27 Jul 2018

Double-Review: After Sunrise (Never Lose Sight #1.5) & Out of the Dusk (Never Lose Sight #3)


After Sunrise on Goodreads:
After receiving a call from his commander, Sergeant Brett Parker rushes overseas to the military hospital, where two of his Marine brothers are recovering after an IED explosion decimated the rest of their unit. Struggling with survivor guilt, Brett's thoughts are dark and tortured until he encounters the beautiful brunette in the cafeteria. Lauren Cage always dreaded getting "the call" every military family fears. Flying to Landstuhl, Germany to her wounded brother's bedside, she battles the grief threatening to overtake her. Being in a foreign country is intimidating for a young woman traveling alone, but when she meets one of her brother's best friends and comrades, her anxiety subsides. After five emotional days, Brett is forced to return to war and Lauren goes home to New York. For over a year, they secretly burn up the internet with a scorching love affair neither time or distance could deny. When entanglements from the past threaten to pry them apart, Brett is faced with a personal dilemma and is forced to embrace his heart's desire.

Out of the Dusk on Goodreads:
After many long years as a Marine, Brett Parker knows the meaning of war. Hardened and tired of death and destruction, he prepares for the most important mission of his career: to win back the woman who has his heart. He was certain he would never hold her again—until a promise to his dying mother takes him on a journey to reclaim the love he lost.
Lauren Terrelli would never forget the boy who broke her heart. Finding happiness after Brett was hard enough; losing it again almost destroyed her. Unexpectedly widowed, Lauren’s sole focus became her bakery, but a voice from the past changes everything.
Lauren soon learns Brett is not the same man she knew all those years ago. As his world spins out of control, hers begins to right itself for the first time.
Brett is ready to fight for his Beauty, but the demons in his head are far worse than he could ever imagine. Is he strong enough to let Lauren lead him out of the dusk? 

The books could be considered as one volume instead of two separate volumes. The books contain immense feelings of love and desperation. Almost to an unbelievable extent. The main couple falls instantly in love with each other. There is nothing that can separate the two, not even the distance between them when Brett's leave is up and he has to return to the sandbox.

There is a sense in the main plotline. Two people fall in love and they have to overcome obstacles thrown at them. The eventual separation and falling out of love is there too, as expected. The plot-flow is more consistent in the first book. Out of the Dusk is more of a mismatch compared to the first one, at times, just trying to patch up the holes left behind from After Sunrise.

Not liking the main characters is always quite problematic when it comes to the overall experience of reading any book. It's hard to love a book if you dislike the person whose story you are following. Lauren, to me, was a very unrelatable character. She has this naivete in her throughout the entire length of both of the books. Her character believes that everything will be okay if you just wear love around you like a protective bubble. And somehow, somehow this bubble doesn't get popped. That's not how it works. You can't cure post-traumatic stress disorder with hugs. You can't cure suicidal thoughts with kisses. You can't drown your own insecurities and feelings of loneliness by convincing that you have fallen in love again. Lauren is so self-deceptive character. It's hard to find a scene in the book where she is truthful to herself.

Speaking of liking characters, how can you learn to like anyone you aren't introduced to? You may admire them. You might even get an impression of what they are in real life, but it's hard to really make up your mind if you don't spend any time with them. And this is what happened with most of the characters in the book. Especially in Out of the Dusk. Half the time, I was quite confused who all the people were and why they were there. I get, yeah, I don't need a formal introduction with a brief recap of their family lineage. No. What I need are characters that belong in the world of the book, not just characters that feel a little out of place but appear in the scene because they need to fill some kind of empty space in the room.

Maybe it's just me. Maybe it's the way I'm brought up. But, most of the events of the second book went too smoothly to be believable. Forgiving and moving on from heartbreak. The rekindling of romance. Maybe it's my past experiences of fighting with the ones I love. Jumping back into any relationship, be it romantic or not, has never gone with the snap of my fingers. There's always the period of animosity towards the other one. During that period you build back the trust you have lost. Talk about all the wrongdoings. I would've wanted to see more of this stage between Lauren and Brett, instead of the teenager lust they went through instead.

To be honest, I had a lot of issues with After Sunrise and Out of the Dusk, but still, I did not resent either one fo the books. Basically, if you want to read a military romance with not so heavy load dumped on you these two books are good options for you.

I received a copy from Book Reviews 4 You with no requirement for a review. All opinions are my own and are 100 % honest.

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