After We Collided is book two of the After Series. I first blogged about this series here.
It was my inaugural book review on my blog and I think it went pretty well. And since I love this series so much, I thought I’d do a quick review of each of the books leading up to the much anticipated release of book four, After Ever Happy, later this month.
BUT I have so much to say about this book! I know you’re busy, so I’ll use pictures to try and keep it short, and still get my point across . . .
After a tumultuous beginning to their relationship, Tessa and Hardin were on the path to making things work. Tessa knew Hardin could be cruel, but when a bombshell revelation is dropped about the origins of their relationship—and Hardin’s mysterious past—Tessa is beside herself.
Hardin will always be…Hardin. But is he really the deep, thoughtful guy Tessa fell madly in love with despite his angry exterior—or has he been a stranger all along? She wishes she could walk away. It’s just not that easy. Not with the memory of passionate nights spent in his arms. His electric touch. His hungry kisses.
Still, Tessa’s not sure she can endure one more broken promise. She put so much on hold for Hardin—school, friends, her mom, a relationship with a guy who really loved her, and now possibly even a promising new career. She needs to move forward with her life.
Hardin knows he made a mistake, possibly the biggest one of his life. He’s not going down without a fight. But can he change? Will he change…for love?
So Okay, the first thing about this book to grab my attention was the prologue. Now, if you’ve read book one, After, then you know it ended with a bombshell. A stinging realization about the beginning of Tessa’s relationship with Hardin that made her question everything she thought she knew. And book two begins right where book one left off–which I loved–but that is not the point.
POINT: This book does a fair amount of head-hopping between Tessa and Hardin.I don’t generally have a problem with that. My issue usually stems from a book series where we follow a single main characters story through everything (Crossfire Series comes to mind) and then WHAM! Now we’re in book two or three and there’s multiple points of view. Book one was all Tessa. Yet this book begins inside Hardins head.
But I cannot complain about it. Because of the ending of After, being the crazy mind-job that it was, we readers needed to get inside Hardins mind. If we didn’t get the intimate look at him here in book two, we never would believe that he actually loves Tessa and the story would never work. So, well done, Mrs Todd.
AND so much happens in this book! The more we get to know of Hardin, the more of a mystery he becomes, but we understand him enough to be able to forgive most of his wrong-doings. At least I do. I see a lot of myself in Tessa, maybe that’s why I still like her after she does such monumentally stupid things (like constantly run to Zed!). The meat of this book deals with the aftermath of Hardin’s treatment of Tessa. And we get to see how naive and immature she really is–which is another thing like about these books; there are no perfect characters, only flawed people doing their best, for the most part.
Through this whole book, I kept thinking of this great quote by this wonderful life speaker, Joyce Meyer: “Hurting people, hurt people.” She also says really wonderful things like the following that ring true no matter where you are in life, and also came to mind as I read After We Collided:
Some great quotes that help sum up the book:
I think a fair summation of this book, is basically Hardin trying to learn how to care about another person. And one of the things that I love about this series is that it is true to life in many ways. There is no simple resolution. We do not turn a page and find the answer to the this couples problems. There is no romantic phrase to undo the damage Hardin has caused Tessa. There is only this profound feeling–and for me, a very deep hope–that their love will carry them long enough to heal one another.