Review: Lily’s Story – Books 1 and 2 by O.C. Shaw

Do you ever have conversations with people where they remark how they seem to have blinked and an hour has flown by, or a week, or a year? This morning I have been having one of those moments, except that I find myself standing in front of my mirror at home, looking at my reflection and realising that somehow eighteen years have gone by. And I can’t for the life of me really tell you much about it – what I was doing, what I achieved, what the hell happened. Caught in an unhappy marriage to a controlling man, who has become increasingly resentful about the hand life has dealt him, Lily Lambert has been forced to manage both the home and income for their family over the last nineteen years. At 37 Lily finds herself approaching middle age, lacking in confidence and unhappy with her life. Determined to finally do something about it, she decides to get healthy. At the gym, she meets a new group of friends — including a man with bright blue eyes and killer abs — who opens her eyes to what she has been missing. In the end Lily faces choices, but all choices have consequences, and Lily learns that some come at a higher cost than others. What goes around comes around is an adult contemporary romance, part 1 of a 2 book series that concludes the story with Full Circle, and is recommended for readers aged 18+

Do you ever have conversations with people where they remark how they seem to have blinked and an hour has flown by, or a week, or a year? This morning I have been having one of those moments, except that I find myself standing in front of my mirror at home, looking at my reflection and realising that somehow eighteen years have gone by. And I can’t for the life of me really tell you much about it – what I was doing, what I achieved, what the hell happened.
Caught in an unhappy marriage to a controlling man, who has become increasingly resentful about the hand life has dealt him, Lily Lambert has been forced to manage both the home and income for their family over the last nineteen years.
At 37 Lily finds herself approaching middle age, lacking in confidence and unhappy with her life. Determined to finally do something about it, she decides to get healthy. At the gym, she meets a new group of friends — including a man with bright blue eyes and killer abs — who opens her eyes to what she has been missing. In the end Lily faces choices, but all choices have consequences, and Lily learns that some come at a higher cost than others.
What goes around comes around is an adult contemporary romance, part 1 of a 2 book series that concludes the story with Full Circle, and is recommended for readers aged 18+

What goes around comes around by O.C. Shaw

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lily Lambert after 19 years married to a man who took away her sense of self has decided she wants a change now that her two twin boys are college age. She has no idea that what starts out with her just joining a gym to finally work on losing the weight her husband has always made fun of her for will result in causing such traumatic and heartbreaking effects on the herself. The title to this book says it all.

This is not an easy book to get through. You are rooting for Lily in the beginning to make those positive changes. You can see her marriage has been a sham and she deservers so much better. And at first she does start to get those things. The secondary characters are wonderful in both books. Her best friend is happy for her finally seeing that she’s been married to a controlling man that killed her self esteem. She meets wonderful friends at the gym and even a man who makes her feel like no other. When she starts this journey she didn’t set out to fall in love and break her marriage vows. Even though she deserves to be happy she didn’t take the path to get there she should have and karma comes around and causes devastation.

The end of this book is not a happy ending. But this is only Part 1 of Lily’s story. Even though its painful to read and the cheating a big trigger for many in romance world, the 2nd part of Lily’s story in Full Circle was so powerful and rewarding to read you understand that the first part had to happen to get to the second part.

Both books in this series should be read back to back to get the Full Circle effect (pun intended)

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Admittedly, misery is a somewhat extreme dieting technique, and everything I read assures me I am likely to puff up like a blood-bloated tick the second I start eating normally again, but hey, I’m willing to take my pleasure where I can find it. Still emotionally reeling from the cluster bomb fate decided to throw at her love life, Lily is finally shown a lifeline when her book is accepted for publication.  Cast into an unfamiliar world following the novel’s success, Lily knows she has almost everything she could ever want – except love. Why can’t I move on, Annie?  Still haunted by dreams of her abusive husband and her dishonest lover, Lily longs to move forward and learn to love and trust again, but karma still has some surprises in store. Karma’s a bitch, and you can expect at some point she will come back to bite you. As her old life blends with new, Lily faces yet more choices in her quest to find her happy-ever-after. Full Circle concludes Lily's Story, which started in What goes around comes around, and is recommended for readers aged 18+

Admittedly, misery is a somewhat extreme dieting technique, and everything I read assures me I am likely to puff up like a blood-bloated tick the second I start eating normally again, but hey, I’m willing to take my pleasure where I can find it.
Still emotionally reeling from the cluster bomb fate decided to throw at her love life, Lily is finally shown a lifeline when her book is accepted for publication.
Cast into an unfamiliar world following the novel’s success, Lily knows she has almost everything she could ever want – except love.
Why can’t I move on, Annie?
Still haunted by dreams of her abusive husband and her dishonest lover, Lily longs to move forward and learn to love and trust again, but karma still has some surprises in store.
Karma’s a bitch, and you can expect at some point she will come back to bite you.
As her old life blends with new, Lily faces yet more choices in her quest to find her happy-ever-after.
Full Circle concludes Lily’s Story, which started in What goes around comes around, and is recommended for readers aged 18+

Full Circle by O.C. Shaw

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lily Lambert paid for her mistakes in Book 1, some in more tragic ways than others. In this second book she finally starts to get the good that she deserves.

After being devastated Lily decides to write the book she’s always wanted to write now that she is free of the chains her marriage and lost the other man she thought was her soul mate. That book ends up being a best seller and starts her on a new journey that takes her places she never imagined but she is still hurting over the love she had for a man who lied to her but yet still holds her heart. With the huge success of the first book and everyone awaiting the second the book get picked to be made into a major motion picture which moves the story from the UK to the USA for a big chunk of the book when Lily is asked to co-write with the screenplay writer for the film. The author does a great job of showing us the good and bad of Hollywood.

As with the first book the secondary characters shine brightly in this book. Lily’s two best friends are the type every woman wishes they had. They have supported her whole heartedly through thick and thin.

The author makes you feel through the words written. You not only feel all the pain Lily goes through but also those of the secondary characters and of James once he comes back into Lily’s life halfway through this book. You also as a mother ache for her over the emotional distance that was put between her and her children due to the circumstances from the first book. It was so rewarding to see her two boys finally see what their father really was and to come to realize their mother had been a victim for 19 years.

The whole journey through this book you FEEL. You feel Lily’s pain and happiness at her success and her love for her friends who stand by her and you feel for the new man introduced into her life who is a good man but one Lily cannot feel anything for because of the one she is still in love with. Once all of the characters converge when James comes back into Lily’s life and we finally get to find out what really happened at the end of the first book their common love for Lily was so heartfelt you were rooting for that happy ending.

There is a happy ending at the end of this book. There are some more suspenseful things that happen before we get that but after the devastation of the first book we the reader are finally rewarded with what I think is a very satisfying ending.

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