Title: All That We Are
Author: Melissa Toppen
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 16, 2018
Cover Design: Pear Perfect Creative Covers
They say everything happens for a reason- that there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. For the longest time I didn’t think that was true. I had stumbled around in the dark for so many years that I didn’t think I would ever find my way out. But when I finally did, it came in the most unexpected way.
Miles Hollins had been my brother’s best friend for as long as I could remember. We didn’t like each other much growing up. Or rather, we couldn’t stand each other. But after ten years of being gone, a lot had changed.
He wasn’t the same boy I remembered. I wasn’t the same girl either. So much had happened.
I moved away and got married.
Miles joined the military.
We both returned home broken in our own way.
I struggled to find my place in my new life. Miles struggled just to get through the day. But together we slowly began to heal. I quieted his demons and he gave me a sense of belonging. For a while that was enough.
But this is real life, and in real life nothing stays perfect forever. In real life not every story ends with a happily ever after. Sometimes the scars we carry are just too deep.
I promised him I would fight.
He promised me I would lose.
I’ll do everything in my power to prove him wrong. Because it’s when you find the one thing you can’t live without, that you truly find yourself.
All That We Are is a standalone contemporary romance.
Melissa Toppen is a Reader’s Choice Award Winning and Bestselling Author of New Adult and Contemporary Romance. She is a lover of books and enjoys nothing more than losing herself in a good novel. She has a soft spot for Romance and focuses her writing in that direction; writing what she loves to read.
Melissa resides in Cincinnati Ohio with her husband and two children, where she writes full time.
I was a little hesitant to read this book because the reviews made it seem like it was really deep and heavy, but it was so much more than that.
Harlow moves back to Kentucky after discovering her controlling husband has been cheating on her. She wasn’t allowed to have a job or a life outside the home, so she’s a little lost. She becomes reacquainted with her brother’s best friend, Miles, and he offers her a job at his tattoo shop.
Miles has his own demons. He was in Iraq and came home with some serious battle wounds (not physical). He is convinced that he doesn’t deserve happiness due to his war experience, which is pretty deep. He’s not prepared for all the feelings he has for Harlow once they are reconnected.
This is a really beautiful story of two people who are broken finding love. I’m a big sucker for a brother’s best friend trope, though this book was a little darker than some.
I really liked Harlow. She came out of her marriage a much stronger person. She had decided she was not going to let another man control her, and she took the control seriously. Her love for Miles was real and genuine, and seemed to be a big surprise to her.
I really loved Miles. He had such a good heart, but war really broke him. Watching him heal was a beautiful tale. I enjoyed reading this story and was happy it was told in the first person, alternating POV.
This was a really great story and I would recommend it.