By: Hazel James
I finally made it. I graduated nursing school, and I found the perfect job. Things were great until a tornado blew through the emergency room, turning my life upside down. I don’t know if I can ever go back to the way things were before. Tornado survivors have a choice to rebuild, or pack up and move away. I’m twenty-two, and I know that one day I want the American dream: a husband, 2.5 kids and a white picket fence. But that’s the thing with rebuilding.
What happens when the next tornado hits? Will I be blown away again?
Adrenaline. It’s fueled me since I was thirteen. It’s what I discovered while I chased tornadoes across Oklahoma. It’s what I craved on combat missions in helicopters in Afghanistan. It’s what I lived for, until one day when everything changed. Now, adrenaline is my drug. It numbs me when the memories become too much to bear. It reminds me that I don’t deserve a wife, 2.5 kids and a white picket fence. I’ve seen what tornadoes do to white picket fences. It’s ugly.
I’m the tornado. I’ve already destroyed one family. Don’t chase me.
*****5 Thrilling and All-Feeling Stars*****
Chased by Hazel James was an utterly consuming, mesmerizingly vibrant, and all-around amazing whirlwind of a story that I loved and felt every word of. Every single word of this book was so phenomenally and thoughtfully crafted, and bursting with the best amount of charm and personality. From the very beginning of this story I knew I was beyond hooked into what I was getting within its spectacular pages with these wonderful and distinctive characters. The more I experienced this story, and the more I got into those characters’ heads, the more I knew that this book was not one I would soon forget.
Whether it was the enthralling thrill of this read, the phenomenal and exceptional crafting of emotion and feels throughout its pages, the authentic characters that seared themselves to my heart with all they had, or one of the many other aspects that made this book what it was, I loved this book with all that I had, and it was truly phenomenal in every way.
This book was like chasing that most lucrative and enrapturing storm that you equally want and need in your life, but that still manages to scare the bejesus out of you in a way because of how raw and intense and consuming it is. With the perfect combination of feels and emotion, heat and connection, and some serious charm and distinctiveness thrown in, Chased was easy to feel, experience, and just love.
Getting what I did with DH and Paige through Chased brought those two straight into my heart, allowed me to understand them on the deepest and truest of levels, and had me feeling it all with the two of them as they shared what they did together. I will tell you right now that their story isn’t always easy, and there were many times my heart squeezed something fierce for those two because of what they went through together and on their own individual journeys. While it wasn’t always easy on those two, it was beyond worth it to get what you do with them, and I am telling you you will LOVE every single intense, all-feeling, and real moment those two share.
Chased had so many aspects to it that set it apart, and that had me feeling, living, breathing, experiencing, and just loving it all, and I know it is a book that I’ll always remember for so many reasons.
What I absolutely loved about this book:
- Did someone say storm chasers? Now I must admit that I am a HUGE fan of storm chasing and every exciting, intense, and consuming moment that comes with it. Since I’ve only read one other book that allowed me to follow a storm chaser, I was beyond ready to see what I would get with that aspect in this book, and let me tell you right now, Hazel James did not disappoint. The way that she throws you right into the thick of the storm with these characters, both literally and figuratively, makes this one helluva intense read that has you experiencing it all with these characters. Whether it was the storms DH was forever chasing, the storm brewing within him as he tried to face the darkness of his past, or the storm of feelings that entered both his and Paige’s lives from their first meeting, these two certainly know how to hook you in with all that they have, while simultaneously having you love and crave that chase and everything that comes with it.
- DH and his own healing. DH is quite the charmer and a man that will have you smirking something fierce, but underneath that wonderful personality is a heart that is bleeding and breaking with what he’s been through. From what he experienced in his childhood, to the web of complicated and heartbreaking feelings and memories he has a result of a day that changed everything, that man has a world of feelings and past going through him. That past and the tight hold it has on his heart and future creates quite an emotional and mental struggle for DH, which Hazel James so authentically and emotionally captures. In Chased you get to be there through every word of DH’s struggle, through his fight, and through every ounce of what he pours into the healing that could be. My heart was with that man, feeling it all with him through every word as he faced it all, and I am telling you, there is no way you won’t love him, feel for him, and root for him with all that you have as he takes that journey of healing on full force.
