So far, I am really enjoying this series. It provides a fun contemporary read set within a family dynamic that I really enjoy. The first book featured Ethan, the oldest brother of the family and the pariah for abandoning the younger two, Nash and Dare, when their parents died suddenly when all three were teenagers. Nash is the middle brother and, like in most family dynamics, the most willing to hold a grudge. I liked the development of the relationship between Nash and Ethan in this book. Actually, that is probably my favorite thing about this book. I love how their relationship is evolving and becoming more rather than just confrontational. I love that this motley crew of a family is starting to grow back together, even though it is incredibly painful for them to get there.
Adding to that pain are Kelly and Tess. Tess is the half-sister, and teenage rebel, to the three Barron brothers. Kelly is her half sister on the other side of the family. Kelly is NOT a blood relation to the Barron boys, even though the family dynamic here is a little convoluted. Kelly & Nash are incredibly drawn to each other, even though they realize that a romance may not be the best thing for their troubled half sister. (You know, the family dynamic didn't seem as weird when I was reading the book as it does now, typing up this review...LOL!) Yes, it's a little odd, but it's a romance novel. You are expected to suspend disbelief a little bit.
I also really liked Nash's personal evolution in this book. Nash is a lawyer and he sees things in black or white. He is pretty staid in his beliefs and not very forgiving when someone does something that he doesn't agree with. When his solid world falls apart, he has to re-examine himself and how he reacts to other people. There is a huge character growth arc that really helped me to enjoy this book more. I thought that it was really creative how Carly used Nash & Annie's marriage and subsequent divorce/friendship to illustrate his issues so clearly. This is a great book on the sociology of people and why people react the way that they do. Nash had no control over what happened in his life at 16, so he has done everything in his power to control every aspect of it ever since.
What I didn't enjoy about this book were those nagging little details like how Nash and Kelly are *almost* related. Also, she has an issue that isn't really an issue. It just has the appearance of one. Just like how Nash and Kelly have the appearance of being related. They were nagging little things that were surface items only, but both of those things are seriously taboo, which lent almost a tainted air to the book. I didn't enjoy that aspect of it. I wish that the story could have been written with a slightly different dynamic so that it didn't have that minuscule taint. It just kind of gave the book a slightly weird feel, but that's probably just me...
Personally, I cannot wait for Dare's book. I loved the little glimpses that we saw of his cracks. I think that his is going to be a pretty powerful story!
- Mass Market Paperback: 296 pages
- Publisher: Berkley Pub Group; Berkley Mass-Ma edition (12 April 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0425245748
- ISBN-13: 978-0425245743
- Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 1.9 x 17.1 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 118 g
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