Review: Sweet Fall by Tillie Cole

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Synopsis:

From the USA Today Best Selling Sweet Home Series, comes Sweet Fall; a tale of heartache, beating the odds and finding strength in the most unlikeliest of places.

We all have secrets.

Secrets well buried.

Until we find the one soul who makes the burden of such secrets just that little bit easier to bear.

Lexington “Lexi” Hart is a senior at the University of Alabama. Surrounded by her best friends, her loving family and having fulfilled her life-long dream of making the Crimson Tide cheer squad, everything is going exactly as she always dreamed it would. But beneath her happy exterior, demons lurk, threatening to jeopardize everything Lexi has worked to achieve. When events in her life become too much to cope with, Lexi finds herself spiraling down into the realm of her biggest fear. Lexi falls hard, victim once again to the only thing that can destroy her and, on the way, finds herself falling straight into the dangerous tattooed arms of a guy from the wrong side of the tracks.

Austin Carillo, starting Wide Receiver for the Alabama Crimson Tide, must get picked in this year’s NFL draft. He needs it. His brothers need it. Most importantly, his mother desperately needs it. Brought up in a world where the poor are forgotten, the sick are left to fend for themselves and no hero miraculously appears to pull you out of hell, Austin had no other choice but to make a living on the wrong side of the law—until football offered Austin the break to get his life back on track. But when a family tragedy drags him back into the clutches of the gang he believed he had left far behind, Austin finds himself falling. Falling back into criminal ways and falling deep into a suffocating darkness. Until a troubled yet kindred spirit stumbles across his path, where Austin quickly finds he is falling for a young woman, a young woman who might just have the power to save him from his worst enemy: himself.

Can two troubled souls find a lasting peace together? Or will they finally succumb to the demons threatening to destroy them?

New Adult/Contemporary Romance novel—contains adult content, sexual situations and mature topics. Suited for ages 18 and up.

Can be read as a stand-alone novel.

 

My Review

 

After reading Sweet Home, I knew I needed to get my hands on Sweet Fall. What I didn’t know was that Tillie was going to rip my freaking heart to pieces in one novel. Don’t worry, it’s a HEA, but still. This novel has the ups and downs of a thrilling rollercoaster that had me gripping my kindle and begging that it would end on the plus side.

Sweet Home was sweet compared to this book. This novel broke my heart because of the visualization and reality of her characters. Sometimes you can tell where an author takes a leap of faith. She pushes past her comfort zone, into a boundary that could either cause her fall or cause her popularity. Tillie broke through her comfort zone like a ninja and destroyed my happy land of fairytales. But she so drowned it in love that I can’t help but still love her.

Lexi…oh freaking Lexi. The happy, bouncy, girl that kind of reminds me of that rainbow unicorn on the Lego movie. She’s seemingly perfect. A cheerleader, happy, loves her friends, loves to party…but at the same time wears goth makeup. She is the total antithesis (appearance wise) to what a cheerleader is perceived to be.

But then she had to come out with her problem. Lexi hates her image. She’s severely anorexic, and every struggle, every factor in her life made me so sad. I think I cried for half of this book. Never in my life have I struggled with what Lexi goes through. Anorexia is an illness so disregarded by many, shoved to the side as something only over-dramatic teenagers have.  But it’s not, and for that reason I felt such immense sadness for Lexi. But then she meets Austin.

Austin had a depressing backstory as well, the first novel of the “Carrillo Brothers” series. After escaping a gang and becoming a famous player for the Alabama Tide, he gets stressed out when drugs start making their way into his school. He’s struggling to keep his head above water, staying away from the other side of the law, and keeping the fiesty cheerleader from it as well. He has to protect her to protect himself…and his family.

Together they struggle through more than most people. Illegal activities, internal warfare and so much more.

This book brings you down, brings you right back up again, and just wanting for the two amazing people to be happy. I loved Lexi, I loved Austin, and this book only made me realize how amazing an author Tillie really is.

Good job for stepping out of your comfort zone, Tillie. Doing that brought out honest emotions and I’m sure pulled tears out of more than one reader.

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