June 13, 2014

BLOG TOUR REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: To Have and to Harm (Remedy #2)


I'm thrilled to be a part of the blog tour for To Have and to Harm! This NA paranormal series was amazing! Read on for my review and a giveaway!

To Have and to Harm (Remedy #2), by Debra Doxer
Published June 6, 2014
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-book, provided by Inkslinger PR and the author
Genre: new adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS

(From Goodreads) She kept everyone from harm, except herself…

Raielle’s life was shrouded in secrets. Her power was a secret and so was her past. When she came to Fort Upton, everything changed. She discovered her family, and she found the boy who would own her heart forever. But it couldn’t last. Knowing so little about her power nearly destroyed her. She had to leave and break both their hearts.

Now she’s back in California, and she doesn’t have to hide who she is anymore. But there is no relief in that because she’s drowning in regret. She knew it would take a miracle or a sin to save her, and there was no miracle. Her survival came at too high a price. She found her father, but she can’t go back to Lucas until she finds redemption.

She saved him. Then she left him…

She came out of nowhere and changed him forever, then she disappeared and left him reeling. Her whole life, she never had anyone who really loved her. Until him. Did she think he wouldn’t come for her? Did she believe she wasn’t worth it?

Lucas leaves everything behind to follow Raielle. When he finds her, she’s a pale shadow of the girl he remembers. Her power is betraying her and so are the people around her, but one thing hasn’t changed. She selflessly wants to save the world, and he just wants to save her.

With more secrets to uncover and dark truths to face, Raielle and Lucas must make sacrifices for each other. But in the end, will those sacrifices bring them closer together or tear them apart? When he’s forced to make the ultimate sacrifice, will she turn her back on everything she believes in to save him again?

Keep You From Harm (Remedy #1) was one of the bigger surprises for me last year. I loved it so much and the paranormal aspect to it was especially unexpected. When the opportunity came along to participate in the tour for the sequel and second part of the Remedy duology, TO HAVE AND TO HARM, it was a no-brainer. Especially given the crazy cliffhanger at the end of the first book. The best news is that, not only is the cliffhanger resolved quickly, but I was completely caught up in Raielle's and Lucas' story that I finished the book in 24 hours.

Raielle is in LA against her will being forced to live a life she doesn't want away from Lucas, the love of her life. Meanwhile, Lucas has never given up on finding her. When he finally does, he resolves to never leave her side again. He turns out to be her rock and the only one out there that she can truly trust as everyone tries to bend her to fit their own agenda. Raielle needs to reach deep down to finally take charge of her own life.

Ray is a great heroine, albeit a bit too self-deprecating at times. She has this amazing ability to heal the sick and injured and a desire to learn how to control it so she can use it to its full potential. However, she has a hard time reconciling the price that has to be paid sometimes for healing to take place. Ray harbors some serious guilt over a lot of things, and it causes her to wallow in indecision and insecurity at times.

Through it all though, Lucas is her rock. This boy never ONCE gave up on her or waffled in his devotion to Ray and their relationship. Sure, his alpha overprotective nature reared its head many, many times, and that was met by resistance from Raielle, but his heart was always in the right place.

From the first minute I saw her across the yard that night, she woke me up from a life I was sleepwalking through. I'd detached from the world so I could survive it. But, suddenly, there she was, and detatchment was the last thing I wanted. I wanted to be close to her. Just a year ago, I didn't know someone like her existed in the world, and now I don't think I could live in a world without her. Despite everything, she's still my ray of sunshine.
Ray and Lucas were amazing together. These two constantly risked their lives for one another. There was a lot of ups and downs for them; a lot of outside forces trying to wrench them apart. I can't imagine building a relationship in a situation like that.

Being with her is like going on that drop tower ride at the carnival where you slowly ascend to the top to look at the breathtaking view, and then wait in suspense for the stomach-curdling plunge back down to the bottom again.
There was potential throughout To Have And to Harm for a wicked love triangle, and I was so, SO glad that Debra Doxer never really went there. There was plenty else going on without having to worry about some other dude honing in on Ray and Lucas' happy relationship.

There was a lot more emphasis in this book on Raielle's healing abilities. In fact, the entire focus is on the people in LA with abilities like Ray's and the empire that Ray's father built around them. I loved that so much more attention was given to this aspect of the story. We learned some of the backstory and the rules surrounding the healing abilities.

There was also a lot more heat and sweet sexy times in book 2. Those scenes were so well-written. They weren't as overt as many NA books, but the chemistry and connection between the characters was perfect. To Have and to Harm is told in dual POV, and Lucas' chapters are my favorites. 

The interesting thing about To Have and to Harm is that the big showdown between Ray, Lucas and the "big bad" occurred at around 70% through the book. I was really surprised, because usually that is an event reserved for the final 10% of the book. At first I was a little taken aback by this, but the more I thought about it, the more I loved it! How often does the big event happen, then the loose ends are very quickly tied up so that the book can end, but we as the reader are always left wanting more? Even though we get some big stuff happening much earlier than expected, it gave us a good 30% to find out what happened next for Ray and Lucas. It was so incredibly satisfying.

To Have and to Harm was a fantastic new adult paranormal romance. There aren't nearly enough of those out there. Debra Doxer can feel free to continue creating them - I'll certainly continue reading them.

About the Author

Debra Doxer was born in Boston, and other than a few lost years in the California sunshine, she has always resided in the Boston area. She writes fiction, technical software documents, illegible scribbles on sticky notes, and texts that get mangled by AutoCorrect. She writes for a living, and she writes for fun. When her daughter asks when she’ll run out of words, her response always is, “When I run out of time.”

Learn more about Debra --> Goodreads / Twitter / Facebook


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