Review: Freeing (#1.5, Fading) by E.K. Blair - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

This post contains affiliate links, meaning I’ll receive a small commission should you purchase using those links. All opinions expressed are my own. I receive no compensation for reviews.

Review: Freeing (#1.5, Fading) by E.K. Blair

My Thoughts

Honest. Heartfelt. Emotionally charged.
A moving story of one man’s struggle to accept who he is and how he finds the courage to free himself from his fears to find unconditional love and happiness.

5stars

Synopsis

FREEINGCoverFINALKnowing who you are and accepting who you are come at different prices.

Jase Kinrick grew up in your typical, all-American household. But after the death of his sister, his parents shut down, forcing him to deal with everything life throws his way alone. Terrified of the person he’s discovering himself to be, Jase has his way with every willing girl to try and rid himself of what he fears he is—gay.

Escaping California and moving to Seattle to attend the University of Washington, Jase frees himself to the reality that he likes men. Never staying with any guy long enough to get to know them, he doesn’t realize that he’s still hiding from who he is until he meets Mark. Scared of having real feelings for another guy stirs up the questions and fears he’s fought hard to bury.

To strip away the barriers to the heart of what is real, and to be okay with what lies underneath, will be Jase’s moment of truth. But he’ll need Mark to lead him there.

My Review

“I’ve spent the last few years praying that this is just a phase. Fighting the thoughts that skate around in my head. Pretending to be someone I’m not in an attempt to escape this sick person who lives inside of me.”

You may think you know Jase, but there is SO MUCH MORE to him. This story made me understand him and connect with him on a much deeper level.  This story is so honest and heartfelt, I felt everything Jase was feeling… the fear, the hurt, the love. E.K. Blair’s beautiful writing brings the story to life vividly and now more than ever, I feel so invested in these characters. Although the story is short (a novella), the pacing was perfect and I was totally “in it” the entire time. In Freeing, we follow Jase’s heartbreaking journey as he struggles to accept that he’s gay. We learn that his inability to accept himself comes not only from the innate pressures of societal norms, but also from the crushing rejection of his parents. His still feels the gaping loss of his sister, and feeling alone and dejected, he struggles to find solid ground. We also gain deeper insight into his relationship with Candace… they are each other’s only family. Through the years, they’ve held on to each other in desperation to find much-needed solace, affection and love. They are each other’s true safe haven. I loved seeing their extraordinary relationship come alive on the page.

“I’m sad because I love you. When your heart hurts, so does mine. Your pain is my pain.”

Although the book is entirely Jase’s story, which starts prior to “the incident” in Fading and continues in that time, we do experience Jase’s side of what happens. Once again, I was gutted and moved to tears. I was taken back to Fading and everything that happened to Candace, but my feelings were magnified when witnessing the anger, fear and helplessness Jase felt at seeing his best friend go through the most painful experience of her life.

“She’s silent as she stares out the window while I drive her back to my place. The misery is palpable; the way life can change in a matter of a moment. I look over at her as she sits there—lifeless—and I desperately want to make it all disappear.”

When Jase first meets Mark, he immediately senses something different. He’s drawn to him. He’s gorgeous, but also kind and forthright. When the attraction between them is undeniable, Mark immediately tells him he is not looking for a casual thing. Jase has been so lost in pretending for so long that despite being with other men, he feels an actual relationship with a man will irrevocably solidify he’s gay… a fact he’s not ready to fully accept. His trepidation has kept him on the sidelines, using men in a string of one-night stands and casual affairs, none which have broken through the protective walls he’s built inside of himself. He wants to try… he wants to be better… but despite his good intentions, he surrenders to his old ways and begins to destroy something beautiful and real. After all, how can you truly love someone without first accepting and loving who you are?

“I don’t want to hide parts of me from you, but I don’t know how to do that. I get scared. I’m afraid people are judging me… You seem so sure of yourself, and I’m so far from that. I want to give that to you. I don’t want to mess this up, and I don’t want you to change the way you are with me because everything you do, you do it perfectly.”

I loved getting to know Mark as well. We already knew he was so good, but I loved his honesty and directness. He encouraged Jase to free himself and accept who he is, but never pushed. Mark simply showed him affection and love. Jase carries so much inside of him during this time… his own insecurities, his feelings of worry and helplessness in Candace’s situation and now the feelings of inadequacy plague him. He knows he hurts Mark every time he pulls his hand away in public, every moment he refuses to show the world he loves him.

“I’m undeserving and selfish. You’re worth so much more than what I’m capable of giving you.”

Overall, the story is just so achingly honest and heartfelt. It’s so beautifully written and captivating. This is a story of acceptance. A story of forgiveness. But most importantly, a story of love.

So far, this has been a wonderful, powerful, moving series that doesn’t seem to let me go. I am so looking forward to reading Falling, which will be Ryan’s story.

FREEING1

addseriestogoodreads

Excerpt

Nobody knows. I’m not sure anyone will ever know. Who wants a fag for a friend? I’ve spent the last few years praying that this is just a phase. Fighting the thoughts that skate around in my head. Pretending to be someone I’m not in an attempt to escape this sick person who lives inside of me.

The only person I need right now—the only one who would listen and not judge me—is gone. I feel like God is punishing me for some reason. He took away the only one who could help me. The only one I could confide in. It’s been almost two years since Jacie died.

