Forever First #1
Published June 2013
Maddie Martin's first weekend at college is nothing like she's used to. It's wild, like the wilderness on which the University of Bellam Springs sits. Roped into going to a frat party, she literally runs into Kyle Hadley. The boy she's loved since she was nine. The boy she promised all of her firsts to. But that was before his father killed her parents.
Determined to stay away from him, she throws herself into her music. Practicing piano eases her heavy heart, calms the sadness, and pushes away images of Kyle's face.
Until it doesn't.
Her music professor asks her to play a duet for their annual Graduation Gala. Doing so means she'll be assured another full ride scholarship. It's an opportunity she can't pass up.
But Kyle is the other half of the duet. And that means hours and hours of practicing.
Days and months of seclusion - just the two of them. And it's more than just music. It's passion like Maddie never believed was possible.
The inevitable happens. She falls in love with him all over again.
But, will loving him be enough to erase all the hate in her heart for his father? Can she look at him, and not see the evil in his family tree?
And maybe it's all a set up. Maybe Kyle is only pretending to care so he can finish what his father started, and kill her too.
About the Author
RaShelle Workman is the bestselling author of the Dead Roses series ("Sleeping Roses" is being translated into Turkish, and will be available in print wherever Turkish books are sold in 2014), the Immortal Essence series, and the Blood and Snow series. She's sold over two hundred thousand copies of her novels worldwide in the past year, including Japan, Canada, and Europe. You can find RaShelle all over the web, but the best place to start is on her blog.
As with the seeming trend at the moment, I picked up touching Melody with only the intention of reading a couple of chapters before sleep. But then it sucked me in. The writing style of Workman is engaging, and at it's heart, mainly due to the dialogue. I felt the flow of the conversations and it didn't feel stiff or unlike something that a person who actually say - a characteristic that can make or break a book for me. The switching perspectives of the novel did wonders to hold my attention as I am often wondering what the other MC is thinking in certain moments, and am eager to find out if the next chapter holds the answers to my queries.
To be honest, Maddie kind of annoyed me. She was always going on about her grandmother saying 'evil men raise evil children,' over and over, and that was the reason that she couldn't trust Kyle. At eleven, I can understand her just blindly believing and going along with what she said, but seven years later? How could she not have made any of her own opinions on the matter, especially considering how she new how horrible Kyle's father was to him, but he was always kind to her. This bugged me to no end. Grow a backbone, girly, and learn to think for yourself! Maddie's compassion was the one thing that I loved about her, though. After such a horrific instance, she still cared - strongly - for those around her, an admirable trait. Kyle has such a sweet soul, so much so that it almost is a fault. Maddie put him through the ringer over and over again, hot one minute and cold the next. I would not have the patience or the conviction to deal with that kind of mentality, especially when she never explains why she's treating him in such a way. It's just plain rude!
Shoes. That's how Maddie decides on a persons personality, on their choice of footwear. It is thrown in there are the very start of the novel and I quite like this trait. With everyone she meets, her eyes always seeks out out their feet to scope out the kicks. Except Kyle. Why would she not look at his feet?! You have to read over a hundred pages for Maddie to finally look at his shoes, and then she basically says, 'They're so Kyle.' I wanted to rip my hair out! All that build up and all she got was, they're so him?! I want to know what him is defined as! I mean, I knew, from reading the sections from his POV and Maddie's perception of him, but it would've been nice to see it reflected in his choice of footwear.
I felt a bit deflated by the end of the novel and incomplete. Now I know what you're thinking, it's a first in a series, so of course it feels incomplete! But Workman has wrapped up the loose ends - admittedly, keeping the resolution vague - and I just dont see where the storyline will go from here. Well, I guess I'll just have to wait for the sequal and find out.
Touching Melody is a light read that has love, loss, and a flare for the dramatic. Overall, an engaging novel that I couldn't put down.
3 out of 5