At 21, Calla hasn’t done a lot of things. She’s never been kissed, never seen the ocean, never gone to an amusement park. But growing up, she witnessed some things no child ever should. She still carries the physical and emotional scars of living with a strung-out mother, Mona—secrets she keeps from everyone, including her close circle of college friends.
But the safe cocoon Calla has carefully built is shattered when she discovers her mom has stolen her college money and run up a huge credit card debt in her name. Now, Calla has to go back to the small town she thought she’d left behind and clean up her mom’s mess again. Of course, when she arrives at her mother’s bar, Mona is nowhere to be found. Instead, six feet of hotness named Jackson James is pouring drinks and keeping the place humming.
Sexy and intense, Jax is in Calla’s business from the moment they meet, giving her a job and helping her search for Mona. And the way he looks at her makes it clear he wants to get horizontal . . . and maybe something more. Before Calla can let him get close, though, she’s got to deal with the pain of the past—and some very bad guys out to mess her up if she doesn’t give them her mom.
After Be With Me I vowed I’d never buy another J Lynn (Jennifer L Armentrout’s New Adult books) again. They just weren’t really doing it for me. But hey if the library has a copy and the summary is halfway interesting, I’ll give it a chance.
Result: Better than Be With Me, but the title could’ve been shortened by about two hundred pages and it still probably would’ve been too long.
It took me about a week to read this one.
That’s never a good thing since even when I’m at my most busy I can usually knock back four hundred pages at most in three days.
Ugh, this book.
What I did Like:
- The Focus on Plot For Once: For once we have a plot and I do think it helped with the story by making me finish it. And while the plot wasn’t a favorite of mine it had its moments. Yes, they were overly dramatic and there were points I wanted to be like-come on-but it was at least refreshing to see something happen.
- Calla: I like the ideal of Calla. I like that she isn’t traditionally pretty (though save for her scar she is described as being gorgeous). The idea of someone dealing with physical scars, actually was really a good one because most people aren’t book model perfect. So, Armentrout I’ll give you that. Though the execution…we’ll save that for the What I Utterly Despised Section.
- The Non-College Setting: Glad to see some New Adult happening outside of campus. I like the bar/small town setting. Though I felt that Calla seemed a little too much like a fish out of water, despite the fact that she grew up in said town.
- Cameo Easter Eggs: I like how there was a cameo of a couple of characters that were non Wait For You universe. They weren’t Dameon Black, but hey…if you’ve read some of Armentrout’s other books it’s still nice to see nods to the past characters.
What I Sort of Liked
- Jax: Up until the last hundred pages I liked this guy. Okay, his devotion to Calla was sort of fast. But I thought he was sweet. And I like that he wasn’t a traditional BMOC. What I didn’t like was how non-challant he was about a clingy ex-girlfriend. Calla deserved better than that. Also, man up and tell her the truth about the bar. It was pretty obvious to me and I don’t even live in your stupid town, dude.
- The Melodrama: While I always find melodrama entertaining, there’s points I want to say come on. And this book has it. To be fair, this J Lynn book uses different types of melodrama than the previous books-there’s no violence towards women in this book. Just living with a crack head. And honestly, I thought some of this was ridiculously handled. Especially the ending.
What I Utterly Despised
- The Pacing: This book was waaay too long. I really think it could’ve lost two hundred or so pages and still might’ve been too long. I felt like there needed to be more to the arc. But it’s hard to pinpoint just what. I think it might’ve been that the love story seemed a little unrealistic to me. While it isn’t exactly insta love, I thought Jax’s attraction to Calla was a little too obvious. It just really didn’t work for me. Also, I felt like whenever the book felt like it was too boring Armentrout would randomly throw in some unrealistic event to make me want to read more. It really didn’t work for me.
- Calla: While I like the idea of her, I don’t like the execution. I just wanted this character to be a little more active than passive. Way too passive for my liking. And really, why can’t she actually do something more than mope, get someone to rescue her, and lust over Jax.
- Catch Phrases/Repeated Phrases: Please, stop with the repetitive catch phrases. It’s like fetch, it’s not catching on with me. Maybe it works for some people. But not moi.
Believe it or not, I did like this one better than Be With Me. I thought I could buy Jax and Calla a little more than Jase and Teresa. Not that it’s great.
It was extremely boring for me, but it will have it’s fans.
I don’t regret my decision to only read J Lynn books via the library. However, the quality of this book has me sort of disappointed. The past few Armentrout books I’ve read (two books in the Dark Elements series and Don’t Look Back) have been fairly decent if not good. It’s a shame that this one sort of interrupted that trend.
Overall Rating: C. Good ideas, sloppy execution.