From Dust (a Portland, ME, novel, #1)

From Dust (a Portland, ME, novel, #1)

by Freya Barker
4.9 8

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Overview

From Dust (a Portland, ME, novel, #1) by Freya Barker

*100,000+ words*

Pain punished her.

The bottle numbed her.

Guilt kept her trapped.

In the dark alley of a pub, the words “Please don’t” take hold of her heart and break the silence she seeks. Thinking herself beyond redemption, she tentatively grabs on to the slim thread of hope that unfolds inside of her. 

Holding her secrets close, she can’t resist the comforting draw coming from The Skipper. The unconditional friendships it offers, the protective roof it provides, and the spark that its owner ignites in her—melting the frost off her heart, and slowly stripping away her resistance.

His life flows from one crisis to the next. Under the pressure of competition crowding him out of his family’s pub and the need to protect his children from the ruins of a bad marriage, he barely breathes. That is until a mane of strawberry-blonde hair and a set of big, pale blue eyes, shake him up.

He never expected the shadow of a woman he finds on the floor of his washroom to bring him the air―the balance and the light he’s been missing.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940152319316
Publisher: Freya Barker
Publication date: 08/01/2015
Series: a Portland, ME, novel , #1
Sold by: Draft2Digital
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 482,204
File size: 488 KB

About the Author

Freya has always been creative. Involved in music and dance when she was younger, she followed it up with painting, cake design, quilting, and has most recently added cover design. Now the Dutch-born Canadian mother of two has found her voice - writing. For Freya Barker the next step to pen a book of her own seemed only natural after a life-time of reading. Driven to make her stories about 'real' people, Freya's characters are perhaps less than perfect, but just as deserving of romance, hot monkey sex and some thrills and chills in their lives!

