“The attainment of wholeness requires one to stake one’s whole being. Nothing less will do. There can be no easier conditions, no substitutes, no compromises.” – Carl Jung
Author: Riley Hart
Pages/Word Count: 339 Pages
Rating: 5 Stars
Blurb: Can three broken pieces make a whole?
Josiah Evans is the orphan who lost both his parents. He’s sweet, shy, and all heart. He wants nothing more than to be loved.
Mateo Sanchez is the son of a gang leader. He’s seen it all, and never hesitates to do what needs to be done, no matter what it is.
Tristan Croft is the wealthy attorney who clawed his way up from the bottom to rule his own world. He’ll never depend on anyone but himself again.
Three men who couldn’t be more different…and yet, as their lives intersect they find an uncommon balance that calms the storms inside each of them, and ignites fires hotter than they ever thought imaginable.
Told in three parts and spanning over ten years, BROKEN PIECES is a journey of healing for three fragmented souls, finding love in the unlikeliest of places—with each other.
Review: Every so often a book comes along that makes me want to do little more than say a simple “thank you” to the author. Broken Pieces is a book that not only makes me want to thank Riley Hart for all the gorgeous words she’s strung together into a fully realized relationship between reader emotion and the mastery of storytelling, but also makes me want to wallow in the eloquence of the pain and the beauty of the redemption her three men will finally come to claim after years of hiding and seeking anything that feels like more than living a half-life.
Told in a three act narrative and alternating points of view—a brilliant move on the author’s part—this story spans a decade of love and loss, of lost dreams and found souls, and sets each stage of the play perfectly, first with Josiah and Mateo, who meet as teenage boys in the foster system; with Josiah and Tristan, who are the story within the story; and ends with these three flawed and broken men, whose damaged parts are shaped so exquisitely that the torn and ragged edges of their breaks fit together like notched pieces of a whole picture, discovering that love both hurts and heals.
This is a book about a romance between very different people—the ex-gang banger, the prosecuting attorney, and the man who holds them together—who reveal yet lie by omission, who give and hide parts and pieces of themselves in the name of love and self-preservation; they fear trust, and they love then sacrifice for the sake of that love; and regardless of how one feels about non-traditional relationships, it can’t be denied that the author has penned a story that is deeply romantic, emotionally articulate, exceptionally provocative, and unlike any ménage story I’ve ever read before. Every single scene serves to build upon and layer each of these men, from surface to soul, in such a way that it was impossible not to fall in love with them, because they are three distinct and magnetic men who draw every bit of compassion and hope from anyone willing to take the journey, one that’s fraught with moments that might gut you yet keeps you turning the pages until you find yourself at a new beginning that’s now to be continued.
I’ll confess I don’t read much ménage because I’ve yet to run across one that not only believably portrays what I feel must be the highly complex dynamic of a threesome—the delicate balance, the potential for jealousy, the honoring and completion of the physical and emotional needs of each individual—but also does it without leaning so heavily on stereotypes, or on the sexual component of the relationship so that its foundation is structured on nothing more than how they relate in bed. This is a fully encompassing novel, pitched perfectly to resonate, balanced brilliantly to show the reader exactly who these men are and why their individual needs are imperative to their whole. They’re men who speak through word and action, sometimes fall victim to their own fears, but manage always to find the courage to face those fears. Broken Pieces is a book that worked for me on every single level, from the writing to the absolute oneness of the three men who fell in love in spite of their own demons working against them.