Swear on This Life by Renee Carlino: Review

Swear on This Life by Renee Carlino: ReviewSwear on This Life by Renee Carlino
Published by Atria Books on August 9, 2016
Genres: Love & Romance

When a bestselling debut novel from mysterious author J.Colby becomes the literary event of the year, Emiline reads it reluctantly. As an adjunct writing instructor at UC San Diego with her own stalled literary career and a bumpy long-term relationship, Emiline isn’t thrilled to celebrate the accomplishments of a young and gifted writer.

Yet from the very first page, Emiline is entranced by the story of Emerson and Jackson, two childhood best friends who fall in love and dream of a better life beyond the long dirt road that winds through their impoverished town in rural Ohio.

That’s because the novel is patterned on Emiline’s own dark and desperate childhood, which means that “J. Colby” must be Jase: the best friend and first love she hasn’t seen in over a decade. Far from being flattered that he wrote the novel from her perspective, Emiline is furious that he co-opted her painful past and took some dramatic creative liberties with the ending.

The only way she can put her mind at ease is to find and confront “J. Colby,” but is she prepared to learn the truth behind the fiction?

Alexis says…

I had some real high expectations for Swear on this Life. You see, Before We Were Strangers was a book I never saw coming. It was something so heartbreaking, beautiful and skyrocketed right up to my top 10 of 2016. So alas, you see where my expectations were, right?!

Swear on This Life was a very unique concept. It was literally a book within a book written in past and present POVs. I don’t think many authors can achieve success when writing a book like this, but Renee Carlino pulled it off perfectly!

In the present, Emiline picks up the new “it” book by J. Colby. While reading it, she realizes that not only is this HER story to tell but it’s also written in a female POV. The only person who could be writing this story is the one boy who stole her heart that many years ago…Jase.

As the story unravels, your heart will break for the awful upbringing that both Jase and Emiline had to endure. I’m not going to lie, their childhoods were just depressing and will hurt. As the reader, you will feel the emotional connection that these two share and what literally keeps them going from day-to-day. That is, until one fateful night that changes their courses and separates them for years.

How the story plays out is for you to find out. Does it mirror what happens in the book?

Like I said above, this story was so different. I didn’t want to put it down and had to keep telling myself not to skip ahead to the end. I so desperately wanted to see what happens to our Jase and Emiline. I am sucker for second-chance romances, and this one is definitely one of my top ones!



About Renee Carlino

Renee’s first friends were the imaginary kind and even though her characters haven’t gone away, thankfully the delusions have. She admits she’s a wildly hopeless romantic and she blames 80’s movies starring Molly Ringwald for that. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two sons, and their sweet dog June. When she’s not at the beach with her boys or working on the next book, she likes to spend her time reading, going to concerts, and eating dark chocolate.