Series: The Panic #1
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Source: ARC, NetGalley
Also in this series: Make Me Stay, Make Me Stay, What About Us
Also by this author: Laid Out (Worth the Fight, #4), Fighting Dirty, Stacked Up, Kiss Marry Kill, Make Me Stay, Make Me Stay, What About Us
Welcome to Panic, a sultry Miami nightclub where bodies and hearts move to a beat that doesn’t stop at sunrise—the setting for an emotionally charged series from the bestselling author of the Worth the Fight novels.
When Katherine Wilson passes out in the arms of the hottest man she’s ever seen, it’s not because of the lights, the pulsating music, or the crowded dance floor. It’s because she can’t enjoy a night out like a normal person, not with her debilitating anxieties. These panic attacks are going to destroy her life unless she takes control—or gets a helping hand. So after the club’s bad-boy owner personally escorts her home, Katherine feels something urgent and primal awaken inside of her.
Nick Moreno doesn’t need a headache like Katherine. A drug bust has put his father behind bars and forced Nick to take over the daily business of his family’s South Beach nightclub. His head tells him to walk away—but his body has other ideas. Katherine’s vulnerability, her grace and courage, compel him to reach out. And when they kiss, Nick is overcome by desire: to pull her close, and promise that his embrace will always be the safest place on earth.
Pull Me Close
Anytime I find a romance novel that includes a character with a mental illness, I immediately want that book. When its by one of my favorite authors, I get down right giddy with excitement to read it. Halston did NOT disappoint with Pull Me Close!
The heroine has PTSD and struggles with agoraphobia and a few other fears. Why she has PTSD is such a moving part of the story and I totally was NOT expecting it. I am not going to spoil it for you because I want everyone to be as moved as I was. Even though her tragic event was many years ago, her illness has gotten worse recently and she had stopped leaving her apartment at all. When she forces herself to go to a night club to celebrate her sister’s upcoming marriage, she has a panic attack. Enter the handsome, cranky, and mistrustful owner, Nico.
You can tell Halston did her research regarding her characters illness. What struck me as even more accurate though was her portrayal of Nico. Everyone who suffers from a mental illness has that person in their life who loves them and wants to ‘help’ them or ‘fix’ them. It comes from a place of love and that person really does have the best intentions, but they simply cannot understand the fear. I thought the relationship between Katherine and Nico was very well written. Nico waffles between pushing her and accommodating her and he gets frustrated just like anyone would when Katherine is unable to do something that seems so simple.
Pull Me Close is one of those books that will stick with me and remind me that I am not alone. My OCD is no where near as bad as Katherine’s PTSD; however, I know that one day, it could be. One day, I could easily stop going outside because of my fears. There are MANY days when I wish I could never leave. Days when leaving actually gives me a headache and stomach pains. I know that while I might be able to say “I’m not as bad as Katherine”, I might not always be able to say that. So, I’m glad Halston has given me a character I can truly, deeply relate to. When you suffer with mental illness, isolation is one of the bigger struggles. Knowing that there are others out there who really do understand and experience that debilitating, irrational fear of something as mundane as leaving your house makes me feel that I’m not so alone.
- POV: Dual
- Tears: yes-Katherine’s mental illness is sad, but her reason for PTSD is VERY sad
- Trope: mental illness
- Triggers: None
- Series/Standalone: Stand alone (although, I think Nico’s brother will get a book next…)
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »Not for the main couple, Nico and Katherine, but there is a bit of a lead in for Mateo’s book « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »While Katherine made huge strides, she is no where near ‘cured’ and there is an epilogue that is a few months into the future. « Hide Spoiler