They weigh you down. I’ve kept a secret all my life. It’s my mother’s secret, too. I inherited it from her along with a unique ability that only we possess. She’s gone now, another victim of addiction. If her death isn’t enough to bring me to my knees, her betrayal flays me to the bone. Because the secret my mother and I have been keeping is just one of many she’d kept. She never told me I have an older brother. And now he’s here, eager to be my guardian.
There is no one else. So I move across the country to live with this stranger, my brother. But experience has taught me that most situations are temporary and forming attachments only leads to hurt in the end. That’s why I’m determined to keep to myself in this new place, struggling to seem aloof while I’m quietly breaking apart.
Then I meet Lucas…
His magnetism is hard to resist, and most girls at school aren’t resisting. I don’t fall so easily though, especially not for guys who use their good looks as a weapon. From the start, our interactions are tense and volatile. I know it’s because I’m denying the unwelcome desire that grips me when he’s near. I think he feels it, too. He looks at me with an intensity that threatens to unhinge my resolve. Soon he’s trying to break through the walls that past hurts have built.
But I’m not what I appear to be, and it wouldn’t be fair to get involved with him. At least that’s what I tell myself. Until a terrible act of violence reveals that Lucas has a secret, too. It’s a secret that links us together and ties us to an evil history I could never have imagined.
There are an infinite number of drawers in my imaginary cabinet, and I can only hope that it never crumbles under the weight of what's hiding inside.
Raielle Blackwood has had a life that has made her grow up long before her time. Her father is absent and her mother is buried deep in her addictions. Foster homes were a part of her growing up although for the last few years she has lived with her mum. They share a secret which her mum has struggled with and has warned Raielle not to share with anyone else. Although everything changes in Raielle's life after the brutal death of her mother. She discovers a brother she didn't know existed and moves to the other side of the country to live with him and catches the eye of the incredibly good looking and popular Lucas Diesel at her new school. However secrets have a way of coming out.
When I first started reading Keep You From Harm, I was sucked right into the story. My heart ached for Raielle. The pain of losing her mother and discovering a brother that she didn't know she had was so strong. I couldn't imagine losing the only family you have and being uprooted form the place you know as home and being placed in a new city, with a whole new family who you know nothing about.
I realize that it hurts to watch them, to see their happy family unit. I thought happy families were a myth. If they weren't real, I didn't have to mourn the fact that I never had one.
But then things slowed right down and I wasn't feeling it. I didn't feel any connection to the characters and the story was quite slow paced and not much seemed to be happening. Lucas had my head spinning!! He was so hot for Raielle one minute and then completely cold to her the next, even to the point of completely ignoring her. I just couldn't figure him out at all. But somewhere around the fifty percent mark things really started to pick up. Everything really started to gel and things flowed much more smoothly. I had a much better understanding of the characters and I could finally understand some of Lucas's behaviour. Yes, at this point, I was hooked!!
Then he smiles at me. It's a genuine smile this time, not his trademark smirk.
I thought he was good-looking before, but when he smiles, he's devastating.
I really loved the romance between Raielle and Lucas. It was an instant attraction between them but things definitely didn't develop smoothly. They have many ups and downs along the way, but when they finally got it together they worked perfectly. Lucas is incredibly loving and caring once his walls are down. They had some really sweet moments together as well as a good dose of heat.
I also have to make mention of a couple of the supporting characters that I really liked. Raielle's neighbour and schoolmate Myles was a great character. Although not in it a great deal I really enjoyed his interactions with Raielle. And also her brother Kyle. His need to connect with Raielle and have her fit into the family was so sweet. Both great characters!!
There is a paranormal aspect to this book that I wasn't really expecting, yet for the most part it reads like a contemporary. And yet the paranormal element is a huge part of the story. It just flows differently to most other paranormals but fits into the story really well.
Keep You From Harm had plenty of mystery and twists and moments that make you stop to ponder the impact that what has just occurred will have on the story. At first I was thrown by the abrupt ending. I didn't realise that this was part of a series and I actually went back a few pages to check if I had missed something. But no, Debra Doxer has just set everything up for the next part of the exciting journey that Lucas and Raielle are about to take.
4/5 Perfect Twist Stars