RECOMMENDED FOR AGES EIGHTEEN AND UP DUE TO EXPLICIT SEXUAL SITUATIONS, STRONG LANGUAGE, DRUG USE, AND GRAPHIC VIOLENCE.
Twelve years ago, Jolene’s adoptive mother died. Twelve years ago, a man showed up at Jolene’s door and promised to take care of her. Twelve years ago, Jolene was happy. Then it all changed…
Jolene Bergio has spent the last twelve years of her life asking one question… Why? Why was she left in the custody of a man who would sell her each and every night to the highest bidder? After a few years, she shut off, giving up hope that anyone would ever find her. Until her luck changed one night and she escaped.
Twelve years later, she finally feels something she hasn’t felt in a long time… Free.
Scared that her past will find her unexpectedly, she hides away in a rented beach house, trying to distance herself from everyone… Until Dr. Cameron Bowen enters her world and slowly tears down the walls that she has built up over the past twelve years of her captivity. Jolene begins to learn to love again.
And trust again.
But when a man from Jolene’s past emerges, will she be able to keep her identity hidden? When lies are told and hearts are broken, will the truth surface in time to bring Jolene back from the shadows that threaten to expose who she really is?
Heart of Light is a captivating story of love, strength, and survival.
Review by Brittany
One day when Jolene Bergio came home from school, she was met with a man that claimed her father signed his custody over to him. She was excited. This man ran an expensive hotel! She’d be able to live in luxury and have people clean up after her. And that’s what she did. Until her eighteenth birthday.
On her eighteenth birthday, Jolene was ushered into a room, blindfolded. Expecting a birthday party, she was confused when she opened her eyes into a dark, dank room filled with men and cigar smoke. From this moment on, Jolene would be auctioned off almost every night to the highest bidder so they can get their rocks off.
Ten years later, Jolene escaped. She found her way to a small island off the coast of Florida. Every person she ran into, she would cower in fear, afraid that their touch would be one full of harm. Slowly, she let go of that fear, and slowly, she fell in love with a man.
Cameron Bowen can be found at the beach most mornings, surfing the morning waves. He is also a licensed psychiatrist who helps women that were in a similar situation that Jolene was in. All he wants to do is help her, and as he slowly falls for this girl, the broken and scared girl, he vows to always protect her.
Jolene has a secret. She can’t tell anyone or else she’ll be taken back to him. The man that made her who she is today. She lives in fear of someone finding her. She can’t go back to that.
I had heard so much about this book before it was published. TK Leigh posted facts about human trafficking everyday on her Facebook profile and the teasers that were made instantly drew you in. They were dark images, pictures of a girl with mascara running down her face. I had to read it.
I went into this book expecting it to be a lot darker than it was. Because of the promotion that I saw, I expected it to be a story of a girl that is trying to escape her tormentors. Which it was, but not the way I was expecting. So in that sense, I was disappointed.
But the story was absolutely wonderful. I wasn’t disappointed in that sense at all. This is a story of a broken girl being built up to feel safe only to be broken down again. You can’t always trust people…they’re not always who they say they are.
I was invested in this story. It is written that from the very beginning you know you have to finish it. You devour every single word, every single page. You HAVE to know how it ends.
And the ending… get those tissues ready. I was bawling my eyes out, screaming “NO!” over and over again. But then you’re blindsided. You read the next bit and you’re like “NO! She didn’t! I didn’t see that coming!!!”
So, if you’re looking for an emotionally charged, heart racing, attention grabbing book, this is it. Five stars for TK Leigh! I am so happy that she took such a taboo subject and not only educated us, but made us aware that this happens here in the US. There are so many things that you do not know about human trafficking. TK Leigh, with the promotion of this book, helps raise awareness of this terrible tragedy.
About TK Leigh
***If you'd like to contact me, please do so via my website or Facebook page (www.facebook.com/tkleighauthor). I don't check my messages on Goodreads on a regular basis.***
T.K. Leigh, otherwise known as Tracy Leigh Kellam, is the USA Today Best Selling author of the Beautiful Mess series. Originally from New England, she now resides in sunny Southern California with her husband, dog and three cats, all of which she has rescued (including the husband). She always had a knack for writing, but mostly in the legal field. It wasn’t until recently that she decided to try her hand at creative writing and is now addicted to creating different characters and new and unique story lines in the Contemporary Romantic Suspense genre.
When she’s not planted in front of her computer, writing away, she can be found running and training for her next marathon (of which she has run over fifteen fulls and far too many halfs to recall). Unlike Olivia, the main character in her Beautiful Mess series, she has yet to qualify for the Boston Marathon.