Monday, 11 March 2013

Review: The Space Between by Victoria H. Smith

Title: The Space Between
Author: Victoria H. Smith
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Format: ARC
Source: Review copy from the author

When Drake started the night at his father’s campaign fundraiser, he never imagined he’d end it being conned into buying drugs on the West Side. Losing high-stakes poker has its consequences, but he’d repeatedly face them just to hear Lacey Douglas sing. Drake sees Lacey light up the stage, and he has to have her. But his intentions for being on her side of town turn out to be the reason he can’t.

Chicago native Lacey has dreams of the opera, but life has its obstacles. Lacey has come to know her hardships as part of living in the real world and accepts them fully. When Lacey meets the intense and invigorating Drake, a fire is lit inside her, unleashing those dreams again.

Two paths that should have never crossed prove to create the exact pairing the other needs. But when their worlds take time to catch up, everything they have is tested. Finding the space between the two sides that challenge them will be hard, but it’s the only place that will keep them together.

I'm really loving New Adult at the moment, and The Space Between is no exception. It's a really beautiful story, and it does address quite sensitive issues, like racism for example. I like how Victoria H. Smith has done this - in a subtle but firm way. I fell in love with the characters in this book, and was desperately rooting for them throughout the novel.

Drake is the ultimate rich kid. His dad is the mayor of Illinois, and his family is the most influential one in the state. Everyone knows him, and because of his dad, they fear him. Drake is actually Korean, but he was adopted by a white family and brought to America. It was great to see how much he loves his sister, Adele, even though they're not related by blood. Lacey is from a completely different part of town, and she and Drake are in totally different leagues. But when they finally meet, sparks fly.

I found it funny how Drake decides to go by his last name, instead of Truman, the name given to him by his parents. Though I guess I get it, since calling himself Truman would have earned him a lot of laughs. I liked the fact that Drake isn't a typical bad boy. I've had enough of those! He's sweet and kind, and really protective of Lacey. He does have a habit of betting, but nothing that would get him in trouble. On the night of his dad's campaign fundraiser, though, he falls into some bad company and is sent off to buy himself drugs in the ghetto part of town. And that's where he meets Lacey.

Lacey works in a theatre, and her ultimate dream is to become an actress. She has the voice of an angel, at least, according to Drake. When she gets her big break in a show, thanks to her friend Margot, she realizes just how much she loves being up on the stage. But Lacey has to take care of her sick mother, and needs to get enough money to pay for her treatment. She takes up a job to become an at-home personal assistant to a rich family up at North Shore. Little does she know what she's getting herself into!

Lacey is an incredibly sweet girl, doing everything she can to help her mother. She's of mixed race (half-white and half-black), and therefore feels like she doesn't fit in anywhere. Lacey is smart and tough, and her mental strength is admirable. Even if she's tearing apart on the inside, she'll never let it show on the outside. Plus, I loved the fact that Lacey has some awesome piercings! It's usually the guy who has the piercings, so it was cool to see them on a girl. Lacey has a lip ring, a bellybutton ring, and - get this - nipple rings! Drake is of course fascinated with all of them ;)

The Space Between takes a very interesting turn near the beginning, when Lacey accepts the job to work for a rich family. She and Drake see a lot more of each other, but they can't let it slip that they've met each other before. Lacey learns what life is like for the rich, and Drake learns what it's like to be in the ghetto. Their relationship has a lot of ups and downs, but it's still oh so sexy. There were some incredibly steamy scenes between them that would make your face go all hot!

I also really liked Drake's sister, Adele. She and Drake look out for each other, and she absolutely adores him. I felt sorry for Adele sometimes, since she's fifteen and wants to do everything she can to prove herself to her friends. She has different tastes from them, and some of them only use her to get closer to Drake. But Adele is strong, and even though she's naive, she gets past it. She initially despises Lacey, because she knows she doesn't need a nanny, but Lacey soon makes a place in her heart. They become really close, and I love how Adele looks up to Lacey later on in the novel.

The Space Between really is an amazing story of love and hope, and heartbreak too. I would love to read a companion novel to this book, possibly Adele's story? I can always hope! I loved the plot of this book; there's humour and suspense amidst the sweet romance, and the characters are extremely likeable.

*Thank you to Victoria H. Smith for providing me with an ARC for review*

Rating: 4/5

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