Blog Tour: Behind the Bars by Brittainy C. Cherry

Behind the Bars 4.37.31 PMPages: 373

Goodreads Rating: 4.60 / 5 stars

My Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: December 7th 2017

Publisher: Self published

Summary:

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When I first met Jasmine Greene, she came in as raindrops.

I was the awkward musician, and she was the high school queen.
The only things we had in common were our music and our loneliness.

Something in her eyes told me her smile wasn’t always the truth.
Something in her voice gave me a hope I always wished to find.
And in a flash, she was gone.

Years later, she was standing in front of me on a street in New Orleans.
She was different, but so was I. Life made us colder. Harder. Isolated.

Caged.

Even though we were different, the broken pieces of me recognized the sadness in her.
Now she was back, and I wouldn’t make the mistake of letting her go again.

When I first met Jasmine Greene, she came in as raindrops.
When we met again, I became her darkest storm.

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My Review:

Review also posted on Goodreads

I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Behind the Bars is the first book of Brittainy C. Cherry’s new series, The Music Street series. The story is set in New Orleans and it’s about a soul singer Jasmine Greene and a saxophonist Elliott Adams.  It started with an awkward friendship turned into lovers briefly and years later rekindled for the second time around.

Soul music was Jasmine’s love and passion but her mother discouraged it and wants her to sing pop music because it’ll give her a promising career in the music industry. Her mom was a selfish woman. She forced her daughter to attend singing and dancing workshops.  For years, Jasmine pretends to enjoy those workshops for her mother’s sake and the last thing she wants is to disappoint her. She’s fulfilling her mother’s dream and not hers. Wandering in the streets, she’s mesmerized by a music around the corner and it belongs to a boy she goes to school with.

His music was beautiful, and kind of painful, too. I hadn’t had a clue that something could be painfully beautiful until that evening.”

Elliott expresses his emotions by playing saxophone.  His love for Jazz was his therapy and every time he plays, it gives him peace. Every day it’s always chaos and pain for being bullied at school. It’s heartbreaking to see this precious boy defenseless. He’ll take the beatings just to protect those people he loves especially Jasmine and his sister Katie. He was so down to earth, reserved and thoughtful. He didn’t deserved to be treated badly. Reading those scenes was difficult and it’s impossible to keep my tears at bay.

Elliott and Jasmine were like Jazz and Soul. They’re perfectly blended for each other both as friends and lovers. Their friendship was awkward yet amusing and the romance between them was purely genuine and slow burn. Though their relationship was brief under circumstances and six years later, Jasmine returns to New Orleans from United Kingdom. Hoping she’ll see Elliott again.

Within those years, both of their lives changed. After a life-altering event, Elliott lost his love for music. He was hollow, cold and distant. He builds a wall that seems impenetrable to everyone else. He feels he deserves to be punished. Whereas to Jasmine, she’s fed up seeking validation and love from her mother. Tired of doing things that made her unhappy. This time she allowed herself to be vulnerable and for once, she wants to experience being happy according to her will.

“Sometimes it’s hard to see things in a different light when you’ve become so accustomed to the dark.”

Jasmine and Elliott’s story isn’t always sunshine and rainbows.  There are parts that will give you heartaches. It will bring you to tears. Both sad and happy ones. MY. EMOTIONS. MY. FREAKING. EMOTIONS.  It’s such a beautiful, deep and tear-jerking novel. I have to pause once in a while and just let myself weep.  Brittainy C. Cherry never fails to leave me in an emotional mess. I recommend you have a box of tissue or handkerchief.

Aside from the emotional aspect, I love Behind the Bars because it doesn’t focus entirely on romance. It’s also about family, grief, forgiveness and acceptance. There are things in our life that needs closure. No matter how hard it is to forgive someone who tremendously wronged us, there’ll come a time we should but it doesn’t mean it’s forgotten. Forgiving sets free those burden feelings and darkness. In the end, Elliott and Jasmine healed their broken souls.

Lastly, a shoutout to two amazing father figures Ray Gable and Theodore James a.k.a Uncle TJ.  Ray is Jasmine’s stepfather and I love he treated her like his own daughter. He’s supportive, loving and protective. He taught Jasmine to be herself and encourage her to pursue Soul music. Uncle TJ is also a saxophonist and Elliott’s mentor. He taught him that playing music, you have to give your heart and soul or else such tune is an empty piece. These men became instrumental for them to appreciate the true beauty of music.

If you’re looking for a contemporary romance that will stir your emotions, I definitely recommend this novel. I’m looking forward to the upcoming books in this series and to end my review, here’s my favorite quote:

“Being strong is loving the broken pieces of your loved ones. Being strong is crying yourself to sleep at night and waking each morning still believing in beauty. Being strong is forgiveness. What you’re doing today — that is strength.”

 

About the Author:

Bcherry

Hi! I’m Brittainy! Join me as we travel through my mind as a Romance Author. This includes such things as my random thoughts, tricks, tips, things I’m learning, things I’m re-learning, things I’m forgetting, and my weird ways of crafting stories.

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Twitter: @BrittainyCherry

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