Monday, April 11, 2016

{Book Review} Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
Published: May 26th, 2011 by Jamie McGuire
Series: Beautiful #1
Source: Bought
Genre: NA, Romance
Pages: 319

The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University's Walking One-Night Stand.

Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.

This book took an emotional toll on me!  I can’t really put my finger on why I LOVED this book SO much, but I know that I am not the only one.  From looking at reviews, I think that this is a book that you will either love or hate.  I did have a lot of conflict when it came to rating this book, but overall, I had to go with how much I enjoyed the book and the emotions that it made me feel.  This book was defiantly the start of a new Jaime McGuire obsession!

The writing of this book was good, but was not mind-blowing.  I think that the writing had that addictive quality that makes readers want to read late into the night.  It was easy to get self-absorbed into McGuire’s great story telling.  I had found myself absolutely in love with this book within the first couple of chapters.  I also thought the pacing of this book was perfect.  It was steady, with several faster-paced scenes that made my heart race.

I really LOVED the characters in this book.  Abby was a great main protagonist and instantly felt connected with her emotions.  I did find that occasionally the decisions she made or some of her dialogue did not seem to match with her character development.  I also really loved America, Abby’s best friend.  I thought she was spunky and realistic.  Her friendship with Abby was great and was nostalgic to friendships I experienced in college myself.  America is the reason why I am so excited to read the novella that focuses on her relationship with Shepley.

I think that the reason why most people had problems with this book was Travis and his relationship with Abby, I know I did.  This was the one reason I questioned my rating for this book.  Is Travis the ideal book boyfriend? No. Was his relationship with Abby unhealthy? Most defiantly.  But I still loved it.  That being said, I am an adult who can differentiate between reality and fiction, but I think that it might be harder for younger readers to not feel like they want to find a love like Travis and Abby’s.  I think that the college setting and the friendships seemed to make their relationship seem less toxic, but once you move it into the real world, any self-confident women would not put up with Travis’s anger and possessiveness.  That being said, I did like Travis as a character and really enjoyed the drama that he always seemed to stir up.  I was hoping that his character would grow more and become more mature, but that did not happen.

The romance in this book was super angsty.  It was a constant will they/won’t they, which was very entertaining.  I did find myself rooting for them to finally admit that they loved each other, but it did get annoying how many times they were torn apart over unrealistic events.  I find it interesting that what kept Abby questioning her relationship with Travis was not the fact that he would constantly fly off the handle and either beat up people or threaten too, but that she thought she was not good enough for him.  I wish that Abby would have been more concerned over Travis’s behavior and question that fact that he seemed to obsessively rely on her.

Overall, I would not recommend young readers to read this book because of the toxic relationship and mature content.  I think that individuals who like NA contemporary romance, will really enjoy this book.  I am defiantly planning on continuing on with this series and look into other books that Jaime McGuire has written.  If her other books are as good as this, she will defiantly make it onto my auto-buy book list.


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