Review by Gabrielle

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“Don’t do that,” she said. “Don’t hold back.” If he treated her like she was fragile, that was the one thing that would make her break. Freyi didn’t think she could stand it, to be touched so tentatively. People had turned her into webbed glass after Jonah died; it made her feel like a relic, not a person.

Gut-wrenchingly gorgeous, You Made A Fool of Death With Your Beauty is a book that will stay with you for a long, long time.

Feyi Adekola wants to learn how to be alive again.

It’s been five years since the accident that killed the love of her life and she’s almost a new person now—an artist with her own studio, and sharing a brownstone apartment with her ride-or-die best friend, Joy, who insists it’s time for Feyi to ease back into the dating scene. Feyi isn’t ready for anything serious, but a steamy encounter at a rooftop party cascades into a whirlwind summer she could have never imagined: a luxury trip to a tropical island, decadent meals in the glamorous home of a celebrity chef, and a major curator who wants to launch her art career.

She’s even started dating the perfect guy, but their new relationship might be sabotaged before it has a chance by the dangerous thrill Feyi feels every time she locks eyes with the one person in the house who is most definitely off-limits. This new life she asked for just got a lot more complicated, and Feyi must begin her search for real answers. Who is she ready to become? Can she release her past and honor her grief while still embracing her future? And, of course, there’s the biggest question of all—how far is she willing to go for a second chance at love?

This may be one of the hardest reviews I’ve ever had to write. I honestly just don’t have the words to describe how great this book is. I’ve never read anything like it, it is so totally unique. 

This is Awkaeke’s first romance book but certainly not their first book. Already they have wracked up awards by the dozens for their fiction, memoir and YA titles. It would not surprise me at all to see them earn several more for this book and they would be well deserved. Awkaeke’s writing is the sort that knows no bounds and defies genres. This is definitely not your typical romance read. I really hope to see another romance from them in the future, we need this kind of love story in the world.

Awkaeke’s writing is raw with emotion, bold and intense. This one is a rollercoaster folks. You better buckle up. There is no shying away from emotions to be found here. As I followed Feyi’s journey, I experienced all the feels. If you are looking for a fluffy read, this is not the right choice for you. 

You probably picked up from the description that this book deals heavily with grief. As Feyi navigates her new life, her grief is palpable. Like a punch to the gut you will feel it. I loved Feyi’s character. Actually, I loved all the characters in this book. They are messy and real. They make bad decisions because it was the best they could do at the time. I haven’t read characters this honest in well, maybe ever. They are the kind of characters I will be thinking about for a long time to come.

The chemistry is off the charts in this one. I don’t want to spoil anything for you but suffice it to say Awkaeke writes a heck of a sex scene. No closed doors here. Just full on beautiful, vivid sex. 

If you are looking for something that will slap you across the face with its bravery, something different and new, something that will challenge you and make you think, definitely don’t miss this one.

Thank you, Simon and Schuster for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.