Author: Jamie McGuire
Kindle Edition 361 Pages
Goodreads Book Summary: The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate percentage of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance between her and the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend America, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.
Sidenote: While scanning Goodreads for the book summary, I stumbled across some very heated reviews regarding this book and among them, other issues. It’s unfortunate that I came across those because a review is really just an opinion on whether someone enjoyed the book or not. And that is all I’m going to comment on and hope to give you.
My Review: Initially, I was not drawn into the story about a young college freshman named Abby, because she felt too out of character; maybe a little mature for her age. She meets a handsome, charismatic guy who happens to be the cousin of her best friend’s boyfriend and she is instantly repelled by him. But, the point is her actions never feel believable for a girl her age with little experience. However, as you read further you begin to understand that Abbey has a supposed dark background and because of the way she was brought up, had to grow up quickly.
And then on the opposite spectrum, we have our resident bad boy, Travis Maddox. Known as the school’s promiscuous player, Travis pays his tuition by engaging in underground boxing matches (basically, Fight Club). He is tatted, fit and roommates with his cousin Shep, who happens to be dating America… You got it. Abbey’s bestie.
Refusing to be another notch on Travis’s belt, Abbey does everything she can to distance herself from him. But, as time goes on they begin to have a love/hate friendship that clearly is more love, than hate. Their only issues really lie within themselves. Abbey’s past--Travis’s behavior. All catalyst for what at times, feels like a very volatile and troubled relationship. That in itself, would have been enough for two young college kids, but, this is where I lost favor with the story. Not only are there personality conflicts all throughout the story, but situations arise that nearly put these two in danger many times over. For my liking, I found it a bit much.
Yet, truth be told, even with Travis’s questionable behavior, and the sometimes ridiculous plot points, I still liked the book. There’s just something sincere about Abbey and Travis trying to work through their issues, and I went along for the ride. And I hate to say this, but I sort of sympathized with Travis. I might have pictured a psychologically disturbed Brad Pitt entering some dark dank area for his unannounced fights, but I get the kid was broke and just needed money. I don’t know, oddly the story worked for me, and overall, I liked it.