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Monday, September 3, 2012

Review: Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Title: Beautiful Disaster
Series: Beautiful #1
Author: Jamie McGuire
Published: 2012 August
Format: Egalley from NetGalley

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, 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.
I’ve seen SO many good, no excellent, reviews of this book.  Many of them are by friends of mine.  I had high hopes for this book after glancing through them on Goodreads.  I didn’t read any of them in depth on there beforehand, I wanted to go in kind of “clean” about it.  You know what I mean.  So could the hype be true?  Could this book be that good?

Um.  Hell yeah. 

The whole flow of the story was terrific, it very easily grabbed my attention and kept it.  In fact, I started reading this book about 8pm last night and didn’t go to bed until 5am this morning.  I knew I wasn’t going to get a chance to read much today, and I just had to know what was going to happen.  I could not put this book down.  And now I can’t believe I have to wait until next year for book two – which happens to be told in Travis’ point of view.  Brilliant move.  I only have one concern for that, aside from having to wait so long.  I worry that in Travis’ point of view, it might just be too emotional.   I get ahead of myself here.

First, Abby.  I didn’t like Abby for most of the book.  There were definitely times where I felt she redeemed herself a bit.  But overall?  I found her to be a bit manipulative and immature.  There were instances where I thought she was a downright bitch.  But like I said, there were some redeeming scenes.  You know she feels these things for Travis, but the way she handles those feelings just left me with kind of a sour taste. 

Second, Travis.  He is amazing.  He starts off as this smart ass playboy, the bad boy that you know for a fact you have fallen for at least once in your life.  I know I have.  But he grows.  Travis teaches us that men can change, given the right reason.  And for him, that reason was Abby.  But right from the first moment they see each other you know he is in it for the long run.  I do wish he had been a little bit more forthcoming about his feelings for Abby, but that wouldn’t made for much of a story haha.  He is a terrific guy who has a horrible temper, but for all the right reasons.  He makes some big mistakes, and I believe he overpaid for them.  Maybe I am being a little soft on him, I don’t know.  I know that if I was Abby and I was confronted with the magnificent Travis, I wouldn’t have ever given him up. Ever.  Never.  His passion for Abby is what made this book a five star read for me.

Together, as a couple, they were perfect.  And that is when I liked Abby.  When she just let all of the outside world fall to the wayside and focused on what she felt for this wounded and beautiful man.  The passion and the emotions to back it up were there.  These two are definitely meant for each other.

They also have some wonderful friends.  At times I wondered if they were too good, America in particular.  I wanted her to just stay the heck out of it, soemtimes.  But she was being a good friend, and that’s what Abby needed.  There were also some less than savory characters.  All of them together made this story fantastic.

This book will definitely pull on your emotions.  That’s what kept me up til near dawn.  I fell in love with them as they fell in love with each other.  They are both very flawed, but together they are beautiful.  They belong together, most definitely.  There are some very high tension scenes, and some things that will just break your heart over and over.  I am so very glad I read this book.  The next year is going to be an eternity waiting for Travis’ point of view!

By the way, I love the cover.  I think the cover change from the open mouth to the butterfly in a jar was a wise decision.  This new cover is just beautiful and a bit tragic, it fits.

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