RELEASE DAY REVIEW – Dirt by Cassia Leo

Title: Dirt
Author: Cassia Leo
Series: Evergreen #1
Release Date: January 12, 2018

Jack and I had everything. Then, in one brutal instant, the universe tilted on its side, discarding us into black nothingness.

Now, I have a cocky a**hole for a husband.

The only way we communicate anymore is when we’re fighting or f**king.

With nothing left to lose, I write Jack a goodbye letter and head for Portland, where I quickly meet a neighbor who helps me find a job.

My new neighbor—broody, tattooed ex-soldier Isaac Evans—is complicated. Nevertheless, we form a fast friendship, bonding over our mutual desire to create something beautiful from the wreckage of our lives.

But despite the distance between us, Jack and I are still trying to make things work—fighting and f**king dirtier than ever. And he doesn’t appreciate my new friendship with Isaac. Not one f**king bit.

Cassia Leo has the beginning of an intriguing new series on her hands with Dirt. Laurel’s story was heartbreaking, surprising, and an emotional rollercoaster from start to finish. I didn’t really have any expectations going into this book, other than the promise that the author would stomp on my heart a few times. Cassia Leo certainly delivered, serving up a journey that was darker and more twisted than I could have imagined. Laurel, Jack, and Isaac made for a web of complicated feelings and unexpected ties that has me anxious to see where this story will eventually end up.

“What have we done to each other?”

I absolutely adored Laurel. She was understandably broken and yet there was something so beautifully resilient about her. I loved her quiet strength and the determination she demonstrated in picking up the pieces of her life to build something new. She had her moments of weakness of course, particularly when it came to Jack, but I’m excited to see how she continues to grow over the course of the series. To be honest, I couldn’t stand Jack. His relationship with Laurel seemed shallow and rooted in lust. Throw in his lying, manipulation, and obsessive behavior and I just couldn’t connect with him at all. Isaac, on the other hand, totally intrigued me. His own pain was obvious and yet he seemed to get what Laurel needed and understood her in a way Jack just didn’t. While I loved seeing them spend time together, I think the development of an emotional connection between Laurel and Isaac was lacking a bit and I needed more depth in order for me to really invest in their potential. 

“Sometimes, all someone needs is for one good person to say yes instead of no.”

Cassia Leo’s writing captured a myriad of complex emotions, giving readers a glimpse of life-altering heartache, devastating pain, and persistent hope. Fast paced and written to leave you wanting more, Dirt made me feel and kept me reading. Knowing there are more books to come in this series, I know the characters have a long way to go before we see them settle. I can say with full confidence that I have no clue where Laurel, Jack, and Isaac will end up and I am definitely curious to find out. With a trio of deeply broken characters and the promise of plenty of twists to come, Cassia Leo dives into what will undoubtedly be a fascinating new series with Dirt.


I’ve been dying for a new series from Cassia Leo for what seems like forever. When I heard about Dirt, the first book in the Evergreen series, I am not ashamed to say that I did a dance of giddy excitement. I dove into this novel with my heart open, ready to be torn apart, but I got something completely different. Dirt left me shocked and speechless, with a mind reeling from all that I had encountered.

“If it’s not the fight-me-tooth-and-nail, leave-me-bloody-and-gasping-for-air kind of love, I don’t want it.”

The heroine, Laurel, was undoubtedly my favorite part of this entire book. I loved her search for independence and the attempts to gain control back of her life. Though she may not have felt it, she was strong simply for surviving the tragedy that she had faced. It was in those moments of living, not just surviving, that I caught glimpses of this character’s true personality and likened me to her. On the other hand, her husband Jack drove me up a wall. He was a character with a personality that made me want to slap him seven ways to Sunday. He had a couple moments of likeability, but they were few and far between for this reader. The communication between these two was severely lacking, which left me wishing for a bit more to help relate to them as a couple. I do wish that we had more chapters from Isaac as well. His personality and brokenness intrigued me immensely. The glimpses we caught of his struggles made me curious for more, and I do hope we receive them in future novels.

“Isn’t there some sort of limit on how many times someone can break a promise before the other person has to say enough is enough?”

Cassia Leo has a special way with words. Whether she is writing angst, sadness, or more lightheartedness, the way she pulls readers in is incomparable. I’ll definitely be sticking around to see how the rest of the books in the series unfold, but I have a feeling Leo is not done with the mind games yet!


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Don’t miss the rest of the series:

Seed (Evergreen #2)

Add to Goodreads
Buy on Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Amazon AU

Bloom (Evergreen #3)

Add to Goodreads
Buy on Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Amazon AU

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