They say in order to find yourself you have to go home.
What if home was what you’re running from?
Where did that leave you?
Always on the other side of the fence.
Always looking in.
Always wishing you were someone you couldn’t be.
Until one day you meet her.
She was my high, but she was also…
Colors blended together making it hard to focus on one thing. I blinked a few times and just like that…
I saw her face.
As if she was standing right in front of me.
My whole world…
I felt my lips curl up slightly at the vision as I reached out for her. Wanting to touch her, needing to hold her, yearning to kiss her. Craving, God, craving to fucking love her.
“I’m sorry,” I murmured out loud to no one but the illusion of my drug-infested mind. “I’m so fucking sorry,” I repeated repentantly, longing for her to believe me.
Aching for her to love me again like she used to.
I don’t know how long I sat there, staring at her beautiful face before my eyes, subconsciously rubbing the tattooed key that was placed over my heart. I couldn’t take it anymore, and the desire won over the haze.
It was too powerful.
It was too vivid.
I grabbed my phone. “Baby,” I said into the speaker. The ringing quickly followed, going straight to voicemail. I hung up and tried again. “Baby,” I urged with desperation in my tone.
I tried again and again and again.
I would try until the end of time if that’s what it took for her to answer.
To talk to me.
To save me.
To crave me.
Time just seemed to standstill, as my life slowly played out in front of me. Trying to balance in between the light and the darkness when all I could see was gray.
“What?!” she screamed into the phone, finally answering after I don’t know how many failed attempts. “What the hell do you want now?”
“Mi cielo.” I breathed a sigh of relief.
She ignored my term of endearment. I hadn’t called her that in such a long time.
“What do you want, Austin? Why are you calling me? We’re over! I can’t do this anymore!”
I shut my eyes and let my mind wonder, allowing it to go to another place in time where she didn’t hate me.
“I remember the first time I made you smile,” I chuckled, as if it had just happened.
My nerves were on fire. The mere sound of her breathing through the phone was too intense for me. I licked my lips, my mouth suddenly dry.
“I remember when you used to smile just for me. Do you remember, baby? Do you remember what my love feels like?”
I heard her faintly breathing.
“Do you remember my hands on you? My lips? My tongue? The first time I made you come with my mouth? Do you remember all the times since? Tell me I’m not forgotten. Tell me you remember, baby.”
“I love you, Briggs. I love you so fucking much. You’re killing me, don’t you see that? I’m dying without you.”
“No, Austin. You were dying with me,” she rasped, knowing that it killed her to say that.
“The first time I saw your face, I thought to myself, damn, this beautiful girl is goin’ to be the death of me. You were perfect in every way. I was a cocky son of a bitch who needed you then, as much as I need you now.”
“I had a dream about you, baby. I always fucking dream about you. In my dream you had a ring on your finger. A ring I put there. You belonged to me. Only mine. Forever fucking mine. You were pregnant, Briggs. You looked so goddamn happy. I saw light at the end of the tunnel for the first time in years.”
She sniffled into the phone.
“I made love to you. Slow, just the way you love. Taking my time to touch every last inch of your body. Memorizing every last bit of you. Making you come until you begged me to stop. I didn’t.”
“I can’t—” she tried to interject, but I didn’t let up.
“I kissed your stomach. Our baby. Letting my lips linger there, whispering sweet lullabies, letting her know daddy will always be there. Baby, it was so real. For a second I gave you the one thing you so desperately wanted, the one thing I can’t give you.”
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Do you ever stop and wonder why we read books? If I think about it, I read for a bit of an escape. A job that is not exactly exciting and 3 kids mean I need to get my kicks somewhere right? What could be better than picking up a book and letting it take me away for a few hours? But is that it? well for me I really want a book to make me feel. Whether that’s a happy feeling or a sad one. I want a reaction. Well, Crave Me certainly managed that.
Ideally you would have read the previous books in this series before starting Austins book. It’s not a requirement but it certainly gives some background on his thoughts and feelings early on. His relationship with the rest of the Good ol’ Boys and their half pint play a part in who he becomes. Like I said it isn’t a necessity but it’s something to consider.
Now, I’ve waffled on enough. Time to actually review this book. Right from the first page it’s like a kick in the teeth. The only words I could find express my thoughts at the beginning were ‘Brutally beautiful’. Not only were Austin’s actions painful to read, they were also so beautifully described. How do you make an addict shooting up in a drug den beautiful? I have no idea. M is just that good with words.
That kick in the teeth at the beginning does not let up. Following both Austin and Briggs from one heart ache to the next weighed heavy on me as a reader. I physically felt the weight of it all. The burning urge to cry was there the whole way through. This one will be added to the small list of books that had me in varying degrees of tears throughout.
There isn’t any need to go into detail about the storyline. Austin is a drug addict and Briggs plays her part in how his life becomes what it does. What really struck me was how their lives started in such opposite ways. Austin had his family and friends and chose to walk away. He went from having the potential to have it all, to throwing it all away. His descent into addiction came at the same time as Briggs was attempting to drag her life away from that world. Their paths crossing had a huge effect on each other lives. Bettering Briggs in one way and probably ruining Austins in another.
I have a family member that is an addict, in a much similar way to Austin in fact. For me this book was terrifyingly honest. There were huge parts of this book where I hated both of these characters. Their actions and words turned my stomach. The struggle they endure is heart breaking but the fact remains the choices they make suck.
Reading that back I’m not giving you much incentive to read that am I? Well, like I said at the beginning, I want to feel when I read. This book gave me nothing but feels. Yes, the majority of those feelings were not good ones. They were gut wrenching. But there are also amazingly tender, loving moments. No matter what else happens in this book, no matter your opinion on what they say and do, you cannot deny that they love each other. That once in a life time, soul deep love.
I urge everyone to read this book. Even if it’s a step out of your comfort zone. Take a chance. It is so worth it. It takes a huge amount of talent and guts to take a storyline like this and write it in such a beautiful way.
My words cant do enough Justice to M.Robinsons work.
*-*-*ARC PROVIDED FOR HONEST REVIEW*-*-*