Review : Collared by Nicole Williams

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Collared by Nicole Williams – 4 Stars

This story took me completely by surprise. I didn’t expect to connect to it the way I did.

As you may have read from the blurb, Jade is kidnapped at the age of 17. She is taken from an amazing life, and from the boy she is crazy in love with, Torrin. The beginning of the book gives us a glimpse of the incredible sweet relationship they have. At 17, they both know they are ‘it’ for the other.

“And when did you finish falling in love with me? When I finally let you win a game of one on one? Or was it the night we…you know?” Thinking about that night makes me blush. Talking about it makes me shift.

Torrin glances at me for a moment, “I’ll never finish falling in love with you.”

But after being taken, that love is what tortures Jade. The hope she holds onto to one day go back to the life she had keeps her from “accepting” this new life she’s been thrown into and thinks she has no way out of.

“I’ve heard it said that love makes us weak. It makes us weak because our survival instincts, along with our reasoning, become dulled. We first consider every move through the filter of that love. In a way, what we love makes us better people, more intuitive and less impulsive.

In another way, it makes us worse. It turns us into an immoral, corrupt being that knows no bounds when it comes to protecting what it loves.

I’ve come to accept what we love makes us weak. I’ve learned something else on my own though, ever since becoming a prisoner of this black room – what we love kills us too.”

The story is told with some flashbacks to Jade’s kidnapping, but primarily from her current POV after being found. Some of the parts of this book are just so heartbreaking and so gut wrenching – not necessarily from anything graphic or disturbing- but because the pain and struggle Jade goes through while she is kidnapped and then once she is found were sometimes difficult to read. I wanted SO badly for everything to return to what it was – her personality, her relationships, and especially her relationship with Torrin. But after being gone so long, Jade struggles to fit into the life she had and realizes how hard it is to accept the new person she now is.

There were some pretty crazy twists in here I didn’t see coming, and some parts that I couldn’t help but tear up over. I found this book incredibly touching and well written and thought the author did a fantastic job portraying the mind of someone who went through such a scary ordeal.

So, why not 5 stars? Well, to be quite honest the ending left me feeling…dissatisfied. There were things foreshadowed from the beginning of the book I would have liked to see pan out. There were also some things I wish were done a bit differently or at least wished they could have been described in more detail at the end. I can’t really say what I am referring to because that would be a huge spoiler, but I just wanted more from the ending. But this is more personal preference, as I am sure there are a lot of people who don’t mind those somewhat vague/open ended endings.

But I did enjoy this story a lot, and was surprised by how emotional I got while reading.

Collared is out March 22nd!

(click image below for purchase links)

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