This is the kind of book that I genuinely don’t know how to put into words my feelings on it. This book is beyond words and yet everything and it’s so hard for me to find a way to explain the beauty and genius that Lunamare encompassed.
It’s a story of starcrossed soulmates, and all the extreme highs, and unfortunately, equally extreme lows they endure throughout their compelling love story.
Lunamare has me on edge, it had me giddy with young love, it just had my emotions all over the place. I adored the formatting it was told in, though to be honest it sometimes amped up my tension as things were hinted at but not actually revealed.
I am not good at the waiting game, so when Nerida of the future would reflect on her and Aslan’s past and tough on agony that was about to come, I did not have a good time when said agony was not immediately revealed and I had to sit there chewing my nails wondering what horror was about to happen next to keep these two from their much needed happiness with each other.
Kudos for how well done the tension building was done throughout Pepper Winters’ incredible writing. All the while the story future Nerida was telling would be told from the point of view of Aslan and Neri’s younger selves who didn’t know what was coming.
Nerida, known as Neri, is a wild, stubborn soul who is used to getting her way and for sure a force to be reckoned with. She knows what she wants and she will do everything in her power to get it. And the people who can withstand her force of nature are few and far between. So when she saves Aslan’s life when he is shipwrecked, nothing and no one will convince her anything other than that she is going to marry him one day.
Aslan on the other hand has lost everything, his family, his home, and any possessions he might have had. He is also in Australia illegally as he and his family ran from his homeland, Turkey, for reasons that are only hinted at throughout the majority of this book. So when Neri’s family takes him in and gives him a place to stay, and a living, he is so eternally grateful to them for sheltering him and keeping his secret that he cannot even consider the idea of crossing their wishes. Which includes not touching their 12 year old daughter. For years this isn’t an issue, until one day Neri is all grown up and won’t let him forget what she feels for him.
And thus much tension and happiness and heartbreak ensues in a tale that spans across time and is unforgettable. I can’t get over the emotions this book made me feel. I was frustrated when the characters were frustrated, I felt so much dread knowing that something bad was coming and worry for these characters that had gotten under my skin and made me fall for them so hard that I was invested in every second of their journey.
The characters, Aslan and Neri were both such fantastic characters to follow. I loved both of their points of view equally and never had those moments of, ugh, just get on with this characters viewpoint so I can get to the one I really want. I loved every second of both characters. And it wasn’t just the main characters that I couldn’t get enough of. Neri’s parents were such fantastic secondary characters that I wanted every second of and couldn’t help but also love.
They have such an enviable relationship and care so much for both Neri, and Aslan who basically becomes their adopted son. And I couldn’t handle the idea of a fallout happening between Aslan and these two because of the incredible bond they had, due to the secret feelings he had for Neri potentially coming out to them.
As much as there was so much beauty in Lunamare and its characters, I feel the need to reiterate this was NOT an easy book by any means. There are a lot of tough moments. Both devastating and horrifyingly gut churning moments. There are triggers, so before you pick this book up definitely check them out, but as tough as some of these events can be, this book is more than worth it.
I also cannot handle where Lunamare ended. I turned to the final page and yelled out when I realized it was in fact the last because I couldn’t handle the cliffhanger moment we were left with. I can’t even fathom the idea of waiting for Cor Amare because the thought of not having the sequel in my hands immediately is honestly driving me nuts. And the hangover I have. Ohh the hangover. I’m not exaggerating when I say that as soon as I finished this book, after trying and failing to pick up multiple other books, I gave up and just went to bed. Absolutely nothing appealed to me, either in other books, or even on other activities.
All I could handle was going to bed because my mind was too caught up in Lunamare and I couldn’t come up with anything to do that would engage my mind like this book had. I’m still struggling finding a new book to read because I’m so hung up on this book and these characters. I can only hope that I get my hands on Cor Amare ASAP to find a way out of this book hangover.