Blog Tour + Review: Release by Aly Martinez

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Release, an all-new “mesmerizing” and “captivating” standalone romance from USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez, is available now!

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Growing up, Ramsey Stewart branded my soul in ways time could never heal.

At twelve, he asked me to be his girlfriend.
At thirteen, he gave me my first kiss.
By sixteen, we’d fallen in love, planned a future together, and had our eyes set on the horizon.

Love never fails, right?
But for Ramsey, it did.
Love failed him.
I failed him.
The entire world failed him.

At seventeen, Ramsey was convicted of killing the boy who assaulted me.

Move on,he wrote in his first and only letter from prison.
Start a new life, he urged.
I don’t love you anymore, he lied.

There was no such thing as giving up on Ramsey. Love may have been our curse, but he was mine—then, now, and forever.

So here I am, twelve long years later, waiting for a man I don't even know to emerge from between the chain link gates.

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**ARC provided in exchange for an honest review**

"Thea and I were two of a kind. Lost. Broken. Forgotten. Stuck."

Release is a fast-paced childhood friends-to-lovers romance. I always get very excited when I see that Aly Martinez is releasing a new book. Release started out really good, and the prologue had me intrigued to see how Ramsey and Thea got together. I was happy that the past was shown in one big piece, instead of inserting flashbacks every other chapter. I loved how these two broken characters came together. Both have their own struggles and hurt they are dealing with, however, one is better at hiding it than the other. Ramsey was a great character, he took all the hits Thea threw his way. He could see her pain and didn't give up on her. It was very painful to see how this beautiful boy turned into a broody and angry man after serving almost 13 years in prison. Thea wanted to take up where they left off, but that was impossible. Ramsey did his best to push her away, feeling like he stole her life as well, having her wait for him to be released. These scenes were very emotional and painful to read. My heart broke for both of them.

"It's impossible, Ramsey. Easy or not, letting go of you is not an option."

Release, in my opinion, had more potential. It was just too short for me, especially the time spent in present time when Ramsey was released from prison. I wanted to see more of how they healed and how their relationship grew stronger. Especially the ending was just rushed, and it left me a but unsatisfied. It would've had a bigger emotional impact on me if I could've spent more time with the characters. It ending before I could really get into the story. Otherwise, the plot was great, and the characters were interesting. I enjoyed reading about how Ramsey and Thea met and grew closer together. I also loved the relationship Ramsey's sister Nora had with both him and Thea. I wanted more scenes with Ramsey and Nora, and see them heal as siblings as well. There were many issues that needed to be handled, and I thought that some were rushed. Regardless, I still enjoyed this book a lot and was hooked to the story. The characters were very likable and I loved seeing them all come together again.

About Aly

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Originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez now lives in South Carolina with her husband and four young children.

Never one to take herself too seriously, she enjoys cheap wine, mystery leggings, and olives. It should be known, however, that she hates pizza and ice cream, almost as much as writing her bio in the third person.

She passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a super-sized tumbler of wine by her side.

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