Tuesday, 20 February 2018

A Figure Skating Book That Might Help You Get Over Your Virtue-Moir Blues

FROM LUKOV WITH LOVE
by Mariana Zapata
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: February 1st 2018
Source: Bought
Rating: ★★★
Amazon
If someone were to ask Jasmine Santos to describe the last few years of her life with a single word, it would definitely be a four-letter one.

After seventeen years—and countless broken bones and broken promises—she knows her window to compete in figure skating is coming to a close.

But when the offer of a lifetime comes in from an arrogant idiot she’s spent the last decade dreaming about pushing in the way of a moving bus, Jasmine might have to reconsider everything.

Including Ivan Lukov.

I know this is a tragedy, but I only discovered Mariana Zapata last year - shout out to Becky & Jasprit for introducing me to her books. I read Dear Aaron and became quickly obsessed with it. I then followed that by reading Kulti, which was another hit for me. And now my third book by her is From Lukov With Love and I'm pretty sure I'm in love with this woman's writing.

All of Mariana's books are ginormous, but I somehow always find myself reading them in a day, which if you know me, is rare because I have studying to do. It was the same with From Lukov With Love. I buddy-read together with Becky, and pretty much finished it in one day. As you can imagine, I loved the book. It was just the sort of read that I was expecting, and I'm happy that Zapata did not disappoint. From Lukov With Love tells the story of Jasmine, a figure skater on the very edge of her career. She's a fiery, anxious ball of a human being, and I loved her with all my heart. Jasmine is an incredibly strong and brave character, and we repeatedly get to see her strength in minute actions throughout From Lukov With Love. The amount of hard work and dedication she put into her career as a figure skater was astounding and awe-inspiring, to me. Lukov, on the other hand, was quite the enigma to me. He wasn't the most open guy when it came to his emotions, but he would do and say these subtle things throughout the book that gave me a better understanding of his personality. The more I progressed with my reading, the more I fell for him. And then I found out that he rescues animal, and I was an absolute goner. I just can't resist a hero who is kind to his family and loves animals, ok?

If you've read Mariana Zapata's books, then you already know that her romances are unconventional in that they are incredibly slow. So if you're a reader who likes it when the couple gets together almost immediately, she's not the author for you. But man, do I love how she handles the slow-burn. Jasmine and Lukov have a very "I-hate-your-guts" dynamic at the start. They are both figure skaters, and there's a bit of rivalry there, but also a hatred that's quite hard to explain. When circumstances push them into skating together as a couple, the hatred slowly starts to change into a friendship, which then finally evolves into a romance. I just loved the progression of their relationship. It was done so well! I especially loved the scenes of Lukov taking care of Jasmine when she falls ill - that's such a catnip trope of mine! I also loved how much of Jasmine's family we got to see. The Santos' are an incredible bunch, and I love all of their loving, complex and messy self. They have issues, like any family does, but they love each other so fiercely, and are willing to take bullets for each other. I got emotional every time Jasmine had an interaction with them. And I loved how easily they embraced Lukov, much to Jasmine's dismay! And the ending of the book! *sobs* So lovely and perfect!

From Lukov With Love was another perfect 2018 romance read for me. This is certainly one of those books that I'll be revisiting in the future because I can't be done with the Santos' just yet. If you love sports romances, slow-burn romances or hate-to-love romances, then this book is perfect for you!

Image result for virtue-moir gif
You know you want to see some of this? ;)

Have you read books by Mariana Zapata? What are your favorites by her?
Let me know in the comments below!


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