May 6, 2013

Title: True

Author: Erin McCarthy

Publisher: InterMix

Release Date: May 2013

From the Publisher: When Rory Macintosh’s roommates find out that their studious and shy friend has never been with a guy, they decide that, as an act of kindness they’ll help her lose her virginity by hiring confident, tattooed bad boy Tyler Mann to do the job…unbeknownst to Rory.

Tyler knows he’s not good enough for Rory. She’s smart, doctor smart, while he’s barely scraping by at his EMT program, hoping to pull his younger brothers out of the hell their druggy mother has left them in. But he can’t resist taking up her roommates on an opportunity to get to know her better. There’s something about her honesty that keeps him coming back when he knows he shouldn’t…

Torn between common sense and desire, the two find themselves caught up in a passionate relationship. But when Tyler’s broken family threatens to destroy his future, and hers, Rory will need to decide whether to cut her ties to his risky world or follow her heart, no matter what the cost…

**Note:  This book was provided by Net Galley but that did not in any way influence this review.

Ans & Jag will put True on their second shelf!

Our Review:

The Story:

Ana:  This story was a pleasant surprise.  I was expecting the same old story of good girl/bad boy but what I got was much more.  The story was deeper and the characters more real.  It tugged at my heartstrings and also managed to make me smile.  I think what made this book different was that this was not just your standard love story.  It revolved not only around the emotional discoveries of the main characters but also with what was going on in their lives outside the romance…the not always pretty picture their family and friends were living.  Having the characters deal with these difficult situations made them more rounded, more real, and I was emotionally attached by the end of the book.

Jag: I’ve been reading a lot of tattooed bad boy fics lately and no lie, the stories start to get a little formula-like, this was not the case with True.  This book, this story, really seemed to go deeper, these weren’t your typical nice girl, bad boy combo and that’s what kept me intrigued.  The story wasn’t predictable at all and neither were the characters.  I really became invested in Rory and Tyler and enjoyed their up and down love story.

The Main Characters:

Ana:  I really liked Rory.  She was a different type of leading lady…a thinker.  She was straightforward and spoke her mind.  And, even though she was sometimes surprised by the words that left her own mouth, she never regretted them.  That is definitely not how most girls are depicted in this type of story.  Oh…let’s talk about Tyler. *sigh*  Tyler was the type of man every woman deserves.  Caring and loving and committed and responsible….with just enough bad boy to make you swoon.  The way he handled his family, especially his brothers, left me totally enamored!  He was realistic, too. He understood his life and his limitations but somehow rose above them to become more.

Jag: I loved Rory, I remember at several times in the book I was genuinely surprised by her reactions.  In situations  where the female lead would normally skulk away in a fit of self-pity, she would burst forth and confront the issue head on.  I adored that about her, her reactions, the way she dealt with certain situations just wasn’t typical by any means.  She had a certain courage about her that sometimes is lacking in these ‘good girl’ characters.  What can I say about Tyler, *sigh* not your typical bad boy.  Trying to take a shitty situation and deal with it while trying to plan his future in the best way he can.  He’s not shooting for the stars, he aiming for just some normal, some stability for his brothers, but not everything ends with a pretty ribbon wrapped around a happy ending.

The Romance:

Ana:  This relationship felt honest.  The romance started off on a rocky note and could have easily fallen off the rails due to the twists and turns of the story but the resolution to these situations felt right.  In the end it didn’t feel forced or rushed, it felt like it played out just as it needed to.  I felt like neither one of these characters truly needed the other to make them whole (like you see in so many books) but they needed each other to make them happy.  And that felt right to me.

Jag: I have to agree with Ana, this relationship did feel honest.  There wasn’t any love at first sight, in fact, the way they come together could have easily resulted in a quick end.  It had time to grow and evolve gradually and let me tell you, there was some serious sizzle too. I am all about the UST and the chemistry and Rory and Tyler definitely have it!

Loves and Gripes:

Ana:  I loved the realness of this story…of how family can impact everything you do and how, sometimes, no matter how hard you try circumstances don’t go your way.  I also enjoyed the honesty of the relationship between Rory and Tyler and how they seemed to understand each others needs and responsibilities.  The emotions in this book were raw at times and it brought tears to my eyes on more than one occasion.  My only gripe is that if felt the end was a bit rushed.  The resolution was too quick…I needed and wanted a couple more chapters of angst.  Not sure why I want to be sad longer than the author wanted me to be but I think that would have thrown the book over the top for me…my emotions at the end would have been even stronger if I’d had to work harder for it.

Jag:  This story was so real, at times it was hard for me but since I am a complete and utter angst addict, I loved it. It felt authentic, I went through a gamut of emotions. My only ONLY gripe is that it ended way too swiftly.  I felt like there were a few chapters missing, the chapters that reflected the angst and pain of separation.  The campus sightings, the pained eye contact, the yearning looks, the misinterpreted situations…I missed all that.  I really believe that the book suffered because the end was just too neat, too tidy, too convenient.  It would have ranked a top shelf read had those chapters been there to help process Rory’s feelings.  I truly believe it would have given the end so much more impact.

Recommend?

Ana: Yes.  It`s a very good read with really likeable characters and lots of emotion.  To me, there are still unanswered questions about Rory and Tyler`s future and how some of the circumstances in their lives will affect what happens next.  I don`t think there are plans for another book about them but I, for one, would read it if there were!!

Jag:  I would definitely recommend this book. It’s not your typical tatted-pierced bad boy meets college virgin story.  These characters have depth and fortitude and they are surrounded by some amazing secondary characters.  As Ana, mentions, there are a lot of unanswered questions with Rory and Tyler and if there was a second book, I would definitely want to find out what happens to these characters.

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