Almost Innocent by Carina Adams
Callaghan. A name synonymous with power and fear. A family of untouchable criminals.
As a teenager, Gabriella Forte had no intention of getting to know the town’s most dangerous brothers. Once Dustin set his sights on her, she was trapped. There was only one way out of her personal hell.
Declan was determined to break away from his family’s shadow. Until he fell in love with the one woman he couldn’t have. She changed everything.
Life isn’t always kind. Love can hurt. Sometimes you need to sacrifice yourself to protect the people you care about.
It’s been twelve years since Declan did the unthinkable and went to prison. He promised to stay away from Gabby and his nephew. That’s one vow he can’t keep.
Things aren’t always what they seem. Facts are only as credible as the person stating them. The truth doesn’t always set you free.
Warning: This is a dark romance. If domestic violence bothers you, if you can’t read violence in literature, or you are looking for a light and fluffy read, this book is not for you.
Theresa M’s Review: 5 STARS
If you’ve read Carina Adams before, and are thinking this will be like any of her previous books, you’re in for a big surprise.
I have my “reading bubble” that includes genres I love and subject matters I’m comfortable reading. I can count on one hand the times I’ve strayed outside my comfort zone, and reading this book was one of those times.
Declan and his brother Dustin were born into a notorious family business. Declan had a natural ability to succeed in this business, but didn’t want to follow in his father’s footsteps. Dustin had no qualms about continuing his father’s legacy, and he didn’t care who he had to step over to do it.
Gabby, Dustin and Declan are childhood friends. Dustin and Gabby begin dating in high school, and a violent relationship ensues. Declan and Gabby are best friends, and share some good times, and grow closer despite Dustin’s abusive behavior. Declan and his brother have a strained relationship, and Gabby refuses to be the cause of more trouble between them. Declan does his best to keep an eye on Gabby, and be there when she needs him.
Tragedy strikes, Declan goes to prison for twelve years, and has gone without seeing Gabby—the woman he’s been in love with since they were teenagers. When Declan is finally released, he has some decisions to make, and forge a path for his future.
Carina tells this story of domestic abuse in a way you know what’s going on, but she isn’t so horribly graphic that you find it difficult to continue. There’s no sugar coating the things that Gabby endured, and it was a lot. For me, this book was a journey, and you see how actions can affect so many people, not just those directly involved. Things may seem to be one way, when in reality, that isn’t the case. There are so many things going on in this story, and I was amazed at how many lives were interconnected irrevocably bound as a result of things that happened before, during, and after Gabby and Dustin’s tumultuous relationship.
This was a tough, painful, and beautifully written story about how a woman who has gone through hell has the strength and determination to forge a positive path for herself, and refuses to give up when no one would blame her if she did. This was a powerful tale, and I’m so glad I stepped outside my bubble to read this.
I loved Almost Innocent and give it 5 stars!
Lita T’s Review: 5 STARS
Almost Innocent by Carina Adams is a strong story that tackles a topic that continues to plague our society. Domestic violence touches a large section of our population. We have either experienced it within our family or we know someone who has. This is Gabby’s life. Her life didn’t start like that, she thought she had found a boyfriend with one brother and a best friend in the other. However what she got was a monster in one brother and a savior in the other. A run in 12 years later between Gabby and Declan reopens old wounds and feelings. This is their story. The author tells the story in a unique way by using flashbacks so the reader learns the terrors that the characters had to endure. This story was filled with lies and secrets, twist and turns, intrigue and suspense. At times the story is a tough read when learning what Gabby endured but if you like Dark than this story fits the bill. The story also shines a light on Domestic Violence affects and repercussions’. I was really into the story until I was a little halfway through than the story really took off. I found myself unable to put the book down till I finished. It was after 11pm at night. I have to be at work at 5am and I get up at 3:30. Needless to say I was tired at work. This story was well worth me staying up till I finished. Be prepared. I was given an Arc of this book for an honest review. I give this story 5 stars
About Carina Adams
Thankfully, fate stepped in and granted her the ultimate wish – a life full of men. Carina lives in a picturesque New England town with her husband, the man who ruined the thought of all others, and two amazing sons who always keep her on her toes.
Carina received her MBA in May, but would much rather play with her imaginary friends (the voices in her head) than work her 8 to 5. When she isn’t trying to juggle being a working mom with karate and football practices, surprising her children with her sci-fi movie knowledge, or writing, you can find her with her nose pressed against her kindle, laughing with friends, or living life vicariously as her Derby Girl persona, Writers Block.
Carina is the author the of Bastards MC series and best selling Forever Red. She is currently writing Out of The Blue, the follow up to Forever Red. She loves to hear feedback from her readers, no matter what type. You can email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org