Review: ★Silent Scars★ by Ada Frost

REview- Silent ScarsSilent Scars
Series: Surviving #4
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Ada Frost
Release Date: November 28, 2015add-to-goodreads-button-2

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Her Man.

Their Hero.

His Pain.

What happens when you pray for death and you’re ignored?

You have to live.

You have to survive.

But what if the last thing you want is to take your next breath?

To the world, Ryan is a hero, an ex-marine, brother, son and protector. He has devoted his life to keeping others safe. He will do anything and everything to ensure his loved ones are protected, even if that means destroying his very own soul. After an explosion on the battlefield ends his career in the Marine’s, Ryan is sent home with an honorable discharge. But the war hasn’t ended for him.

He is home, he is free and he’s breathing, but he’s dead inside.

He wants nothing more than peace, but the nightmares in his mind will not grant him that. They taunt him, tease him and torture his waking moments. The darkness within him is slowly consuming him, blackness has seeped into his veins and is rotting his core. Ryan is a man on the edge of destruction. For once he is the one in need of saving. He needs a saviour.

He needs her.

Ryan is commissioned as a bodyguard to Aloura Cavendish. When he initially meets her, he believes her to be a spoiled rich brat, wasting his time. But the fire inside her astounds him. When he pushes, he never expects her to push back. When he runs, she chases. For the first time in his life, Ryan has a protector willing to fight his demons. The only problem – he is too afraid to release them.

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Review3.5 starsSilent Scars-DGR

In a world of chaos and pain, you are my silence.”

Silent Scars was my first book by this author and I can say with certainty it will not be my last. I do think I did myself a disservice by jumping into book 4 in this series without having read the previous books. Don’t get me wrong, this works well as a standalone and I was never confused, but it’s clear there’s a history with the secondary characters that I was missing. Ryan’s relationship with his brothers is something I would have loved to have read first before jumping into this book, but it is what it is. I definitely plan on going back and reading the rest of this series now.

…I needed to know how you healed silent scars.

This was an extremely poignant and emotional read that was almost difficult to experience at times. Ryan’s history is absolutely devastating. Everything that he’s been through and the memories that continuously haunt him to this day made my heart bleed for him. This is not an easy story to swallow. It’s dark, it’s emotional, and it’s a story of survival.

I’m not broken, Aloura. That would imply I could be fixed. There is nothing left inside me.”

After a devastating injury on his last tour in the Marines, Ryan is out. And while he may have his share of physical scars, none are as debilitating as his silent internal ones. The scars of his past and what he’s survived is what haunts him. The guilt of what he’s been through continues to eat at him. He’s a shell of a man that doesn’t believe he’s worth anything, let alone the attention of a beautiful woman he’s hired to protect.

I don’t want to be someone’s possession, Ryan. Belongings can be expandable, thrown away when they are old and dirty. I want to be a part of you. I want to wake up each morning with a feeling of completeness because I know you’re near. I want your soul to greet mine. Show me all of you. Give me your pain and I will give you my joy.

Aloura was an interesting character. She’s a bit quirky and introverted, she’s shy and unsure of herself. As the daughter in an unorthodox family, the quirkiness is basically guaranteed. Her father is the owner of a medical research company that’s been working on trialling a new cancer treatment drug and controvercially they test their drugs on human patients. When the threats turn to his beloved daughter, he hires security, and Ryan just so happens to be the unwilling bodyguard. Aloura is non too happy about the shadow, but when she meets Ryan, there’s something about his brooding intensity that calls to her. She wants to find his secrets and she wants to heal his deepest wounds.

How was it possible to know someone for only a few hours and feel so connected to them?

The story itself was an exercise in frustration for me. Ryan runs hot and cold so frequently it’s enough to give a girl whiplash. He yearns for a true connection and love, but in the same breath he doesn’t think he deserves it. And he certainly does his utmost best to push Aloura away in the cruelest of ways. While a part of me completely understood his behavior given everything that he’s been through, it’s Aloura’s that I had trouble connecting with. Ryan is a flat out asshole to her at times, he’s intentionally cruel and his words to her were sharp enough to cut at times. Yet she takes it all and wants to fix him. It just seemed like her connection to him was much too quick for me to really connect to. Ryan doesn’t give much for Aloura to be as invested as she is and at times I had a tough time swallowing his treatment of her and her acceptance of it.

Tiny dancer, I am not a fairytale prince. I’m not one of your heroes from those romance novels. I’m fucked up, inside I have nothing worthy of you.”

I struggled with my rating for days. I want to rate it highly simply on the poignancy of the story, but at the same time I just didn’t connect with it as much as I wish I did. I loved Ryan, but something about Ryan and Aloura never quite grabbed me. The story is angsty as hell and filled with plenty of bumps along the way. It kept me reading well into he night but there was always also something missing and while I can’t quite place my finger on what it was, it prevented me from enjoying the story as much as I’d hoped.

I needed her like oxygen, she was becoming my reason to breathe.

I have to say that I loved the author’s writing style, and I absolutely loved the setup behind the series. I will definitely be reading all the books before this one and the future ones after. While Silent Scars wasn’t quite what I had expected, it’s still a beautiful story of perseverance and survival that I’d highly recommend to any readers that enjoy that sort of thing.

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