Author: Jen Frederick
Series: #2 in The Woodlands Series
Publish Date: September 3, 2013 in Paperback (Kindle 9/16/13)
How I got my copy: I was given this copy as an ARC in exchange for an honest review
Summary From GoodReads:
I’ve been called all these at Central College. One drunken night, one act of irresponsible behavior, and my reputation was ruined. Guys labeled me as easy and girls shied away. To cope, I stayed away from Central social life and away from Central men, so why is it that my new biology lab partner is so irresistible to me?
He’s everything I shouldn’t want. A former Marine involved in illegal fighting with a quick trigger temper and an easy smile for all the women. His fists aren’t the danger to me, though, it’s his charm. He’s sliding his way into my heart and I’m afraid that he’s going to be the one to break me.
Impulsive. Unthinking. Hot tempered.
I allow instinct to rule my behavior. If it feels good, do it, has been my motto because if I spend too much time thinking, I’ll begin to remember exactly where I came from. At Central College, I’ve got fighting and I’ve got women and I thought I was satisfied until I met her.
She’s everything I didn’t realize I wanted and the more time I spend with her, the more I want her. But she’s been hurt too much in the past and I don’t want to be the one to break her. I know I should walk away, but I just can’t…
What I thought….
W-O-W. I have been reading A TON lately, so characters are all over my brain right now, but I have to tell you in the past 24 hours the only thing on my mind has been Bo and AM. It was such a refreshing NA story – even from the description and cover I knew I wanted to read this! Bo and AM’s chemistry was palpable from the first page, that first class together – I could feel the electricity I swear! Bo had me from the first few pages, I can tell you that – I was head over heels for him. Same for AM – her courage and her determination even with everything else going on – amazed me. This book in general had my attention up front and center. I do work for a living (not that I woudln’t love to blog for a living – but it has yet to pay my bills – however it does support my book habit so that has to count for something right?) and I have not been able to even concentrate today while I was thinking about this book and what would happen next. I LOVED having the dual voices. Seeing a story from both sides and being inside both of the main character’s brains to see how they think has become my new favorite way to read a story – I feel like for me that makes both the characters much more real and I can understand where they are coming from. This might mean that sometimes the bone head things a guy does won’t seem all that horrible because I see why he thought that was ok (not that I’m excusing it at all) but without seeing inside Bo’s head here I may have thought he was a little more than a jerk in some places…
The POV was great, and I really enjoyed the story too. If you read a lot of romance (which I do obviously) then you will understand how some writers bring you to the point of madness waiting on the edge to see what’s going to happen, or bring you through the trenches and wrench your guts before you see things may even work out – but not Jen Frederick. I loved how she gave just the right amount of mystery, romance, angst, and also the great factor of amazing girlfriends and girls standing up for each other. I really liked that this is something I could see happening to someone, especially what happened to AM. I like that she made it real, and that AM was amazing while not being perfect – she was real. Bo’s story was also real – something too many people have to go through even today. I loved Bo and AM’s relationship too, the way they bantered and had fun, not just hot sexing all the time, they had it all and I think that made me love them as as couple more too – to see all of their moments. Some of the banter in the book made up my favorite parts – they were just so stinking cute together!! So overall, you can see I highly enjoyed this book and would absolutely reccommend it!
I’ll start with AM – girl’s first right? AM is a tough cookie. She had the unthinkable happen to her and despite her past and her fear, she did the best she could and she did NOT run away – the fact that she stayed spoke volumes to me. Her love of her friends and her family and her core loyalty all spoke to me. I also like that she didn’t make it easy for Bo – even though she wanted to be with him, she stuck to her guns and made him wait it out, work for it – and even when they got together it wasn’t a defined and easy thing – there is no forgone conclusion here.. In the end, I love the confidence she gained – she is a strong, independent woman and she showed that and I always enjoy a good female character.
No for Bo – oh BO… HOT.. Muscled…Smart..Marine.. SO many words come to mind, but when I think of Bo while at first that centered my mind from descriptions but once I got into his head, I thought..decent guy…good guy…loyal guy.. I knew he had some issues, I mean come on – all the fighting was for some reason – but once I saw what that was it made everything click together. I loved that he saw AM and wanted to be with her not for a challenge but because he wanted to just “be” with her – and wanted it to be for the right reason so he didn’t hurt her, even from the begining. I love that in the begining of the book he noticed her the semester before when he sat in front of her all semester – just showing that she was more noticable then than even she tought. Bo is a loyal friend, a good guy, and a great man – that’s all there really is to say. Oh – and his impression of Lloyd Dobber’s move in “Say Anything” will be one of my favorite book moments for all time I feel sure – *Swoon*
The Take-Away Thoughts:
1. Read the book – maybe now if you can make that happen. If you want a paperback, go for it – if you want it for Kindle unfortunately looks like 9/16 is the day – but I can tell you now it’s worth the wait.
2. Love the book – how can you not? And tell me about it once you’ve read it – asap! Let’s compare swooning moments!
3. 5/5 Stars for this one – hands down – it’s an absolute re-reader – so invest the $ and buy it. I woudln’t even mind owning this in paperback.
Now my final thoughts:
I just loved this story, Bo and AM. I liked the characters built into their world and the story itself. It was real and I know I say this a lot but that matters to me, I don’t like especially romance books that just seem so fake and cheesy – like this could never happen to you type of stuff. I like the real, butterflies in my stomach books that make me realize love is still out there – true love and true love stories still happen! I’m a total romantic at heart if you cannot tell. The writing was amazing and the characters – were also great. I like in this story that AM didn’t make it easy, even though she could have – she worked for it and made Bo do the work too – so will they work out? That’s my last thought – and I want you to find out.. They want it, they want to let the past go and move forward– but will it work out? That’s for you to find out, and I hope you do and share with me! I was not dissappointed even one little bit – I was right when I knew this book was for me and I hope you will feel the same way.
My very last thought is this: How did I not know that there was a first book in this series – until I checked the author’s website I had no idea about “Undeclared” and now my whole day has been made. You know I’ve already been online to Amazon and it’s waiting patiently on my Kindle for me to get off tonight and devour! I cannot wait! And the one thing I thought through this whole book is that they did bring Noah and Grace up – but what ws their story, I was hoping to hear it next and now to know it’s already there for me – Amazing! Plus – a bonus – other stories are on the way too – Finn and Mal and I’m hoping Grey (that name is just HOT!). All right, I’m putting my antics to bed now, you all know I loved it, want you to read it, am begging you to read it, and to read “Undeclared” too – if you are waiting for a Kindle version now is the perfect time to read “Undeclared” and then you can start “Unspoken” next – see perfect timing, right?? Now check out some amazing quotes from the story and then go BUY it!
“Am I feeling sorry for myself?” Bo asked, a rueful smile playing around the edges of his mouth. “Yes, and if you act like this any more, I’m going to start calling you Edward.” “Wow, is that the insult we’re using instead of pussy?” “It’s the male version.”
“You know what she’s planning?” Noah whispered. “Nope. I’m just here to catch her.” And hold her, comfort her, and beat the shit out of anyone who made her cry.”
“Now whenever you feel alone, know that I’ve got your back. No matter who’s against you, know that a thousand others wait to avenge you.” “But I’m not a Marine,” I whispered back, my voice catching on the tears threatening to spill out. “You’re a fighter, Sunshine. Plus, you belong to this Marine.”
Well that’s all. I really hope you will all check it out. I can’t even do it justice, even with everything written above – it’s something you need to read for yourself. If you are into romance, hot guys, military hot guys, love, NA novels, or all of the above – it’s for you!