Review: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata

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Vanessa Mazur knows she’s doing the right thing. She shouldn’t feel bad for quitting. Being an assistant/housekeeper/fairy godmother to the top defensive end in the National Football Organization was always supposed to be temporary. She has plans and none of them include washing extra-large underwear longer than necessary.

But when Aiden Graves shows up at her door wanting her to come back, she’s beyond shocked.

For two years, the man known as The Wall of Winnipeg couldn’t even find it in him to tell her good morning or congratulate her on her birthday. Now? He’s asking for the unthinkable.

What do you say to the man who is used to getting everything he wants?

My Review (1)

Disclaimer: This book was bought by pinching pennies and the thoughts expressed in this review are all mine and only mine.

I don’t take chances with Sports Romances – as in I NEVER ever read them – not because they aren’t well written but because I, a nerd at heart, can never connect with a sports fan – which i ironic considering that sports have that intense passionate feelings about inanimate things that only a nerd could understand.

Yet somehow, this book caught my attention – if only because of that well written blurb – I mean, once I read it, I had this irresistible urge to actually, pick up this book and know who this man is – who is so used to getting his own way!

Let me tell you what happened – I started this book at 10 PM, thinking that I will just read a few pages for this book is like 400+ and there was no way I could complete this book for I need to get up like real early next morning (Yeah, we all know how that conviction goes, now don’t we?) – and the next thing I know, it’s freaking 3 AM and I am done with this book (FML!). 

Told in the POV of Vanessa – the assistant to Aiden Graves – a football player who talks in monosyllables, and is rude to the point of looking unsympathetic, it seems to be one of those books that would be really slow, for the first few pages, and then BAM you are hooked in and you don’t even realize it till you are at the end, and you still don’t want it to end.

“I need a friend—I need you.”

Aiden is a mass of contradictions, really. He is sweet behind your back, but rude to your face and damn if it doesn’t take ages to get yourself situated in his life. Van is someone who is indispensable to him, but does he actually say that to her? Na uh.  What he does do is not talk to her, never thank her and even go as far to actually not protect her? What an ass.

But when he needs something, he goes to the only person whom he even remotely likes (not that he ever told her that, the jerk!) but he still expects that she would help him.

Aiden grew on me, you know? He is one of those characters that you know you won’t like at the start, his rudeness, his actions physically hurt me (not kidding!). The hurt and the humiliation that Van felt, was felt by me so acutely, that sometimes, I believed that I was Van.

But the way Aiden grew up, the subtleties of change in his behavior, were brilliantly captured by the author – I loved how those changes weren’t overly exuberant – unless you knew you had to look for it, you would never even know that the growth had actually occurred in Aiden and I especially loved how Van knew how to look for those subtleties – those behavioral actions, those simple gestures, the way she understood him, I couldn’t have done a better job in the pairing, if I had tried (and I am a fangirl. Believe I try very well!).

“Of all people I would ever want in my corner for moral support, here was the most unexpected one… and the biggest one. My friend. The keeper of my secrets. My moral support. My paperwork.”

And Van, oh my lord, she is an angel and I am not even kidding – because she knows her drawbacks and yet she strives to be the best sort human being she could ever be, and damn if she doesn’t succeed.

She took the best parts of her, and made sure that Aiden never got away with any crap – but did that mean, she didn’t still take care of him? She did – and she did in a way that Aiden noticed and believed.

She took him as he was and made sure that only the actions that hurt her, were called upon. That is a mark of one strong woman, especially, if she didn’t actually change the very essence of what made Aiden, Aiden.

This book is about subtleties, the subtleties of actions that make us realise whether we are treasured or abhorred – this is a book, that doesn’t talk about over the top actions that are seen by the whole world, but actions that are taken for the ones you love, even when there is no one to actually witness it.

This book about growth, about change, but mostly about building that quiet understanding between two people who are going to spend their lives together, each day on.

Two characters that slowly but surely took over my heart, my thoughts and honestly had me rooting for them, even without me knowing it? That is a brilliant book and definitely an author I would read more from.

“Maybe that was the thing about love I never understood before. Like football and art, like anything that anyone in the world ever wanted, love was a dream. And just like a dream, there were no assurances behind it. It didn’t grow on its own. It didn’t blossom without food to feed it.

It was the greatest in its subtleties.

It was the strongest in its selflessness.

And it could be forever with someone who wasn’t afraid to never give up on the possibilities it presents.”

My Rating (1)

⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Add To Goodreads (1)

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2 thoughts on “Review: The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata

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