Early Review: Collared by Nicole Williams

Collared by Nicole Williams

Collared by Nicole Williams
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: March 22nd 2016
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review

When a seventeen-year-old girl vanishes,
A community is shaken.
Parents turn desperate.
Friends hold vigils.
And the boy who loves her searches.

When a year goes by,
The community is recovering.
Parents feel hopeless.
Friends feel helpless.
And the boy who loves her continues his search.

When ten years go by,
The community has forgotten.
Parents cling to the past.
Friends move toward the future.
And the boy who loves her . . .
Brings her home.

Jade Childs spent ten years in captivity, but now that she’s back, the real battle for survival begins. The media shadows her. Flashbacks haunt her. Her old life evades her. Her so-called new life rejects her. She spent too many years in the dark to recognize the light. She spent too long repressing her feelings to remember how to express them. She spent a decade abandoning hope and cannot dare letting it back into her life. Jade’s not just defined by what happened to her—she’s collared to it.

When the twenty-seven-year-old woman is found,
A community wants to know the story,
Parents want to forget the story,
Friends want to be a part of the story,
And the man who still loves her faces the greatest challenge yet: letting her go.

OH MY GOD!!!!! I love love loveedddd this book so much. SO MUCH!!! I had no idea I would end up loving Collared as much as I do, but it was seriously perfection. I’ve loved Nicole Williams since I first read her Crash series a few years ago, but this, THIS BOOK, is for sure my all-time favorite read of hers now. I’m so in awe of the brilliant story Nicole Williams has woven in Collared. I loved this book so much I literally just bought myself the paperback so I could have it on my favorites shelf. AHHH!! I’m dying for this to release so everyone can read and experience the utter beauty of it!

“Find an emotional tether. Someone you trusted before and someone you can trust now. A person who can connect you to your past but can pilot you into the future. Someone who can pull you back from the ledge when you find it and from the dark when it finds you. Find that person, hold on tight, and don’t let go.”

I began this book intrigued by the blurb and cover. I don’t particularly LOVE kidnapping stories, but Collared’s blurb hooked me in and I prayed it would meet my expectations. I’m so happy to say this book went above and beyond anything I ever expected. I ended up reading this in one sitting, staying up until almost 3AM finishing it – I had to get up 4.5 hours later, but it was totally worth the lost sleep. I honestly couldn’t put this book down! It’s a captivating, haunting, utterly romantic story – a story of a girl kidnapped for ten years and brought home by the boy she loved before she was taken.

He’s not supposed to be the one I tether myself to, but it doesn’t change that he’s the one I already have. He’s not supposed to be the one . . . but he always has been The One.

Jade Childs was only seventeen when she was kidnapped, stolen away from her family and the love of her life, Torrin. For the next ten years, the boy she loved who loved her never stopped searching for her or giving up hope. Now, at twenty-seven, she’s finally come home – but can she ever live a normal life again? Or will her past continue to keep her shackled down, collared, unable to move on with her life?

As Jade struggles with being back home and interacting with other people, Torrin is right by her side the whole time. But she’s not the same girl she was when they were in love, and neither is he. There’s a twist in this book I did NOT see coming, that had me seriously OMG-ing, but I loved the way the author took the direction of the story with it. This twist creates complications for Jade and Torrin… and I love the angst and heartbreak that came with it. Collared made me FEEL so much, but the one thing that captivated me the most, that had me obsessing over this book, was the powerful, beautiful love story.

He stretches slower. His eyes refuse to blink. “You were my first. And you were my last.” His words echo in the small space. “A man could have a thousand different partners and settle down with an amazing woman, and I’d still hold the bragging rights.”

I am head over heels in love with Torrin and his unwavering, heart-stopping love for Jade. He is not a perfect man, but he’s utterly perfect for Jade. There really is no end to what he would do for her – he would literally give his life for the girl that he has never stopped loving. He’s a words and actions man, so the things he says and does because of his love made my heart MELT. I love Torrin!!!

His strong hand grips the side of my neck, and he aligns his eyes with mine. “I’ve been sure about you since I was fifteen years old. And I’ll be sure about you for the rest of my life.”

Jade herself is so strong but vulnerable. I don’t usually connect that well with heroines in kidnapping stories, but with Jade, I connected with her right from the start. The raw emotion coming from her struggles, her fear and helplessness, her desire to be whole again, made me feel as if I were fighting right alongside with her. I liked that Nicole Williams didn’t focus too much on her kidnapping – there were enough flashbacks to give us an understanding of what happened to Jade, but her story very much focuses on her healing and moving on.

