My rating: 4.5/5 stars
Kristy Bromberg has a new series in town and Ramona was so up for the challenge. The reviews were awesome and almost all of them spoke about emotion and broken hearts, so why not???? I wanted to see how much she could push me and expose that sensitive side that not always is easy to reveal in a person. After “Down Shift” I thought it would be very hard for her to reach that level of emotion and connection again, and even if for me it was nearly there, I have to admit that the ride was amazing.
“Cuffed” brings us 2 distinct characters that are nothing alike, but united by childhood memories. Emerson and Grant were best friends up the age of 8, until something terrible happens and Emerson doesn’t want to see Grant again. 20 years later they reunite as grown-ups, but the minute they see each other everything comes back, plus a very strong attraction they try to fight.
It was impossible to focus only on one character, so of course I loved both and found them extremely interesting to explore.
Grant is a real life hero and being a police officer enables him to save a lot of people and serve as best he can. When Emerson walked away 20 years ago, he was devastated and consumed by guilt, because he felt that he could help her, but being so young, he was powerless. Having her back again made him realise that he was never over her, and now he is determined to keep Emerson in his life. He was extremely stubborn and really manage to handle her in the best way possible, because he really had a hard mission. His hero complex is very interesting and there were cases when he wanted so much from himself, that he pushed his limits and expectations extremely high. Everything came back to Emerson, to the day he felt he let her down. Now, he will pursue her, make her feel alive again and in the process, start a new life, without having the past constantly haunting them.
Emerson on the other hand was very hard to read at the beginning, and I had a hard time understanding her because I wasn’t aware she was the victim of child abuse. She acted so bravely, never letting Grant know about what is really happening to her, never being in the open, but there were glimpse and pieces for the reader to receive through the book. For me those were heartbreaking and I just couldn’t understand how a child could live something like this. Despite a very hard exterior, Emerson felt like a ticking bomb and there were parts in the books that just made her explode and we find out how she really coped after she left Grant 20 years ago. Those were very strong and I felt so much anger and not only for Emerson, but for the thousand of children that go through that every day.
The couple was explozive and amazing, because even if the push and pull was constant, I could feel a development, something that made Emerson’s shield crack and trust Grant. It was very special to see them bond and by the end of the book, you truly feel like you experienced the couples problems in person. I was very involved in this plot and after finishing it, I felt exhausted, because I really felt everything and connected to each of their problems or happy scenes.
The story was extremely well written, with a lot of emotional parts that makes you reflect so much about certain aspects in life. After seeing that Kristy wrote this book from something she really lived, it broke my heart, not that I was not aware of it happening in real life, but I just imagined how hard it must have been for her to experience it again trough writing. The message at the end of the book for Olive made me tear up, the dedication was impacting, and I could feel her regret for not seeing her anymore, not knowing if she met a real life Grant that could save her like the way it happened with Emerson in the book. The message is so strong, and it overwhelms you in impossible ways, because you realize how fragile a person could be after such traumatizing events, and how a heart can be rebuilt with love, tenderness and trust.