Knowing 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.
Another out right freaking amazing book from E.K. Blair! I don’t know what in the world I was thinking when I said “Oh let me start reading this now (at 11pm)” I swear I know better, but nope. I am now running on fumes and coffee! First, I loved Fading, it is in my Top 5 must reads list. I was anxiously awaiting Freeing, which is a companion novel to Fading. It is Jase’s story and while you do glimpse into what happened with Fading it is not the same and there are parts to this story that have NOTHING to do with Candace. It is not a retell of the previous book. I don’t know how E.K. is able to write such deeply emotional and difficult subject matter with such skill, I mean WOW. Freeing is so emotionally riveting; it will draw you in, and take you on a beautiful and painful journey. Believe me when I say I couldn’t put it down. I didn’t WANT to put it down at all. I wanted it to go on, because I was deeply invested in this beautiful novel, I would have been happy to read for another sleepless night.
We met Jase & Mark in Fading when we found out what an amazing friend Jase was to Candice throughout her ordeal. We knew he came from a broken home and had issues regarding relationships. This story gives you so much information on his pain and struggles in life, relationships and of course dealing with all that happened in Fading. I cried again, big ugly tears, rip the emotional band aid off because its heart wrenching. He has been through so much, and we had NO idea what he went through while at college and dealing with coming out to his family. I have no possible idea what that is like, yet I was able to feel it through this story. I felt his fear, anguish, sadness, guilt and just every single emotion. I cried for him, for feeling like he wasn’t enough or worthy.
Mark, I swear there is no word to describe how I feel about him. He is absolutely the most amazing character; he is warm, forgiving, loving and so so much more. I just felt like he was every single good quality in a person, Jase couldn’t have found a better person. He made me in awe his ability to love and forgive. Even when he and Jase went through all their crap, he just stood by him, strong and he was giving in everyway. He never made Jase question his love for Candace and he loved him so fiercely. Mark showed Jase that he was deserving of love regardless of being gay, it was such a beautiful love they shared! I hope that every single person has a Mark in his or her lives.
Freeing had so many difficult subject matters to tackle. People judge and hate what they don’t’ understand. Prejudice and preconceived beliefs often cloud a persons ability to see love and beauty. I personally know people who have gone through this in their own lives, and I can not imagine how they would have felt if they were Jase. I hope no one ever feels that way!! No matter what we are all people and are deserving of love and I felt like E.K Blair showed just that. I read a story about love, pain, fear, acceptance, and the reality of life and love.
“I need you to be mad.”
Taking a step toward me, he asks, “Why?”
I walk over and sit on the arm of the chair before admitting, “Because I need to feel it. So that I know that you can see this for what it is.”
“And what’s that?”
“Imperfect. Unequal.” Dropping my head, I release a deep breath before looking back up at him. “I’m undeserving and selfish. You’re worth so much more than what I’m capable of giving you.”
He moves to stand in front of me and takes my face in his hands as he questions me intently. “You don’t think you give me what I need? You think I’d stick around if you didn’t fill up pieces inside of me that only you’ve been able to?”
As he moves his hands to my shoulders, I drop my eyes when I tell him, “My pieces feel stripped bare.” I catch his eyes when I look back up and tell him, “I’m not sure I even have enough of them.”
“Maybe I have what you’re missing. But if you keep holding back, you’ll never find out. You’ll never know how well we can fit together unless you try.” I grip his shirt in my hands, almost pained by my confessions when he affirms, “I need you to try.”
“So that’s it?”