This is not your typical love story.
It’s not so black and white. Lines are crossed.
Walls are smashed. Good becomes bad.
Bad becomes very, very good.
Shayda Hijazi—the perfect wife, the perfect mother, the perfect daughter. For thirty-three years, she has played by the rules, swallowing secrets, burying dreams and doing whatever it takes to anchor her family. Shayda Hijazi is about to come face to face with the one thing that can rip it all apart, the one thing her heart has always been denied: Love.
Troy Heathgate—untamed, exhilarating, dangerous—a man who does exactly as he pleases. Life bends to his will. Until he comes across the one thing he would give it all up for, but can never have.
Born on the same day in opposite corners of the world, their lives collide. And nothing is ever the same again.
Spanning three decades, 53 Letters for My Lover is a fiercely sensual, emotional ride to the heart of an epic, forbidden love that defies it all—an intimate exploration of love, loyalty, passion, betrayal, and the human journey for hope, happiness and redemption.
“Sexy, intense fiction isn’t afraid to step out of the box.”
Contemporary women’s fiction: Ages 18+
*53 Letters for Your Lover has a companion novella in Troy’s POV titled From His Lips. Below are some quotes from both Shayda and Troy in their POV from their respective books.
“He Said/She Said” with Shayda and Troy
Shayda’s quotes from 53 Letters For My Lover
Troy’s quotes from the companion short story, From His Lips
THE FIRST TIME THEY MET
Dusty sneakers, grey sweatpants…and then—the most startling pair of blue eyes. They reminded me of the cut outs I had saved in my wish book, of the places I wanted to visit. Blue like the water that surrounds the islands in the South Pacific. I felt like I had been picked off the pavement and plopped smack dab in the middle of it. I floated there for a while, suspended in its endless horizons as it held me for long, still seconds.
“Here you go.” I knelt beside her. That’s when I first saw her face.
At the time, I was completely clueless about just how significant that moment was, how it would derail both our lives, because at the time I was just an ordinary guy looking at an ordinary girl on a quiet, shaded street. That’s how a lot of things start, don’t they? Our most profound experiences, our greatest adventures. When we’re just looking. Because if we knew that we were really at the beginning of miracles and plagues, and slayings and resurrections, we might retreat. But not knowing, I kept looking. And so did she.
Except she didn’t just look at me, she looked into me. As if she saw a place there that she’d always wanted to go, and it stunned her that it actually existed.
A hauntingly tragic love story that takes you on a roller coaster of a ride over three decades of love, devotion, heartache, pain and self discovery. Leylah Attar has become a go to author for me with this beautiful, unconventional love story. This will definitely be in my top 10 for the year.
Shayda is a victim to her cultural obligations. With an arranged marriage, the turmoil of loving her husband Hafez, who wants nothing but her happiness, left with no way of showing her because of his own dysfunctional family and demons of his past – Shayda is let vulnerable. When Troy Heathgate comes barreling into her life, their attraction is magnetic, combustible and yet so taboo.
What happens next is a series of events that will shape the lives of those around her, not always in the best way. Love is complicated, hard and not always pretty. Things don’t always go the way you want them, the way you plan. But fate…fate has a way of setting a course that eventually guides you down the right path.
The writing in this book was magnificent. Beautifully woven. I tried to put the book down and ended up waking up hours later only to pick it back up. I needed to know what was going to happen next.
Troy, Shayda and Hefez all will leave you with a wealth of emotions that will have you thinking about this book, long after you read the last word.
The doorbell rings. Repeatedly. Followed by loud thumping on the door.
“Coming, coming! Now what did you what forget?” I swing the door open.
My heart screeches to a slamming halt. “Troy.” I turn pale. “You…you shouldn’t be here.”
“No?” He storms past me into the house. “Where should I be, Shayda? Waiting by the phone? Staking out your office? Checking my email? Where the fuck, Shayda?” His fist slams into the console table, so ‘fuck’ is an obscure, jarring thud, like some censored song on the radio.
“I changed my mind.”
“You changed your mind. Just like that?” He starts pacing the hallway. “And when were you were planning to tell me exactly? When, Shayda?”
“I made a mistake.” My voice quivers. “I got caught up in the moment. We were alone, we were away. It was…it was all an illusion.”
“An illusion?” He pulls me hard against him. Our bodies collide, knocking the breath out of me. “Is this an illusion?”
His lips assault mine.
“And this?” His hand slides under my dress, claiming my thigh.
“What about this, Shayda?” He pushes my panties aside and slides two fingers inside.
“Tell me, Shayda. Tell me this is all in my head.” He shoves me against the door and deepens his strokes. “Tell me this is nothing.” He rubs his fingers on my neck, leaving the unmistakable trail of my reaction.
“This is you, Shayda.” His finger slips inside my mouth. “Your taste, your smell, your skin, your touch.” He grabs me by the hair and pulls my head back. “Tell me you’re not real, Shayda. Tell me!”
I feel the gathump gathump of his heart. Our breath comes in short, shallow gasps. His eyes darken, black holes pushing sky blue irises to the edges of raw emotion. Hunger. Anger. Love. Pain.
Leylah Attar writes stories about love – shaken, stirred and served with a twist. When she’s not writing, she can be found pursuing her other passions: photography, food, family and travel. Sometimes she disappears into the black hole of the internet, but can usually be enticed out with chocolate.