Bring You Back by Malynda Schlegel

Summary of Book: After suffering a great loss, Camille goes back to her hometown of Bellsby with the intent of regaining everything she let go when she left. But picking up where she left off feels impossible when her friends are holding grudges against her for leaving and the only boy she’s ever loved is with someone else. But Camille isn’t easily deterred and she’s willing to fight. Which is exactly what she does.

“Bellsby is the last place I had a purpose… love. Love gives you purpose and reminds you that you have a heart. I need to be reminded.”

I can say with certainty that I have never connected with a character more than I connected with Camille. She’s hard and scrappy, says what’s on her mind, has a tongue as sharp as a knife, comes off as a huge bitch but means well. She has a tough exterior that’s begging to be broken but it can only be broken by the right person. Julian is the right person to take an ax to her walls and he does. He chips away at the bricks she’s built up around her heart and little by little, she opens herself up to him and damn, it’s a beautiful sight to see.

“Love is a heavy anxiety, a stress. You’re tied to the things and people you love. Then death barges in and cuts those ties, and you’re left with a new stress, and empty stress.”

I was promised a friends to enemies to friends to lovers romance and that’s exactly what this was. Camille and Julian had something before she left town. When she comes back, they still have something though Julian tries to pretend that he’s moved on. Their connection is palpable by chapter three and it only intensifies as the book goes on. Not only that, but the side characters, Tommy, Banks, and Reyna… Bring You Back wouldn’t be as amazing as it was without their friendship as well. The five of them, they have the sort of friendship that we all want. They’re there for each other when they need it, tell the blunt, hard truth when it’s needed and they’re soulmates. Soulmates as friends and lovers and really, you’d just have to read the book to understand what I’m talking about.

“People like to talk about the lasts; the last time you saw someone, the last time you talked to them before you never could again, but nobody warns you about the first. The first morning, the first day, the first night without them. The first drive, the first dinner, the first birthday. Then the seconds come… the thirds… the fourths… Nobody warned me.”

The other part of this book that absolutely snagged me and kept me up for five hours straight reading was the banter. Oh, the banter. I’m a sucker for hilarious banter and this was filled with it. I cannot express how many times I laughed out loud. Laughed so loud that I woke up my dogs and got some pretty dirty looks from them but it was well worth it. The hilarious banter mostly came from Banks and Julian, an unlikely pair that I absolutely lived for. Actually, I could have read an entire book about Banks himself. He’s hilarious. True definition fo the word. Kind of a prick, but hilarious all the same.

“Her bitch face is beautiful, but her unguarded warmth is a privilege to see.”

Among the amazing things about this book, there were a few things that had me pursing my lips and grimacing. While the love and friendship between the group was palpable, some of the love and relationships between certain people were, to be blunt, toxic as hell. I really wished that a certain relationship would have ended within the first five chapters because dragging it on to the end of the book just felt… cruel. And it made both parties in the relationship look horrible and my love for them was dimmed as a result. It also ends on a MAJOR cliff hanger that’s going to have me in a book hangover until the second book comes out, so be prepared for that.

“Death cuts ties, but it can tighten old ones. And I’ve stopped wielding scissors.”

All in all, Bring You Back was a very fast-paced, angst-filled book that ripped my heart out multiple times and mended it multiple times. The literal second Malynda Schlegel releases book two I’ll be buying it and devouring it because that’s just what this book does to you; it makes you gobble up chapter after chapter until there’s no more pages left and you’re screaming for more. That’s exactly what I’ll be doing until book two in the Bellsby Beach series comes out.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Read more about Bring You Back by Malynda Schlegel here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3485754634.

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