#IABBAddict: Here to Stay by Suanne Laqueur Reviewed

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Author: Suanne Laqueur
Title: Here to Stay (Book 3 of The Fish Tales)

Pages: 350
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Romance

Date published: January 14, 2016


Synopsis:
Suanne Laqueur’s Fish Tales series follows the extraordinary romance of Erik Fiskare and Daisy Bianco. When they meet in college, she is an aspiring ballet dancer and he is learning the behind-the-scenes art of stagecraft. Quickly they are drawn into a romance both youthfully passionate and maturely soulful. Their love story thrives within a world of creativity and artistry until it is changed forever by a shocking act of violence on their campus.


Laqueur has chosen a unique slant on an issue sadly prevalent in today’s world, by focusing on the victims of violence and the effect of trauma on human connection. The first book in the series, The Man I Love, won a gold medal for realistic fiction in the 2015 Readers’ Favorite Awards. Told from Erik’s point of view, it follows his emotional journey to salvage the relationships he destroyed, including his estrangement from Daisy which never ceased to haunt him. He equated the end of a love affair with desertion, but now he sees leaving isn’t the end of loving. He must go back and finish, or he will never be free to go forward and start again.


The second book, Give Me Your Answer True, inverts the narrative and tells Daisy’s side of the story, as she works to separate her evolution as an adult from the unresolved guilt and grief of her youth. The loss of Erik’s love weighing heavy on her heart, she must learn to hold onto her accountability without letting it become her identity. To find and give her answers true.
 
 

 

The third book, Here to Stay, is a continuation of Daisy and Erik’s remarkable love story, as they begin a new phase of life together, knowing now that happily ever afters are built, not found. Though separated for twelve years, the extraordinary bond forged in their youth has endured. But when your soulmate has caused you indescribable pain, how easy is it to forgive? How much trust is needed to place your heart back into the hands that once broke it? How much faith does it take to ask the question, “Do you still want me?” and believe in the reply: “I still want us.”


 
This gripping series has been hailed as a new kind of “emotionally intelligent romance.” The books explore themes of love and sexuality, the effects of trauma, the burden of unfinished business and the power of reconciliation. Through Erik and Daisy’s experiences, we reflect on what it means to be a soul mate, a partner and a lover. What it means to be a hero, not a victim, and fight for what you love. What it means to live the truth of who you are and what you feel.



Excerpt from Here to Stay

 

It’s a strange thing to find a lost lover in your hands again. Like finding your childhood baseball glove in an attic box of memories. You’re sure it won’t fit. But the heat of your palm, a flex and a bend. A cautious knead of the leather and a tentative reach into the furthest recesses… It knows you. It remembers you.
It fits you.
“Do I feel the same?” Daisy asked, her voice a silken caress.
After twelve years, Erik thought, of course not. He had loved a girl. It was a woman’s body up against him now, with the heft of wisdom and the weight of experience. He ran his fingers up her backbone and felt all the bits of new fused steel, overlaid with the strong assurance in her muscles and the soft aplomb of her skin. She was a hundred times more beautiful. A thousand times more thrilling.
And as her blue-green eyes stared into his, he was keenly aware of her vulnerability.
“You feel more,” he said, his hands moving along her body, trying to remember how she felt when he last touched her. Thin. Beyond ballerina thin—she was drugged thin at the end of their days in college. Yet beautiful to him. Never anything but stunningly easy on his eyes and liquid in his embrace and sweet in his mouth.
“You feel right,” she said, her own hands gliding along his limbs, in and out of him. “Maybe a little thinner.”
“I probably am. I lost and gained weight over and over. Depending on how I was feeling at the time. When the dark times came around, I’d stop eating.”
“I know, but…” Her delicate, arched eyebrows flickered in her brow. “I think over the years, in my head, I made you bigger than you were. Or maybe I beat myself down into something smaller. But now I remember your body. I remember mine with it.”
She was kissing him, pulling him to roll on top of her again. The digital clock on her bedside table read 2:06 in the morning. They had been going at it like possessed demons for hours now and no matter how tight he held or how hard he clung, Erik could not get both arms around making love to her. Too much feeling grabbed at him, clamoring for attention and precedence. Euphoria, lust, guilt and sadness were four wild stallions chained to each limb, intent on tearing him apart. Yet at the center of the jerking, pulling emotion, his heart was calm and accepting. Quietly riding out the storm, safe in the knowledge he was living his truth, living the life he was born to live.
“Don’t leave me,” she whispered under him.

“I can’t,” he said. “I’d never breathe again.”


My Thoughts

Suanne Laqueur did it again. I don’t really know what to expect when I first heard about book 3. Basically, book 1 and 2 are the same story under different point of views. Book 3 is what came after that. One of my favorite authors said, “The story does not end when the book does.” and book 3is that story after the book ended.

In my writing workshop several years ago, we where thought the difference between a love story and a romance story. As I was reading Here to Stay, I realized it was no romance story. Rather, The Fish tales is a love story in it’s finest. It’s not about a hero and heroine going through a life in a bed of roses with a few throns. For me it was like the characters where the roses going through life in a bed of torns. And it’s because of these torns that you can appreciate the beauty of the roses that Suanne has brought to life.

What I love about this third installment is that it gave answers to the questions I didn’t even realized I wanted to ask. And I have always been fascinated of great stories of family and friendship. More than the love and the romance friendship and family intricately woven in a good story makes me hooked on them more. And with here to stay, we can that happening. And it’s even more beautiful because you know where they were coming from and you appreciate how what happened to them made these bonds of friendship and family even more stronger. Will and Lucky are the spice that made Erik and Daisy’s life more colorful and meaningful.

I truly feel it would not be as great a story as it was if you take out one single character that was there. All of them played a part not just a filler to meet word counts. Every scene matter and every one of them will get you to feel.

I think I said in the man I love that going through Daisy and Erik’s story is not like reading a story but rather it feels like going through the journey with them. That still remains true in Here to Stay. There are good and bad stuff that happened after the book end and you will find yourself feeling happy and devastated along with the characters. It feels so real. Like it did happened. Not just another story from the book. And you know it because you where there too. I don’t know if you get what I mean. But if you read this book, I know you will. It’s so real it make sense. It feels so real because it make sense.

Once again, Suanne Laqueur put me in a roller coaster of emotion and it’s because of this that I love her and her writing more.

Favorite quotes:
“I never fell out of love, Dais. I just fell out of touch. I’m here now. I’m back and I’m here to stay.”

“Let it go. You’re here now. The past will just give you cancer.”

“Love makes us do amazing things. And if love drives us away, love is what brings us back.”

About the Author


Suanne Laqueur’s first novel, The Man I Love won a gold medal in the 2015 Readers’ Favorite Book Awards. Its other 2015 accolades include the Beverly Hills Book Award, a gold medal from the eLit Book Awards and a current finalist with the Kindle Book Awards.Suanne graduated from Alfred University with a double major in dance and theater. She taught at the Carol Bierman School of Ballet Arts in Croton-on-Hudson for ten years. She lives in Westchester County, New York with her husband and two chil-dren. An avid reader, cook and gardener.

Author Links:
 
Giveaway – 1 Signed Copy of Here to Stay


 

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