It Ends With Us by American author Colleen Hoover is a heartrending novel full of pain, emotion, and awareness.
TRIGGER WARNING: This book contains content on relationships, domestic and intimate partner abuse and violence.
Life has not always been easy for Lily. As a child, she was the victim of abuse, watching her mother suffer from domestic violence for years at the hands of her father. Due to being around abusive behaviour and seeing her mother suffer, Lily vowed she would not end up like her.
Growing up in a small town in Maine Lily dreamt big. After graduating from college, she moved to Boston with the hopes of starting her own business, a florist shop. Now twenty-three years old she has come a long way from her childhood and has turned into a strong independent woman -confident and believing in her abilities to succeed.
When Lily meets Ryle Kincaid, a resident neurosurgeon, a relationship is the last thing on his mind, he has a rule in which he doesn’t date and prefers casual flings. Like Lily, Ryle has had a traumatic childhood and inner demons lie. Although there is an attraction, they part ways as Lily wants more than casual.
Six months later, Lily purchases the shopfront for “Lily Bloom’s.” She meets Allyssa, who volunteers to help her and they quickly become good friends. Unknowingly, Allyssa is Ryle’s older sister.
As time passes Lily and Ryle start to spend time with one another – Lily is besotted. She finds Ryle to be charming, energetic, smart, and determined to be successful.
Their friendship moves forward, and Ryle decides to explore and settle into a relationship with
Lily. She is thrilled; he is attentive, thoughtful, and crazy about her. He seems to be everything
she’s ever dreamt of in a partner. When she starts to see signs of manipulation and control, she
is concerned and revisits her past.
Fifteen-year-old Lily kept journal-filled letters to Ellen DeGeneres, who she idolised and entries about Atlas Corrigan, a homeless, eighteen-year-old boy who lived in the abandoned house behind her own home. He supported Lily through her mother’s abuse, when Atlas moved to Boston to live with his uncle, they promised each other one day they would reconnect.
They had an untouchable bond that no one could break.
That day came, she ran into Atlas and memories came flooding back. Now Lily is questioning
her future. Relationships are hard, and no one is perfect. Can some degree of uncertainty be
good for her? Does she feel safe with Ryle? Has she made the right choice?
This is an intense novel with compelling characters who are realistic and relatable. Ryle’s character is a prime example of an abuser; he is controlling, sadistic, and a bully. Lily is a strong woman but so vulnerable, I could not help feeling her pain, hurt and confusion, and cry along with her.
As a survivor myself, Lily’s character is an excellent illustration of a victim in an abusive environment. I loved the support Allyssa gave her, especially seeing her brother is the abuser.
It Ends with Us offers story after story dealing with the trials and tribulations women face in everyday life. The author presents that there are four areas that can damage the psyche of women: those being the mental, the emotional, the physical and the spiritual.
Based on true events from Hoover’s life, this book and her words will give hope and courage to many readers who are stuck in unhappy situations and will encourage them to look inward to find happiness. It is a good way to realise that everyone is the scriptwriter of their own lives and can create the life they have been dreaming of for themselves.
With a dramatic storyline, this powerful well-written novel kept me on the edge of my seat until the final page. I highly recommend this book and can’t wait for the next instalment – It Starts with Us.
Thank you, Beauty and Lace and Simon & Schuster for the opportunity to read and review.
My love of books started at a very young age. My mum has always been a reader and encouraged me to read, buying me endless book from classic fairy tales advancing to the world of Enid Blyton, CS Lewis, Louisa May Alcott, Kathryn Kenny, Carolyn Keene, Francine Pascal. In my adult years the list of authors is endless and every room in my house is filled with books.
One of my favourite novels is Narnia which has always has a special place in my heart. I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1978 and when I was given this book to read it let me escape to another world where I felt like I was in the book with all the characters, it wasfun and exciting to escape from reality and eased the ups and downs of the disease at such a young age.
In books nothing is impossible and there is endless potential and hundreds of places to explore or being taken to places that are only made up from the authors’ great minds, the past and future to navigate, characters lives you step into taking you on an emotional rollercoaster ride or being scared out of your wits. I can experience things that I can’t in real life because they’re not possible or real. It challenges my perspective and mindset expanding my worldview.
I find joy, comfort and peace with books, many people may not get it, but I know bookworms like me truly understand. Reading makes my heart happy.