By Marie James
“You’re gorgeous. Even better looking than the day I fell in love with you.”
The words are a constant reminder of what true love is. Olivia Dawson’s alarm goes off at the same time every day and she disappears into her room to hear Duncan’s voice, see his face, miss him even more for being untouchable. Olivia loves with her entire heart, and her love for Duncan is unmatched, but there’s something about her new roommate she just can’t seem to ignore—no matter how hard she tries.
“I miss you so much.”
“Can’t be more than I miss you.”
The words are a constant reminder of how unavailable Olivia is, and Bryson Daniels isn’t one for competition off the baseball field, but since the moment he knocked on the door to his new apartment and his roommate “Ollie” wasn’t who he expected, he can’t help but consider bending a few of his rules—even if it means heeding to Olivia’s.
“I love you, sweet cheeks. Chat with you later?”
Bryson hears the conversations through the paper thin walls, but there’s a pain inside Olivia he can’t seem to walk away from. He vows to be there for her when the voice on the other side of the computer inevitably breaks her heart, but will he ever be able to compete with someone who’s more than a memory?
Before I get started, I think I need to point out that MORE THAN A MEMORY is set in college, with Bryson and Olivia aged twenty and nineteen respectively. The synopsis makes no mention of the college setting, nor does the man on the cover look like he’s twenty years old. Don’t get me wrong, he looks hot and I would totally kick him out of bed only so that I could fuck him on the floor, but he looks too old to represent a twenty year old college student who’s not legally allowed to consume alcohol. Moving on, like I said the story is set in college and if I knew that at the time, I may not have considered reading it. College romances can be hard for me to connect with, especially when there’s too much drama and/or too much pushing and pulling between characters. There was a bit of that here, but thankfully not as much as I’ve read in other college romances.
I can’t say a lot about Olivia other than she’s a recluse suffering from severe depression. She hasn’t stepped outside her apartment in months and the only physical interaction she’s had is with her mother when she comes to visit. Normally a character like Olivia would frustrate me to tears with her huge mood swings, but not once was I frustrated with her. I put that down to reminding myself that she had depression, but I think it’s also because Marie James did such a good job of writing her that you can’t help but feel sad for her every time she suffers a setback.
Now Bryson on the other hand did frustrate me several times. I did like him, and I loved that he helped bring Olivia out of hiding, but sometimes he flat out treated her terribly. He tells himself he wants to help her and that he needs to be patient with her, but when she didn’t adjust as quickly as he’d like, or when she’d have a setback, he’d get angry and mean and would pull away from her. His night with Simone was done deliberately in front of her to humiliate and punish her, all because he wanted her but couldn’t have her. Quite honestly, I thought his mood swings were bigger than Olivia’s, but then I did have to remind myself that he was only twenty and clearly not equiped to handle her very well.
MORE THAN A MEMORY is told in dual POVs and is currently a stand-alone. I say currently because the story is left open for two of Bryson’s teammates to get their own story. I did enjoy the story and it certainly brought out some strong emotions; I was crying so much at one scene that I had to stop and take a break. It does come with a HEA, but I was left wondering one thing: Did Bryson go pro?
More Than A Memory
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