THE WILL TO LOVE by Selene Chardou

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“I wasn’t looking for love, only a good time and a way to tour the world with a rock band when he came along and hit me like a hurricane. Nothing could have prepared for me for the complexity that was Will Cullen. He hid a secret that would devour me whole and spit me out. The only problem I had was how did I let go when I decided to give my heart to the very man I would never be able to control and who would always be just beyond my reach?” – Laurel Munsen

Will Cullen has always been comfortable in his own skin, even it was behind the scenes as the bass player for Scarlet Fever. He’s always known he was gay and accepted his sexuality even if he couldn’t be out and proud as a member of one of the most popular rock bands in the world.

Laurel was supposed to be a diversion, a beard to hide behind while he and his lover, drummer Grant MacMullen, continued their hot and heavy relationship. Grant breaks his heart and admits there can never be a future between them.

It is Laurel who picks up the pieces and although he knows what they have together is wrong and conforming to society’s standards of what love supposed to be, how can he rectify his strong attraction and desire for men while he is falling in love with a woman?

Both Laurel and Will learn the fluidity of human emotions and together, they gather the strength and courage to live life, understand each other and love with heart, body, mind and soul.

Note: This story is about a homosexual man who happens to fall in love with a heterosexual woman but it does not negate his homosexual status nor is the author implying sexuality is a choice; rather that most of the time, we don’t and cannot choose the person we fall in love with and decide to give our heart and soul.

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I will admit, this was one of the strangest stories I have read, not strange in a bad way, but in a way that I never knew what was coming.  The secrets each of these people kept were so far out there, I don’t think I could have dreamed them up in my own head.

I would say this was a pretty equal match between Will and Laurel when it comes to determination, courage and baggage.  What was intriguing was that both were very honest with each other when it comes to what they had done, desire and want in the future.  So many times as I read this story I was thinking in my head, now would be a great time to end this relationship, but not them…….they just agreed to accept it and move on.

Will’s big issue was him being a gay man, having a relationship with Laurel, while having sex with Grant, who is in a relationship with Laurel’s sister.  Once Grant and Will was forced to stop their “sex dates”, Grant committed to his girlfriend and Will was determined to commit to Laurel and try to make up for what he had put her through. Will also knew he wanted to start a family with Laurel, but her parents would NOT agree with her being in a relationship with him.

Laurel, has enough baggage in her past that it would probably take a few books to sort it all out, but Will accepted it and continued to move past his gay desires and give her what she deserved.  The sex scenes were hot and a bit intense, but knowing all I knew from their past, it was very difficult to wrap my brain around.  While she always wondered why Will was still in love with Grant and would she ever measure up, she didn’t realize that out of every woman Will has met, there was something about Laurel that he didn’t want to let go of.

I certainly can’t say I disliked this book because I really did love it, but I have to say it is one of the few books that I have read that left me as mind blown as this one did.  While it was hard to grasp and comprehend this rock band and their girlfriends, it was so interesting that I didn’t want to stop reading.  It was a blend of damaged, twisted human beings, finding their own way in life under the spotlight of media and fans and family.  The boundaries between the relationships were blurred, discussions that would seem so abnormal to the rest of us, appeared perfectly normal for this group.  I think the characters were well-developed, but there was so much to absorb. There was NO cookie cutter characters in this book, each were unique, interesting and yes a bit abnormal, which I like once in a while in a book, depending on how it is delivered to us readers.  I think this author did a great job at giving us more than we can absorb and she did it in a way that left us wanting more.


Will walked outside and knelt before me. “Fuck. What the hell did I do now?”

“Nothing,” I said before I turned to look at the pool and swallowed, the harsh bitterness of the Xanax pill still left in my mouth. “I realize everything that has happened between us is on me. Grant always came first and I was a distant second but now that he’s gone, I truly wonder if there is any room past that empty spot he’s left inside of you for me? We don’t choose who we fall in love with and God knows if I could take my feelings back for you, I would.”

I paused and stared into those vast pools of blue. “But I can’t and I won’t. Now, the onus is on you. Do you or don’t you want to be with me? If you can’t, I truly understand because it just isn’t the way you’re hardwired. We were never supposed to be in the first place. However, if you do want me, then it has to be just you and I. No one else and certainly no one night stands or interlopers. I have to know I can trust you or we won’t work out. Do you understand that?”

He nodded, his silky blond hair blowing in the soft breeze. “Of course I want to be with you or I wouldn’t have said no to coming out and I sure as hell wouldn’t have invited you to Vegas. If this works out and we sign this contract, this affects your life just as much as it does mine. I can understand if what we have isn’t important enough for you to uproot your life and change everything just to be with me.”

“Oh, but it is…and my question to you is can you make that sacrifice because no matter how you look at our situation, you are doing something that is against your very nature. You’re denying a part of yourself to be with me and I can’t help but feel like I am the most selfish bitch in the world for making you do that.”

“Listen to me,” Will said as he grabbed my jaw with both hands and held my face softly. “I’m not doing anything I don’t want to do. If you’ll have me then I’m yours. It’s as simple as that.”

I nodded and we kissed each other on the lips before I embraced him. I couldn’t understand why I was holding on so tight and then it hit me like a wrecking ball. I was scared if I didn’t hold him like he was the only man in the world, he might disappear and leave me all alone with my emotions and the thought was too much to bear.

Meet Selene


Selene Chardou is a world traveler and the alter-ego of Elle Chardou.

Ms. Chardou’s writing is all about hot romance and exciting times with the wild, damaged, out of control and/or rich and famous set in the New Adult realm.

She is currently working on The Will to Love, the second novel in the Scarlet Fever Series, which chronicles the relationship of Will Cullen and Laurel Munsen. She is also working on Deadly Seduction, the first novel in The Rough Riders series, which chronicles the issues between three Motorcycle Clubs, and various criminal elements in the tri-city area of Reno, Lake Tahoe and Carson City in Northern Nevada.

Ms. Chardou has lived abroad in Stockholm (Sweden), Manchester (England), Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area and Portland. She currently resides in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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