1,4,3 By Alicia Sophia

I wondered if I would ever be able to love again. This first sentence of one of the chapters sums it up perfectly. 1,4,3 is about love, loss and disaster and you can’t have one without the other.

It starts with a couple who live together, but not really. Both return in their own little world, not even listening anymore to the other because… Well, things went south. And then there is the moment where they part. Not in a nuclear explosion, but rather in the dying fizz of a firework well over its date.

Through jumps back in time we see why both got attracted to one another, but we also understand why they never stood a chance, too. In between the lines you find broken people who try to live, but don’t always know.

And then, after being apart for five days, they meet again. A sour taste filled my mouth because you expect at least pain. Instead, there is little regret, a bit of a sting… Until Cam, the MC, realizes nothing is worth living that fake life. Again.

All the while Cam’s father hovers around, doing things father do, Cam slowly falls apart. We start with the love – and the hatred – and continue with the loss and disaster. While there is a lot of fucking (as in the curse word) I don’t think the story would have stood so well without it. You know those people, too, who use that word every chance they get. It comes natural in the world where Cam moves through and so, it’s part of the world you discover in this book. The author takes you on a journey that is believable, with the pain, the silence and the tears – though no one will ever admit to them.

The travels are rocky. While another woman lies next to her, Cam receives a mail from her ex. And while it hurts – for obvious reasons – she at least doesn’t bite. Love, someone once said, is a many splendor thing. But when it breaks – whenever it shatters – it’s the source of so much pain and horror and regrets. If anything, that’s what this book conveys.

So, Cam goes to the Bay Area. Or does she? There always is the ex – Leah. The asshole with a sexy body that dressed really well. That’s not my description. That’s Alicia Sophia’s. Or rather, Cam’s. ;?)

People in this book aren’t ‘nice’ people. And maybe that’s the most beautiful part of it all: they’re not ‘nice’, but they are real as hell. It’s Cam and Leah and Judi and all the others that you pass daily on the streets, with their presents and pasts and futures to come, all soaked in a little alcohol. Life is a gift and it depends on what you do with it, but this is as raw as it gets.

Alicia Sophia took me on a ride in the LTGBQ-world, but apart from the female-female relationships, you could as well find it in the straight world. Emotions remain, just the people changed and that’s what I liked about it. Everything can be exchanged by something else until you feel at home in it. And fear it, more than anything else.

But circles come round. And when you reach the end of the book, you discover that there is one universal truth. Everything is possible as long as you set your mind to it.

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