Nicole Williams has written an unputdownable, gripping, heart-pounding read. Collared is emotionally devastating yet uplifting. It’s meaningful, heartfelt, and so, so romantic. It’s a fantastically-written, powerful story I loved with all my heart. If you love unique books with unforgettable love stories, I can’t recommend this enough.

5 hearts
lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


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Cover Reveal + Excerpt: Collared by Nicole Williams

I’m thrilled to share the gorgeous cover of Collared, Nicole Williams’ next upcoming novel!

Collared by Nicole Williams
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: March 22nd 2016
Add to Goodreads

When a seventeen-year-old girl vanishes,
A community is shaken.
Parents turn desperate.
Friends hold vigils.
And the boy who loves her searches.

When a year goes by,
The community is recovering.
Parents feel hopeless.
Friends feel helpless.
And the boy who loves her continues his search.

When ten years go by,
The community has forgotten.
Parents cling to the past.
Friends move toward the future.
And the boy who loves her . . .
Brings her home.

Jade Childs spent ten years in captivity, but now that she’s back, the real battle for survival begins. The media shadows her. Flashbacks haunt her. Her old life evades her. Her so-called new life rejects her. She spent too many years in the dark to recognize the light. She spent too long repressing her feelings to remember how to express them. She spent a decade abandoning hope and cannot dare letting it back into her life. Jade’s not just defined by what happened to her—she’s collared to it.

When the twenty-seven-year-old woman is found,
A community wants to know the story,
Parents want to forget the story,
Friends want to be a part of the story,
And the man who still loves her faces the greatest challenge yet: letting her go.

Buy Links:
Preorder links coming soon!

Now here’s an excerpt from Collared! ❤

excerpt button

He holds my eyes, not letting them wander away from him. “Why have you been avoiding me?”

I wander my room, not sure where to go now that he’s here. I’m not sure where I fit now. I’m not sure where I belong in his life.

“You know why,” I say quietly.

“I want to hear you tell me.”

“Why?”

“So I can change your mind.” His hands slide into his front pockets, and the sunlight catches on his dad’s watch and casts golden beams through the room. It lights up like someone just lit a million candles at once. “I can’t do that unless I know exactly why you don’t want to see me.”

He wants a reason? I’ll give him a whole list of them.

“Because I don’t want to drag you into my mess of a world any more than I already have. Because I don’t want to smear you through the mud on the media’s march to burying me. Because I don’t want to hurt you—again—and because I want to protect you.”

“I can protect myself from them.”

I shake my head and cover my chest with my hand. “To protect you from me.”

Torrin’s jaw hardens. He works it loose the moment after. “I don’t need protection from you.”

“Everyone needs protection from me. There’s something dark in me now, Torrin, and I can’t get it out. It’s growing, spreading, and I don’t want it to infect the people I love.”

He pushes off the closet doors and crosses the room before I know he’s coming. “There is nothing dark in you, Jade. Nothing.” He backs me into the wall and stares at me, unblinking. “There is light and good in you. There always has been. There always will be.”

“That’s gone. He took it from me.”

“No, he didn’t.” Torrin’s hand slams into the wall beside my head. “It’s still there. You had to bury it to keep it safe, but it’s still there. You’ll find it. I know it.”

I want to believe him, but that doesn’t make it true. “You can’t find what isn’t there, Torrin.”

“Dammit, stop talking like that,” he says, his jaw tensing. “It’s there. I know it.”

“I’ve tried. I can’t find it.” Even as I say it, I start to feel different. It’s because of him being so close, saying what he is in the way he is. He’s the tether that keeps me from floating away.

His eyes lower to mine. “I’ll help you find it.”

I feel my heart again. My lungs. Everything else. I feel it waking up. “What makes you so sure you can find it?”

“Because when I look in your eyes, I still see it.” His other hand fits against the wall beside my head. “Because when I’m close to you like this, I can still feel it.” He leans a little closer, and I feel something too. “It’s there, Jade. It’s not gone. He took ten years of your life—ten years.” The corners of his eyes crease as an emotion fires in his eyes. “Don’t hand him the rest of it by believing that kind of shit.”

about the author button

Nicole Williams is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of contemporary and young adult romance, including the Crash and Lost & Found series. Her books have been published by HarperTeen and Simon & Schuster in both domestic and foreign markets, while she continues to self-publish additional titles. She is working on a new YA series with Crown Books (a division of Random House) as well. She loves romance, from the sweet to the steamy, and writes stories about characters in search of their happily even after. She grew up surrounded by books and plans on writing until the day she dies, even if it’s just for her own personal enjoyment. She still buys paperbacks because she’s all nostalgic like that, but her kindle never goes neglected for too long. When not writing, she spends her time with her husband and daughter, and whatever time’s left over she’s forced to fit too many hobbies into too little time.

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