Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published by: Author on December 16, 2012
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War has taken everything from me. My family. My home. My innocence. In a country blasted by war and wracked by economic hardship, a young orphan girl like me has very few options when it comes to survival. Thus, I do what I must to live, to eat, and I try very hard to not consider the cost to my soul. My heart is empty, and my existence brutal.
The one impossibility in my life is love.
And then I meet HIM.
War is hell. It takes a chunk out of a man's very soul to do the kinds of things war demands of you. You live with fear, you live with guilt, and you live with nightmares. If you haven't been through it, there's no understanding it. War leaves no room for love, no room for tenderness or softness. You gotta be hard, closed off, and ready to fight every moment of every day. Lose focus for a split second, and you're dead.
Now the only thing that can save me is HER.
Two beautifully broken characters I couldn’t get enough of!
WOUNDED is an unexpected emotional story that left me a total mess. It takes place in Iraq during Desert Storm and introduces us to two very different characters, Rania and Hunter. After her family is killed and her younger brother enlists in the Iraqi Army, Rania has resorted to prostitution in order to survive in a country devastated by war. Hunter is and American soldier on his last tour when his team is caught in a bloody battle and he is wounded. A witness to the carnage, Raina puts all her prejudices aside and saves the wounded Hunter. With no way to communicate with each other, these two souls are bound together by their scars, finding a safe haven among all the tragedy around them.
War is never a good thing and Ms. Wilder’s depiction is intense, she doesn’t sugar coat anything which makes for a “not for the fain of heart” story. Rania and Hunter come from two very different worlds but relate to each other despite the language barrier between them. The comfort and peace they find in each other gives them hope. Rania has lost herself in an alter ego named Sabah in order to bed her clients, but in Hunter she sees a good man who is kind, patient and has been the only man that treats her as a human being and not an object. I was surprised by how Hunter never judged Rania for being a prostitute and how he protected her, he never sought to take advantage of her like some men would given the circumstances. He’s a stand up guy who I couldn’t help but falling for, Hunter is the best of both worlds, he’s an alpha when he needs to be and there’s also a tender side to him.
“Her beauty has captured me, imprisoned my capacity for language. All I can do is pay homage to the temple of her body.”
While Rania isn’t your typical strong, kick ass heroine, she definitely is in my book! Her story tugged on my heart strings and the perseverance she has combined with her strength, make her one of the strongest protagonists I’ve read in a while. Their romance developed over time and with sex out of the equation, you really get to see Rania and Hunter learn to trust one another and establish a solid foundation. That’s not to say there isn’t any smexiness between Rania and Hunter, there are plenty of those moments and I thought the author handled their loves scenes beautifully.
“They took him, although he loved me, and would have made me his. I wanted to be his. Someone’s. Anyone’s.”
WOUNDED is unlike any book I’ve ever read and touched on some dark topics, but I found myself captive to Ms. Wilder’s exceptional writing. The dual POV of the main characters was a little hard for me to get used to in the first few chapters but it was well executed. The ending felt a bit rushed and the HEA was too perfect for me, but I wanted a HEA for this couple so bad after everything they experienced that I didn’t really mind. If I could sum up this book with a song it would have to be Rihanna’s We Found Love, the lyrics “we found love in a hopeless place” resonate with Rania and Hunter’s love story flawlessly! Jasinda Wilder delivers a heart wrenching, passionate love story that stems from loss and blooms with hope.