Blog Tour: SO MUCH IT HURTS by Melanie Dawn
Life is full of uncertainty, but what happens when a what-if from your past suddenly makes its way into your present?
Kaitlyn Thomas, a weary wife and mother, is taking a much needed getaway with her friends. All she wants to do is relax and rejuvenate on her weekend escape to the beach. Having a drink at the bar with the girls sounds like the perfect way to unwind. That is, until Kaitlyn hears a familiar voice from the stage that shakes her to her core. She grapples with her memory until Chris King, the lead singer of the band, walks up to her and eliminates the questions in her mind.
Chris King…the misunderstood bad boy who once saved her in ways that no one else could.
Kaitlyn’s friends beg to know the story behind this mystery man. Forced to revisit a painful past from which she has spent years trying to heal, Kaitlyn’s recollection of Chris awakens intense feelings that she has kept buried deep inside her heart. Has time changed him, or is he still the same person Kaitlyn fell in love with so many years ago?
Marriage vows are sacred, but temptation is a powerful thing.
Seeing Chris again has caused a war between her head and her heart. In the end, which one will win the battle? Facing a difficult decision, Kaitlyn just wants to be sure of one thing when she walks away from this weekend—no regrets.
Abby’s Review 5 stars
Sometimes you read a book that just resonates so much with you personally. So Much It Hurts touched me and I am sure that it will touch so many women. This book had a lot of things that were extremely relatable to me. I think that is something that can really make a book a home run, when the author can connect with the audience so effortlessly.
This story begins with Kaitlyn going on a girls weekend with her girlfriends and she comes face to face with someone from her past. We are catapulted into Kaitlyn’s past where she meets her first love. Slowly, his character is revealed. So much of her experience with her first love is similar to mine. He is wonderful at first and then his jealousy consumes him. He becomes a monster. Kaitlyn loses parts of herself.
Personally for me, although high school ended almost 15 years ago, this book brought back memories of my controlling asshole, and how I vowed to not be that girl. It was funny in a way, while reading, I thought to myself, wow, Melanie knows, and it made me reflect when was my butthead’s actions enough. I remember, and it was so true to when it was enough for Kaitlyn, it was when I hated him. My problems were not as bad as Kaitlyn’s but I completely understood. I felt so connected to Kaitlyn as a teenager.
As an adult I felt even more connected to Kaitlyn. There is so much about her adult life that I could relate to.
This story is about, family, love, heartache, soul mates, children and love. I want more. I want it to continue. I had to look up Melanie Dawn when I was done. Is she my age? Does she live near me? I felt so connected to this that in ways she could have sat down and plucked parts of this from my head.
I am in love with this story, my heart felt full and broken at the same time when this was over.
Dawn’s Review 5 Stars
Holy hell! I was a crying mess at the end of this one! You know those books that touch you so deeply and leave you crying at the end? The bittersweet ones where you know how real the end is and how honest yet it leaves you aching for a glimpse into an epilogue that is 10 years later and makes your ‘what if?’ dreams come true? Well, So Much It Hurts was one of those books for me. I am still emotional days after reading it!
Melanie Dawn’s debut novel was one that once I started reading was immediately consumed by it and couldn’t put it down. It starts out with Kaitlyn and Michael who are married with a young son. Their relationship is one that seems more of convenience than love. Kaitlyn heads out on a girls’ weekend with some of her other married friends, only to run into Chris King, a man from her past and one that never quite left her heart.
Connecting with Chris brings up all of their history for Kaitlyn. The story flips back to the past to when they meet and become forever part of each others’ lives. We also meet Trevor, the douche bag high school boyfriend. My heart hurt for Kaitlyn and what she dealt with at his hands! I wanted to personally kick the crap out of him! I could feel the internal conflict and guilt that Kaitlyn felt and how she believed she didn’t have a choice; that she needed to do what was expected but not necessarily what she wanted. It irritated me and made me want to shake her, but I can only imagine how helpless she felt. And then the moments with Chris! Wow – I was instantly connected with him and his sexy self! I loved the sweet, tender moments between him and Kaitlyn. Chris was everything Trevor was not, even if Chris wasn’t from ‘the right crowd’.
The story then moves back to the present and girls’ weekend. Choices are made, consequences abound. People are hurt. Bonds are questioned. More choices are made and accepted. No spoilers here, though, so I’ll leave it at that. I really feel that Melanie Dawn did a phenomenal job of capturing how difficult life choices can be and how we handle the consequences. I think the part that was the hardest for me at the end was that I felt Kaitlyn was again doing what was expected. Did she really learn from her past or was she repeating the same patterns in a slightly different way?
