ARC Review “Hope for Her” by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle

Hope for Her

Hope Series

by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle



Published Oct 1, 2014
Series | 289 pages | College – Romance -Sports – Multicultural & Interracial
by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle




(adapted from goodreads)

No one ever expected much from him.

Joshua Elijah Griffin, IV is on his last chance. A stint in rehab and a transfer to a new school has scared him into putting his life on track. He’s determined to live up to his family’s expectations, but on the first day of class, Josh meets a girl, and he knows his father won’t approve, but in Carrington, he sees a kindred spirit. He’s willing to give up everything to be with her.

No one ever thought she was special.

Carrington Olivia Butler is ready to shine. Always in the shadows of her siblings, she goes away to college to break out of her shell. All Carrington wants is to feel special. Josh’s attention is exactly what she craves, but their intense and sometimes volatile relationship is more than what she bargained for.

Josh’s demons return, and Carrington’s feelings fade, but both aren’t ready to give up hope. They give their love one last shot to survive, but hope, may not be enough.

**This book contains adult subject matter. Not intended for young readers.**


“I was provided by the author with a copy of this book so I could give an honest review.”

The best part of being a reviewer is that I’ve always taken by surprise from the unexpected stories I have the honor to read. To speak honestly, I rarely read the synopsis of the books I receive, almost never. It’s a thing I want to keep invariably, only with the books I have for reviewing, so I’ll always have to welcome the first feeling of what is going to happen at the duration of the story until the end of it. Of course there are specific genres I love to read, which all have the same kind of narration…somehow! Of course I’m helpless romantic and love happy endings, which is almost impossible not to find in these books! But the unexpected is, what makes a story a success and, is what I love most to find inside each book I read.

” In my eighteen years of wishing and hoping to become someone’s something, I never thought about what it would be like being someone’s everything” ~Carrington Olivia Butler

Hope for Her is what I called an unexpected story! Even the title couldn’t prepare me about what is going to happen or how or why or when so I can understand where the word “Hope for” stands for. Maybe, as a reader, I wanted to be clueless about what would happen, not to try to observe better the signs but to let the story takes me with it, safe to live the experience of unexpected. Maybe!!

So here we are, at the Florida State University, watching two freshman college students, try to normalize their new lives into the maze of colleagues and their own indepentency. Both have their personal demons, their own anchors which keep them apart and far away of being as same as the other students. However, these are what makes them be so much more special than the others. Coming from two opposite worlds, Joshua Elijah Griffin and Carrington Olivia Butler found a connection to link their lives together and be a couple, despite their differenses. Their journey together starts with the welcome jolt of romance, a man and a woman always have, when they first met. It was majorly sweet to watch them interact, trying to earn the attention and then, the approval of the other. After all, is a story about college students; but still, nothing is the same.

“…The habit of self-loathing and fear of not measuring up was much worse…” ~Joshua Elijah Griffin IV

Hope for Her is a story, which includes both heroes personal stories. This way, thoughts and feelings, help the reader a lot to unfold what is going on inside these special creatures, both Joshua and Carrington are. The narration begins with Joshua’s first day at the PKP fraternity house of Florida’s State University; a university his family went there and graduated, for generations. Coming from a very wealthy and well known family in Florida, Joshua is the quite opposite his family, and most specific his father, wanted to be. Sensitive and vain inside, Joshua was living a life between the need for his father acceptance and the need to be his own self. Last year he screwed up his life and family name. He became small in the eyes of his father, again. Now he has a second chance to do it right and be a true Griffin, proud of his name and family history. Unfortunately, it became difficult to achieve it, when he wanted Carrington in his life as badly as he wanted his father love.

“I wanted to go someplace where no one knew me…” ~Carrington

I loved Carrington! She’s the type of girl that doesn’t easily fits with others, but she is easy going, not wanted to make someone unhappy and she needs the space to be alone with herself. I can totally understand her!! Both lonely and imperious, Carrington craves to control her life as she pleased. Feeling incongruous in her own family, she decided to go far away from home and takes her law degree at the Florida State University, living the adventurous life, any collage student has the privilege to experience. No strings attached, no romances, no self-loathing again, only the freedom to enjoy freedom. Beautiful, with exotic chocolate skin, Carrington acknowledged the interesting two handsome colleagues had for her and felt special. She wanted to explore the unknown. When Joshua told her that he wanted to be her boyfriend, straight forward and clear, it was the first step into this exploration and Carrington took the chance without second thinking. But, when she saw red flags at Joshua’s actions everything changed and everything stayed the same.

