Book Review: Live Without You by Sarah Grace Grzy

Happy Friday, Readers! This week has flown by, and even though I spent most of it being tired and either consuming large amounts of caffeine or thinking about caffeine, it has been another good week and very educational at work! Today’s review is fairly brief, because I am talking about a fairly short (but very good) book.

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Title: Live Without You

Author: Sarah Grace Grzy – visit her website here

Genre: Contemporary, Christian Romance

Synopsis (from Goodreads): Piper Redding is a loner, but lonely. Everyone she loves has abandoned her and opening her heart to others is just asking for more pain. She can’t help but blame herself for her brother’s tragic death six years ago, and in her guilt, she shuts herself off from the world. No one could love her-not even the God who promised to be there for her but wasn’t. For paramedic Ezra Bryant, failure is not an option. He’s had enough of it, and only by God’s grace is he able to put it behind him. But when a traumatic event brings Piper’s greatest fear and Ezra’s failures to light, can they use that event to allow God to mend their broken pieces? Can love triumph over fear, and grace over guilt?

Content Warnings/Things to be Aware of: Some medical descriptions of wounds, although they were not as graphic as some of the warnings I read had made me expect.

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First of all, look at how beautiful that cover is!

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The story inside is just as gorgeous.

My Thoughts

Live Without You is a dramatic novella. Ms. Grzy wastes no time piling on action and emotion, so I was hooked and invested instantly! Granted, the book opens at an outdoor ice skating rink, amidst Christmas lights and hot cocoa, which is a great way to get me interested regardless of the story to be told. However, on top of the setting, there is action and drama right away. Not the annoying kind of drama that could be avoided if people would only talk to each other, but what-is-going-to-happen-next drama. Things get real right away.

The romance is also set up almost immediately. It isn’t entirely predictable, but you know from the beginning who is going to end up together. I appreciated this, but I can see how it could bother some readers.

{Side note, I want Piper’s house. It is adorable and practical and basically everything I didn’t know I always wanted in a house! It seriously sounds perfect.}

Piper and Ezra have a sweet romance which I enjoyed watching grow. Both are believable characters with real emotions, conflicts, and backstories, and they stumble through fitting their stories together. Surprisingly, their relationships is more of a courtship than dating, which I don’t think I have ever seen portrayed in contemporary fiction. The scope of their relationship was not discussed often, but I liked the unique and chaste perspective.

Along with her relationship with Ezra, Piper must rebuild her faith in order to move forward with her life and to find peace despite past trauma. This is an area where I would have liked to see more nuanced growth and development, but for the length of the story, I understand why it was paced as it is.

Additionally, the ending is incredibly well-crafted. Although there were a few things that I guessed from the beginning, the last few chapters had me reconsidering everything and on the edge of my (metaphorical) seat wondering how/if things were going to work out! I was mentally and emotionally invested in these characters and their lives, much moreso than I usually am in any given book.

The Verdict

The characters, themes, and setting are all beautiful and so sweet. This is definitely one of my favorite books of 2019 so far, and perhaps more than that. Live Without You is a quick read, perfect for when you want to let your mind dive into another life for a while. It is an emotional roller coaster, but so worth the ride. I could tell from the writing style that the author is young, but young does not equal untalented or anything else negative. It is simple but thorough, sometimes predictable but altogether enjoyable. I highly recommend Live Without You by Sarah Grace Grzy to fans of contemporary fiction, Christian fiction, or romance.

 

Until the next chapter,

Jana

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