Split, Book #1

By J.B. Salsbury

ISBN# 9781472238610

Author’s Website:  http://jbsalsbury.com/

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

Shyann Jennings couldn’t leave the small town of Payson behind fast enough.  Nothing was the same after her mother died and she couldn’t stand the memories that assaulted her there.  She left and went to college to get into broadcasting.  However, when she finally has a chance to make it big, she lets her emotions get in the way, sabotaging all that she has worked for.  No news outlet will hire her now.  With no other option, she tucks her tail and goes back to Payson and her father until she can save up enough money to start over somewhere else.

Lucas has a dark past.  Unfortunately, he can’t remember most of it.  When things get too tough for him to handle the blackouts come and HE takes over.  Lucas has been doing well in Payson and has actually started to make a life for himself.  He has a job he enjoys and even a place to stay.  However, his boss’s daughter could ruin everything for him.  The more time he spends with her, the more he enjoys her company.  But her appearance in his life has brought back his blackouts.  He’s scared that Gage will do something that will send him packing once again.  Like the night his entire family was killed.  He believes Gage killed them, but he doesn’t know and he can’t fathom why he’d kill his young siblings, those he was supposed to protect!

“Gage hasn’t always been my curse. Most of the time, he’s been my savior.”

Lucas and Shyann are starting to really like each other, but will they be able to bypass Gage’s protective instincts to actually have a chance?  Or will Gage hurt Shyann or worse in his attempts to keep Lucas safe?

This book had a slow start, but once Gage makes his first appearance, I found it quite interesting.  This novel opens your eyes to the struggles that those with dissociative identity disorder (and those that love them) face.  I had never read a book where one of the characters struggled with this before, although I’ve seen plenty of soap operas in the past that played with it.  It was an interesting read that stuck with me and made me think even when I wasn’t reading it.  Shyann had to prove to Lucas’s alter-ego, Gage, that she wasn’t a threat in order for him to not surface and throw Lucas into the dark.

“There’s something about him that’s impossible to walk away from. Like an injured boy being held captive by his abuser. But Gage isn’t his abuser; he’s his warrior kachina. His real-life protector made of muscle and bone and capable of inflicting damage on anyone who stands in his way. Pushing anyone who has the potential to hurt Lucas away, but also everyone who has the potential to love him.”

My heart broke for Lucas and his siblings and the abuse they suffered at their mother’s hands.  It’s easy to imagine why Lucas’s brain would create Gage to protect himself.

And, I actually really enjoyed Gage when he surfaced.  He was such a polar opposite to Lucas, who was a bit too timid, for my liking, most of the time.  Therefore, it was fun seeing the take no prisoners jerk that Gage could be.  And, honestly some people in this book deserved to have to deal with Gage.

Shyann was a tough cookie to put up with everything to be with Lucas and Gage and find a way for them both to accept her.  I like that she wasn’t trying to get rid of Gage, but to include him and even love him.  Although, I think this book should have probably touched on the treatment of DID at least a little, despite there not being a true cure.

This was a great read and I’ve not read anything like it before.   I’ll be diving into the short story, A Perfectly Split Christmas that follows this book next!  I honestly can’t wait.