An Ali Audiobook Review: Unquiet (Resilient Love #3) by Melanie Hansen and Michael Stellman (Narrator)

Standard
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Loren Smith has been in love with Eliot Devlin almost his entire life. During their turbulent childhood and teen years, Loren didn’t always understand Eliot, and sometimes he could be a challenge, but Eliot was the only one to ever truly ease Loren’s deep loneliness and accept him. When Eliot’s increasingly erratic and self-destructive behavior culminates in a suicide attempt at seventeen, Loren is devastated.

Upon meeting again by chance nine years later, Loren is enjoying a successful career as a police officer while Eliot’s life has been a constant struggle for stability. In and out of mental hospitals, with a rap sheet a mile long, he continues to be buffeted by the twin storms of mania and depression. Loren’s love and protectiveness for Eliot are deeply ingrained in him, however, and their feelings for each other are quickly rekindled.

Loren has issues of his own he’s dealing with, and trying to understand and cope with Eliot’s bipolar disorder isn’t easy. They believe they’re meant to be, and Eliot brings a fulfillment to Loren’s life that no one else will ever match. But as they both come to realize, love by itself can’t cure all.
This book has the distinction of being both one of the best and the worst books I’ve read in a long time.  The writing in this story is fantastic.  The author makes the characters and their situation so realistic you feel like you’re right there along with them.  This level of top notch writing makes it one of the best books I’ve read this year.
What makes it one of the worst is that this story is just emotionally brutal. It takes a very realistic look at loving someone with a chronic, severe mental health issue. I would go so far as to say it’s a love story but not a romance. If you’re looking for a story with a touching hea this is not it. The book is nothing but pain for these two. They have their moments of happiness but they’re boxed in between really horrible days, weeks, months. When it ended I just felt sad and so, so bad for both of them. I found this entire story to be a giant downer.
If I had known going in how heavy and serious it was going to be I would have been prepared and maybe I would have probably liked it better. Honestly it was just too much for me.  I want my romance stories to have a happily ever after and that didn’t happen here.  They’re together at the end and it’s as good as it’s ever going to be, but their lives are still this roller coaster of emotion.  There was more than once occasion where I wished for something different for Loren.  I had liked him so much in book two.  He was such a great guy.  Then I felt guilty for those thoughts because none of what was happening was Loren’s fault.  He didn’t ask for the life he was given.  My heart hurt for all the pain he had to go through.
This book was narrated by Michael Stellman who is a new narrator for me.  I thought he did a great job on this.  His narration was well done and I liked the way he did both MC’s as well as the side characters.  I think the great narration added another level of emotions to the story.  Normally that’s a good thing but in this I think it made it even sadder.
I struggled with how to rate this.  I think it deserves a 5 plus stars on plot and writing but if I based it on enjoyment level it would be much lower.  I have read and really enjoyed the first two books in the series.  I was expecting something with that same level of angst.  This was just too gritty and too realistic for me.  If you’re looking for something different and on a more serious tone I do recommend this.  If you have read the first two books you will see the other two couples in this a bit and there’s some sweet scenes in regards to some of them.  If you have not read the first two you can read this as a standalone.
This cover was done by Natasha Snow Designs and I think it is really good.  It perfectly captures the mood of this story.

Sales Links: Dreamspinner Press | Amazon | Audible | iTunes

Audiobook Details:

Audible Audio
Published September 13th 2017 by Dreamspinner Press (first published January 22nd 2016)
Original Title Unquiet
ASIN B075KFLSC7
Edition Language English

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