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Before I Let Go by Kennedy Ryan

Before I Let Go

by Kennedy Ryan

Quick take

All the right ingredients are there, but can this divorced couple find a way to make their romantic recipe work again?

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Emotional


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_400

    400+ pages

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_MarriageIssues

    Marriage issues

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Foodie



Their love was supposed to last forever. But when life delivered blow after devastating blow, Yasmen and Josiah Wade found that love alone couldn’t solve or save everything.

It couldn’t save their marriage.

Yasmen wasn’t prepared for how her life fell apart, but she’s finally starting to find joy again. She and Josiah have found a new rhythm, co-parenting their two kids and running a thriving business together. Yet like magnets, they’re always drawn back to each other, and now they’re beginning to wonder if they’re truly ready to let go of everything they once had.

Soon, one stolen kiss leads to another . . . and then more. It’s hot. It’s illicit. It’s all good—until old wounds reopen. Is it too late for them to find forever? Or could they even be better, the second time around?

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Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of Before I Let Go.

Why I love it

I teared up (and laughed, and sighed, and cheered) many, many, many times while reading Kennedy Ryan’s new masterpiece, Before I Let Go. There is a specific scene, though, that I’ll carry in my heart forever: Yasmen—mother, ex-wife, restaurant owner, all-around superwoman, severely depressed person in recovery—is asked by her therapist to set a date to forgive herself for the choices she made in the past. After thinking about it long and hard, she says: “Today. Write down today.”

If you have any sort of experience with depression, the adept way Kennedy Ryan writes about mental health will doubtlessly resonate with you. Her prose is lyrical, full of gut punches and breathtaking images, perfect to convey the struggles of grief, self-doubt, and loneliness. But I don’t want people to get the wrong idea, because Before I Let Go is not a sad book. On the contrary, it’s fundamentally a story of hope and healing. At its center are Yasmen and Josiah: two soulmates who are deeply in love, have built a life together, and manage to find their way back to that life following a tragedy. It is a tearjerker, but also sexy, funny, witty, and swoony. It celebrates the importance of family ties, resilience, and communication. Before I Let Go is, at heart, a romance—and a perfect one at that.

It takes an immensely talented kind of writer to create a piece of work that’s raw and gritty, but also dreamy and romantic. This book is the real deal, and Kennedy Ryan is one of the best voices of this generation.

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Member ratings (3,556)

  • Alexis A.

    Birmingham, AL

    I can’t believe I loved a romance book! I loved seeing Yasmen & Josiah find their way back to each other. I also enjoyed the different serious topics the author discussed in the book. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

  • Cayla B.

    Niles, OH

    Wow! What a beautiful story. I loved going along their journey from the dual points of view. So many real emotions and you couldn’t help but root for the characters to find their ways to healing ❤️‍????

  • Shalane H.

    Hayward, CA

    I can’t even explain how much I loved this book. It was so good. It moved me. I got wrapped up in it immediately, and couldn’t put it down. I laughed, I cried, I felt hope. And so much more. 5/5 ⭐️!

  • Jennifer K.

    Lakewood , CO

    5⭐️ This book was beautiful. The pain and suffering that you could feel through the pages was heartbreaking but the strength and love was so uplifting to witness. I loved and felt this story so much!

  • Sarah K.

    Union City, CA

    I've enjoyed the novels by Kennedy Ryan that I've read. You can feel the emotion between the 2 characters. The reason they fell apart and how they eventually find themselves back together believable