Sunday 10 July 2016

Review ~ Undecided by Julianna Keyes

Book Description:

Nora Kincaid has one goal for her second year of college: be invisible. Last year’s all-party-no-study strategy resulted in three failed classes and two criminal charges, and if she messes up again she’ll lose her scholarship. But there’s one problem with her plan for invisibility, and his name is Crosbie Lucas: infamous party king, general hellraiser…and her new roommate’s best friend.

Crosbie’s reckless reputation and well-known sexcapades aren’t part of Nora’s studious new strategy, but as she’s quickly learning, her new plan is also really boring. When Crosbie’s unexpected gestures of friendship pull her head out of her books long enough to see past his cocky veneer, she’s surprised to find a flawed and funny guy beneath it all. The muscles don’t hurt, either.

But as Nora starts to fall for Crosbie, the weight of one of last year’s bad decisions grows even heavier. Because three failing grades and two misdemeanors are nothing compared to the one big secret she’s hiding…

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Our Review:

Reviewed by Donna ~ 5 stars

“Crosbie Lucas is the best boyfriend I never would have guessed I wanted.”

I have been fortunate enough to have had a great run of reading books these past few weeks and this one came as a great surprise. This was a recommendation from a friend I trust explicitly, we have extremely similar taste and when she said I had to read I dived in at the next available opportunity. I will say that the cover is a little misleading so I will point out that this is not a cheating book, nor is it a menage, it is just a beautifully written college romance love story that will have you swooning from ear to ear and your heart melting into huge mushy puddles. I adored it.

“But the guy over me now isn’t the obnoxious jock I thought I knew, just like I’m not the responsible bookworm he thinks he knows.”

Julianna Keyes delivers a story that will have you laughing one minute and swooning the next. Tears of both kinds in laughter and sadness but on the whole this was as uplifting as they come with just a few trials and tribulations as any new relationship suffers. There is one though that is definitely not run of the mill but had me hooting and hollering with laughter none the less, the scenes surrounding this plot line were hilarious at times and sensitive in others, fantastically pulled off. With relatable characters, fantastic dialogue and great scene setting, I was living the lives of these students every step of the way.

Nora Kincaid is now in her second year of college, new year, new life, new Nora. Gone are the days of partying and little study. The new Nora, was studious, quiet, introspective and on a mission to do better. Nora’s first year of college was a hoot, but it cost her dearly…half her scholarship. She partied hard, studied less, got in trouble, was the typical party animal but now she had to knuckle down and so she makes it her mission to get out of halls and be off campus where she can be her own person. Replying to an ad for a “responsible and studious roommate” Nora is taken aback when her prospective roommate is none other than the campus’s biggest party boy, Kellan McVey.

“I went from zero to sixty without ever tapping the brakes, and eventually I spun out. So here I am, back to zero, hunkered down, paying for all my fun. Was it worth it? Yes, I’d say so. Am I reversing course, going from sixty to zero without ever finding a reasonable middle ground? Yes again.”

Kellan McVey is in a similar situation to Nora, so turning over a new leaf is his only option and he needs as little distractions as possible. Kellan was your typical jock, all the girls wanted to be with him and all the boys wanted to be him, he partied hard, was top of the chart of “conquests” so had a constant revolving door of girls. But his grades too were slipping and he needed to turn his life around so this was his next step. Kellan’s best friend, Crosbie was seemingly another Kellan but his sense of humour was off the charts, he actually opens the door to Nora when she first came to the house and since then Crosbie may be a little smitten, not that Nora noticed.

“Kellan is the crush everybody has.
Crosbie is the sidekick.
He’s the Nora to Kellan’s Marcela.
He’s the one you forget.”

Crosbie was totally adorable with a capital A, despite his reputation he wasn’t actually that bad and used his wit and sense of humour as a façade to hide the sensitive soul that was lurking underneath. He was a fantastic character and the author really delivered on making the reader appreciative of his thoughts and feelings despite not giving us his point of view. Crosbie’s mannerisms and actions spoke more for his feelings than words ever could and it is this that only makes you love him all the more. Don’t be mistaken though, when he does open his mouth, his words more than back up his actions.

Crosbie and Nora’s friendship blossoms over the pages and while Nora is at first totally oblivious to Crosbie’s feelings even she catches on eventually. These two are seriously, seriously cute together and as I said above, Crosbie is adorable. From Superman costumes, to bed jumping, to magic shows, Crosbie has quite the arsenal up his sleeve and delivers it in style. From movies, to lists, to necklaces and a propensity for trees this couple will have you cheering them on from start to finish. When secrets are finally revealed though, is the relationship they have built up over the months strong enough or will the age old motto of bro’s before ho’s rip them apart.

“I’ve got Nora the Nerd, Nora the Assistant, Nora the Convict, Nora the Party Animal… Your multiple personalities provide all the variety I’ll ever need.”

I loved everything about this book, the chemistry was seriously off the charts, the side characters all had their part to play and added to the story, the friendships, the shenanigans, all will leave you reliving your youth and once again wishing you were back in college. So it seems I have found another new to me author that I love, if this book is representative of her others then I have another back catalogue to get to grips with.

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