From New York Times bestselling author Cassia Leo comes an emotional romance about all-consuming love and family secrets.
Jack and I had everything. Then in one brutal instant, the universe tilted on its side, discarding us into black nothingness.
Now Jack is obsessed with revenge, and I’m desperate to leave the night of our anniversary behind me. When we’re not fighting, the only way we communicate is in the bedroom.
With nothing left to lose, I write a goodbye letter and head for my mother’s empty house, three hours away from Jack, where I quickly meet a neighbor who helps me find a job.
My new neighbor—handsome ex-soldier Isaac Evans—is complicated. Nevertheless, we form a fast friendship, bonding over a mutual desire to create something beautiful from the wreckage of our lives.
But despite the distance between us, Jack and I are still trying to make things work—fighting and playing dirtier than ever. And he doesn’t appreciate my new friendship with Isaac. Not one damn bit.
Intriguing and Full of Surprises!
Cassia Leo has the beginning of an intriguing new series on her hands with Dirt. Laurel’s story was heartbreaking, surprising, and an emotional rollercoaster from start to finish. I didn’t really have any expectations going into this book, other than the promise that the author would stomp on my heart a few times. Cassia Leo certainly delivered, serving up a journey that was darker and more twisted than I could have imagined. Laurel, Jack, and Isaac made for a web of complicated feelings and unexpected ties that has me anxious to see where this story will eventually end up.
I absolutely adored Laurel. She was understandably broken and yet there was something so beautifully resilient about her. I loved her quiet strength and the determination she demonstrated in picking up the pieces of her life to build something new. She had her moments of weakness of course, particularly when it came to Jack, but I’m excited to see how she continues to grow over the course of the series. To be honest, I couldn’t stand Jack. His relationship with Laurel seemed shallow and rooted in lust. Throw in his lying, manipulation, and obsessive behavior and I just couldn’t connect with him at all. Isaac, on the other hand, totally intrigued me. His own pain was obvious and yet he seemed to get what Laurel needed and understood her in a way Jack just didn’t. While I loved seeing them spend time together, I think the development of an emotional connection between Laurel and Isaac was lacking a bit and I needed more depth in order for me to really invest in their potential.
Cassia Leo’s writing captured a myriad of complex emotions, giving readers a glimpse of life-altering heartache, devastating pain, and persistent hope. Fast paced and written to leave you wanting more, Dirt made me feel and kept me reading. Knowing there are more books to come in this series, I know the characters have a long way to go before we see them settle. I can say with full confidence that I have no clue where Laurel, Jack, and Isaac will end up and I am definitely curious to find out. With a trio of deeply broken characters and the promise of plenty of twists to come, Cassia Leo dives into what will undoubtedly be a fascinating new series with Dirt.
I’ve been dying for a new series from Cassia Leo for what seems like forever. When I heard about Dirt, the first book in the Evergreen series, I am not ashamed to say that I did a dance of giddy excitement. I dove into this novel with my heart open, ready to be torn apart, but I got something completely different. Dirt left me shocked and speechless, with a mind reeling from all that I had encountered.
“If it’s not the fight-me-tooth-and-nail, leave-me-bloody-and-gasping-for-air kind of love, I don’t want it.”
The heroine, Laurel, was undoubtedly my favorite part of this entire book. I loved her search for independence and the attempts to gain control back of her life. Though she may not have felt it, she was strong simply for surviving the tragedy that she had faced. It was in those moments of living, not just surviving, that I caught glimpses of this character’s true personality and likened me to her. On the other hand, her husband Jack drove me up a wall. He was a character with a personality that made me want to slap him seven ways to Sunday. He had a couple moments of likeability, but they were few and far between for this reader. The communication between these two was severely lacking, which left me wishing for a bit more to help relate to them as a couple. I do wish that we had more chapters from Isaac as well. His personality and brokenness intrigued me immensely. The glimpses we caught of his struggles made me curious for more, and I do hope we receive them in future novels.
“Isn’t there some sort of limit on how many times someone can break a promise before the other person has to say enough is enough?”
Cassia Leo has a special way with words. Whether she is writing angst, sadness, or more lightheartedness, the way she pulls readers in is incomparable. I’ll definitely be sticking around to see how the rest of the books in the series unfold, but I have a feeling Leo is not done with the mind games yet!
Great start to a series
4 stars for - Dirt - book one in the Evergreen series by Cassia Leo. This being only the first of three planned books we end up with too many questions with not enough answers and don’t even get me started on that cliffhanger ending!
Laurel and Jack are forced to suffer through the worst possible loss imaginable. They have barely managed to maintain their lives together and now two year later Laurel decides a separation is needed to fix their marriage.
Laurel moves back to her childhood home in Portland while leaving Jack behind in Hood River. While she fully intends this to be a temporary move she needs to find the person she once was before tragedy and loss took so much from them.
Laurel - while extremely fragile - is still very much in love with her husband. Therefore she finds it quite difficult to stay away from him and rather enjoys when he comes to visit, but sex was never their problem. Now all that emotional stuff is what he can’t really deal with too well.
To make things even more interesting - there just so happens to be a insanely handsome ex-soldier with tattoos and a freaking man-bun living right next door that is there for anything Laurel “needs help with”.
Jack is broken, Laurel is broken and together they are a hot mess. I’m not sure what is gonna happen next but I can’t freaking wait to read it!!!