Cover Image: Before I Let Go

Before I Let Go

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Member Reviews

I had been hearing so much about this book online that I knew I just had to read it. I was drawn in from the very beginning! Yas and Josiah were young lovers that had a dream to get married and own a soul food restaurant. The story takes us through one of the lowest points of their lives when they lose the family matriarch 'Byrd' as well as suffer a stillborn birth all a few months apart.
I was rooting for their love half way through the book and got so invested that I hated seeing them date other characters! It was nice to see a book with African American characters deal with therapy in a healthy way that isn't considered taboo. I'm looking forward to other books in this series.  Five stars!
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Love love love! The writing style is so well done in this book. I loved every character and the whole story. Yas and Josiah are just amazing!!
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“To the strong girls, To the hustlers, To the superwomen, Tend your hearts with ruthless care….and rest.”

I just closed the book and I don’t know if anything I will say will do this book the justice it deserves. Kennedy Ryan did a phenomenal job of painting us a raw and vivid story of loss, love, and the affects those play in our m ental health. The topics of depression, therapy, and grief were beautifully covered. 

As the reader, I found myself being gentle with my thoughts when it came to Yas, and even Josiah as they navigated their relationship. This is definitely one of those books where words will never be enough. The love, the joy, the sadness, the hope…were all palpable. The beauty of sisterhood, the tough journey back to self, the emotional/mental breakthroughs were so relatable. 

To see Black love portrayed in such a profound way, and to see a Black man written in the light of vulnerability was just….FREAKING AMAZING! 

I have nothing more to contribute to this as I will begin to babble. If you haven’t read it….GO READ IT! 

“And may all of your pain be champagne.”
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Second chance romance: The book starts off with the couple divorced. Their lives are intertwined because of their kids as well as the fact that they share a business. The way both MCs were able to put the needs of their kids first was so refreshing. These were mature folks who always prioritized their children above their own conflict with each other.

Undeniable love and sexual tension: Si and Yasmen are clearly soul mates but life and tragedy and depression played a role in their separation. There are some OW/OM scenarios creating some jealousy but no cheating is involved. The chemistry between these two are unparalleled! When they finally get intimate post divorce, it was epic!

Depression/ Grief/ Therapy: This was handled so well! Normalizing antidepressant meds and going to therapy was highlighted. Si's growth especially in this area was phenomenal as he started out as a typical man who didn't believe in therapists.

The female friendships: Yasmen's yoga girl crew was amazing! Love supportive characters like these. They brought the humor and heartfelt moments and I can't wait for them to get their own books.

 The food: This couple own a soul food restaurant and this book is rich in decadent meals with recipes posted at the end of the book. I love a good foodie romance and this one delivered!

This was emotional, sexy, heartfelt with difficult moments that might bring you to tears but the HEA is absolutely worth it! I highly recommend!
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I was really excited to read this one after hearing all the amazing things about it and I'm so glad that I got the chance! It was a fun read and I did enjoy it overall. I enjoyed the characters and enjoyed the writing by this author. I'm excited to see what the author comes out with next!
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Before I let go is absolutely spectacular! The creativity and the soul is woven through these books from ms Ryan every single time. Before I let go received a 6 stars from me without hesitation. This is my favorite book of 2022. Kennedy Ryan never disappoints!
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Before I Let Go was the perfect 2nd chance love story. Kennedy Ryan is no stranger to creating well-rounded characters that create a sense of familiarity and as a result, the impact of their story hits that much deeper. Yasmeen and Josiah’s story is a love that transcends time and grief, aspects Kennedy excelled touching upon. As always, thank you to NetGalley and Forever Publishing for this eARC in exchange for my honest opinion!
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One of my top books of 2022!  I could feel the their pain so acutely. The entire story felt so real, from the family dynamics to Yasmen's friend group (I NEED more of these ladies!), I loved the dialogue, relationships, how everyone worked through (or didn't....) their own personal challenges. It was just terrifically written. 5+ stars!! Just get it, you'll have no regrets.
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So happy I ended 2022 with this one. It was beautiful, sad and REAL. This is how second chance romance is done. All the stars and tears 😭
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Before I Let Go is a second-chance romance with some of the highest stakes I’ve seen in a novel, and Kennedy Ryan balanced it perfectly. We’re introduced to Yasmen and Josiah as they’re coparenting their two kids and running a successful restaurant together, but there are moments where they’re still drawn together and questioning whether letting the other go was the right idea.

There are so many heavy topics at the heart of this plot, including divorce, still birth, miscarriages, grief, depression, and suicidal thoughts, but each is beautifully handled as the characters find their way through the hurts and back to each other. The writing is so easy to read, and there’s some spice for those that like that.

I’ll definitely be picking up more of Kennedy Ryan’s books.

