Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A well-written book about a sensitive topic

Author: Tammara Webber
Genre: NA (New Adult)
Content Rating: R for, you know…
Coffee Beans: 4
Favorite Line:
Personal Recommendation: Read it. Now
Cover Appeal: Awesome sauce
Instalove Factor: None present
Spoliers: Yes, sort of. But I warn you when

Publisher’s Summary:

A girl who believes trust can be misplaced, promises are made to be broken, and loyalty is an illusion. A boy who believes truth is relative, lies can mask unbearable pain, and guilt is eternal. Will what they find in each other validate their conclusions, or disprove them all?

When Jacqueline follows her longtime boyfriend to the college of his choice, the last thing she expects is a breakup two months into sophomore year. After two weeks in shock, she wakes up to her new reality: she's single, attending a state university instead of a music conservatory, ignored by her former circle of friends, and failing a class for the first time in her life.

Leaving a party alone, Jacqueline is assaulted by her ex's frat brother. Rescued by a stranger who seems to be in the right place at the right time, she wants nothing more than to forget the attack and that night--but her savior, Lucas, sits on the back row of her econ class, sketching in a notebook and staring at her. Her friends nominate him to be the perfect rebound.

When her attacker turns stalker, Jacqueline has a choice: crumple in defeat or learn to fight back. Lucas remains protective, but he's hiding secrets of his own. Suddenly appearances are everything, and knowing who to trust is anything but easy.

My Review:

Easy is a very convoluted, detailed book. And not in a bad way. I tried explaining it to my friend when she asked what it was about, and I realized, at the end of my sloppy description, that there is A LOT going on in the story. Let’s see if I can make it better this time around.

Mostly, this book is about Jacqueline’s journey through coping with the fact that she was assaulted and almost raped by someone she knew, and then her relationship with Lucas. But mostly her relationship with Lucas and him helping her and her being empowered to deal with what happened to her.

See? Even that was messy.  *sigh*

Let’s get out of the way what I didn’t like (and this is a bit of a spoiler, so skip a head if you don’t want to read this). There were two things.

1.       She has this attraction to Lucas, a guy in her econ class. He’s super cute, a bad boy, and according to her friends--the perfect rebound guy from her recent break-up. So, she toys with him. He plays along. They make out and then at class the next day, they completely ignore each other like nothing ever happened. Like the hadn’t even met!! That, to me, was frustrating and a tad unbelievable. But not a deal breaker.

2.       Because of said break-up, (and the assault) she’s in a hot, emotional mess, and skips two weeks of her econ class because her ex is taking it, too. The teacher says she can take up tutoring with the TA (who she’s never met) to catch up on what she missed and then get a project assignment to make up for her midterm. His name is Landon.





Anyone else seeing what’s being set up here? To me, it was completely obvious that they were the same guy. Like, 100%, no bones about it. I can’t believe Jacqueline didn’t pick up on it.

So those were the only two issues I had. The rest is all good.

The writing of Tammara is very, very good. It seems, with these types of books (I don’t know if they have an official genre or not. But you know the ones; Beautiful Disaster, Crash/Clash, 50 Shades), writing seems to come secondary to all the other “stuff”. But with Tammara, writing and telling the story comes first. And it’s soooo well done. All of it.

I enjoyed the characters immensely. Jacqueline was a real person with believable actions and thoughts, her friend Erin was saucy and offered strength, wisdom, and comedic relief. And Lucas was actually a strong male character in this book. And not just physically strong (cuz he was that, too), but he was mature and reasonable and was kinda just a normal guy (thank you, Tammara. There aren’t enough Lucas’ in YA/NA/Crossover books).

I LOVED how Tammara talked about the importance of a female knowing that being raped isn’t their fault. That it’s not something to be ashamed of, and it’s okay to get help. She delivered all the important information and the truth of the situation in a natural way and at no time did I feel like I was reading a PSA (public service announcement).

I’ll tell you this, I’m signing up for a self-defense class after reading this book.

One thing I do wish, that she added a little more to the stalker element of the story. I think that would have added a bit more depth to the plot, given it a bit more to sink my teeth into.

And I loved that this was a standalone book. Can you tell that I’m not really into books that are setting up a series?

Happy reading, my friends!


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