Friday, April 1, 2016

Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Perez

“This is East Texas, and there’s lines. Lines you cross, lines you don’t cross. That clear?”

New London, Texas. 1937. Naomi Vargas and Wash Fuller know about the lines in East Texas as well as anyone. They know the signs that mark them.

“No Negroes, Mexicans, or dogs.”

They know the people who enforce them.

“They all decided they’d ride out in their sheets and pay Blue a visit.”

But sometimes the attraction between two people is so powerful it breaks through even the most entrenched color lines. And the consequences can be explosive.

“More than grief, more than anger, there is a need. Someone to blame. Someone to make pay.”

Ashley Hope Pérez takes the facts of the 1937 New London school explosion—the worst school disaster in American history—as a backdrop for a riveting novel about segregation, love, family, and the forces that destroy people.

The Urban Dictionary's definition of a Book Hangover is: When you've finished a book and you suddenly return to the real world, but the real world feels incomplete or surreal because you're still living in the world of the book. To say I'm suffering from one is an understatement. This book transported me to a different time period, a different life, and whole different mind set. I was blown away by the reality within the words and gut punched by tragedy. Out of the Darkness deserves like 10 Stars it was that good! 

Naomi and her siblings are sent to live with their daddy/"step daddy" and with that comes a brutal past and a terrifying present. He is a racist, a drunk, and a born again-but not really- christian. He is a walking nightmare. He is so unpredictable that everyone walks on egg shells around him. Naomi especially because they have a past and he wants her in ways he shouldn't... While she would love to flee and never look back, she has the kids to worry about. She doesn't expect much, but when a guy sees her foot dangling from a tree her life seems to turn upside down. She feels happy and finally can see a light at the end of tunnel. Unfortunately, what may seem great slowly turns to turmoil. 

This book was unlike anything I've read before.. It should be a classic! I will say that again. This book should be read by EVERYONE... While it was based around a forbidden romance it also captured the essence of the time period and how racism touched all those around. It was hard to read at times, but life changing in the most unexpected way. It was like grasping sand... Reality slowly drifted away and I was surrounded by smoldering ash, blood, and a broken heart. 

It wasn't all tragedy though... There was a passionate romance that had intimacy and friendship and so much more. Wash and Naomi will forever be embedded in my mind. I loved their story so much that as soon as I finished the last page I wanted to start it all over. So I absolutely recommend this book! I can't wait to read more from the Author and if I could find this beauty signed somewhere I would be all over it. 


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