Category/Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: April 2013
Source: Received from author for review.
A dark New Adult romance
You have to understand that we never meant for it to happen. We knew it was stupid. We knew it was wrong.
Eighteen-year-old Danni Warren has big plans for her last summer before college: a cool job, a concert she wouldn’t miss for the world, and spending time with her beautiful girlfriend, Esme. But after one hell of an argument, Danni’s mother packs her off to stay with her estranged step-uncle, Gabe, in his lodge on the English coast. So begins a weekend of the worst punishment imaginable: no phone signal.
With his sun kissed good looks and sarcastic manner, twenty-nine-year-old Gabe Asher isn’t anything like Danni expected. She wants to hate him—he’s her punishment for standing up to her mother—but between surfing lessons and beach hikes, Gabe and Danni grow close. Maybe too close.
Now Danni’s questioning everything: old family secrets, her future, her strained relationship with Esme. One sun stained afternoon, Gabe and Danni go too far. And then everything else falls apart…
Danni is an 18 year old girl who is sent to spend the weekend in the middle of nowhere with her mom's step-brother, who (whom?) she hasn't seen since she was a small child. So Gabe, the non-uncle as he is usually referred to, is 29 and totally smoking hot. Having the name Gabriel Asher just screams it really, so he had to be! The premise of this taboo take on things completely had my interest. And unfortunately for me, I clearly did not read the blurb close enough or too fast, and missed the part where Danni is the one with the girlfriend. I honestly thought Gabe was who that was going to be about so I started it thinking he was going to be a typical grade A jerk, and it took me a bit to get on track with where the story was going instead of where I thought it to be going.
I always feel a little funny with the whole cheating plot line. I hate it, and I hate myself when I don't feel bad about it happening, at all. This book twisted my emotions, pun intended, and I flip flopped every few pages about how I felt about Danni. Esme was...controlling and possessive, and really judgey. I didn't like her, but at the same time felt really, really bad for her. Danni tried to have her...cake, yeah cake is what I'm going with here, and eat it too, and THAT'S when I wanted to shake her like a shake weight. She really was in a huge shit storm of her own creation, and I really couldn't feel a bit sorry for her. I have a favorite series that has a bisexual character, and you never for a second doubt or are confused about this part of him. I think Danni's age played a huge role in this confusion, but a lot of what she said and did made me side with Esme on questioning her feelings and intentions. She never even told her girlfriend that she thought she was bisexual. I'm no expert, but in my opinion that is a very big deal when the other person thinks you are on the same page as them, not matter what sexual orientation.
On the flip side though, it was an interesting array of events that was truly a coming of age story. Even when I didn't get it, I had to tell myself this girl is 18 years old, and we're inside her head 100% of the time. She thinks she is wise and knows what's up, but it is painfully obvious that she has some growing up to do. I am drawn to these sorts of things, not only because I got married when I was 18 and have a different story than most college age people, but I like stories that are different like this one and opens my eyes. I like to pretend "I would NEVER have acted like that when I was that age," but we all know that really who the hell knows. I digress. The point is I liked this story because you're right there with Danni navigating all of these adult situations, with a newly adult mindset. She has a teenage view when she thinks that just because she's in her Gabe bubble and being sneaky, people won't be on to her.
I was quite surprised to be honest with the end of the story, and Danni's growth and maturity finally shined through. After all of the drama and heartache she caused, it was especially nice to find out where everyone ended up.
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About the author:
Lucy writes sharp contemporary fiction, usually with a liberal splatter of filth. She is a Lyrical Press author and a screenwriter.
Her upcoming new adult novel, TWISTED SUMMER, is a gutsy take on forbidden love starring an even gutsier heroine.
Her contemporary series, encompassing CHAIRMAN OF THE WHORED and THE WHORED'S PRAYER, features slick London lawyers with a penchant for sensual violence. It's definitely on the darker side. BEAUTIFUL MESS, her current release, is a snarky, sexy friends-to-lovers romp.
Lucy is currently working on new novels, and is developing a paranormal television series with producers (think The Vampire Diaries meets The 4400).
She is still trying to kick her dirty Pepsi habit.
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