- Waking up Paige! Paige was a fun, authentic, and so easy to love character that I connected to from the very first pages of this book. I loved that girl’s personality, and how she had her own vibrancy and charm in spades. That girl felt so real with what I got with her in this story, and with everything that came her way, she started to evolve a bit herself. The start of this book finds Paige starting off the life she’s always wanted and dreamed of. She’s in a new town, starting her first big girl job, and is bound and determined to live the life she always thought she wanted. The thing is though, with one storm and unforgettable encounter with a man unlike any other she’s met, Paige soon starts to realize something more. She starts to wake up, to take a long hard look at her life and what she wants, and soon that girl finds herself on a path she never thought she’d be on, yet one she can’t for the life of her want to get off of. Everything I got with Paige as she evolved, and went on her own journey of realizing what she wanted, what she needed, and what she couldn’t live without was nothing short of spectacular.
- A charm and vibrancy that is literally amazing. To say that Paige, DH, and the other amazing characters of this book had some serious charm and vibrancy is putting it too lightly. The personality bursting out of this book set it apart in the most memorable way, and had me simultaneously laughing, melting, blushing, and just basking in every word and moment with these characters. Hazel James does an incredible job of bringing out that vibrancy and personality in a way that sets these characters apart from any other you’ve read, and it’s that wonderful and charming distinctiveness that will have you heart going to them and rooting for them through every word of this story. The way that personality comes out from the supporting characters of this book, the town they reside in, in addition to everything DH and Paige give you will have your heart beyond in it all as this story unfolds.
- The growing of what could be. Over the course of this book, Paige and DH start to realize that their friendship might be leading to something more than they ever thought could be, though there are many obstacles of both past and present that stand in their way. These two share a world of connection and a world of emotion between them that makes every part of their journey full of emotional twists and turns that put them through the wringer. And then some. But let me tell you, what I felt most of while reading Chased was the possibilities of what could be, and it was those possibilities that pulled me, my heart, and these characters through every all-feeling and emotional word of this book. Whether it was the possibilities of what could be between DH and Paige, the possibilities of their own individual futures, the possibilities of what could happen when the pain and emotion of the past turned into the healing and hope of the future, or just the possibilities of what their hearts could feel…those possibilities made this book the amazing thing that it is.
- One wild heartfelt ride from start to finish. From start to finish, Chased was one thrilling and all-consuming ride that had my adrenaline pumping, my cheeks blushing, and my heart loving what I was so authentically experiencing. The way that Hazel James perfectly balances those intense, adrenaline filled moments, with those moments that touch and squeeze your heart will have you feeling it all in this story. It will have you NEEDING more with these characters, more with what could be, and more of that unforgettable chase that will sweep you up in more ways than one. Through it all, and through Hazel James’s phenomenal writing, I lived this story. I lived and understood and loved its characters with everything I had, and it truly doesn’t get better than that.
Chased was an all-consuming read that took me and my heart for one helluva ride. This story was about so many mesmerizing and all-feeling things, and it gave me two endearing, vibrant, and easy to love characters that I loved with all I had. Their story in this book was filled with their personalities, their wonderful charm and dynamic, and it had me feeling and believing in the possibilities of what could be.
With an emotional journey and evolution that will have tears falling from your eyes, and your heart squeezing more times than you can count, Chased is an utterly meaningful and emotional story that will take your breath away and show you that some chases are worth everything.
I truly can’t say enough how much I loved and felt and just enjoyed every single word of this story. It was so fantastically written, so enjoyable to read and experience, and so damn good. It gave me a story that was equal parts thrill ride, romance, and heartfelt emotional journey. The way Hazel James so phenomenally wove together the different aspects of this story put me in it all, had me believing and fighting and rooting for what could be, and in the end, had me knowing that this story was everything.
Read this book y’all. Read it. Live it. Breathe it. And take it all in, because the chase, the feels, and the journey within it are beyond worth it.