“I wanted her, and I wanted a taste – one of my addictions compined with my new obsession in one gorgeous package.” ~Joshua

Singling out specific words from this line, you could easily understand the depth of Joshua’s problem and which way he is dealing with it. He is a former drug and alcohol addict, a result of the lack to control his life as he wanted to and, the unsolved issues he has with his father. The package he is carring is big but, nonetheless, he doesn’t share it with Carrington. He believed that, she had the power to change him, to keep him on track and be the free man he always craved to be, without her knowing this little detail. If she knew, she would leave him and it wasn’t something Joshua could endure without slide into his past addiction. Yes, his love for Carrington was undeniable deep and majorly intense but the ups and downs on his mood wheren’t helping much his side either. With any encounter he had with his father, Joshua was again being in control of his self-loathing, a moving time bomb ready to destroy what’s important for him. His relationship with Carrington.

“Carrington had all the power to crush me or make me the happiest man in the world….It scared me to give someone that kind of power…I wanted to tell her to be careful with me.” ~Joshua

Hope for Her isn’t the classic novel of some college students having an affair. It’s more of that, I can tell!!! Without putting the color difference and what problems might caused, both heroes have their own issues to confront and these issues are what this story is all about. What I saw, was two vulnerable souls, each one for different reasons but with the same effect, the need to be loved and accepted by their families.
At the duration of the story, these issues were unfolded infront of my eyes occasionally. Seeing the depths of loneliness and worthlessness a young man was having in the most productive moment of his life was riveting. Joshua’s story, just like Carrington’s, was so honed to precision that was so easy to understand why he acted the way he did or why he truly craved a life with Carrington despite the young of their age. She was his soulmate, the kind heart who can understand him, be connected with him, had the strength to control his inner demons and keeps them at bay…almost. As I said above, Joshua craved two different things and the one of these two things had more control of his life than the other. What is going to happen when he let himself be under control again? The ultimate disaster!!

” I felt empty, manipulated, and stupid. I confused passion with obsession and control. All of it compined, in hindsight, made the ending pretty predictable.” ~Carrington

That’s it!!! I think I wrote a very confusing review this time. I understand that I haven’t say much about Carrington, maybe too little, but I literally wanted all of you to find out alone, what was her journey inside the story. It is, honestly, a breathtaking journey, with a corrage that leaps off the pages even when she didn’t believe she had it. Yes, the chemistry between them was very intensed but, I would never expect less of it, I would never expect it differently. The vehemence this story had on me is indescribable!

The way Sydney Aaliyah Michelle narrates Hope for Her, shows a very well versed author in the genres of romance books, with a fair amount of suspence and the sensitivity of a hot topic, like drugs and alcohol addictions, included violence. She truly cares about her heroes, a feeling that’s clearly appears through out the story, presented them with tenter and compassion, showing every aspect of what a broken soul can do.

I loved that it was a page turning book, with every scene, every inside thought, had used the perfect amount of time, not to stall what was coming next; and of course, that once again, but not very offen, I read a fully consuming novel that gave me a true ache inside. Thank you so much Sydney for the honor you gave me to read this beautiful story of yours. Joshua and Carrington would always be in my heart for now on.

And for all of you who I help or don’t help with this terrible review, Hope for Her has a second and a third book ready to be read as well. So, don’t wait long, grab your own copy, dive at your special spot and start reading them.

An insatiable joy while reading a good book…

Detailed rating:

Book rates: 5 stars
  • Plot:5 stars
  • Characters: 5 stars
  • Writing:5 stars
  • Pacing: 5 stars
  • Cover: 5+ stars

 More from Hope Series by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle

Hope For Him #2


What do you HOPE for, now?

Carrington Olivia Butler‘s last relationship ended in tragedy, but she remains hopeful about love. She believes its a matter of being with the right person and she is ready to pursue the man who was right from the beginning. He saved her life, he helped her get over her past. He is the man she is supposed to be with. Unfortunately, when she returns to school, she discovers, he has moved on.

Jackson Latre Mitchell needed to move on. It took him a long time to get over the guilt of falling for his best friends girl. With football his priority and a six foot blond in his bed, life is back to normal, but for how long. When Carrington shows up on campus, it takes one smile to remind his heart how much he has always wanted her. After an epic kiss, he knows his life will never be normal, again.

Can Carrington and Jackson find their way back to each other or will their past continue to tear them apart?

**This book contains adult subject matter. Not intended for young readers.**

“This was one big emotional roller coaster.”Tunerchic
This book kept me interested from beginning to end.”Afeni
I couldn’t put this book down, and I found myself engrossed in the story so much that chunks of my time just disappeared.”E.R.
Hope For Us #3

What do you HOPE for, still?

Carrington Olivia Butler spent the last few years taking care of her son all by herself …with a little help from ex-boyfriends trust fund, but her past haunts her around every corner. Carrington hopes a move to Arizona will giver her some much-needed distance from her past.

Jackson Latre Mitchell has spent four years in the NFL, but he is one mediocre season away from being a bust. Jackson hopes a trade to Arizona will turn his career around … as long as he can avoid distractions.

Carrington and Jackson are back together again. Will their newfound ambition, continue to push them apart or will they discover, they have no hope without each other?

**This book contains adult subject matter. Not intended for young readers.**

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