Kiss Me Like You Mean It by J.R. Rogue
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on March 22nd 2018
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My love is poison. His kiss is mine.
“The first time he saw me I was shattered glass, and he was a shadow. If I had stayed, he would have just faded away.”
It’s strange how easy it is to tell our stories to a stranger’s eyes. The truth about Connor Stratford and I had always been a sad tale. Over ten years of chasing, tears, lies, vows, and leaving. Two people who never loved each other at the same time, but couldn’t let each other go.
Now here I was telling our story over drinks midday in an airport bar with my old diary clutched in my hand. Telling some version of our story, anyway.
I left him once with no goodbye. Now I was returning home to give him what he needed to move on.
“It’s important. It’s what you’re thinking.”
I knew what his message meant, sent in the middle of the night after I woke from a fever dream.
He was finally ready, and so was I. I just needed to finally give him the kiss he begged for. The one that meant goodbye.
“I knew what it was like to watch your face fall in reflected glass. To watch words die in your own eyes.”
Books like this are the reason I love to read. I don’t love many books or hand out many 5-star reviews. I reserve those sentiments for books like this. Those every-once-in-a-while, holy-shit books that just rip right to your core.
I love it when someone can put my mixed-up brain and broken heart into words and onto paper. Only someone like J.R. Rogue could take so many fears and failures and somehow make them sound so beautifully poetic.
Kiss Me Like You Mean It is not a romance novel. It’s an impossibly fucked up love story and those are the ones I truly love to read. Love is hard and life is messy and I crave the kind of brutal honesty that makes my heart feel like it’s going to bleed.
This is a story about how broken people love. How they sabotage, fear, and reject love, and all the things they try to do to protect themselves and numb their pain. It’s about how destructive childhood trauma, depression, and anxiety can be in our daily lives and relationships. But in the end, it’s also a testament to the fact that love is really just two people choosing not to give up on each other.
This book, like most books I love, is probably not for everyone. It’s not “pretty”; you need to read it with an open mind. If you haven’t lived some life or been handed some of the worst of what life has to offer, you likely won’t recognize the beauty contained in all the ugliness of these pages. Kiss Me Like You Mean It takes some grit to be appreciated.
To J.R. Rogue – thank you for being so honest and brave and letting people see the ugly side of yourself, of love, and of life in general. Your story ultimately left me hopeful that maybe someone will eventually love all my broken pieces.
Kiss Me Like You Mean It releases March 22nd.