mixed feelings about Letting Go.  I enjoyed the college setting in the story.  It took me back to my college days, and to a certain extent Cori reminded me of my self.  She was dedicated, organized, and determined to be the best she could be.  I enjoyed reading about the fraternity and sorority life, college parties, and Cori's emotional journey.

A few things that did not work for me were that I felt like the story didn't move until the very end.  Cori was stuck in her pain for most of the story, and didn't confide in Luke.  This gave the story a feeling of being stuck, and I wanted it to move forward.  Also, while I understood Luke needing Cori to confide in him, I still thought that he came across as not very forgiving or compassionate towards what Cori was experiencing, which really bothered me.  He needed to have more patience with her.

Overall, I enjoyed this story.  I liked Cori's character, and I enjoyed when Luke was sweet, fun, and caring with Cori.  The intimate scenes were fade to black, so they weren't explicit for those readers who prefer that type of romance.  I really enjoyed getting to know a few of the secondary characters.  Amber, was the type of best friend that I'd want by my side, and Josh, one of the fraternity brothers, was pretty funny and likable!

My Rating:

I give, Letting Go, by Jessica Ruddick, 3.5 Grieving, Healing, Second Chance at Love, New Beginning Filled Stars!

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About Jessica Ruddick:

I am a 2014 Golden Heart® finalist for my new adult novel, Letting Go, which was inspired by my own college experiences. I’m married to my college sweetheart—our first date was a fraternity toga party. (And nothing inspires love like a toga, right?) These days I’m a high school English teacher by day and young adult/new adult writer by night, lunch break, soccer practice, basically whenever I can squeeze in a minute to write. I live with my husband and two sons in Virginia and am represented by Sarah E. Younger of the Nancy Yost Literary Agency.


  1. Tough to get that balance right between establishing the reason for the emotions and also having a story that paces forward. I think I could relate to this girl too and that's cool that she found someone who was good for her. Insightful review, Lindy.

  2. I cannot do slow pacing books. I love that it took you back to your college years though. Not sure I would like Luke though.

  3. I get what you mean. Cori had to deal with something that affected her deeply and you would expect Luke to understand that and help her. It still sounds like a nice read though.

    Naomi @ Naomi’s Reading Palace

  4. So many feels just from the blurb. The thought of this story being stuck is a great way to explain books that take too long to get to the point. Not in length but in story. Great review.


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