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This review is also available on my blog, Bows & Bullets Reviews
Penny Wright has loved Mason Trent for years. He is her twin brothers best friend and, as a result, also a close friend of hers. When things between them shift to friends with benefits territory, she is sure she can handle it. Having part of him is better than none, right? Until she sees him with other women, which breaks her heart. Now, after too many months of torment, she is determined to win him over, to have him all to herself, no more sharing...and she is willing to do whatever necessary to make it happen.
Penny was a character that instantly got on my nerves and it doesn't really improve throughout the novel. She has some growth, but I had a hard time believe anything she did that didn't fit into my mental image of her. On page 1, she is a spoiled rich girl with little care for anything besides her brother and winning over Mason. After that point, we get to see various other talents and interests, but they just didn't quite match my grasp of the character. My grasp could have been way off, but it is still how I felt. Every time she'd give a business suggestion or do something seemingly nice, I felt like it was the author trying to give us a reason to sympathize with Penny instead of hate her and it didn't work for me. I have a hard time giving sympathy to...this is going to sound so bad, but to the poor little rich girl dramas. Money can't buy everything, boohoohoo. As any bookworm can tell you, money can't buy happiness, but it can buy books and that's really the same thing. I realize there are a lot of problems money can't solve, but when this brat is given everything she could possibly want or need and she still has the need to complain about everything? She eventually gets a $100 spending limit and goes ballistic. Mommy and Daddy cover everything from the roof over her head to her food and college tuition and now she can only spend $100 a week on extra?!? Who could possibly get by on that paltry amount?
After this point, I can't sympathize any at all. Sorry chica, but you get nothing from me by irritation and anger. Then she finds out that she has done irresponsible things and now has to deal with a very big consequence and goes nuts. Beyond the irritation at the rich snob, I also have no sympathy for those people who put themselves in the situation she is in. Mason makes it perfectly clear that he doesn't want a relationship with her and yet she sits pining away and allowing him to use her body. Have some goddamn self-respect woman!
And she goes on and on about how she is an adult and should be treated as such but then acts so immature and irresponsible that it's no wonder her parents want to control her. Sorry, but you're an idiot who apparently doesn't know any better.
Then we have Mason. This "dreamboat" is suppose to inspire me to swoon, but really, I don't like him much more than Penny. Selfish and stupid and just plain cruel and I'm supposed to buy that he loved her all along?
Sorry, but no. He's been too much of a jackass to forgive. Either that or he is the retarded level of blind. Either way, it induces no love from me.
Plot and writing-wise, this was fine. Okay, writing-wise, it was fine. Because these two were morons that I couldn't care much about I had a hard time to loving their story...it felt a bit too easy. Boy + Girl + Drama + Running away + More Drama = Happily Ever After?
Yeah, I'm not sure I can get behind that.
This is one of those reviews I hate to write. I wholly enjoyed Sarra's Beautiful Demons novel (yes, Kandice, I know I need to finish that series) and I really want to read the rest of that and her other works, but this just wasn't the novel for me. It gets 3 stars because the writing was good and I think if the characters were different, I would have enjoyed it, but Penny just wasn't someone I could love.
I've harped endlessly about the importance of characters for me. Good or bad characters maker or break novels for me. I can love a novel that has horrible writing if it has characters I can really get behind or hate a novel with amazing writing if it has characters I can't stand. This falls pretty close to that. I wouldn't say I hated Penny and Mason, but they did irritate me a great deal. That being said, I still want to go back and read the first novel in this series and I would be interested in trying the next one. I refuse to let this one dud tarnish my joy for Sarra's other works.
****Thank you to All Night Reads for providing me with an eARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review****