Many thanks to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the advanced digital copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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Overall, great story! There was a lot of repeating the same lines over and over though. I kind of got bogged down with that.
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I love a good second chance romance book. I actually liked how this book touched on a subject that doesn't often get talked about. For some reason, the story just didn't flow well for me. I just didn't feel the connection with the characters that I was hoping for.
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Going from a love that everyone envied, to divorced and grieving, Josiah and Yasmen still prioritize what matters: their kids and their business. Before I Let Go starts off two years after the divorce and shows how a story can be heart-wrenching and heartwarming all at once. This slow burn, second chance romance shows how a couple shows up, grows up, and heals from mistakes that were made in order to find their way back where they belong - together.

This book was everything I could want and more. I knew by 25% in that it was 5/5. I saw the hype and it scared me. I often feel let down by own expectations when I read a book that is so well reviewed.  BUT this book was more than I could have hoped for. I felt so strongly for these characters. There is no question of chemistry or love between them, or those they care about. You feel their pain and their fear. They are real and feel real things. And the mental health/therapy representation?! YES. I don't think I can say enough good things about this, you just need to read it. 

As always, thank you to NetGalley and Forever Publishing for this eARC in exchange for my honest opinion!
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This was such a binge worthy read. While I fail in my own love life, this made me invested in the love and heat between these two characters. I am looking to see what else happens in this world Kennedy Ryan has created!
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First, let me say that this was one of the best books that I've read in 2022. The entire family was affected by trauma and internally screaming out for help. At first glance, the readers are led to believe that Yasmen is suffering the most, but as the story unfolds, you see that it was clearly Josiah. Yasmen and her daughter had a support system that encouraged them to press forward…Yasmen in her girlfriend and Deja in her friends and love of hair. Kassim turned to his sister for relief, by Josiah had no one, so he did what so many others do when their dealing with loss…he covered it up by turning to Vashti, which was clearly a mistake. A wise person once said that rebound situations never work, and this situationship was proof of it. Luckily, therapy was the catalyst to recovery for this family, which hopefully encourages someone to seek therapy today. If you can't afford it, find a spiritual leader to assist you. 

I absolutely loved the couple in Charlotte and cringed every time Edward's name was mentioned. I cannot wait to find out what he's hiding. This was not my first read but @kennedyryan1, but it was certainly my favorite…so far. I'm looking forward to reading more of her catalog.
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I loved everything about this! Kennedy Ryan is perhaps the best romance author, her characters have so much depth & heart. Josiah and Yasmen are such a great couple and following their journey was both emotional and heartwarming. Strongly recommend this one!
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One of the best romance novels I have ever read. Yasmen and Josiah’s relationship is so complex and real. Beautiful, relatable story.
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✨ Review ✨ Before I Let Go by Kennedy Ryan

CONTENT GUIDANCE: depression, complicated grief, still birth, passive suicidal ideation.

After a heartbreaking stillbirth and a long period of depression, Yasmen and Josiah separated. Still linked by the restaurant they own, coparenting their children, and the world they had created together, this book takes up their life as Yasmen is coming back into her own. Their relationship, however, is magnetic, and the pull they feel toward each other is STRONG. The tension in this book is delicious, and there's so much depth in the emotions they both explore within. 

This book is open and thoughtful in its discussion of mental health and therapy, and while the feelings and grief run deep here, this open discussion was really refreshing. While this isn't your traditional romance, it was still a really engaging, exciting read. I'm here for anything Kennedy Ryan writes!

Genre: f/m romance after divorce/grief/trauma
Location: Atlanta I think?
Pub Date: out now

Read this if you like:
⭕️ multi-layered romances
⭕️ open discussion of mental health and grief
⭕️ magnetic relationships

Thanks to Grand Central Publishing, Forever, and #netgalley for an advanced e-copy of this book!
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Before I Let Go by Kennedy Ryan is a love letter to Black Women who have been through some sh*t. Yes,this is beautiful, mature, community oriented Black Romance, but this was very much Yasmen’s story (to me). As a reader I fell in love with Yas as she found herself & fell in love with herself again. Reading Yas was like sitting with a friend. If I’m being frank—it felt like looking in a mirror because of how accurately the author described life deep in depression. 

Can I tell you I wanted to hate Josiah? Honestly I still did,  until I got the opportunity to talk with Kennedy &  I asked her if she could talk to one of her Characters, which one would it be & what would she say. She chose Josiah, and she would tell him to slow down because he’s been through so much & never stops moving to process his emotions. One of my mood board pictures says “Are you healed or just distracted” & that is the new lens I look at Josiah through. This is book that shows how trauma affects the entire family in different ways. I love the space the kids were given to FEEL and express those feelings (even if I wanted to lay hands a couple times). I LOVEEEE the community Yasmen & Josiah are surrounded with because it’s apart of their story and journey back to each other.

Yasmen & Josiah have a preserved love & everybody can see it, even the dog. It is a journey getting back to them but it is necessary for a love/relationship that will stand the test of time. Please be mindful of the trigger warnings in this book and be gentle with yourself as you read.
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Though it deals with very heavy subject matter and is at times heartbreaking, this is a very real and very gut-wrenching love story. A love story for the times. It's the story of two people who find their way back to each other in the most unlikely way, after a divorce during a really tough time of their life. Some sparks never die, and thank goodness the spark between Yasmen and Josiah. Such a lovely story.
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