Initial reaction: Not bad, but I’ll admit I’m disappointed because while I could see the author was trying to approach different things, it never strayed from the New Adult formula and I found several things here to be problematic.
I give credit to Christina Lee in the set up of the storyline, in that a Nursing student (Avery) ends up meeting a guy one night who happens to be a virgin and seems like a upstanding guy (Bennett). He’s an artist, he lives upstairs, he’s cute (hot in her terms), and all I could think of at first was “Thank goodness this guy isn’t a jerk! Someone who’s actually *normal* for a change and isn’t going to bash some other guy’s head in for sheer abrasiveness.”
That reaction lasted all of about a minute before I realized…oh, wait – Avery’s the abrasive one instead.
I blame this book for getting the phrase “Slutasaurus” implanted in my head. (And yes, Avery describes herself as this when she considers her relationships with men, and somehow corrupting Bennett’s innocence. Because he’s a virgin and she’s not.)
I’ll applaud Lee in that there really aren’t that many male heroes who are portrayed as virgins, but the stereotyping against sexuality and choice is still in full thrum here, as are a number of other different stereotypes that are often seen in New Adult. The more I think about this novel, the more I realized I thought it was okay, but it didn’t leave any lingering impressions on me personally. It’s too cut from the same cloth from the genre for me to really connect with it. I did like the focal touches to Avery and Bennett’s family, among other details, But it progresses pretty much how you think it would, what with Avery’s tragic past and that having a mark on her relationships and sexual interludes, and Bennett – while a decent character, really wasn’t memorable to me as a hero that I could connect to more.
A light read, and probably appealing to fans of the genre, but it left me wanting more.
Overall score: 2/5 stars
Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher Intermix/Penguin Group.