Review: Clash by C.A. Harms

Note: This ARC was provided by Enticing Journey Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Clash is a standalone new adult (NA) romance novel from author C.A. Harms and one that tackles a young woman's years of abuse under her father and a sense of abandonment after he mother upped and left when she was only eleven. Seven years later, Payton Walters knows all she has to do is hold out a little longer, waiting until she graduates so that she can finally go off to college and be free of her father's various forms of abusive behavior. But when the abuse takes a far darker turn, the decision of when to leave is taken away from her, and she's forced to finally reach out for help. Sometimes though, no matter how far one has come to escape the darkness of the past, the truly evil forces find a way to creep back in.

Her mother may have escaped John Walters's abuse, but Payton had to continue living with it for seven more years, with no buffer or shield to protect him from his words and hits. Family to her was the one she found in her best friend's home, and the distraction of her longtime crush on her best friend's brother certainly didn't hurt, even if he would never see her as anything more than another little sister for him to take care of and protect. When things spiral out of control with her father, Payton begins her new life with the Andrews family, but two years later, changes between her and Dylan Andrews are afoot, and he doesn't look at her like a sister anymore. Then the past comes calling and Payton struggles to simply stay afloat.

This was quite a fast-paced story, so there was never an opportunity nor an inkling for boredom to hit me. I liked how Payton evolved from a victim to a survivor, finding support and strength from her best friend's family, the Andrews, to finding a different kind of love from Dylan, and then finding she was stronger than even she thought possible. I did struggle when it came to what her mother did to her because there simply is no excuse for abandoning a child, especially with the knowledge that the person you left her with is abusive. But then Payton's story is not just about surviving; it's also about love, family, and redemption. Parts of her journey to come out on the other side of her struggle with confidence were rather inspiring.

Payton and Dylan's relationship was one that seemed inevitable, but I did like that it was still able to surprise me since Dylan wasn't hiding some sort of secret crush on her just like she was with him. They had their ups and downs and a sticking point was Dylan's fraternity brother Todd, who was a major jerk. It was never really clear why he kept antagonizing Dylan and if what he was doing was actually to just piss Dylan off or if he was after Payton all along. There didn't seem to be any real rhyme or reason and he lacked motivation, so Todd came off as more of an unnecessary distraction that never really had any sort of actual definite resolution by the end of the story. Still, Clash was an overall good read that gets four stars. ♥

Date Read: 20 April 2016

Learn more about C.A. Harms.

Purchase Clash on Amazon.


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