Such a beautiful, splendid and heart-warming read this one was. The best way to describe it would be - A slow burn romance mixed with a dosage of craziness and certain taboo elements.
Before I get to the actual review- I have to say this: This book made feel a lot of 'de javu moments". There was this uncanny resemblance to Thomas and Layla (from unrequited- one of my all time fav books) in terms of overall gist of the story, taboo nature, the main protagonists, their relation dynamics, the story pacing and even certain scenes!! In so many ways it felt like a rehash of unrequited with different characters and in a different setting. THAT will be always be my top fav by the author but this was no less!! It was agonizingly beautiful in everything - the story, writing as well as the characters.
Okay so coming to the actual review :
This book has a very strong, complex and heavy storyline dealing with mental illness - suicide. Despite that it never took a dark tone and though it conveyed a lot about the illness, its nature and the treatment (if any), it never felt too gritty and painful to read. There was a nice hopeful and romantic feel to it but again nothing was sugar coated but was handled with finesse and balance with right proportions of angst, love and sex. The tone and pacing were top notch. Absolutely no complaints there.The story by itself offered quite a few taboo elements and that's what made it all the more enticing. The taboo love affair between a psychiatrist and his depressed patient. I think the author has a penchant for writing taboo stories - In case of Unrequited it was a student and a teacher ;) anyway, moving on, the settings of a psychiatric facility was also very intriguing. I haven't read other books that went into so much details about how actually they function and the daily routines of all the patients admitted there. It was very realistic, and created a very good understanding of the overall functioning and even the treatments offered.
I loved the whole dynamics between Simmon and Willow. They form an amazing super hot and perfect couple. They both have their own set of flaws but complete each other so flawlessly!! More than liking them individually, I loved them together as a couple. They just clicked. Most of the chapters are from willow, so I could totally get her perspective on everything. Initially I has a problem with truly empathizing and liking her character. She used to lie and it seemed like she was in denial about he down illness but that haze was cleared when Simon walked into her life and she finally opened up to him about everything. Simon actually gave me a different lens to view her in and then I started to really admire and like her. By the end of the book she had completely grown on me
Simon is perfect match for Willow but as a protagonist, I had several issues with him. That might be because I got very less chapters from his POV and most of his secrets are not revealed up until the end. There was a mystery, aura and also cockiness surrounding him, but I never got to actually look into the depths of his character. Sometimes he got on my nerves and at times I expected him to do more, react, respond, admit his feelings but he took his own sweet time and though I don't blame him per se, I wish he were more stronger and open (like he expected of his patients)
The sex scenes were scorching hot and I had a really fun time imagining it in my head!! In this aspect, Saffron never disappoints. She always nails the sex scenes, adding her own creative touch to each and evey one of them .
The drama quotient was kind of low and towards the end, the story became a lot predictable (maybe that's why I deducted one star?)but it didn't steal the joy while reading. I loved every single page and chapter and read it with same interest and enthusiasm.
Last but not the least -This book had some amazing dialogues that were really very inspiring and motivating!! I have soooo many highlights of such lines. This book is not just romance, I felt it more like a life lesson. It teaches us to always fight against all odds, not for anyone or anything but for ourselves. A sweet love story with a powerful moral lesson - Four magically healing stars!!!!