Love Me Breathless… Because Romance Never Dies by Mary-Lisa Russo

A lyrical, vivid, and immersive collection…

In poetic language that’s both contemporary and ageless, debut author Russo brings vivid life to romantic love and longing. She beautifully captures what is both raw and relatable about romantic love, such as the first glimpse of a new love, the longing, the passion that burns the heart, the exhilarating highs, and the fears and the insecurities. The protagonist pours her innermost self and her love for her soulmate, a love she feels is boundless in “Loyalty.” Russo’s lyrical style gives “Forever Fire” an undeniable pull, its emotionally charged free verse reflecting the protagonist’s immense passion: “I have a fever./ A warmth that emanates from my skin,/ but I know/ this heat originates from deep within my bones/ and it only intensifies when you are near.” Materialistic rather than metaphysical, these poems are concerned with connection: “Love./ It is an ocean/ that is never-ending,/ always searching,/ grasping and expanding,/ stronger than muscle or bone,/ more powerful than the human mind,/ for since the beginning of time,/ love is a quest for our own holy grail.” Through her protagonists’ longing, Russo gives the sense of an author documenting every thought along with the individual moments including tenderness, passion, ecstasy, and revelations. Deep passion sprawls across the pages in “The Reason.” There’s a hint of loneliness and despair of separation in “Right Place, Right Time,” but the collection stays upbeat and hopeful ultimately. In “Love On Fire,” Russo uses second-person narrative to intensify the closeness between the reader and the subject: “We will burn everything/ and everyone around us/ with one sweeping glance/ from our smoldering eyes…” At its heart, this is an intimate exploration of love in its many forms, with the protagonists’ growing love for their soulmates reigning supreme. 

Love Me Breathless… Because Romance Never Dies 

Mary-Lisa Russo

Coming soon



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