Customer Review

28 April 2019
This story was more than I expected. I feel it focuses on relationships. Relationships with parents, with siblings, with friends, lovers and, more importantly, the relationship we have with ourselves. I won't lie, the story had me crying in certain places. My heart ached for Daria and her situation. Initially, I felt irritated by her poor rich girl attitude however that changed the more I read. That was just a facade and not who she truly was on the inside. She truly felt alone and the only person in her corner was her father. Until Penn shows up. But as quickly as he enters her life, their friendship turns into a war that Penn is determined to win. He wants her to suffer. And Daria doesn't begrudge him. She feels like she deserves to be punished. The deeper I delved into the pages, the more I realised that everyone was keeping secrets. Everyone was guarding hidden truths about the real person they were and they all had insecurities. LJ Shen has written a remarkable story that is so relatable and real. The characters are raw and flawed which is why it makes it so easy to connect with them. Penn and Daria both have to work through their own issues but their connection helps them make better decisions. As for the other characters, Jaime... sigh... For those who have read the Sinners of Saint, they would know about the Hotholes and we get to glimpse them here. And it was brilliant! Plus, we get to see what Jaime is like as a father. And I have to say, he is fantastic. His wife? I'm undecided about her. She wasn't the ideal mother to Daria and while she does redeem herself somewhat by the end, I still feel like there is more that she needs to do to repair the damage done. It's great that we get to see the other Totholes (children of the Hotholes) and the personalities they each possess. But definitely Daria and Penn are my favoruites. Their interactions and changes show that while we might have preconceived ideas about a person based on their situation, we never truly know someone until we walk a mile in their shoes. There is angst, love, betrayal and forgiveness. There were so many feels! I hope there are more Tothole stories to come!
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Product Details

4.8 out of 5 stars