Review: Rock Wedding by Nalini Singh

BP NOTE: Trigger Warnings this book includes miscarriage and stillbirth.

28937797Publisher: Self
Publish Date: 19 Jul 16
Reviewed by: E and Has
How we got this book: ARC from the author via Netgalley

After a lifetime of longing for a real family, Sarah Smith thought she’d finally found her home with rock star Abe Bellamy, even if she knew Abe didn’t love her the way she loved him. But their brief relationship, filled with tragedy and heartache, nearly destroyed her. Alone, emotions in turmoil, and already shaky self-esteem shattered, Sarah struggles to pick up the pieces in the wake of their divorce.

Abe knows he’s to blame for the end of his marriage. Caught in a web of painful memories, he pushed away the best thing in his life – the sexy, smart woman he adores – breaking them both in the process. Then fate throws him a second chance to get things right, to prove to Sarah that she means everything to him. Abe desperately wants that second chance at love…even if he knows he doesn’t deserve it.

But can he convince Sarah – now strong and independent without him – to risk her wounded heart one more time?
This blurb came from Goodreads

E: Spoilers for previous books in this series will be included in this review but we will try to keep them at a minimum. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading Singh’s Rock Kiss series and I have both eagerly awaited Abe’s story and dreaded it at the same time for a couple of reasons some of which fit both categories. First, this meant the end of the original ARC with the Rock Band, sadness but also happiness because I have heard some Rugby players might be moving up in the queue and we get to see Abe happy. Second I have rediscovered that Singh is great at writing tormented heroes who really have to see about rock bottom, survive, and pull themselves back up before they can find happiness. I really enjoy seeing them achieve happiness, however I go through the emotional wringer with her characters.

Has: I adored this final entry to the Rock Kiss series, Abe and Sarah’s story, was heart-wrenching and bittersweet but also filled with poignancy that had me teary throughout the book. It was a book, that had me rooting for them to heal their rift and heart-ache due to their tragic pasts and I have to say that this one of sweetest and tender romances that I’ve read. I am also very, very happy that we will get a spinoff series featuring those hot rugby players that were introduced in T-Rex’s book.

E: I knew Abe had been previously married and I knew he wasn’t over her yet but beyond that he stayed rather close-lipped about his past. Everyone knew he had a dark past but the entire band kept quiet and just looked out for him as much as they could. Seeing his reaction when Sarah approached him after a concert and how protective he still felt I knew his story was going to be a heartbreaker to read and I wasn’t wrong. Watching him face up to everything he did and the emotional damage he caused was brutally good. He wasn’t apologizing because an apology was a requirement of his recovery but really trying to make amends and heal the wounds he caused while earning Sarah back. As I learned more and more about their past relationship, I admired Sarah’s strength as she built herself back up and refused to accept less then what she was worth even while she doubted inside.

Has: Abe really learned from his mistakes which was the cause of their breakup. But it also became a catalyst for Sarah to find out what it was be her own person, and to forge her own path as well. Yet even though she had further heartbreak, she still clung to her inner strength and it was great to see that play out in the book. I loved that Abe realised that she was a different person and was supportive of her career and that he gave space and time to win her back. It was so sweet and heart-warming to see them reconnecting tentatively in the beginning of the book.

E: So many factors played into the ending of their first marriage and as they were revealed along with how the changed Sarah and Abe dealt with some of those same factors was gut wrenching at times and full of character self-discovery. I cheered when Sarah realized some of her impressions of the others in Abe’s inner circle were spurred by her own self-doubt and as someone who was greatly matured she could accept and view those same others from a healthier vantage point. Abe on the other hand, as far as he had come in his healing and recovery still had some emotional spots he was forced to explore for the first time as he worked to be worthy of Sarah. The growth in both characters – one shown mainly through flashbacks and a changed current day reaction and the other on screen matched nicely. Both were scared of being hurt again, scared of rejection, intent on demonstrating change, and still really really attracted to each other. This really was the perfect combination for a second chance at love.

Has: I so totally agree! They both learned from their experiences and mistakes they made together and with others. So when they finally got reunited and decided to take a second chance with each other, I could believe they would make it as a couple even though there are underlying issues with Abe’s past but that it was something they could deal with together. It was wonderful to see them slowly connecting together again, especially when they had to deal with a surprise change in their relationship which could have put a spanner in the works! But I love, love them slowly realising that they were still in love with each other and wanting to try again.

E: I think I cried happy tears straight through the last tenth of Rock Wedding as everything came together in so many ways and Abe’s friends/family demonstrated they fully welcomed and wanted Sarah as part of the group on her own not just because of Abe. And then how Abe was so openly honest with Sarah and fully exposed himself to her while just living on hope she had seen who he was now and who he was committed to being. Singh’s emotional wringer ended on such a high and she did a great job of pulling all of the primary characters together in a seamless whole.

Thankfully she plans on returning to this world with perhaps a focus on Rugby because I have really enjoyed this journey.

I give Rock Wedding an emotional A.

Has: For me, Rock Wedding was an heart-wrenching, emotional and poignant romance which really pulls on your heartstrings. Nalini Singh, really pulled off the reunited lovers trope perfectly although I warn you there is real heartache and tragedy which was hard to read but it was well worth the pain to see these characters heal from this and to find happiness and healing. Their romance was bittersweet and tender and it was just fantastic to see them reuniting despite their past issues – I LOVED this book!

I give Rock Wedding an A+!

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