Before I Let Go Read Online Kennedy Ryan

Categories Genre: Contemporary Tags Authors:
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Total pages in book: 137
Estimated words: 131486 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 657(@200wpm)___ 526(@250wpm)___ 438(@300wpm)
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“Real, raw, magnificent—Before I Let Go is the beautiful angst I love to read.” —Colleen Hoover, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Their love was supposed to last forever. But when life delivered blow after devastating blow, Yasmen and Josiah Wade found that love alone couldn’t solve or save everything.

It couldn’t save their marriage.

Yasmen wasn’t prepared for how her life fell apart, but she’s is finally starting to find joy again. She and Josiah have found a new rhythm, co-parenting their two kids and running a thriving business together. Yet like magnets, they’re always drawn back to each other, and now they’re beginning to wonder if they’re truly ready to let go of everything they once had.

Soon, one stolen kiss leads to another…and then more. It's hot. It's illicit. It's all good—until old wounds reopen. Is it too late for them to find forever? Or could they even be better, the second time around?

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************

The Beginning

Josiah

“In the middle of the journey of our life

I found myself within a dark woods where the straight way was lost.”

—Dante Alighieri, Inferno

Do people remember the exact moment they fall in love?

I do. Yasmen brought me homemade chicken noodle soup when I was so sick it hurt to blink. Tasted like day-old dishwater. Not sure how you mess up chicken noodle soup, but my girl managed it. She watched me expectantly with those long-lashed doe eyes. God, I’ll never forget her expression when I spat that soup out, but it was so bad and I was too sick to even play it off.

For a second, Yasmen looked distressed, but then, despite feeling like someone dragged me over hot coals and needles, I laughed. Then she laughed and I wondered if this—finding someone you can laugh with when everything hurts—was the stuff happily ever afters were made of. Not the sugarcoated kisses and hot-air balloon rides and romantic walks under a full moon. My whole body throbbed with whatever plague infected me, but that day Yasmen made me happy. In the midst of a raging flu, she made me laugh.

And I knew.

I tipped over from wildly attracted and more-than-slightly pussy-whipped into the real thing. Into love. That moment is soldered into my memory. It’s one I’ll never forget.

And here, just months later, so is this one.

“What do you think?” Yasmen looks up from something she’s working on at the card table in the middle of the living/dining/kitchen zone of my dilapidated one-bedroom apartment, complete with impoverished student decor.

“Think about what?” I ask, sitting down in the raggedy chair across from her.

“Grits.”

“Baby, please don’t make grits again. I’m still recovering from the last time you tried.”

She glares at me without heat, the corners of her mouth fighting a grin. “Boy, not cook grits. Have you even been listening? I said what if you name your restaurant Grits?”

In an unprecedented move, I took a girl home for Christmas. She and my aunt Byrd hit it off right away, and by New Year’s Eve, the two of them were scheming about a restaurant I could open using my MBA and Aunt Byrd’s family recipes.

“Oh, yeah. Sure. Grits.” I scoot my chair closer and push back the fall of braids cascading over Yasmen’s shoulder. “Sounds good.”

“Sounds good?” She lays the back of her hand across my forehead. “Are you sick again? The Josiah Wade I know picks apart every suggestion and always has a yes, but on the ready.”

She’s not wrong. My father was a military man, a stern taskmaster who never settled for anything a day in his life. He planned each move like a military campaign. Control, discipline, and reason propelled him up through the ranks. That’s what he instilled in me even in the short time I had with him before he passed away, but all of that goes out the window in this moment when I realize that I not only love Yasmen, but I want to love her for the rest of my life.

“Marry me.”

The words slip out soft and certain. And I am certain. An actuary running a dozen risk assessments couldn’t be as certain as I am right now. Yasmen and I belong together.

She drops her pen and her mouth falls open.

“Wha-what?” Jerky breaths stutter over her lips and her eyes go wide.

“Marry me.”

Improbably—because this, all of this is as out of character for me as a goat tap-dancing—I sink to one knee in front of her, heart skydiving in my chest. Full-on romantic movie proposal posture. I reach up to cup her face, the beveled bones and delicate curves fitting perfectly against my palms.

“I love you, Yasmen.”

She nods, her expression dazed. “I know. I—I love you, too, but I thought we’d wait until you finished grad school.”

“I’m almost done. One semester left. Your lease is up next month. Perfect time to move in with me.” I sweep my arm around the sparsely furnished, shabby apartment. “Don’t you want to join me in this lap of luxury?”

She snickers, a wide smile breaking out on her beautiful face. The first time I saw her, my friends laughed because I stopped in the middle of whatever bullshit I was saying and stared. That’s not me. No matter how fine, no girl ever dropkicked me at first sight the way Yasmen did. I want to see her smooth brown skin, these sweet, full lips, the thick fan of lashes, on my children.

“You’re crazy,” she whispers.

“I’m sure of you.” I trace the silky dark arch of her eyebrow. “Are you sure of me?”

And I see it. I see the calm, the certainty, the love suffocate her doubts, smother the hesitations. She leaves the rickety chair, goes down on her knees to face me on mine, and scatters fleeting kisses across my face. They ghost over my lips and eyes like butterflies that float out of reach before I can grab them. I want to capture her face again, make her be still so I can kiss her back, but my hands hang at my sides, numb from the magnitude of what’s happening. Finally, she takes my hands in hers and looks directly at me. Tears pool in her eyes and slip over her cheeks.


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