Withering Hope

Withering Hope

First Lines: My last flight as Aimee Myller starts like any other flight: with a jolt.

Weekends are my time to binge-read. I try to finish whatever book I’ve been reading that week on Friday or Saturday morning and then I’ve got the chance to pick something that interests me. I didn’t like my options on my shelf at the time, so I searched my Kindle and came across this one. I must’ve gotten it free on Amazon at some point, but it looked like it’d be worth a shot.

Aimee’s wedding in just a few days will be perfect. She’s got the perfect dress, the best fiancé, and a beautiful location at a holiday ranch in Brazil. But all her plans mean nothing when the private jet she’s on–en route to Brazil–defects and the pilot is forced to make an emergency landing. In the middle of the Amazon rainforest. With no chance at connecting with civilization, the only hope Aimee and Tristan (the pilot) have is being rescued. But as days pass with no sign of a search team, they are forced to take on death in its many forms: starvation, diseases, and beasts. As Aimee and Tristan fight to stay alive, they grow closer. With old scars in both of their pasts, they discover how much they need each other for their survival–in more ways than one. Despite her devotion to her fiancé, Aimee can’t help but feel things for Tristan. You can hide from a lot in the rainforest, but not from love.

Oh my God, did this pull me in. Unexpectedly, I might add.

The story starts off in pretty much a basic crappy romance way. We’re immediately introduced to Aimee, who is clearly very wealthy (she’s on her fiancé’s private jet, on her way to his ranch in Brazil for their wedding). From the way Aimee acts, she’s also obviously spoiled, but she’s sweet and kind at the same time. Tristan, the plane’s pilot, very much keeps to himself and doesn’t really interact with Aimee. And about 10 pages into the story, the plane goes down. (There really isn’t much exposition in this story, something that is a mark against it.)

But the survival element then kicks in because they are stuck in the middle of the Amazon rainforest. No one knows exactly where they are and as days pass, it seems like no one’s looking for them either. The only life they see are the beasties of the forest–some of which could kill them easily. The survival stuff in the story was actually really interesting and really helped change the dynamic between Tristan and Aimee naturally and in a way that helped me connect with both characters. I really liked the survival stuff. It’s very different from what I’ve been reading lately.

I ended up getting really into the story during this part. I read the whole book in an evening because I just kept wanting to see what would happen next. Would they have a mishap with their water supply? Would someone have a run-in with a snake or a jaguar or a poison frog? When would they be rescued? It was just fascinating. Was it over the top and melodramatic? Absolutely. 100%. But it was fun.

The one writing critique I have is that 98% of the story is told from Aimee’s perspective, but there’s the occasional cut in from Tristan that is super short and, frankly, pointless. He cuts in just to say something we can pretty much guess he’s already thinking anyway and then immediately goes back to Aimee. Tristan’s perspective is no longer than a page at any one time, so it really is just a waste of space. I see why it was there (Tristan is very taciturn and rarely says what he’s feeling), but come on.

Other than that, I have a lot of fun reading this one. Even if I did roll my eyes with the whole “my fiancé is a billionaire” stuff. I hate that trope.

Maybe just keep in mind that my rating is based on how this exceeded my admittedly somewhat low expectations of this when I started it. But I really did enjoy it.

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