I miss her.

I miss everything about her, and now I need her more than ever. I need her to tell me it’s okay, that I’m okay.

About E.K. Blair

3442_10101017886613957_1994128092_n

USA Today bestselling author and International Amazon bestselling author, E.K. Blair takes her readers on an emotional roller coaster with her FADING series. A former first grade teacher with an imagination that runs wild. Daydreaming and zoning out is how she was often found in high school. Blair tends to drift towards everything dark and moody. Give her a character and she will take pleasure in breaking them down, digging into their core to find what lies underneath.

Aside from writing, E.K. Blair finds pleasure in music, drinking her Starbucks in peace, and spending time with her friends. She’s a thinker, an artist, a wife, a mom, and everything in between.

Subscribe for Updates:

Share This Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

On Facebook

SuperWebTricks Loading...

On Twitter

A heroine who can’t help but fix everything, an IOU from a handsome stranger, a cunning old boyfriend, and thorny family dynamics—it's the perfect setup for another irresistible… https://t.co/41Z6NHON8w

Who else is just about dying for this book??? 🙋🏻‍♀️ I’m a huge, long-time @lisakleypas reader and am so excited for this Ravenels meets Wallflowers book. This is Phoebe and West’s love… https://t.co/1jLpO0kztx

Excerpt: Irresistible by #MelanieHarlow! @jennw23 https://t.co/b7jOloJ6UP

Excerpt: Devil's Daughter by @lisakleypas!!!! @HarperCollins https://t.co/4Df0pdtaVx

Read an excerpt from Overture by @skye_warren!!! https://t.co/TmtNKTy5Fz

Review: I Owe You One by @KinsellaSophie! @randomhouse https://t.co/g6niPTVQA1

Cover Reveal: Make Me Bad by @AuthorRSGrey! https://t.co/jZ9COv8ekd

Double tap this pic if you’re planning on a little sunday self care! 🙋🏻‍♀️ Trying to figure out what to use today and @blissworld has sent me so many wonderful goodies from which I can… https://t.co/6vqA6kTsKA

🚨 𝐆𝐈𝐕𝐄𝐀𝐖𝐀𝐘 🚨
.
Happy Sunday, you guys!!! So excited to share an awesome giveaway with you!!! I’m partnering with @rebeccayarros to give away two signed paperback ARCs of 𝐓𝐇𝐄 𝐋𝐀𝐒𝐓… https://t.co/us2IKyj5VT

What is your favorite thing to buy beautywise? The thing you have a weakness for and probably own too many of? ❥
.
For me, it’s eye shadow palettes. Well, okay... and pretty much all things… https://t.co/bBFtmyRflD

I still can't believe the trailer is here! 😭What do you guys think? Let me know what your favorite parts were!

You can watch it here: https://t.co/KbWZ7uVKGi

“𝗧𝗵𝗲𝗿𝗲’𝘀 𝗼𝗻𝗹𝘆 𝘀𝗼 𝗺𝘂𝗰𝗵 𝘆𝗼𝘂 𝗰𝗮𝗻 𝘁𝗮𝗸𝗲 𝗯𝗲𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗱𝗲𝘀𝗰𝗿𝗶𝗯𝗲𝗱 𝗮𝘀 𝘀𝗼𝗺𝗲𝗯𝗼𝗱𝘆 𝘆𝗼𝘂’𝗿𝗲 𝗻𝗼𝘁.”
.
Have you guys read Angie Thomas before? I was late to THE HATE U GIVE (so powerful), and absolutely loved… https://t.co/1mlyXKrwqn

Happy Valentine’s Day my friends!!!! ♥️ Any plans with friends or loved ones today?! I gave my man and my boys little gifts this morning so they start their day feeling loved, then… https://t.co/W77vDiaC4f

Any lisagardnerbks fans out there?! 🙋🏻‍♀️ You guys, she is one of my favorite authors and she has a new (fabulous) book out: NEVER TELL. I was honored to interview her on the blog, where… https://t.co/wwL5ihZAGB

𝗗𝗼 𝘆𝗼𝘂 𝗵𝗮𝘃𝗲 𝗮 𝗳𝗮𝘃𝗼𝗿𝗶𝘁𝗲 𝘀𝗰𝗲𝗻𝘁?
.
My favorite for skincare and lotions is roses! So when I found out the new mask from @summer__fridays smelled like a whole bouquet of 🌹🌹🌹, I was all in.… https://t.co/MxIA51I8Yh

𝗗𝗼 𝘆𝗼𝘂 𝗵𝗮𝘃𝗲 𝗮𝗻𝘆 𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗻𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗩𝗮𝗹𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗲’𝘀 𝗗𝗮𝘆???
.
We typically cook at home, and now love celebrating with our boys. This year, I’m putting together a Valentine’s Day charcuterie board and… https://t.co/tc1Z12hikK

Review: @SummerFridays R+R Mask! https://t.co/bQUUrl01df

Read an excerpt from Ensnared by @ElisNaughton! @1001darknights https://t.co/sedrAbdmGn

Review: On The Come Up by @angiecthomas! #2019favorite https://t.co/LerkTijup8

Interview with @LisaGardnerBks, author of NEVER TELL (out this week!) @penguinbooks https://t.co/RMXgpmlWB1

Load More...