I wasn’t sure I wanted to read Love, Cutter. It is a difficult subject and sometimes I shy away from those…but it seems that all my tours go that way. The reality is that this book hits very close to home. Not because of the attempted suicide or the other tragedies in the book, but because of the message of how hard it is to kick perception and expectations to the curb. This really is a story of Carter finding his way to accepting himself…and realizing that others will accept him as well. It’s a long and convoluted journey, but it seems that the people Carter meets in his search for Kinley are there to help him overcome the things that he struggles with. Michelle Jester pulls together a story of love and redemption…though both of them are things that she emphasizes need to come from yourself, first. Everybody struggles with perception. I know I do. To see a character that can overcome this, overcome the expectations his family has of him, and not only survive but thrive, gives the reader a great amount of hope for their own lives and struggles. Most people have issues trying to live up to others’ expectations of them. While I wouldn’t recommend an attempted suicide and coma to change your perception, it really isn’t what does it for Carter, either. They are merely the catalyst that sets him on the path to discovering who he really is, outside those expectations.
I had a slight issue with the dialogue in this. It often felt stilted to me. But there were sections where it flowed, too. It wasn’t enough to make me stop reading, though. I also didn’t like how glossed over the therapy and recovery from depression was. There are mentions of Carter attending therapy, but overall…it seems to be a minor point in his recovery. That bothers me, as I think it glosses over how serious depression can be. I wish there was more about how the therapy also helped and his therapist’s thoughts on him hiding from his family. It seems like the therapist is an afterthought instead of a key component to Carter’s recovery. And that makes the whole thing seem as if his journey is easy and miraculous, instead of the hard work so many people put into coming back from that kind of decision. However, Jester’s opening makes it very apparent that she does not believe this.
Overall, this was a sweet story. While it has romance in it, I would definitely just stick it in contemporary fiction. The romantic interest is a guiding point, but the true story is in Carter’s discovery of himself and understanding of what it truly means to accept and love yourself.
Jester gets bonus points from me for Shane’s favorite book series. If you haven’t read Gardens of the Moon, I highly recommend it. It is the first book in what is also my favorite series.
Publication date: August 28th 2018
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult
After an attempted suicide Carter finds himself in a coma. He is able to hear the world around him, yet he can’t move. What he hears propels Carter to begin to see life in a new way, especially when one of his nurses, Kinley, shares parts of her tragic past with him. Soon, Carter realizes he is falling in love with her.
Months after being transferred from the hospital, to a rehabilitation facility, he suddenly wakes up with a passion to live that he never had before and a determination to find the one person he feels may be able to help him put the pieces of his life together again. However, when he returns to the hospital, Kinley is gone and Carter must try to find her based solely on the things she shared with him while he was in a coma.
Only, nothing is as it seems and Carter learns the biggest lesson of them all… the differences between expectation, perception, and reality.
Michelle Jester lives in Greenwell Springs, Louisiana with her husband, high school sweetheart and retired Master Sergeant. Together they have a son and daughter. She is a hopeless romantic and has been writing poems and stories for as long as she can remember.
One of her prize possessions is a bracelet with only a yellow, Rubber Duckie charm on it; which she wears every day to remind her to enjoy the fun and happy things of life!