ARC Review: Touching Melody (Forever First #1) by RaShelle Workman

Publishers:  Polished Pen Press
Published Date: May 14th 2013
From: NetGalley
My rating: 3 out of 5


Maddie Martin's first weekend at college is nothing like she's used to. It's wild, like the wilderness on which the University of Bellam Springs sits. Roped into going to a fraternity party, she literally runs into Kyle Hadley. The boy she's loved since she was nine. The boy she promised all of her firsts to. But that was before his father killed her parents. 

Determined to stay away from him, she throws herself into her music. Practicing piano eases her heavy heart, calms the sadness, and pushes away images of Kyle's face. 

Until it doesn't. 

Her music professor asks her to play a duet for their annual Winter Gala. Doing so means she'll be assured another full ride scholarship. It's an opportunity she can't pass up. 

But Kyle is the other half of the duet. And that means hours and hours of practicing. 

Weeks of seclusion - just the two of them. And it's more than just music. It's passion like Maddie never believed was possible. 

The inevitable happens. She falls in love with him all over again. 

But, will loving him be enough to erase all the hate in her heart for his father? Can she look at him, and not see the evil in his family tree?

And maybe it's all a set up. Maybe Kyle is only pretending to care so he can finish what his father started, and kill her too


Lots of YA authors are now crossing over to New Adult to write stories with more daring subjects. As readers and lovers of YA I guess the trend of authors is being followed by us reviewers because we too are growing up and want to read about the next step in adulthood.

Touching Melody by RaShelle Workman is a great story about a girl called Maddie who found her parents dead one night. She also saw a glimpse of the killers and all the blood surrounding her parents bodies. She is whisked away days after to live with her Aunt and Uncle and to prevent any backlash after that fateful night, is home schooled. While this may have been in Maddie's best interests she has grown up naive, completely ignorant of the modern world. As a child her best friend was Kyle. They both had tough parents to deal with but stayed best friends throughout, promising each other things that children do, things they know nothing about.

Seven years, Maddie is starting College. At a party she bumps into Kyle. But he appears to not remember her. She then pretends to not to know him. Eventually after a drunken spell they reveal their identities. The romance begins but there are still those who want to keep these two apart no matter what the cost.

Touching Melody is a really good coming of age story. I wouldn't say the story was that original but Workman writes like a genius and I really felt like I knew Maddie and understood her. Her roommate is Gina who carries the weight of the world on her shoulders. Kyle comes off as being an idiot to start with. Rumours of him enjoying a menage a troit and being into kinky sex start spreading.

I also liked the switch between POV's, I thought this worked well to understand Kyle and his motives. Maddie and Kyle's story does come across as being completely natural and believable and what I loved most was the innocence of both of them. Yes, Kyle's dad beat him and Maddie's parents seemed suspicious but neither of them had any idea of what kind of life their parents were living and how their fate got all twisted together.

Little things that made it more enjoyable. Maddies tattooes, her shoe fetish and her friendship with Gina.

The ending did come across as a little rushed, almost a 'tell' rather than a 'show' and read quickly so the emphasis on hoping Maddie survived was like watching a movie in double time. Maddie and Kyle go through lots of heaving petting but this NA book leaves out the big event, and the Aftermath surmises Maddies final acceptance of what happened and allows her to begin a new life.

All in all, a good book.

You can reach RaShelle Workman here: 

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