If you have not read my review of Flow yet- do that first. (Flow is chronicling the week of magical days and nights that will haunt Grip & Bristol for years to come. GRIP is the full-length conclusion of their story.)
If you have then strap in, because we are about to ride the roller coaster that is GRIP.
Nothing has changed, and everything is different now.
I don’t even know how to start this, but that is an accurate depiction of my feelings “nothing has changed, and everything is different now” when I started GRIP.
Flow ends with a confrontation that puts both Grip and Bristol in a predicament that could make or break them- and it isn’t the last to rain down a proverbial shit storm on our couple.
Resisting an irresistible force wears you down and turns you out. I know. I’ve been doing it for years.
I may not have a musical gift of my own, but I’ve got a nose for talent and an eye for the extraordinary. And Marlon James – Grip to his fans – is nothing short of extraordinary.
Years ago, we strung together a few magical nights, but I keep those memories in a locked drawer and I’ve thrown away the key. All that’s left is friendship and work.
He’s on the verge of unimaginable fame, all his dreams poised to come true. I manage his career, but I can’t seem to manage my heart.
It’s wild, reckless, disobedient. And it remembers all the things I want to forget.
While GRIP takes place 8 years after the conclusion of Flow, it begins with a glimpse into hours after the end of Flow, and then a few years following before catching up with Grip and Bristol in present day.
WARNING!! From this point on, there is no way I can avoid spoilers- not if I want to do this review any justice in my heart. They will be minor, but they will still be evident-
Bristol has sealed her heart away. She refuses to acknowledge Grip, who subtly and not so subtly chips at the foundation of the wall around her heart, finding cracks and wiggling himself in. She continues to shove him back out and ends up sacrificing herself to avoid ever letting her love free.
Bristol fears the depth of her feelings, fears what succumbing to them would do to her- what they have done to her own family.
“You are just like me, maybe worse,” she says. “You need too much. And you’ll love too much, too, if you’re not careful. I fell in love with the wrong man a long time ago, and people like you and me, we don’t know how to stop.”
Grip has a death…grip (that was unavoidable) on his connection to Bristol- but between all the back and forth he almost lets go…
“Do you have any idea what we could be together? Hell, what we already are?” The hot words sear my lips. “It’s rare and real and you just keep spitting on it. You just keep ignoring it. Ignoring me. And I’m so fucking over it.”
Tries to let go, but we know our boy’s heart is lost forever to our girl. And our girl just needs to come to grip… with her feelings for Grip (can’t stop won’t stop). Once they collide, their souls explode over the pages and we are consumed by their overwhelming, all consuming, forever kind of love.
He’s dictating my heartbeat, governing my pulse, holding my next breath cupped in his hands. I’m at his mercy, and it doesn’t frighten me.
However, just because they have come together doesn’t mean the war is over- just the beginning battle won. So many obstacles are thrown in their way and there are moments when your heart will break, where it will ache- but it will also soar, because Grip and Bristol tackle everything against them as the power couple they are.
And by power I mean a couple that is real, that is honest, that is so pure in it’s basest form and willing to fight until their last breath for the other.
Maybe I do love him too much and don’t have boundaries. I don’t care. This love is the stuff of magic, of fantasy, but so raw and real I can touch it. I can taste it. If for some reason I fall, how many can say they soared this high?
Their souls forever entwined.
I cannot possibly in this life be deep enough inside her. I want so much more than her body. She has thieved my soul, and I need to feel the reciprocity, the exchange. To know I’ve pilfered her and taken everything that she would offer and anything she meant to hold. Because that’s what she’s done to me.
I cannot tell you what these characters mean to me, so much so that I often forget they are fiction- and that just goes to show you the incredible way Kennedy Ryan has brought them to life. You need to read GRIP to discover for yourself the way in which Miss Ryan composes their lives into a commanding symphony- worthy of your standing ovations.
As with Flow, you will walk away from this story with more than just an inevitable attachment to Grip and Bristol, but also eye-opening realities in a way that will have you thinking about GRIP for days to come after.
If not… then I am positively blessed by the Fiction Gods that that was my reaction.