All Your Perfects: A Novel
OUR LATEST BUDDY-READ and OMG that was one of the BEST starts to a book I’ve read in ages. Hooked me from the very first page, and I was absolutely blown away by the circumstance that brought these two main characters together. With that kind of intro, I couldn’t wait to read their story (and I was delightfully scared, ’cause I know Colleen can go there).
Maryse: OMG I AM HOOKED ALREADY. This is going to be an AWESOME read.
Amy: One chapter into All Your Perfects and now I have to take some Z-Quil or else I’ll stay up all night reading it. Especially after that first chapter. ESPECIALLY after the first few lines of the second chapter. *silently begs CH to do some healing after the bruising*
Tasha: I’m at like 25% into AYP. I’m loving it. It’s scary how relatable it is.
Maryse: Ohhhhh for crying out loud!!! I can’t stop highlighting EVERYTHING in “All Your Perfects”. This paper book will be loaded in little fluorescent flags.
Amy: I already decided…I’m staying up tonight and reading AYP until I can’t keep my eyes open anymore. That’s how much I’m loving it. Gotta love a mid-week day off.
Leslie M: I am really scared now because I am only 34% in AYP and it’s already stressing me out!! If Amy is loving it, I need to be very afraid. I almost wish it was just the “thens” and no “nows”.
Jean: Leslie, I can’t believe you are reading AYP! Don’t you usually steer clear of tearjerkers?
Leslie M: Jean, AYP made me cry…quite a few times actually…but its not the same sad as like Behind the Bars or even Full Tilt. (if that makes sense) I like marital problem type books and its CoHo so I had to try it. Although nothing will beat Slammed & It Ends With Us.
Michele G: Girls I’m with you! I could have had a book full of “thens” with no “nows”…AYP is giving my poor heart an emotional workout. I’m a little over 70%…and holding my breath to see what comes next. I may be a bit too invested in these characters…but they are so relatable.
It was angsty, it was loving, it was beautiful and it was at times, so sad. Told via a past and present narrative, we lived through their crazy-in-love beginning, with all the hope in the world for their future together, to the present and the very essence of what was now tearing them apart.
I felt it through and through. Their elation. Their devastation, and there was a part… a reveal, that had my blood running cold.
Maryse: My blood just ran cold…
Tasha: Uh oh, Maryse!
bev: Why is Maryse’s blood running cold? Is it a scary book?
Tasha: Yes, it’s a scary book. I’m scared to see where it goes. Because I love them in the ‘then’ and the ‘now’ is not marital bliss. It’s hard in any marriage, but they have a huge additional stress as a couple that is so painful, you know it’s tearing them apart in more ways than one. But Maybe!! I have hope. *bites nails* I’m just about to 40%
R: It’s taking everything I have to keep from smashing my phone. How are you Amy? I’m hurting. And I’m mad that I’m hurting because I don’t understand why I’m hurting. Super annoying. Waving the white flag and walking away. At least for tonight.
Amy: LOL!! That IS how I feel when I get to those parts! I’m doing good here, R…totally in my element. My heartache-enjoying element, but my element all the same.
Tasha: Well [email protected]&$ me. I just hit the **% mark.
Maryse: *evil grin* RIGHT?????? TASHA!!!!!!!!!!!???
Leslie M: *bites nails in anticipation of what awaits me @ **%*
Cheryl: At **%. WTF!! Ok, I get that she’s not been a loving wife, BUT… *opening bottle of wine*
Amy: Oh f&%k. I can’t, guys. I just can’t. I might be done.
R: I said that last night. Keep going just a little bit longer and then decide. Even so, I didn’t totally understand all the things until much closer to the end. …You can message or email me if you want to be sure.
Cheryl: Amy, keep going just a little more. I stayed up late and finished. R. you’re right I didn’t understand everything until close to the end. I will say even though my tummy was in twisty knots, it’s the first book in a while that I didn’t want to put down and gave me the “good” feels. Also, read the book club questions at the end; number 12 is one whose significance I missed when I reading the epilogue. Overall, like I said I really liked the book, but maybe it was resolved too quickly.
Leslie M: Seriously….this stupid book is making me a blubbering mess and I am only at 80%
Amy: Okay, I finished it. Exquisite and emotion-filled writing as always but…well, you guys who have read it know what changed things for me.
On the plus side, I loved the cameo and I finally feel some closure regarding THAT event, heartbreaking as it was. I would still recommend it to anyone who wants an emotional and relatable read.
So what’s it about?
Quinn and Graham meet under very unusual circumstances (my jaw dropped during this whole scene!!) and forge a bond, on the spot.
He laughs and then I laugh and it’s the strangest thing. Laughing when I should be crying. Why am I not crying?
A deep connection ties them together, and they soon fall head-over-heels in love in no time. It’s insta-love, sure, but I believed it. The WAY it developed… THIS happens. And Graham is so sure of their future and their forever happiness, and he doesn’t play games. He knows what he wants, and they truly are the epitome of the perfect couple. Supportive, trusting, loving. In love. Everything we hope marriage will be.
But as they try and try to have children, Quinn begins to despair. Their inability to conceive is due to her own infertility which eventually leads her on a downward spiral.
But inside, I am not at all attractive. I am not eternally appealing by Mother Nature’s standards, because I do not have a working reproductive system. Reproduction is why we exist, after all.
Reproduction is required to complete the circle of life. We are born, we reproduce, we raise our offspring, we die, our offspring reproduce, they raise their offspring, they die. Generation after generation of birth, life, and death. A beautiful circle not meant to be broken.
Yet… I am the break.
I was born. That’s all I am able to do until I die. I’m standing on the outside of the circle of life, watching the world spin while I am at a standstill.
And because he is married to me… Graham is at a standstill.
Depression, despair each month when she realizes it still hasn’t happened, fertility treatments, anything and everything, until finally, she slowly begins shutting down, and shutting Graham out completely.
The one question I’ve been waiting for him to ask me for awhile now.
And what do I do?
The moments that follow my shrug are probably why it’s taken him so long to as the question in the first place. It’s the moment i felt his heart come to a halt, the moment he presses his lips into my hair and sighs a breath he’ll never get back, the moment he realizes he has both arms wrapped around me but he still isn’t holding me. He hasn’t been able to hold me for a while now. It’s hard to hold on to someone who has long since slipped away.
And this story is all of that, explored.
Cheryl: I can certainly relate to Quinn in AYP. Infertility takes over your brain. Have to say my hubby was a lot like Graham too- quietly supportive. At least like Graham so far at 30%. Not sure where this is going to end up. It’s an emotional train wreck.
You’ll be hurting with them as they struggle to find their ground again, mistakes made from both sides (the anger, the guilt, the self-blame… ohhhhhh but I could totally understand). Yet when it comes to true love… and Colleen Hoover’s gorgeous storytelling, you can trust that your heart will be soaring. Mine was.
I asked, “What’s the secret to such a perfect marriage?”
The old man leaned forward and looked at me very seriously. “Our marriage hasn’t been perfect. No marriage is perfect. There were times when she gave up on us. There were even more times when I gave up on us. The secret to our longevity is that we never gave up at the same time.”
This love story is magical. I want it. 😉