In the end, I highly recommend this book! It brought on some ugly crying for me, so be prepared! Oh, and Melanie Dawn…PLEASE, I beg of you…please give us a 10 or 15 years later epilogue!!!
Nicole’s Review 5 Stars
This is not my first attempt at writing my review of Melanie Dawn’s So Much It Hurts! I have started 3 other times and backspaced every one of them. Why? This book hit me so hard emotionally that I have had a difficult time putting my thoughts into words. From the very beginning, my emotions were all over the place. So much of this book could have or actually happened to me! There were times where I had to stop reading to sort out if it was me feeling for the main characters or just me feeling. Wow.
So Much It Hurts is the story of a woman who in the midst of a less than pleasing life walks right into the best part of her past. Kaitlyn is a stay at home mom who has found that staying home with a little one isn’t all that it is cracked up to be. It’s hard, monotonous, and often requires little use of your brain. Laundry never ends. Kids are always right there with you. Some days you don’t talk to another adult, not even your husband! She has escaped for a much needed and deserved girls’ weekend! Kaitlyn and her friends have hit the beach and plan to let loose and relax!! While out for drinks and Karaoke, Kaitlyn hears a voice that she can’t quite place, but she KNOWS the voice. Turns out it’s the voice of her long lost true love, Chris. Their connection is still there. Their history still matters. Their feelings haven’t waned. None of this is lost on Kaitlyn’s girlfriends and they want the scoop!!
And a scoop they get!! Melanie Dawn switches from Kaitlyn’s present to her past and tells a wonderfully heartbreaking and sweet love story. We are transported back to high school with Kaitlin as she tells her girlfriends the story of she and Chris…how they met; how he saved her; how they fell in love. What a story! It’s the kind that makes you sniffle (All Right…I didn’t sniffle. I cried!) and sigh sweetly at the same time. As Kaitlyn wraps up her story and we are brought back to the present, Kaitlyn is given a potentially life changing opportunity. Chris asks if he can meet her later. What’s a girl to do when she finds her past staring her in the face still loving her the way she still loves him? Does she politely turn him down? Or, does she follow her heart?
Friends, no matter what you think about Kaitlyn’s choice, you will feel for her. You will either feel her quandary. Or, you will know exactly how she feels. Either way, have tissues handy! Seriously. If you have a “one that got away” in your past, you will understand the ache that that loss can create, as it did in Kaitlyn’s case. If you don’t, you will most likely feel compassion for Kaitlyn and Chris as they come so close to having what they so desperately want.
I’m not going to lie…So Much It Hurts resonates deeply with me. I know how it feels to be saved by the same guy who steals your heart. I’m lucky. I married mine! I stay home with 3 little ones and often wonder if there is more to life than laundry, Nick Jr. and chicken nuggets. (Though I wouldn’t trade it for the world!) I do have a “one that got away” in my past that sometimes makes me wonder…What if? Kaitlyn and Chris are given the chance to find out the answer. The choices they make will change their lives forever. Those choices will make you cry. And the ending…Well. I sobbed. I’m not proud, but I did!
I am giving So Much It Hurts a 5 star rating. I can comment on the Melanie Dawn’s writing style, her ability to grab the reader and all that kind of stuff, but those aren’t the reasons for 5 stars. I am giving this book 5 stars because it moved me. It made me feel. It hasn’t left me yet. Not many books do that!
Review copy provided for honest review
Melanie Dawn is a thinker, a dreamer, and a hopeless romantic. When her head isn’t in the clouds, she spends her time as a jack of all trades to her family. Melanie resides in the hills of North Carolina with her husband, her three children, and her cat. She enjoys lazy summer afternoons cruising around the lake on the pontoon boat with her family.
Melanie graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a BA in Psychology and earned her MA in School Counseling from Appalachian State University. She spent the first six years after graduate school as a middle school counselor. Those were years she deems as some of the best years of her life. That is, until she had children of her own. The last seven years have been spent as a stay-at-home mom. She has learned some tough life lessons, like what the inner absorbent pellets of a diaper look like scattered in the washing machine. She has also learned the strength of the willpower of a two year old lacking a nap. Through it all, Melanie has learned how to roll with the punches and appreciate the time she has been able to spend at home with her children.
Now that her last child has started Kindergarten, Melanie is ready to add a new chapter in her life. That chapter begins with her debut novel—So Much It Hurts.
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Goodreads Author Page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6894648.Melanie_Dawn
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