Pulse by Gail McHugh
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: July 9th 2013
How do you keep existing when your heart is so splintered, so completely torn to shreds, your pulse is fading?
You’re…broken. How do ou move forward when every breath is nothing more than a constant ache? Living becomes and insidious reminder that you threw away the single largest part of yourself. Your…soul. No amount of distraction can pull you from the torture of losing your…life.
Now that Emily Cooper has walked away from her first love, she finds herself running toward her only love. Unraveling fast, bust clinging to hope, Emily risks all she has left on the man that has consumed her every thought and dream since the day they met. Will Gavin take her back? And if so, will their reunion be a collision of two hearts destined to complete one another and rekindle a love that knew no boundaries? Or will scars from their past rip open, tearing slowly at what each of them was meant to be? Can fate, the ultimate game changer, mend the shattered road it laid out from the start?
Only time will tell…
What Karen thought…
Pulse is the follow up to author Gail McHugh’s debut novel Collide. In Collide I absolutely fell in love with everything about Gavin Blake: his wiseass attitude, his humor, his looks, and his sexiness – everything! I adored almost everything about Collide, so to say my expectations were high with the sequel, Pulse, is an understatement.
Pulse picks up where Collide ended and continues the story of Emily, Gavin and Dillon. I found that Pulse was not what I expected, which had its pros and cons. So, I’ll try to spell those out for you by way of my review.
McHugh’s writing in Pulse was almost poetic and it was very descriptive. She painted vivid images with the brush of her words. The writing was smooth and flowed well, albeit the pace felt a little slower. In this follow up novel I felt that the angst was toned down quite a bit. Keep in mind I love angst to the point where I fear my heart will burst. While the first book kept me on the edge of my seat and flying through the pages, this second installment was milder and tamer to me. There was angst and when it was there it was good, but it was a small part of the book. I needed more. Although the words were written beautifully, I felt most of it was a bit fluffy. Just when a scene would start showing potential to get interesting with some drama worth salivating over it became flowery. The sex scenes were written great and were packed with lots of steam. Gavin Blake sure knows his way around. I liked the story within the story where the author spoke of domestic abuse. I felt this part of the story was poignant. It felt personal and put these abusive relationships in perspective.
The characters in Pulse were still the same crew from Collide. Gavin Blake. Need I say more? He is still, in my mind, one of the hottest guys in fiction. I love his humor, his sexiness, his dialogue. I love him. Although in this book I didn’t have as strong of a response to the characters. I didn’t feel as strong of a connection with them. Emily was crying. A lot. Dillon was still a dirt bag, but even that was toned down. Olivia, Fallon and Trevor were present throughout the pages but were toned down and almost inconsequential. Olivia still has a smart mouth on her and still shows her talent for nicknames.
Without giving any spoilers, I wasn’t thrilled with the direction the story went. Where it had shown potential for giving me more of that which I love about books, I ended up feeling disappointed. This is not at all to say that I didn’t really enjoy Pulse. I just felt that my own expectations led me to the mild disappointment that I felt rather than the story entirely itself. I can only imagine how difficult it is to follow up such a fantastic first novel with equal greatness. In this respect, McHugh was only slightly off the mark, for me.
Overall, Pulse was a great read. I still find these to be some of my favorite characters. The writing was beautiful, but the story wasn’t as strong. I don’t think I was disappointed as much as left wanting more. I still think Gail McHugh did a great job, and this is definitely a book to pick up! The sexiness and hotness that is Gavin Blake is alone worth it! Give it a try! 4.0 Stars Reviewed by Karen
What Kara thought…
Pulse definitely had my pulse racing, and I love that in a book. Keeps you on the edge of your seat and you don’t know what’s going to happen or how things are going to turn out. I fell in love with Gavin and Emily in Collide (which I read while watching the Super Bowl…not even kidding). I hated Dillon and how he controlled Emily in Collide, therefore, I was super stoked when I heard the news through FB that Gail was writing the sequel, Pulse. Pulse picked up right where Collide left off and after a bit of a refresher (for small yet crucial details) I jumped right in to Pulse. Pulse left me with moments of thinking “WTF”, no effing way, awwww, and then so pissed at times that I wanted to throw my Kindle. How Emily needs to be constantly reassured by Gavin is heart-breaking due to her past and what she’s endured. Watching her build her trust with Gavin resulted in me having a perma-smile on my face (my hubby even commented on it). I also found myself highlighting A LOT of these moments because Gavin’s words were so emotional. Honestly, who would not want there significant other to reassure them with words like Gavin’s?, exactly! I was holding my breath at certain points and sighing in relief in others. What a helluva ride and I loved every twist, turn, tunnel, and upside down flips although my stomach didn’t like them at times. I took many chapter breaks because reading Pulse directly after Thief just wasn’t a good idea…a lot to handle, but in the end, it was completely worth it!! Give it a try!! Rating: 4.5 stars Reviewed by Kara
Giveaway: HUGE fantastic giveaway – FIVE prizes: $250 visa gift card, $100 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Giftcard, Kindle Fire and 2 signed sets of Pulse and Collide signed paperbacks with the new covers. Five winners, FIVE fantastic prizes:
About the Author
I’ve always been a lover of writing, but mostly dabbled in creating poetry while raising my three beautiful children. I am grateful my husband of fifteen years has supported me—albeit sometimes kicking and screaming—as I pursue this “hobby” of mine. Without his help, writing would be an impossible endeavor.
In late June 2012, I felt an urgent tug of my pen, and I began writing one of my first novels, Collide. Although I thought it might never see the light of day, it gave me the courage to plunge headfirst onto a path I had never considered before.
Pulse Playlist –