My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Okay, so let me start by saying I know that some of you are total #TeamRyan fans, but I’ve been #TeamCarter since we first met Carter Montgomery in Preservation. Why? Because there’s no way that I can resist a totally hot, sweet, and did I mention HOT, musician.
“I began to play, and little by little, the noise began to dwindle. I only chanced a peek out into the crowd once before I shut my eyes, because honestly, as soon as my fingers started to move and my voice followed, the faces in the crowd were drowned out. Visible, but seemingly invisible. It was just me and the music, just the way I liked it. No one could touch us in our little bubble, and we set the pace. No rules, no heartbreak.
Just a pure cleansing of the soul.”
With that said, on to my review!
Declaration was a bit of a bittersweet read for me. Carter finally found love with Whitney – a feisty little thing, full of life and enough spirit for the both of them – which made me super happy! He needed his world shaken up a bit, especially after the heartbreak of his unrequited love with Kate Parker, one of his best friends.
“Dance with me, Montgomery,” she rushed forward and grabbed my free hand. I shook my head and smiled, letting her tug me back and forth as she hopped around in pure bliss. I moved and bobbed with her, smoking with one hand while I eyed her moist, glistening skin under the moonlight. Her free-flowing black hair billowed around her shoulders, sticking to her sweaty skin, and her sparkling eyes were positively wild. Full of light and spark I’d never seen. Right then, I knew I wanted – no, I needed – to know more about this girl.”
There was only one drawback to Declaration: I couldn’t stop thinking about how this book would bring me to the conclusive end of the characters that I’d come to love so much over the last year – Whitney, Carter, Kate, Ryan, Dean, Emma and Jackson. So, I read a little slower than I normally do because, honestly, I didn’t want to have to say goodbye. I savored the moments – the highs and lows, the angst and moments of elation, the moments in which either Carter or Whitney seem to still be victims of their past and the self-reflections that help them move past it all.
“A strange sense of unity settled over me, and understanding for my friends and all they had gone through, all I’d witnessed them endure. The loss of love, life, dreams – it all impaired them in some way, but it didn’t stop them. It didn’t keep them from going after what they wanted all along.
To not be afraid anymore.
I leaned over the sink, bringing my face close to the mirror. The edges were still fogged up with steam, creating an uneven, distorted ring around my features. I didn’t want to let that fear we were all so familiar with eat away at my chance to be happy.”
Thankfully, I own all of the books, so I can revisit their world whenever I like. I don’t re-read books often, but the entire series, including Declaration, will be evergreen for me. These stories will forever be etched in my heart. Thank you to Rachael Wade for giving me a wonderful year-long addiction that has come to a beautiful close…for now.