Against All Odds (Standalone)
by Angie McKeon
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Release Date: Early April, 2014
He was my world, my whole life. My reason for breathing. I had a perfect marriage, a baby on the way, and I felt fulfilled—almost invincible.
Until the day life hit, leaving me broken, vulnerable, and alone.
She was my life. My ray of hope on the cloudiest day. With her, I thought I had the ultimate safety. A love that would never hurt or betray me. I gave her my heart, my body, and my soul.
Until she broke me, destroying every dream and illusion I had about life, love, and marriage.
In our grief, we made a mistake. A mistake I'm not sure we can come back from
I’m so cold. It’s the kind of cold that seeps into my bones and makes me feel as though I’m going to die. My body trembles from the drugs and sheer terror coursing through my veins.
Why is this happening to me?
What did I do to deserve this?
Please, God! I can’t handle it.
I open my mouth to scream, to cry, to do something, but nothing comes out. I’m aware of doctors and nurses surrounding me. They’ve placed Kayla on my chest. She’s still warm from being pulled from my body, but she's not moving.
She’s lying there . . . lifeless.
I’m in a state of disbelief as tears slide down my face. My world shatters when I look at my precious baby girl. She's everything I’ve always wanted, always dreamed of.
Slowly, I run my fingers over her delicate lips; they’re so soft and small. An instant reminder of Cooper’s lips. He doesn’t have full and luscious lips like mine but small ones that almost disappear when he smiles. As I run the tips of my fingers across her puffy cheeks and closed eyes, I try to memorize every last detail of her dainty face. She’s so beautiful it takes my breath away. Her hair reminds me of caramel; it’s light brown and silky to the touch. It looks like mine did when I was a baby. Her face is peaceful, and for a single moment, I’m so thankful she’s not in pain.
Looking at my little girl is a moment I’ve always dreamed of. I love her instantly, and I want to hold her forever. To breathe her into me. To never let her go. The realization that I’ll never hold my precious baby again sinks in, and I feel my stomach clench as pain rips through me. I’ll never get to see her smile, laugh, roll over, or take her first steps. I’ll miss it all.
How do I move past this?
Can I move past this?
As grief consumes me, my sobs become brutal. I feel as though I’m dying. Like my heart is burning up and turning to ash. I’ll never ever be whole again.
I pick her up and cradle her against my body, wanting to feel her skin against mine. She feels warm—soft and smooth, like velvet. As I curl my arms around her, my tears drip onto her perfect head. I feel an overwhelming urge to fix this, to bring her back. I don’t want to lose my sweet baby. Everything in my body, my soul is screaming to bring her back.
Desperately looking up at Cooper’s green eyes, I will him to fix this, to make it better and help me. Help her. He’s always been my rock, my glue, the person who makes everything better. But all I see in his eyes is sadness, desperation, and helplessness that I know is killing him as much as it is me. He rubs his big, shaking hand gently over her tiny head. He looks as though he’s being tortured. Sobs rip through his body as he wraps his arms around me and our precious bundle while climbing into bed with us. I feel myself collapse against his chest as we sob over our loss.
There’s nothing we can do.
This is the end of a shattered dream.
Our spirits are slowly dying, and I’m not sure we’ll ever be able to heal.
Jen's Review -
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I'm not really sure how to rate this book - it was really ... messed up
I want to give it more than 3 stars because of the ending - but it actually messed with my mood for a couple of days while I was reading it - but there was something about it that made me keep reading -
Cooper and Kylie's life were great - until the one thing that they both wanted more than anything tore them apart -
When Kylie lost their baby, she lost part of her soul, and when Cooper couldn't deal with the loss of the baby, he began pulling away from Kylie when she needed him the most.
And in turn - their marriage fell to pieces -
When you start reading, you will see Kylie walking into a bar, seeing her husband in the arms of another woman, and it tares her up inside - but for the last 2 years, this was their life -
And as she sits at the bar, and flirts with the first guy who offers to take her worries away, Cooper watches with a jealous glare in his eyes as she walks off to his hotel room ...
These two really screwed up - they both love each other to no end, but they both needed a way to escape from their pain - and the more pain they cause each other, the harder it is for them to find each other back.
The hardest part - Grayson - Coopers best friend, and the guy who he told to watch for his wife - to make sure she was always ok - Cooper and Gray had been friends for 24 years , so he's known Kylie since Cooper and her started dating back in high school. He knew how they felt about each other, and he tried so hard to keep his distance, but watching Kylie be torn apart day after day by Coopers negligence just drove his heart closer to Kylie.
Now you see the problem - and trust me, it isn't an easy fix either - the struggles these 3 people have in their life is heartbreaking and you really don't know how it's going to play out until you read it. and while you're reading it you keep thinking "Really???"
I don't want to say I understand the open marriage they had - but when you read Kylie's POV - you can see why she needed it -
but then about 50% into it, you get Coopers POV - and everything turns around in another direction -
The book had a happy ending - but it's still not right - we got a little glimps of the upcoming book at the end, which kind of makes me feel better about the whole love triangle -
I'm still not sure reading this was a good idea - it left me in a darker place (personal reasons) for a little while - but I'm glad I finished it up - because I'm a sucker for happy endings :)
Thanks to the Author for allowing me to read this ARC for my honest review :)