Until I Knew Myself by Tammy L. Gray – Contemporary about Healing and Grace

Friday, June 1, 2018

Book Review: Until I Knew Myself by Tammy L. Gray Contemporary about Healing and Grace

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Author: Tammy L. Gray | Publisher: Indie Published
Publication Date: 2018 | Series: Brentwood, Book 1
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary, Adult Fiction
Source: Author provided – thank you, Tammy
FIND the BOOK ELSEWHERE: Amazon | Goodreads
Amazon | Blogger | Goodreads | Wordpress
Rating: ★★★★

Though he grew up without a biological family, Tyler Mitchell was surrounded by a loving family. This included his best friend and Beck's parents, a circle of close friends, and eventually his girlfriend, Journey. But now, many years later, everyone is grown up, and somehow, they’ve all found their own lives… and have forgotten their once tight-knit bond.

Tyler and Journey are no longer dating, and when Tyler learns a secret about his past, even his friendship with Beck suddenly crashes. With the introduction of a new friend, and the heartbreak in their respective love stories, will this group of friends recover to find their happier past?

Beautiful though Until I Knew Myself is, it has a few flaws. One of the things that I think hinders the reader experience is the multiple POV switch off. Perhaps “hinder” isn’t the right word because the changes aren’t ill timed nor do the transitions seem “off,” but still, I think there was too many perspectives. Or maybe it’s simply a personal preference since I don’t recall ever being confused as to who’s story I was in, which is often the troublesome factor in many multiple POV stories. Tammy’s has an ease about it that made the story feel polished and more intricate.

As the reader works deeper into this story, one thing that is alarmingly clear is the author’s feelings about this story. Each of the characters has deep-seated emotions, which must mean, the author also went through all the feels while telling their stories. Whether it’s the scars of one character’s abandoned past or a thread which involves a character running from the past, these stories have purpose. The characters are likable, though their stories are less about happiness and more about discovering what’s really important.

Most of this novel isn’t cheery in the same ways so many favorite contemporary authors are. That said, this novel IS stunning - so much so, I'm anxious to discover how this group of characters will end up in the follow up novel. Until I Knew Myself is emotional and surprising in many ways. The characters experience a roller-coaster of emotions, and as readers, we relish the journey with them towards a brighter future. ♥

Content Note: this does have some allusion to couples living together or spending night's together, but nothing graphic.

Synopsis: Tyler Mitchell grew up an orphan, taken in by his best friend’s family when he was only sixteen. Even though ten years have passed, and he’s been given everything he should ever want—a loving home, an adoring girlfriend, a successful career, and lifelong friendships—Tyler has always felt a foreigner in his own life.

When a surprising phone call reveals the death of his biological grandfather, Tyler’s seemingly perfect life starts to unravel. The people he loves most in world have kept from him the greatest secret of all—knowledge of his father’s family.

Now hunting for more information about his past, Tyler discovers nothing is quite as it seems. And the definition of family is far more complicated than choosing between blood and loyalty. – Goodreads

Coming Next from Tammy L. Gray: Nine years to win her. Three years to love her. And one decision that destroyed it all.

April Duncan was raised with three clear truths: the family name is absolute, ambition and success rule over every emotion, and love always comes with strings attached. Image was everything in her carefully crafted world... until the mirror cracked.

Sean Taylor was April's best friend, the one man who taught her it was okay to let her guard down and to rely on someone. She trusted him. She loved him. Which made his deception the darkest kind of cruelty.

Now, nearly a year later, she’s ready to leave her failed engagement in the past and get back her life and her estranged family, even if it means dating a man solely for his connections. She’ll never again choose love over loyalty.

Sean has spent his entire life breaking barriers, facing challenges, and never giving up. Until one impossible choice destroyed his future and left him no option but to flee from the woman who annihilated his heart.

Now he’s back in Bentwood and determined to make her hear the truth and rebuild the trust he shattered. But April has become a mere shell of the woman who claimed his heart long ago.

Winning her back is more than just seizing a victory, because if he fails… the girl he’s loved for a lifetime will disappear forever. - Goodreads

Sincere thanks to the author for providing a copy of this book; all opinions are my own.


  1. Great review! I'm not sure what to expect when I read this book, but I'm excited to. All of the emotions and character history are bound to make a compelling read. I've already preordered the second, too.

    1. YAY! Hope you enjoy. Let me know what you think if/when you're able to read this one. :)


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