Customer Reviews

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From Dust 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have readthis whole series so far, and can't get enough!
ReneeEntress More than 1 year ago
4.5 star I was pulled right into this story. The story has laughs, twists & turns, second chance a love, secrets, grief, abuse, and heartbreak. This is Sidney (Syd, bird) and Gunnar’s story. Sidney was living on the streets when Viv, the pub’s manager took a chance and hired her. Now she is slowly coming out of her shell but when Gunnar meets her she wants to run. When her place she was staying is torched he offers her the apartment above the pub. They get along and Gunnar wants to protect her but a misunderstanding has her running. Will they be able to track her down and bring her back? Will she want to come back? Will she believe that Gunnar want’s her with her past? Will she be able to open up to him and get him to understand what she is hiding and why? What happens when her past comes for her? Will she fall into herself or come out stronger then ever? I felt I was able to connect with the characters and the story was a great read. I highly recommend this book.
Honolulubelle More than 1 year ago
Favorite Quotes: “Years of frozen emotions are starting to thaw and the process is almost painful. How long has it been since someone cared? How long since I cared?” “I am rewarded with the same bright smile. It hits me right in the chest as well, but runs through me like a soft breeze, blowing the dust that has settled on my heart.” “My emotions seem to be coming alive under the influence of good people and warm food. My heart is defrosting and it hurts like my fingers do when warming up after being outside too long in the cold.” “I’ve been ground down by my loss; Only a collection of particles that threaten to be blown apart and scattered by a strong wind. I’ve only just begun to gather myself from dust. Another blow would surely decimate me.” “You are a beautiful man, Gunnar Lucas. And you don’t look half-bad either.” “I don’t care how long it takes, but I will remind you every time you struggle, what an amazing person you are, how much you are needed, and how deeply you are loved.” “I used to think I was dropped off by aliens when I was little and a bit over-imaginative. I can see why now. They are like something from a different planet, aren’t they?”… “Uranus, more than likely.” “Damn boy is virtually giddy; don’t think I can’t remember him like this since he fed his dog kibble soaked in rum, wanted to see what he’d look like drunk. He got his wish and a spanking from his dad that had his ten-year-old butt blue for a week.” My Review: From Dust consists of emotive, heart squeezing, insightful, and thoughtful writing. It was a deeply moving and thought provoking story, yet I did not find it maudlin or uncomfortably angsty, despite the tragic unpinnings of the premise. Freya Barker has mad skills and realistically flawed yet intelligent and lovable characters are one of her special gifts. I am deeply enamored with her style and could happily read her work every single day. The main character of Sydney seems more than cursed. She has been decimated by a tragic loss and bad luck seems to continually plague her. She became one of the unseen homeless and lived by her wits in a solitary manner for several years, yet she still managed to retain her intelligence, dignity, and insightful observations. When discovered dumpster diving for her dinner outside a wharf bar, she was enticed inside for a warm meal instead. Ragged, malnourished, and taciturn, she quietly assists and vastly improved the lives of her rescuers as she began to heal. The story never lagged or failed to keep me interested or invested, and despite the tragic history of the character that was revealed one layer at a time, Ms. Barker’s wry humor and uncanny insights retained the hope and light to the story while plucking at my heartstrings. I enjoyed this unique cast of characters and the big burly men with kind hearts most of all.
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by JJ Phillips for Readers' Favorite From Dust by Freya Barker is a romantic suspense that is tough, dark, and ultimately inspiring. It starts with Sydney Donner, a woman unsuccessfully trying to run from her mistakes. She lives in an abandoned shed next to a pub called The Skipper. Gunnar Lucas owns the pub, but he is too distracted as a single parent to pay too much attention when Sydney starts working at The Skipper. He can tell she has a secret. When the shed next to the pub catches on fire, he thinks he has finally figured out what her secret is. Eventually Sydney and Gunner put trust in one another, because a multitude of subplots comes into play and adds suspense and a mysterious twist to their now budding relationship. As the plot thickens, the characters grow until they are capable of letting go of the past and looking toward a bright future...perhaps together. From Dust is a good story that crossed a multitude of areas and topics, including parenting, working relationships, and class. I enjoyed Freya Barker's descriptions of Sydney when she was homeless. These scenes were incredibly detailed and made the story come to life in a way that I haven't experienced in a while. I also liked Gunnar's character. I liked that the male character was taking care of his children (a role reversal we don't always see in romantic suspense), and I liked the way he thought about Sydney and how he chose to act on those feelings.
JeriTRyan More than 1 year ago
“From Dust” by Freya Barker is one of those special books. One of those whose plotline and characters remain with you for days after you finished it. I loved the plot and the writing is solid. The characters are deep and I could feel for and with them every step along the way. Yes – maybe the storyline is predictable in some ways – BUT it is beautifully told and I really look forward to read more from this author. I encourage you to read this book and judge for yourself
nancy-h_ More than 1 year ago
From Dust by Freya Barker is an inspiration to anyone. This is an emotional read. Her characters are magnificently flawed. They are not perfect. They make mistakes. They learn. They grow. They survive. I adore Sydney. She is a strong woman. She is a broken little Bird learning to fly again. Gunner is my newest and most special book boyfriend. He is an alpha male looking out for those he loves. His attraction to Syd leads to a hot,sweet love. Its beautiful to watch both accept and receive the gift of trust, love and forgiveness. Together they face the past and reach for a bright future.
Maria-ObsessedbyBooks More than 1 year ago
Wow, this book is one intense read and well worth it. This is the first book that I have read by Freya and I am so glad I took a chance after reading the blurb. Be warned as this book will draw you in from the first page and take a hold of you and not let go until you have finished every last page. We meet Syd, who is a the lowest time of her life, living on the streets, with a cold shack to call home. In a chance meeting she meets someone that takes and chance on her and gives her a job at the Skipper a local pub only yards from the shack. Here Syd meets Gunner, a pure alpha male and we see things develop between them throughout the story. What we have here is a book where it tells a story of survival against all odds, of loss so severe that you will fall in to the depths of an abyss. But also a story of a woman who finds a new family and claws her way to happiness, even though at times she feels unworthy. A story of acceptance no matter what your past is. This is a heart-warming read, where at times you will be reaching for the tissues. A book that is truly a work of art, with a gripping storyline. If I was able to, I would give this read more than five stars. This is one read that I recommend to read 100% **** Received via Obsessed by Books ****
Bouscher99 More than 1 year ago
ARC provided via Netgalley Any book that can evoke the emotions that this one did is worthy of more than 5 stars! Laughing, tears and even anger…I felt them all. I was crying by the time I was 40% in! This is so well written that you can feel the emotions of the characters, it sucks you right in. This is my first book by this author and I’ve definitely found another one to add to my favorites list. This isn’t your “typical” romance, or at least what seems to have become typical. It’s real, it’s raw and it will rip your heart out at some points and then put it back together again. There’s a lesson to be learned from this one. Don’t judge people without giving them a chance to show you who they really are and, it shows generosity without expectation of anything in return. Syd experiences a tragedy that is absolutely heartbreaking and instead of supporting her through it, her so-called family turns on her…there are no words to describe how horrible her family is (this is where the ANGER comes into play!). When she had the opportunity, she ran and chose to live on the streets, secluding herself from everyone in order to dull the pain and the guilt caused by her loss and to avoid the risk of losing others…you can’t feel pain when you don’t allow yourself to have feelings. She doesn’t feel as though she deserves any better. Syd meets Viv first. She’s the manager at “The Skipper”, which is a pub local to where Syd sleeps, and gives Syd an opportunity for a job. By doing so, she opens the door to a genuine friendship and gives a lost soul a chance at recovery. The relationship between Gunnar and Syd is one that grows from employer/employee, to friendship to a love so deep and genuine it gave me goosebumps. I absolutely loved Gunnar; hot alpha male that is a softie at heart and will do anything for his family. Once Syd is accepted into The Skipper’s family, she opens up gradually and everyone around her learns that she is a very loyal, independent, strong, compassionate woman. Gunnar and his kids help to piece her heart back together and she finds happiness once again but, it’s a difficult road getting there. She and Gunnar will have to navigate their own rocky road to get there.