Publication Date: November 26, 2013
Landon and Seven have had troubled backgrounds. Landon seems to have life figured out, but his traumatic early life has left a mark as did his mother’s inability or unwillingness to protect him. Seven has problems with anger management and involves herself with people who exploit her weaknesses.When they meet at the beauty shop that belongs to Landon’s cousin, there is an instant connection. Landon is everything Seven has never had. Suave, wealthy and in control … or so it seems. Can their relationship develop and love bloom despite the odds or will their past catch up with them?
The author, R.H. Ramsey, provided me with a copy of this novel in exchange for my review. I reviewed this novel as an ARC, so content may change between the editing copy and the final product.[easyazon-link asin=”B00GY5HQIE” locale=”us”]Just Beneath the Surface II: Landon’s Story[/easyazon-link] is not a continuation of the story told in the first novel. Ramsey, in her new outing, brings us new, tragic characters with uniquely different and frequently chilling problems. Whatever I expected going into this novel, I did not expect the story that Ramsey expertly unravels. [easyazon-link asin=”B00GY5HQIE” locale=”us”]Just Beneath the Surface II: Landon’s Story[/easyazon-link] is exactly what it implies. You’ve known these people or heard of them, or seen them, but little can you imagine the turmoil and real dysfunction that boils in their soul. As the novel developed, I didn’t want to feel sorry for either of the main characters. Seven was a woman who would snap if you looked at her sideways. I was watching the VH-1 show “Mama Drama” the other night (this review was originally written in August 2013) and she would have fit perfectly with the cast. Seven is vividly written. I know this woman. I may have never before known what she was thinking or have known why she did what she did but like the people in Seven’s life, I would have been tempted to not think beyond what was going on and refer to her as crazy.
Landon is a more complicated prospect but no less expertly written. He suffered a deep trauma. Not only was he abused as a child, but throughout his life he has been judged and maligned and because of that, he chooses women who he perceives as needing him desperately. The story opens with his coming home to find his drug-addicted girlfriend overdosing and going through a clearly time-worn ritual of shocking her and then making her warm. He says that he simply can’t do it again, but you know he’s the guy who will eventually be back because he needs a purpose and what more noble purpose than someone he believes that he can help?[easyazon-link asin=”B00GY5HQIE” locale=”us”]Just Beneath the Surface II: Landon’s Story[/easyazon-link] is a novel of extreme ups and downs. Within the narrative, there is great anger, great suffering, great joy and great loss. Landon and Seven evolve as the story progresses in a shockingly realistic way. Ramsey comments within the narrative, or so it seems, on man’s cruelty to man. Any of us who have been online for more than five minutes can see a parallel. People say things that cut the deepest and then laugh with derision when a person is hurt. “What do you expect?” they ask. “You’re pathetic. Why haven’t you killed yourself. You’re a waste of oxygen.” They hate each other for the smallest things and never is a thought given to the pain and damage lurking under the skin. Ramsey does the impossible in [easyazon-link asin=”B00GY5HQIE” locale=”us”]Just Beneath the Surface II: Landon’s Story[/easyazon-link] in making us feel and weep for those lost souls who may seem to be the least sympathetic. Does that mean we should ever let someone choose our path? Never, but we should reach out in sympathy and compassion to those who can be saved and identify with the turmoil within. We should open our eyes to our fellow man and help who we can each day.
R.H. Ramsey’s writing style is beautiful and hauntingly real. We build a relationship with Landon and Seven in her writing and when the time comes we wonder what we could have done to help. This is a work to be savored. A tragic masterpiece. The first book of the series, Just Beneath the Surface I was also reviewed on this blog.
If Just Beneath the Surface 2: Landon’s Story by R.H. Ramsey sounds like a book for you, read and excerpt and buy on