The Hard Truth About Sunshine

By Sawyer Bennett

Synopsis

Despite having narrowly escaped death’s clutches, Christopher Barlow is grateful for nothing. His capacity to love has been crushed. He hates everyone and everything, completely unable to see past the gray stain of misery that coats his perception of the world. It’s only after he involuntarily joins a band of depressed misfits who are struggling to overcome their own problems, does Christopher start to re-evaluate his lot in life.

What could they possibly learn from one another? How could they possibly help each other to heal? And the question that Christopher asks himself over and over again… can he learn to love again?

He’s about to find out as he embarks upon a cross country trip with a beautiful woman who is going blind, a boy with terminal cancer, and an abuse victim who can’t decide whether she wants to live or die.

Four people with nothing in common but their destination. They will encounter adventure, thrills, loss and love. And within their travels they will learn the greatest lesson of all.

The hard truth about sunshine…

Warning: This book deals with some tough issues including suicide and sexual abuse.

Review

I don’t even know where to start with this review, mainly because I just don’t think I have the words that will do this book justice.

When I first received the ARC request for THE HARD TRUTH ABOUT SUNSHINE, I spent several days wavering between signing up for it because it’s a Sawyer Bennett book, and not signing up for it because it sounded too intense for my tastes.  I finally decided to request an ARC, but when it was time for me to read it, I hesitated again.  I still wasn’t sure if it was right for me and I’ll admit I regretted signing up for it.  But then I started reading it and I have never been happier to prove myself wrong.

I want to slap their sunny smiles off their faces, and I want them to come down to my level where they can wallow around in the sludge of desolation with me.  I want everyone to feel as bad as I do, because it’s unfair that I can’t seem to feel better on my own.

I won’t sugar coat it, Christopher starts out as an absolute arsehole.  He’s so bogged down hating his own life and being angry at the world over his disfigurement, that he doesn’t care about anyone else’s problems.  After being abandoned by his family and girlfriend while recovering from his injuries, he’s bitter and unwilling to let anyone else in.  But after just a few days into a road trip with the three members of his therapy group, he starts to open up and let them in, and he grows up a lot in a short amount of time because of it.

I choose to live.
I choose to love.
I choose to forge my path.
Life is my choice.

THE HARD TRUTH ABOUT SUNSHINE is told only in Christopher’s POV, so it’s his story you learn the most about.  But while Christopher is the focus, Jillian, Connor and Barb play big roles from beginning to end.  Their personal stories will break your heart at the unfairness of it all, and all three will grab your heart in their own ways.  This is a stand-alone and despite the devastating topics woven throughout, it does come with a HEA, one that is both sad and beautiful.  It was a perfect end to an emotional story.

THE HARD TRUTH ABOUT SUNSHINE is beyond amazing.  It is real, deeply emotional and it will break your heart before putting it back together again.  I smiled a little.  I laughed a little.  I cried a lot.  I think I will be hard pressed to find another book that will affect me as deeply as this one did for a very long time.

The Hard Truth About Sunshine

My Rating:  

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