Saturday, May 7, 2016

Christie's review: The Empty Jar by M. Leighton

Title: The Empty Jar
Series: Standalone
Author: M. Leighton
Release date: May 8, 2016
Cliffhanger: No


Three months touring Europe.
Romantic. Dazzling. Unforgettable.
The trip of a lifetime.

But some lifetimes are shorter...

We couldn’t have known it would work out this way.
No one could. No one could’ve guessed that something so beautiful could be so tragic.

But it is tragic.

Yet so, so beautiful.

That’s what sacrifice is—beauty and tragedy.
It’s pain and suffering for something or someone you love.

And this is the ultimate sacrifice.
One stunning act of true love.

This is our story.
Our true love story.

The Empty Jar is being hailed as "The Ultimate Love Story". I think we can all agree that these are some tall words to live up to. Though I was hopeful this would be an unforgettable reading experience, I had my doubts that these words weren't exaggerated. Let me preface this review by saying that this book scared me before starting. Judging by the synopsis and the little I had read about it, it seemed like something that would be a very challenging read. To my peace of mind most of all.

I'm the type of reader that needs a HEA in her books. I'm all about some angst and an emotionally gripping read, but I need some hope and sense of optimism after closing the book. There were no guarantees on that end and I knew I'd be pushing my comfort boundaries. There was a voice inside my head that wouldn't quiet every time I tried to dismiss The Empty Jar. And when my gut tells me that I need to read something, I listen. I'm so glad I did.

This book is not a light book by any means. Not in any form, so if you're looking for something to simply entertain you for a few quiet hours, this will decidedly not be for you. However, if you're looking for something that will deeply affect you to your core and stay with you...well you may want to close your eyes an take the leap. I cannot express to you how this book made me feel, at least not adequately.

There really aren't words for how worthwhile this story is. M. Leighton examines every facet of love, the very nature of it in it's purest form. She shows us a love free of greed or selfishness. It's often painful and debilitating on it's harshest days. It can heal you and ruin you, but how do you see the soaring beauty, or the rewards of the purest love without experiencing the acute lows? I envied this couple their love while at the same time feeling nothing but dread for what they had in store for them.

These two...they were devoted.

They made me ache for them and struggle to endure what they were going through with every page. I wanted to put my arms around them and just make everything whole again, to make their harsh reality disappear in a puff of smoke.

Their story isn't your typical love story and it will open your eyes to a lot of horrific truths that many hope to never have to experience.

However, it went beyond your traditional love story, it was about the heroine's own personal self discoveries and finding her center, her calm in the midst of a frightening storm. It was also an examination of this woman's emotional battle. The most important one of her life. Her bitterness over the tragedies of her past, her loss of her loved ones has made her reject her own spirituality. Until one twist of fate had everything true and solid slipping away unexpectedly in the sands of time. And while the clock started ticking she was given one choice. A choice that would mean learning sacrifice and a new scope of love as she never could have anticipated.

I know I haven't really given anything away about the plot, but I feel like this is one of those books that need to be fully experienced as it was originally intended to reach the impact that she was searching for. Let me assure you, if you're expecting this book to be difficult, severe,'s most certainly all of those things. But it's also one of the most genuine books-there was sincerity dripping from every word. This message is something that's just screaming to be heard.

Many of the struggles we see are a direct result of the author's own personal experiences. And it shows. I've read several of her books, and none of them compare to the incredible highs and lows of this beautifully inspirational story. She wrote this with every ounce of her heart and I have a feeling it will creep into a corner of many reader's minds, settle in, and never leave. This will certainly stay with me for a long, long time to come.


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