Friday, August 16, 2013

[Review & Giveaway] A Taylor-Made Life

“A Taylor-Made Life”
A Contemporary New Adult with strong romantic elements
By: Kary Rader

-The Making of A Taylor-Made Life-

Five years ago while I was pregnant with my youngest child, my husband was diagnosed with Stage IV melanoma cancer. It was a difficult and emotional time in our lives. He’s now well and cancer free, but last year when a friend's daughter was diagnosed with cancer, all those emotions came flooding back. A Taylor-Made Life is the result of those emotions. It's a special story looking for a home in the hearts of readers. I pray you give the characters an opportunity to touch you.

“A Taylor-Made Life is one of the best books I've read this year and it's not one I'll soon forget... Taylor and Gavin stole my heart and my breath, and I wasn't ready to let them go.” – Nikki Barrett, Storm Goddess Book Reviews

"Beautifully written, and I would dare anyone not to cry..... Gavin and Taylor have such depth and emotion, it's hard not to fall in love with them. These two characters will remain in my memory forever." – Melissa Limoges, Insert Clever Quip Here Book Reviews

“Kary Rader is a wonderful new voice in New Adult fiction. Taylor-Made is a must-read.”– Jill Limber, author and editor, Boroughs Publishing Group


Cheerleader Taylor Smith doesn’t want to die a virgin. Unfortunately, if the terminally-ill leukemia patient doesn't find a lover or a stem-cell match within months, her fear will become reality. When her cancer mentor is revealed to be a hottie entrepreneur from California, it seems fate might finally be on her side. 

Tech-geek Gavin Taylor has everything he ever wanted, except someone to grieve for him when he's gone. With his melanoma cancer beyond the help of his riches, he agrees to participate in a cancer patient mentoring program where he's matched with a dying teen from Texas. Despite his immediate attraction, the Silicon Valley whiz intends only to provide friendship and happy memories to the beautiful, young woman who is determined to win his love.

When it's discovered that his frozen sperm and her harvested eggs could lead to a cure, Taylor's mother offers to be a surrogate. And Gavin must decide if he can risk the heart he has never given and a child he'll never know to a girl he just met. They lived the life they were given; they loved the life they made.

This review has taken me quite a while to write. I must admit, this was my first ever book dealing with cancer. Cancer is one of the hardest things for me to deal with. I talked with the author and decided that this book would be a start for me. I started reading this novel knowing what to expect. I expected the anguish and heartache along with the severe pain of the memories it would bring back to me. I honestly think this was one of the most eye-opening reads that I’ve ever read. I can’t think about this book without a pain in my chest. I loved A Taylor-Made Life, but I also hated it. I hated the truth behind it. I hated that this is really what people go through.  I don’t think I’ve ever ugly sobbed so hard over a book before this, and I’m glad it happened.

It’s taken me a while to mull through my emotions about this book. There was so many things about it that I loved. The characters were charming and pure. The bravery that each character went through was simply astonishing.  Not only do the main characters go through some very intense moments, but you get to feel how the rest of the characters feel. What it’s like to have cancer, and what it’s like to care for someone with cancer. In my opinion, both are equally just as difficult. No matter who is fighting, there is still a fight to be won.  I seriously loved the slow build between Taylor and Gavin.  The intensity between them was real and palpable.

Kary Rader has told such a beautiful story. Well written and very fluid, she has definitely left a huge impression on me. No one’s words have made me weep the way that you have. I could not stop crying. I’m not kidding. A Taylor-Made Life WILL make you cry. I don’t care who you are… you will shed a tear. All I wanted to do was take the pain away from the characters. To change the inevitable outcome that I kept hoping wouldn’t come to fruition.  I thought just maybe… Maybe. But like real life, happily ever afters don’t always come the way you’d like them to.

This book was almost like a spiritual cleansing for me. I cried out all the bad toxins in my soul. Although I still feel pain for my personal losses with cancer, this novel has reiterated that life will go on. Not everything will be with you forever. Kary has definitely shone new light on the old saying that “everything happens for a reason”. I’ve always believed in it, but this just further pushed me into that belief. The night I finished this novel… Kary - I cried for you, I cried for me, I cried for everyone who has lost someone. Now, even through the throb that I still get in my chest when I think of this novel… I smile. There is now peace in the gaping hole of emotions that I hadn’t dealt with. I feel as if a handsome weight has been lifted off my chest. Thank you for that. 

If you read this, make sure you have tissues. This really will rip your heart out, but in a good way.

Kary Rader is a part-time Twitter sage, stay-at-home mother of three, and slave to the characters and worlds inside her head. Always creative, she's drawn to stories with fantastical worlds and creatures. With a little bit of magic and divine guidance, there isn't anything that can't be accomplished with words. It's the power of words that creates and destroys. Vanquishing evil and injustice while finding eternal love in the process is all in a day's work. With the help of her critique partners and master cartographer imaginary places come to life.

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