Friday, December 6, 2013

**Blog Tour & Giveaway ~ Let Me Go ~ L.L. Akers**


Happy Friday, y'all and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for L.L. Akers' Let Me Go. My stop includes everything you need to know about Let Me Go, my review, and TWO giveaways. 

To enter the tour-wide giveaway, simply obey the rafflecopter below. :) I am also thrilled to be able to offer one lucky commenter an ecopy of Let Me Go. To enter my giveaway, leave a comment. This giveaway is open internationally and ends on December 11th. The winner will be chosen randomly.

This tour is presented by Xpresso Book Tours. To check out all the stops on the tour, you can click here.


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Let Me Go by L.L. Akers
(Let Me Go #1)
Publication date: July 5th 2013
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult

Synopsis:
A scarlet dragonfly tattoo—meant to be a beautiful, family mark of freedom, but instead becomes a prophetic brand for those who wear it, to forever be suffering. Wounded and broken, they find themselves flittering back into the cycle of abuse that relentlessly clings to their family, a reality they can never seem to escape.
One mother and her daughters, bound by blood—torn apart by abuse. They begin their lives intertwined but are forced to fight for their survivals separately, struggling to hide their fear and undeserved shame from each other and the world. One of these women finds herself trapped—alone—and she battles to survive the terrifying darkness. With long hours of nothing to do but wait in fear, she grapples through her obscure dreams and memories of the past, sorting which memory belongs to whom: physically harmed, mentally damaged, raped, sexually abused, an unwanted pregnancy… and even the vivid memory of a dangerous dance with death in a last attempt to escape the shambles and horrors of a seemingly unchangeable situation.
Twin sisters, Gabriella and Olivia, dive blindly—and much too early—into adulthood. They are soon followed by their younger sister, Emma, all running from a not-so-idyllic past; chasing the happiness they believe they will find, by abandoning their childhoods to be “grown-up” and start their own lives.
Deeply evocative, Let Me Go is a coming-of-age story: the struggles of one mother and her daughters trying to survive life—marred by abuse and misplaced blame—and their need to reach peace, forgiveness, and reconciliation.




I wrote my review of Let Me Go and then, I kept thinking about this book. And I kept thinking about and kept thinking about it. I decided that maybe talking about it would help me get my thoughts straight, so I volunteered my hubby to be my sounding board. It helped a little. There's just so much I want to say...all good. ;) Please forgive my vagueness in my review but this is a story that must be experienced. 

Let Me Go is a captivating read. There is a lot going on but I think it boils down to a few things. Hopefully, I'll make some sense and be able to convey how thoroughly moved I was by this book.

The main thread of this story is abuse. What makes a person prone to suffering abuse? Is there something in a person's genetic makeup that makes them susceptible? Is it that element which would allow the propagation of the cycle of abuse? Or is the cause learned behavior? Nature vs. Nurture...

Let Me Go follows details the lives of a mom and her three daughters. All four lives are touched and tainted by abuse. The three girls are first witness to abuse between their parents. But even after their mom and dad split, the cycle continues. 

Each girl/woman experiences abuse in different forms. And each, unable and unwilling to share with each other their suffering, end up drifting apart. Each woman, at a certain point in their lives, get a tattoo symbolizing a new start. The mom is the first to get the tattoo, a symbol of freedom, but the tattoo ends up being symbolic of their suffering.

Olivia and Gabby, the twins, along with their younger sister, Emma have a 'hard tow to hoe'. Their mom isn't much of a role model or a mother, really. Each of the girls are tossed out into life way too young and have to figure out how to manage on their own. This was particularly hard for each of them because they'd been through so much and had always survived by sticking together. But these girls are survivors. We see them traverse so many hardships without much support from either of their parents. 

The POV switches between the four females, although there is one chapter from the dad's POV. And throughout the novel, there are chapters from "The Girl in the Box". The rotating POVs really enhanced the story. I do feel as though this story was told mainly from that POV of Gabby. I felt a connection to all the girls, but I think Let Me Go was primarily Gabby's story. I was flabbergasted by the things these poor girls experienced. And I have to say that I was more astounded at their mother's attitude towards the girls and their situations. The dynamic between the girls and their mother is definitely unique. I, however, never felt much more than apathy toward the mom for her struggles. As a mom, I can't imagine pushing my babies into the rough waters of life and leaving them to fend for themselves as such early ages. The girls love their mom, although I was never able to grasp the tenderness of their feelings. 

What I appreciate the most in Let Me Go was seeing the resilience of these women. We see them all at their lowest and we see them moving toward healing. We watch them learn that together, they are stronger. And we see them learning forgiveness.

