23 April 2014

Surviving Love by M.S. Brannon- Blog Tour, Book Review, Giveaway

“She is my heart and the other half of my life, and now, that life no longer exists." ~Drake Evans, Surviving Love

For Drake Evans, life was once happy. He was living the kind of existence that any man would envy. By his side was the woman he loved and a daughter he cherished. Life was truly perfect, until the day demons from the past came crashing into their perfect world, destroying everything he had been so sure would last forever.

Today, Drake’s life is shrouded in misery. Every day he faces the unyielding pain of losing the love of his life at the hands of a drug dealing murderer. On top of it all, he has to live with the anguishing betrayal caused by the devastating role his brother played in Presley’s death. Gone are the days of carefree happiness and impending futures. They've all been replaced with the shallow emptiness hollowing out his heart and the undeniable rage pumping through his veins. Drake is only moving through the motions of life, raising his daughter and earning a living, in the only way he can tolerate—alone.

Since the day she was banished from her family, Zoe Ledoux lives her life as a free spirit. For the past four years, Zoe’s been moving through life day by day, place by place. She never stays in one area long enough to establish relationships. She refuses to get close to anyone, protecting herself from the fear of once again being left behind. Then a turn of fate sends her to Sulfur Heights where she lands a job working as a bartender.

In a chance meeting, an instant connection forms, bringing together the wounded souls of Drake and Zoe. It is together that they begin to cope; to mend the brokenness of their pasts and feel what it is like to truly live again. However, will their newly formed friendship be enough to pull Drake and Zoe from their dark pasts? Can Drake overcome the fear of losing someone he loves and eradicate his anger just enough to let someone in? Will he learn that Surviving Love with Zoe is what he ultimately needs in order to be happy?
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Buy the Book: Amazon  |  B&N

This is one of those sequels I have been looking forward to since I have read Tragic Love. The novel was too heartbreaking and too earth-shattering for one character, he really did deserve his happy ending, and I wonder if M.S. Brannon will be kind enough to give him his happy ending, and how will she able to give him that? Drake had found his one great-love in Presley. Granting that their relationship was more on the rocks and volatile, but their love for each other remained unquestionable, especially Drake’s devotion to her. How can he possibly survive her loss? How will he learn to love another woman when he had given everything to Presley?

It started with her death, then a series of events starts to unravel, one painful truth at a time. Things he didn’t expect that had shuttered his broken world some more. His heart is filled with anger, hurt, and grief that was palpable in every pages. It was painful to watch him suffer, and I wished someone would heal him, fast before he kills himself.

But despite all his pain and anger, he still tries to live- and it was all because of the adorable Mia. Their daughter. He tries to live his life one day at a time, earning for his daughter, breathing for her, but he still crave for his time alone with Jack Daniels. Alcohol numbs his pain. It masks his sorrows. It allows him to forget everything – temporarily.

Then here comes Zoe. She was something I never really pictured out for Drake. He was already broken. He didn’t need another broken person to fix him – how can it possibly work? Zoe was kicked out from their home because her mother chose to believe another person than her. For the past years, she became a nomad, moving from one place to another, from one bed to another, from one relationship to the next. She surrounded her heart with walls, protecting herself from people who are bound to leave her behind. Then, fate had pushed her towards Sulfur Heights where she landed herself a job, and found a long-lost relative.


Drake tries to stay away from the girl who stirs powerful emotion inside of him. He didn’t want to forget Presley, he didn’t want another woman. So no matter how much he wanted this girl? He was fighting it with every bit of his being. The funny thing about fate is that the more you stay away from it, the more it chases you. Because they seemed to be bumping into each other a lot.

A common person allowed them to become friends, an impending lose had allowed them to become closer to each other – and before they knew it, a steamy encounter soon followed. But there’s one problem though, he wouldn’t kiss her! It was so frustrating, her wanting him badly to kiss her, and him trying to avoid her lips at all cost. No matter how hot and steamy their encounter was, you can feel the void, you can feel that it was just him meeting his needs rather than him trying to put in his emotions and I really felt bad for Zoe during this time.

Zoe, this amazing girl, wasn’t the type of person to give up. She tried, and tried, and tried – and no matter how many times he pushed her aside, she fought with everything she has, until finally – she was reaping the fruits of her labor. It took a while, a whole lot of bumpy and painful ride, but both got what they deserve – an HEA.

Just as when you thought you can never find another love as strong, as powerful and as true as your first, fate gives you one heck of a surprise that will leave you dumbfounded – another chance for love which will be greater and stronger than the previous one. Just as when you thought your heart is broken and shattered in a million pieces, and it’s remains has been scattered, someone will be nice enough to find it for you and patient enough to glue each pieces one at a time. The ending was pretty much amazing, it wasn’t what I expected it to be, it wasn’t that much of an HEA (on another level), but it was reality. Some things needed time to heal, and other sins may need time to be forgiven.

M.S. Brannon had once again given as a book that will engage your emotions one page at a time. Surviving Love is a story about two broken people who found a way to heal each other, and found their second chance in love.  Surviving Love is a story about love, healing, and second chances.

✪Complimentary Copy was given in exchange for an honest review.✪

I yank open the door and pull the half empty bottle of whiskey left in the cupboard. Unscrewing the cap, I tip the glass to my lips and allow a few more tears to fall down my face.

“Here’s to the rest of a useless life,” I toast to no one and chug down the whiskey. It instantly burns and calms my insides. The raging ocean of emotions I can’t seem to shake is finally subduing, and it’s welcome. Jack Daniels is always welcome to ease my agony. Always.

I rip my tucked-in shirt from the waistband of my pants and move down the back stairs. The last time I wore this fucking shirt was when I saw Presley in rehab. I will never wear this piece of shit again. Still grasping the bottle, I rip open my shirt, popping buttons as my chest is exposed to the cold, damp air.

I walk to the driveway and see the spot where I last held Presley alive. My boots scuff the pavement when I walk toward the dreaded spot. I hold the bottle to my lips again and chug. Then again and again. It’s burning my gut and suffocating my throat, but I keep gulping it down. My legs give out, collapsing to the concrete. The pain stings when my knees connect with the ground. I relish in it. It’s more welcome than the pain in my heart.

“This is the only way I can get you out of my mind,” I whisper out loud to no one, or maybe to her, but I don’t fucking know. “I need you out of my mind. I need peace for just a day. I love you, Presley, but I just need peace.” I expel a deep breath and choke back another drink. “Don’t hate me, baby, but please…give me some peace.”

I lay down on the cold concrete just as the rain begins to pick up again. I don’t care. I want to be in this spot. I want to be with her. And I want to be numb. I choke back a few more drinks until the bottle is empty then close my eyes, envisioning only her honey-brown irises and the world I will no longer possess. ~ Drake Evans, Surviving Love

M.S. Brannon was born and raised in the Midwest. She still resides there today with her wonderful husband and son. When she is not writing or reading, M.S. Brannon spends time with her family, watching movies, and discovering new music. She writes romance because she believes love and heartache is the rawest emotion one can experience.
Email: MBrannon16@gmail.com

Connect with the Author: Goodreads     |     Website     |     Facebook     |     Twitter


★Sulfur Heights Series Reading Order &Purchase Link★
Scarred Love - My Review  |  Amazon  |  B&N
Tragic Love - My Review  |  Amazon  |  B&N - CURRENTLY FREE on AMAZON & KOBO
Blind Love - My Review  |  Amazon  |  B&N  |  Amazon UK  |  Kobo

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