Written With Regret, the first in an all-new emotional duet from USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez, is available now!
Every little girl dreams of the fairytale. The one where the white knight rushes in to save her from the clutches of evil. They fall in love, have babies, and live happily ever after.
By that definition, my life should have been a fairytale too.
When I was eight years old, Caven Hunt saved me from the worst kind of evil to walk the Earth. It didn’t matter that I was a kid. I fell in love with him all the same.
But that was where my fairytale ended.
Years later, a one-night stand during the darkest time imaginable gave us a little girl. It was nothing compared to the pitch black that consumed me when I was forced to leave her with Caven for good.
At the end of every fairytale, the happily-ever-after is the one thing that remains consistent. It wasn’t going to be mine, but there hadn’t been a night that passed where I hadn’t prayed that it would be hers.
I owed Caven my life.
However, I owed that innocent child more.
And that included ripping the heart from my chest and facing her father again.
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Written With Regret is Aly Martinez at her absolute best.
This book is one of the most unforgettable stories I have EVER read. The story you get in this book, the dynamic and interweaving layers it presents to you, the AMAZING characters it sears to your heart, and every single incredible word of this book is just a fraction of what makes this one of the best stories I have ever read. I truly have never read a book like this one before, and I’m completely positive that with the exception of the follow up to this book, I never will read another story like this one.
It is that magnificent. It is that consuming. It is that unique.
It is everything.
As I am sitting here writing this review I want to tell you all the things about this book and how utterly breathtaking and outstanding it is, but I also want to tell you nothing about the story because this is a story you NEED to experience for yourself. You need to go into this story blind. You need to just read the blurb and jump in heart first, because experiencing this story for yourself will take your breath away. LITERALLY. There were so many moments when reading this book when I felt the physical effects of what these characters were going through and when I could not breathe or move because I was so consumed in what was unfolding before me.
So trust me, do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars, just jump into this book ready for the emotional ride of your life.
I guarantee you have never read a book like this one. Ever. I promise you you will be completely owned by every word of this story. And I am telling you now, be prepared for one of the most emotionally consuming, heartrending, and breathtaking stories you will ever have the chance to experience.
From the very first moments of this book until the very last, your heart and soul will be on edge, will be feeling it all, and will be loving every word of what these characters give you. This story will push you right along with them to the limits. It will make you think and feel EVERYTHING, and it will have you wondering how in the hell it is all going to come together with the intricate and well thought out pieces this story delivers. You will love every piece of this exceptionally thought out story that you get in this book, and when you reach the last page of this book, you will be desperate for more.
More emotions, more answers, and more of this incredible world and these characters that will consume you within everything it has.
While I don’t want to tell you much about the story itself, as to not give away too much, I will tell you that these characters and what they give you in their story will touch and pull and break at every part of your heart. Caven and Hadley’s story isn’t easy. At all. It is quite the opposite really. It is messy, full of their own flaws and past mistakes, it is more complicated than an episode of Game of Thrones, with both of their pasts being an integral part of what continues to make their present and future so damn hard to fight for. Their story is full of emotional ups and downs, and it will have you guessing at what is really happening with every single word you read, as you sit their feeling it all. You will feel their struggles, you will bask in their triumphs, and you will break with them as the past and present collide in ways you didn’t even think were possible.
And through it all you will live and breathe and feel and experience every lick of what they are sharing, what they each feel themselves, and what this story does to them and the dynamic and interweaving layers of their lives come to be.
I think what I loved most about this book was the fact that this story and these characters weren’t easy. They weren’t just two people trying to figure things out and having things immediately go their way, they were two very distinctive characters who were desperately trying to not let the demons of their past rule their lives. They were two characters who fought with all that they had for what they wanted, for what they knew was right, and for the life they wanted so badly. They were two characters trying to redeem themselves for the choices they’ve made and the life altering consequences those choices brought to not only them, but those around them. Both Caven and Hadley were two characters tied together by so much more, who were trying to find some semblance of happiness in the seconds.
Their story is wholly unique and so are they. Written With Regret is about what happens when they come together, as they face the past and the consequences of their choices, and as they fight like hell for the future they so desperately want to have. This story is completely theirs, and I am telling you, it will move you, break you, shock you, tear at every part of you, all while giving you it all and you will LOVE it so much. This story will make you think and question everything. It will make you wonder what happened all those years ago, and what could be in the next moment. It will have you rooting for Caven and Hadley and the little girl that connects them, and it will have you dying for all of the answers you want and need and have to have.
This story is not a fairy tale. It is not a story of boy meets girl, they fall in love, and that’s it. This story is more. So much more. This is a story of darkness, of heartbreak, of unimaginable anguish and pain. This is a story of the twists and turns your life can take in the beat of a heart. This is a story of fight, of steadfast determination, and the power and gloriousness of redemption. This is a story of the light that can be found in the dark, and what it truly means to live in the seconds. This is a story about what happens when the person who saved you all those years ago might just be the person to save you one last time, even if it means sacrificing your heart in the process.
Written With Regret is an emotional, consuming, and truly unforgettable read from start to finish.
I promise you will not see these characters or their story coming. You may think you know what you’ll get when you read this book, but I promise you, you have no idea what this book will deliver to you. And that is just part of what makes this one of the best books I have ever read. This story will own every single part of you from beginning to end, and will have you NEEDING the second part of this duet like you need your next breath.
Aly Martinez truly outdid herself with this book. I have loved each and every one of her books fiercely, and she is the queen of duets in my opinion. She writes one helluva story, and this one is no different. Yet in a way it is. It is more. It is more emotional. It is more consuming. It is more twisty and turny and bursting with moments that will stop you and your heart in their tracks. It is more of everything.