There are a host of side characters in the story. Not many of them are worth mentioning, but only because they aren't the nicest of people. I will say that despite being abusive in his marriage, the dad was actually a likable person. We don't see him much but I think I almost liked him more than mom. I enjoyed seeing Uncle Jackson for the brief amount of time we see him. But the one character I must mention is Jake. I don't want to say more about him than he's the good. He is a bright spot in all the darkness.

Let Me Go is full of emotion. It is riveting and gut-wrenching. And the added tension of wondering who was 'in the box' had me flipping through the pages quickly. I liked Ms. Akers' use of symbolism with the dragonfly and even the box. Although this story is a difficult one, it was ultimately uplifting and it was splendidly rendered.

**I received an ecopy of the book as part of the tour in exchange for an honest review.**

On a side note, I didn't realize this was the first book in a series until I was putting my post together. I will certainly be reading the future installments, as I have a feeling I'll get a closer look at Olivia's and Emma's lives.

a Rafflecopter giveaway





L.L. Akers is originally from the Midwest where she grew up climbing trees, haystacks, and haylofts—escaping into other worlds with a good book. She enjoyed playing cow-pattie hopscotch and outrun-the-bull with her siblings.

She now lives in the South, the silly wife of a serious man, and mother of: one very gifted and fetching male-tween, a chubby beagle that looks astonishingly like a mini-cow, a deranged terrier as well as five Koi fish, a herd of tiny but boastful lizards, and dozens of obnoxiously loud serenading frogs.

After a career in human resources, she now pursues life as a recluse writer; hanging out at home in her PJ’s with her iPad, Burt’s Bees lip balm and her posse of creatures. Regardless of her self-isolation, she can still be lured outside for brief moments by the scent of freshly mowed grass and a bowl full of cherries.

Let Me Go is her first novel, and book 1 of the Let Me Go Series – each book is a stand-alone, with no cliffhangers.




22 comments:

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    1. It is! And it's a great book behind that beautiful cover, too. :)

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  2. Thank you so much for hosting me, and for such a well thought-out review! What a way to start out my day: 5 Bookworms!

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    1. It's my pleasure and I'm so glad you like my review. :) I loved your book, obviously!

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  3. The best books are always the books you can't seem to let go... and they just stick in your head. Great review!


    Teresa @ Readers Live A Thousand Lives

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    1. So true, Teresa, so true! Thanks so much!

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  4. Wow a book that's so emotional or intense that you have to talk it through is definitely worth the read! I'll be sure to check this one out it's right up my alley! Wonderful review, Brandee!

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    1. Oh, Giselle, it's definitely worth the read. ;) I hope you love it. And thanks!

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  5. I love that you talked through your feelings with your husband. The questions you asked at the beginning of your review shook me. I've never looked at abuse that way. That is some great storytelling if the abusive dad can come across as likable. The mom would be hard for me to care about I think and the girls would probably break my heart. Great review, Brandee. I know it will be on my mind for a while!

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    1. Thanks, Robyn. Yeah, I'm STILL thinking about Let Me Go. Luckily, James is always willing to let me talk at him! LOL The book kinda brings about those questions of abuse. I just - it moved me. :)

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  6. Oh man, this sounds heavy and the kind of book I like to torture myself with.

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    1. You'll love it, Braine! It's beautiful torture. ;)

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    2. Hey Braine! You're my randomly chosen winner! Yay! You should get your copy sometime after the 21st. :)

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  7. Wow a powerful review, Brandee! It's clear you were touched by the story and that is a great thing! Thanks for the review.

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    1. Thanks, Andrea! I'm glad I was able to convey something of how much Let Me Go touched me. It's a story that will stay with me for quite awhile. :)

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  8. I am getting to love making people cry--I know, right? That sounds so wrong.

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    1. You definitely made me cry and let me tell you, ugly crying while on the elliptical is...well, ugly. ;)

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  9. Brandee,
    Do I have permission to quote you on Amazon in the editorial review section?
    ~Lisa

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  10. Wow, this sounds like a really thought provoking read. Great review Brandee!

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  11. I like that this one got you thinking about what really causes a cycle of abuse and how people can get out of it. It's amazing the strength someone can possess and the difficulties that can be overcome in life. No matter how hard someone has it in life though, there is always someone out there who's had it harder. It definitely sounds like an emotional read. I'm glad that you enjoyed it. Jaclyn @ JC's Book Haven.

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  12. Oh wow!! I think I could really get lost in this book! I am very interested in reading this one!!!

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Now you know what I think...what are your thoughts??