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He makes the rules. She breaks them all.
A new start. It's the only thing keeping Allie Harper going, when she packs up her life and moves across the country to Woodshill, Oregon. She's about to start college, desperate to leave the ghosts of her past behind her. Even if that means never talking to her parents again.
Now the hard part - finding an apartment before classes start. Just when it seems she'll have to live out of her car, Allie visits one more place. It's beautiful. With one exception: can she stand being roommates with campus bad boy Kaden White? Sure, Kaden is sexy with his tattoos and careless attitude, but he's also an arrogant jerk. With nowhere else to go, Allie moves in.
The first thing Kaden does is make a set of rules. Either Allie obeys, or she's out:
1. Don't talk about your girl problems.2. Keep your mouth shut if I bring someone home.3. We will NEVER hook up.
Easy enough, thinks Allie. Who would want to get involved with a brute like Kaden? But the more she gets to know him, the more she sees beyond his gruff facade. He, too, is harboring some painful secrets. For Kaden and Allie, it gets harder and harder to ignore the sparks between them. And the lines between the rules start to blur-
Begin Again is a beautiful romance that shows us just how possible it is to start over. To find freedom in heartbreak and love in the most unlikely places.
ARC received for review purposes in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Have you ever read a book that annoyed you so much at times… but you still enjoyed it? This was the case for me with Begin Again. I’ve been on a mini-NA kick these last few weeks, but we all know how hard it is now to find non-cliché NA these days. I saw this book on NG a while back and there was something about it that made me want to read it. Maybe it was the roommates storyline, which I am a sucker for, or maybe it was that I hadn’t read an NA book in so long but I downloaded it. I went through moments being annoyed, being hooked, and rolling my eyes with this book… but I still wanted to keep reading because despite all the eye rolling I was for the most part enjoying it.
Allie comes from a rich family that has never le her spread her wings and who don’t believe in he career choice (teaching). She decides to cut ties with them and move a few states away and enroll in college on her own. After a dismal roommate search, her last option is Kaden. Kaden is rude and an asshole, but he’s pretty much Allie’s only choice so she accepts to move on with him despite his ridiculous rules. *sigh* Although I liked certain parts of Allie and Kaden’s personalities, I can’t say that I ever felt connected to them or cared for them all that much. Kaden was the typical asshole NA guy who has secrets in his past that are supposed to explain/forgive his asshole moments. He was kind of cliché but he had his moments and I liked his friendship and relationship with Allie. Allie was kind of all over the place. She had some pretty ridiculous moments where she would cry for fucking everything. Everything. She cried the first time they ordered pizza. Because she had never had pizza before (her rich mom never let her have pizza), she cried when she and Kaden first kissed and pretty much any other time something remotely significant happened. Other than that, I admired her will to live her life on her own, to stand up to Kaden and her parents and to go after what she wants.
I will say that I enjoyed the slow burn relationship between Allie and Kaden. They were clearly attracted to each other but they also had a great friendship and they didn’t want to mess it up by getting involved. So they fought it most times while letting a few stolen kisses sneak in here and there. All this time, it was eluded that Kai is the way he is (has trust issues) because of a past girlfriend and that something along the lines of sexual abuse happened to Allie to make her leave her home. View Spoiler » One of her dads rich associates would hit on her and try to sneak in her room and touch her, she told her mom who told her to dress more conservative since they couldn’t do anything against him because he donated a lot of money to her dad’s company. « Hide Spoiler
All in all, I was disappointed in both these events and it did take away my enjoyment of the book. I didn’t mind certain clichés and I could handle Kaden’s sometimes assholish ways and Allie’s silly crying because they had good chemistry, but this kind of sent it over the edge for me. Overall, this was a good book, not a favorite of mine but it did have a lot of potential.
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