You won't like me.
I am not the nice girl. I am not your friend.
I don't care about you, but most of all, I don't care about me.
Go ahead, hate me.
We all have secrets.
I have them as well—dark, terrible secrets.
The only time I can breathe is when I forget.
I need to be numb. You don't want to know how.
But as long as I can breathe, the past cannot smother me.
Not what I expected
***I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.***
Smother is not what I expected it to be. And at the same time, it was.
We were warned beforehand that we wouldn't like Reese at the beginning, but I strangely did not dislike her. I felt pity and sympathy for her, but I didn't hate or dislike her. I don't have a specific reason, except that everyone deals with pain differently. And I don't mean to sound corny or cheesy, but that's what Reese was in. Pain. Pain from a horrendous past that haunts her every waking moment. And even those moments when she isn't awake. I can't hate someone for being in emotional pain, or any kind of pain.
Leo was an enigma. I empathized with Reese in this case because he was one tough guy to read and figure out. I related a lot to how Reese felt, always trying to see what his thoughts are because Leo is like a changing combination safe. You may get the combination right one time and get him to open up, but when you go to try the same combination again, you find it's been changed and have to try to figure it out again. That's my description of Leo.
I think Reese is someone who pretends to be strong and tough to keep people from finding out how fragile and broken she is. But she is also a fighter, and we see her fix herself all on her own. Smother is different from other stories involving abuse because we see the dark, dirty, and gritty aspects of the effects of abuse that are not present in other books I've read dealing with the subject. We see Reese in the downward spiral she is in, and then we see her redeem herself so she can live her life, and not just go through life merely existing.
Lindy totally outdid herself with this one. Her style of writing grabs you and doesn't let go until you can't help but love the characters you read about. Smother gets all 5/5 Platypires.
Squeezing the darkness out of Reese and Leo in a unique way.
It's an interesting twist to a dark story. The depth of these characters is intricately woven throughout each chapter in a limited unveiling keeping it mysterious.
Reese and Leo have an interesting relationship. Reese wants to push Leo away yet wants him to save her. Leo wants her to stop punishing herself and save herself.
Lindy slowly starts to reveal Reese's past, but holds back on revealing much about Leo. The only thing Lindy reveals about Leo is that he wants to protect her and is always watching her.
It kinda blows your mind. The story and characters both play tricks with your thought process. It's philosophical in a sense that both are seeking light in the darkness. Both want some form of comfort.
While Reese went in search of men to use to hurt her she instead found herself in a difficult situation. Reese had no idea the men she used would also want more from her.
Leo is evasive with his words. Leo is hiding something from Reese. Leo has power yet I'm not sure what kind. Leo has intimidation yet I'm not sure how. Leo has insight but I'm not sure where from. Not a lot eludes to the kind of man Leo is. Not sure if Leo was hurt or if he is the one doing the hurting. Not sure if Leo has to answer to a person more powerful than himself. Many mysteries to unravel and I'm looking forward to discovering those mysteries.
I enjoyed the complexity of Leo and the battle to figure him out. I was impressed with the way Leo kept pushing Reese to become a better person by giving her small gifts. Since Leo is a guy with few words he expresses himself through art. I thought Lindy did a wonderful job of moving the story along without revealing too much about Leo. The big reveal was worth the riddles and short answers.
I love Reese's inner turmoil between good and bad. When life is good or bad we use our perspective on what we have endured in life. In order to make changes and move forward we use this new sense of perspective. Information is key to gaining a new perspective on life.