Publisher: Carina Press
Date Published: June 23rd 2014
Genre: New Adult Contemporary
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Hard-edged rocker Graham Allen has it all. He's flush with cash from playing bass in a band by night and restoring classic cars by day. And there are plenty of women willing to share his bed for a night, complication-free.
Perfect, because if there's anything he learned from his past, it was to never get attached—to anything. So when bartender Carly Sullivan flashes her innocent smile, Graham isn't prepared for what happens next.
Never fall in love.
Two rules, that's all Graham has—never apologize and never fall in love. He knows Carly is everything he should avoid. Cheerful and sweet, she has "relationship" written all over her. But Graham can't stay away from her probing questions and concerned blue eyes.
When Graham discovers Carly is hiding a crushing secret, he's prepared to risk it all. Until in one single moment, everything changes and Graham's past threatens to collide with his future. His life is crumbling down around him, and soon no apology in the world can save him.
He should've known to walk away.
Graham has two rules; never apologize and never fall in love. So far its been working out for him. He plays bass in a band, works on muscle cars, and owns part of a club. More money than he knows what to do with. But lately he's been hanging around a bar, just waiting for his day to end on the gorgeous bartender's smile.
Carly is cheerful, all the time. Even when Graham is a total ass. How she puts up with his B.S. and still keeps up that gorgeous smile is a mystery to him. Soon Graham realizes that Carly isn't just another girl, she has scars, scars that he can't fix. And he's falling for her hard. But with his screwed up childhood and mommy issues, he's broken. And Carly has her own issues to deal with. Will Graham break his rules for Carly? Or will he continue not living, in a hope that he can just deal with life?
I was enticed by the cover of this book before the story, if I'm honest. The cover is amazing, I love it. And then of course I love womanizing broken bad boys. They make for the best love stories.
Graham. He's a complicated character. Not everything he does in this book I liked. He acted like a real ass sometimes. And not in a hot, 'oh he's being a playboy' kind of way. I understand he was afraid of what he was feeling a lot of the time, but he didn't respect boundaries and he did some screwed up things. I don't know if I would have been as forgiving as Carly. THERE WAS NO CHEATING! Thank god for that small miracle. I hate books with cheaters. Cheating is inexcusable. End of story.
Carly. She was like a ray of sunshine compared to Graham. Yes, she has a past that will make you want to punch a bunch of scumbags, but she isn't jaded. She still sees the world in the light, not the dark. I love that about her. Graham is jaded enough without Carly being jaded. They balance each other out.
I think the characters were believable and I connected to them on a basic level. I can't say that I felt the characters, exactly. I don't really have anything in common with the characters. I thought Graham was cool because of the muscle cars and playing bass, and Carly was a writer, but personality wise I didn't mesh with them. I did love Carly though. I mean, how many girls know cars, ride motorcycles, can actually hold their alcohol, fight MMA, and are still super nice and sunny? She's great.
Carly didn't grow that much in the story. I mean, she grew a bit there from the middle to end, but most of the character growth came from Graham. If you read the first few pages and then the last few, you'd find an almost completely different person. I mean, Graham wasn't a bad person, per se, at the beginning, but he was a player and his morals on sleeping with lots of women and getting drunk were pretty low. At the end he understood why some people wanted monogamy.
The romance in the story was a little slow going. There was an attraction from the first few pages, but it didn't turn into more until later. It felt like a real romance because of that. They had to build it up. It wasn't insta-love or anything, which was nice.
I'm not really sure whether the romance was the main focus or a subplot. I mean, it was definitely there, but there was a whole lot of other things going on too. I think it would probably be somewhere between the two. It wasn't really the main focus, because that wasn't the first thing that happened. They became friends before lovers. But it wasn't really secondary to anything in the story.
The story was detailed, you weren't left with any questions. That's always nice. I hate it when there are holes in the plot or the story. It felt real, I imagine there are similar couples out there everywhere who have issues akin to the ones in the book. The writing was done well, it was like watching a movie in your head rather than reading the script.
Unlike with some books, I think the middle was the best part of the story. There was so much anticipation and waiting to see what Graham did, how he would handle all of the hurdles thrown at him. And whenever he screwed up you could just roll your eyes and mutter 'men' under your breath. Thats what I did, anywho.
This story was in 1st person, told from Graham's point of view. I thought it was interesting, because we got complete access to his thoughts. And a lot of the time his thoughts didn't match his words. It was an interesting perspective.
I would recommend this book to all of the girls who love the broken bad boys. In real life, they suck. In books, though? They rock your socks off. And other clothing items :)