Beautiful Disaster – Jamie McGuire

Beautiful disasterTitle: Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful #1)
Author: Jamie McGuire
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
Format: Paperback
Pages: 416
My rating★★★★✫

I have bought this book for it’s title and cover. There, I said it. Yes, sometimes I do judge a book by its cover, without even reading the synopsis. Well, in this case it was definitely a good guess, because I really loved the story.

What the book is about

The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.

Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.

What I think about the book

The first part of the story got me hooked. Travis is the ultimate bad boy and I had an instant book-crush on him. Yes, he is everything a girl needs to stay away from, but I do find that quite attractive. Like Abby, I would not rush into things. That seems like a smart thing to do.

Abby didn’t really seem like such a good girl herself, although there was nothing ‘wrong’ with her, I had no idea what was in her past. It became clear that she and her friend America left home for good reasons. When I finally found out what her past was like, it felt like a major plot twist. Whoa! It was not at all what I expected, but at least it made me understand why she was able to stand up to Travis the way she did.

And then there was Parker. I loathe guys like him, who think they can make girls like them with expensive dinners and presents that are over the top. I find it a bit creepy, as if they have no soul. I could not like him, no matter how hard I tried. Ugh. Exit Parker, hello Travis!

Of course Travis and Abby find their way together. You can feel that from the very beginning. Abby and Travis have this friendship / relationship going where things can go either up or down, but nothing in between. When it’s good, it’s awesome, but when it’s bad… You better hide. I can relate to that in a way. For some people it seems like a bad thing, but these two can totally handle each other, good or bad. I liked that.

While I found the beginning of the story total 5 star material, I did end up giving the book just 4 stars. It became a bit unrealistic near the end and things were getting out of control. I still liked it, but it was different somehow. When I finished it, I thought “Did that just happen to them?” and I wondered if the ending was okay. Maybe it was, but I wasn’t so sure. It didn’t change my mind entirely, I still loved Travis and Abby – and all the others in the book.

Terminated – Rachel Caine

TerminatedTitle: Terminated (Revivalist #3)
Author: Rachel Caine
Publisher: Roc
Format: Paperback
Pages: 304
My rating★★★★★

This review may contain spoilers for those who haven’t read Working Stiff (Revivalist #1) and Two Week’s Notice (Revivalist #2) yet. 

What the book is about

Already addicted to the pharmaceutical drug that keeps her body from decomposing, Bryn has to stop a secretive group of rich and powerful investors from eliminating the existing Returné addicts altogether. To ensure their plan to launch a new, military-grade strain of nanotech, the investors’ undead assassin—who just happens to be the ex-wife of Bryn’s lover Patrick—is on the hunt for anyone that stands in their way.

And while Bryn’s allies aren’t about to go down without a fight, the secret she’s been keeping threatens to put those closest to her in even more danger. Poised to become a monster that her own side—and her own lover—will have to trap and kill, Bryn needs to find the cure to have any hope of preserving the lives of her friends, and her own dwindling humanity…

What I think about the book

The last book of the trilogy was the best one for sure. I really loved Terminated, especially the end was very awesome. I am not going to spoil that part for you, of course. You just have to believe me on that one (or read it yourself.)

Things have changed for Bryn. Her upgrade means she doesn’t need her daily shots anymore, but she feels like it is slowly turning her into a monster. She does not want to become a monster, of course, but to Bryn it feels like this is out of her control. It is not always clear who Bryn can trust, but on the other hand she and her friends get lots of help from unexpected parties. So, is there any hope that this will get better? Will they be able to stop the Fountain Group once and for all?

Once again the book is full of action, fights and many plot twists. Therefore this part of the series was quite easy and fun to read. As for what happens with the Funeral Home? I have no idea. Bryn does not go into work as she is being chased all over the country and I bet that things won’t go back to normal for a while…

Two Weeks’ Notice – Rachel Caine

Two Weeks' NoticeTitle: Two Weeks’ Notice (Revivalist #2)
Author: Rachel Caine
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Format: Paperback
Pages: 384
My rating★★★★✫

This review may contain spoilers for those who haven’t read Working Stiff (Revivalist #1) yet. 

After reading Working Stiff I needed to get some time away from these series. I wasn’t exactly sure what to think. Yes, it was nice, but was it good enough to keep reading?

What the book is about

Making a living can be rough if you’re already dead. After dying and being revived with the experimental drug Returne, Bryn Davis is theoretically free to live her unlife – with regular doses to keep her going. But Bryn knows that the government has every intention of keeping a tight lid on Pharmadene’s life-altering discovery, no matter the cost. Thankfully, some things have changed for the better; her job at the rechristened Davis Funeral Home is keeping her busy and her fragile romance with Patrick McCallister is blossoming – thanks in part to their combined efforts in forming a support group for Returne addicts. But when some of the group members suddenly disappear, Bryn wonders if the government is methodically removing a threat to their security, or if some unknown enemy has decided to run the zombies into the ground…

What I think about the book

Even though I gave both Working Stiff and Two Weeks’ Notice 4 stars, I definitely thought the second novel was way better than the first. After a certain point I just couldn’t put it down anymore and I didn’t really have that same feeling while reading the first part of the series.

Bryn is still ‘dead’ or at least not completely alive, but I got over that fact and that made me enjoy the book that much more. The book is full of action and kick ass fights and Bryn certainly knows how to handle herself. She doesn’t have to fight alone, as she’s got her own ‘army’ of cool men by her side. Action and fights aren’t the only thrill in this part of the series. There are plenty of plot-twists that will keep you entertained as well.

So, even though Bryn is still officially the owner of a funeral home, she is not spending a lot of time there. Which is good, because those parts are not nearly as interesting as others. In this novel I actually started to like Bryn, Patrick and Joe a lot and I cannot wait for the next book in the series.

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2016 Reading Challenge
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