Swear on This Life – Review


“We can’t always control our circumstances, who our parents are, where we live, or how much money we make, but in those rare moments when we can shape our fate, when we do have the power to make our own happiness, we can’t be too scared to do it.”

Books, like Swear on this Life, are the reason I love reading.  I felt a deep connection to this story and hated having to put it down to get work done throughout the day.  However, this didn’t stop me from speed reading it in less than 24 hours—I just had to know what happened to Jax and Emerson.


This was not your typical smutty romance, thank goodness (it’s not my favorite thing).  Instead, this was a book within a book, within a book.  Riddle me that! 😉  The story features Emiline, a college writing instructor desperate to be a published author.  When her roommate and fellow writer suggests reading a book published by a hottie who happens to be under thirty, she is a bit resentful, but reluctantly decides to give it a go.  As Emiline consumes the story, she finds it echoes her past, and potentially steals her future writing material.  With no other option, she decides she must confront the bestselling author of her story to get some answers.  Renee Carlino gives her readers a unique viewpoint by allowing us to read both stories simultaneously, always keeping us guessing about what is on the next page.


I loved how emotional the story was from the get-go and how deeply developed Carlino’s characters were, while still keeping things light and funny at times.

“Impossibly, Jase’s earsplitting grin was charming the panties off my gay aunts.”

To me, the book within the book was the most intriguing part of the story, because it unraveled the past of the characters while leaving readers wondering what was real and what was fictional.  In the post-reading high and long after, I will give this book five stars.  It is a truly captivating read that I highly recommend.  I will definitely be checking out more of Carlino’s work in the future.

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