The Synopsis...My name is Elise Duchamp. I’m twenty-three years old and I’m known as the town whore.
No, not the kind who exchanges sexual favors for money. The other kind. The kind who gives it all away for free, whenever and however she likes. I am that girl. The one everyone whispers about and the one none of the girls seem to like, because all of their boyfriends either want to sleep with me or already have. Promiscuity is my thing—the kind that slowly, violently turns my insides black, but gives me something I need.
All things considered, I’m not completely reckless. I’m safe, and contrary to popular opinion, I do have a heart. I live in a world of careless choices, and with those choices come careless people. I cannot judge them, because I am one of them. I too bow down to the altar of the self-serving. I am not a good friend. I am not and never could be anyone’s girlfriend. I’m convinced any goodness in me shriveled up and died long ago.
But I am a replacement. That is something I know how to be, and this is a story of the lengths I’d go to in order to keep it that way.
The Replacement by Rachael Wade is a stand alone novel about one woman's journey of self discovery and finding her worth. I found this book to be hard to read emotionally at some points, Elise is a damaged, broken woman who sees herself as worthless. She doesn't believe she deserves love and is on a painful self destructive path where she sleeps with anyone who will have her, mostly men with wives or girlfriends. She makes no apology for who she is or what she does and that is one thing I really liked about her. She was obviously hurting people and didn't care but she never pretended to be anything but herself, she owned her reputation and wore it like armor. She thought she was worthless so that is how she acted and it was heartbreaking. The author uses flashback to give the reader some insight into what happened that made her so damaged and it isn't an excuse but it is a reason.
She has no intention on changing her behavior but then she meets Ryder and he sees her, the real her, not the shield she puts up to protect herself. She fights him the whole time but he is determined to get into her heart, he is amazing, sweet, kind, understanding and doesn't care about her past. He wants to set her free from what haunts her. My heart actually hurt for him, he was so wonderful and had such pure intentions but Elise constantly lashed out to push him away. She believed he was far too good for her and in a way he was, until she learned to love herself. Still, he doesn't give up and he does something amazing and basically it changes her entire life. Then there is Jay, her boss, one man who loves her unconditionally even though she can't really see it. Between him and Ryder her damaged sense of self didn't stand a chance, they were going to make her see what they saw.
It takes quite awhile and a huge surprise in order to help her see the good in herself but when she does it is amazing. She sheds her past and wants to move forward, she is still damaged but she has hope and that is the most healing thing in the world. I found this story captivating and emotionally gripping, Elise was a very relate-able character. Many people engage in self destructive behavior to mask things they can't face and hers happened to be sex. I didn't judge her for her choices, the author wrote her character in such an open and honest way that I could relate to her pain. She isn't easy to like but as we get to know her the more I could understand her, she lashed out to isolate herself because she felt like she didn't deserve anyone's love. Overall this was a raw and powerful story about a young woman who was in a very bad place learning to love herself with the help of a wonderful man. I also loved the fact that the promiscuous character was the woman instead of the man, it was really refreshing! This was my first read by Rachael Wade but I will definitely be looking for more.
Female Character: Broken
Male Character: Understanding
Author's Writing Style: smooth, flawless
Plot Twists: attention grabbing
Laugh Factor: low
Cry Factor: maybe a few tears!
Steam Factor: YUMMY
About Rachael Wade...
Rachael Wade writes edgy New Adult and Adult romance and science fiction. She is the author of the Amazon bestselling PRESERVATION SERIES, THE REPLACEMENT, and LOVE AND RELATIVITY, as well as the paranormal romance series THE RESISTANCE TRILOGY. When she's not writing, she's busy going to concerts, watching too many movies, and learning how to protect animals and the environment. She's an avid Brandi Carlile fan and loves all things Tim Burton. Visit her at RachaelWade.com and LightsOnLove.com, and come chat with her on Twitter @RachaelWade.