What Aly Martinez creates in Written With Regret is her best writing yet. I say that with all of her books because she continues to deliver unforgettable stories with an outstanding level of writing and storytelling, but this story really takes the cake. It really changes the game. It will push your mental and emotional boundaries, it will make you feel every ounce of what these characters do, and the way she so thoughtfully brings her words together to create this story will have you knowing with every fiber of your being that you have just read one exceptional story.
Written With Regret lets her writing talent shine through the emotional roller coaster these characters take you on. And you know what? You will love every second of that ride, you will LOVE having a front row seat to it all, and in the end, you’ll just want that ride to keep going and going because that is how amazing it is.
This book is one of the best books I have ever read. It is full of emotions and feels and heartbreak, but at its core it is a story of redemption, second chances, and the fight that defines you and your story. Written With Regret is brimming with emotional honesty and heart, and I loved every single second I got to spend within its pages with its characters. I can’t wait to continue this story in the follow up because I have no doubt that Aly Martinez will once again blow me away with everything she creates for these characters.
So are you ready for the emotional ride of your life?
Because buckle up buttercup and be ready for Caven, Hadley and every word of Written With Regret to give you one helluva reading experience that you will NEVER forget.
And trust me, you will love every second of this ride because it is nothing short of everything.
Life had never been easy for me. Chaos had been following me like a dark cloud, looming and hovering, casting its shadow far and wide despite how bright the path in front of me should have appeared. After growing up the way I had, where happiness had been more of a privilege than a choice, I knew better than to believe that that moment would be anything other than fleeting.
And one second later, the universe proved me right.
I opened the door to see who had rung the bell—a cursory check revealed an empty hallway.
And that’s when I heard it: the sound that changed not only my entire life in the present, but my life for all future days to come.
At first, it was just a grunt, but as if that baby could feel my gaze, the minute my eyes made contact, it let out a sharp cry.
Confusion hit me like a lightning bolt, sending me back a step. I used the door frame for balance as I took in the yellow blanket with a hole only big enough to reveal a pale-pink face.
“What the fuck?” I breathed. Glancing around the hall, I waited for someone to jump out and start laughing. When no one spoke up to issue a punchline, I took a step closer and repeated, “What the fuck?”
I was utterly unable to process the absurdity in front of me.
Of course, I knew the facts.
It was a baby.
On my doorstep.
But the why in that equation was glaringly absent.
“Uhhh,” Ian drawled, peering over my shoulder. “Why is there a kid at your door?”
“I have no idea,” I replied, staring down at the squirming and now-screaming bundle. “It was just there when I opened the door.”
Ian shoved me to the side so he could stand beside me. “You’re shitting me, right?”
“Does it look like I’m shitting you?”
He looked from me to the baby, then back again. “How did it get there?”
We were two incredibly smart men who had created a technology empire out of nothing. But, clearly, a baby was too big for either of us to wrap our minds around.
I swept an arm out and pointed to the kid. “I have no clue, but I’m assuming it didn’t catch a cab.”
A light of understanding hit his eyes. He moved first, stepping over the crying baby and hurrying down the hall, searching around the corner near the elevator before returning alone.
The party continued behind me, but even with the door open, the loud chatter was no match for the ear-piecing cries happening in that hallway.
Veronica suddenly appeared beside me, her body going solid as she stammered out. “Is that…a baby?”
“Back up,” I urged, throwing my arm out to block her path as though the infant were going to suddenly morph into a rabid animal. And let’s be honest, I knew nothing about babies. Anything was possible.
Ian dropped to his knees, scooping up the wailing child. Meanwhile, I stood there like a gawking idiot, paralyzed by a weight I didn’t yet understand.
“Call the pol—” He stopped abruptly and reached into the top of the child’s blanket. “Oh shit,” he whispered, his wide, panic-filled eyes flashing to mine.
“What?” I asked, stepping toward him to get a better look at the kid. Only it wasn’t that tiny baby cradled in his arms that made my heart stop and bile rise in my throat.
There, in my best friend’s hand, was a folded piece of notebook paper that had been tucked into the child’s blanket. From the looks of it, the paper was unremarkable in every sense of the word. Blue lines, white spaces, hanging remnants from where it had been haphazardly ripped from a spiral bound notebook. Even the crease was crooked. But it was my name scrawled on the outside in messy, black ink that made it the most remarkable paper in existence.
I snatched it from his hand and, with blood roaring in my ears, opened it.
I’m sorry. I never meant for this to happen. This is our daughter Keira. I’ll love her forever. Take care of her the way I can’t.
Written with regret,
The hall began to spin, my head feeling like every ounce of blood had been drained from my body. The thundering in my ears faded and the loud chatter of my guests, who were suddenly aware that something was happening at the door, roared to life.
And then the chaos finally found me all over again—the past playing out in my head like my life flashing before my eyes.
I sucked in a deep breath and looked at the baby in his arms. The blanket had fallen off its head just enough to reveal a patch of fine hairs, more orange than its mother’s red.
“Call the police,” I declared, turning on a toe and walking back into my apartment, leaving Ian standing in the hall with Hadley’s child.
Shoving through the crowd of concerned onlookers, I headed straight to the bottles of liquor lining the counter. I didn’t bother with ice or even a glass. I threw back that bottle of vodka, hoping like hell the burn of the alcohol could numb the panic coursing through my veins.
Through it all, that baby never stopped crying.
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Originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez now lives in South Carolina with her husband and four young children.
Never one to take herself too seriously, she enjoys cheap wine, mystery leggings, and olives. It should be known, however, that she hates pizza and ice cream, almost as much as writing her bio in the third person.
She passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a super-sized tumbler of wine by her side.
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