This was my first time reading Abbi Glines' work. A lot of the reviewers I follow who enjoyed similar romance books as I did seem to think highly of this book so I decided to give it a shot.
Blaire is a 19-year-old girl who recently lost her mother to cancer. She's broke and homeless from shouldering her mother's hospital bills. She has no choice but to seek her estranged father's help, at least just to provide her a place to stay until she gets back on her own feet. Blaire has not had contact with her father since he walked out of her life 5 years ago, when her twin sister died from a car crash. Incidently, it was their dad was driving at the time. Inasmuch as it pains Blaire to ask help from her father, she goes to Florida to stay with him for the meantime. Upon arriving at the beach house where her dad and his wife were staying, she finds out that her dad and his wife are in Paris at the moment, and that her stepbrother, Rush, knows nothing of her and her dad's arrangement. He also turns out to be famous rockstar musician's son and a huge jerk. She turns to leave after mean words are thrown at her but unfortunately, her truck has ran out of gas and she only has $20 in her possession. Rush surprisingly goes after her and agrees to let her stay until her dad comes back. She appreciates this gesture and is determined to get a job and be out of his hair as soon as possible. Luckily she finds employment the next day, at the country club where Rush's circle of friends hang out. Her supervisor and co-workers are great and she gets great tips due to her being super gorgeous and nice to the patrons. It's just dealing with Rush and his endless slew of f*ck buddies at home and his mean half-sister, Nan, that prove to be her biggest challenges. She also can't deny the huge attraction she has for Rush and he seems to reciprocate her lustful thoughts.
What I liked about this book was that the author created a realistic heroine. Blaire might lack personality, but you have to admire her for her strength and doing what it takes to get through the day. She was nothing but a gracious boarder the whole time she was at Rush's house, and she's polite and nice even when she wants nothing more than to point her gun at the people who are mean to her. She's not an android without feelings though. She cries after her first encounter with Rush, and she is hurt when the mean girls call her white trash and make fun of her "cheap" dress" at the party.
What annoyed me was the development of the story, or the development of the romance between Rush and Blaire, and Rush as a main protagonist. He is completely unrealistic, behaved like an ass most of the time, and had no redeeming good quality about him (except his decision to let Blaire stay and when he finally lets her out of the teeny pantry bedroom and move in to one of the guest bedrooms
). And I have no idea how they got together when they did. Sure, instant attraction is valid, but they hardly talked and spent time together. They knew NOTHING about each other except for the few things about her family that Blaire talked about. True, Blaire is admirable, but how they managed to fall in love with each other so quickly is just so ludicrous to me
And then there was the big reveal. I've read reviewers talk about the unbelievable revelation towards the end. While THAT somewhat explained Rush's initial behavior towards Blaire, and Nan's continuous animosity, it still didn't save the story for me. Okay, you have a whacked family background but it's not uncommmon. Rush and Nan and their snooty "friends" who treated Blaire poorly were pathetic characters, or at least, they were portrayed so unfairly. Why was it that, in Rush's circle, only Grant and Woods the only ones who showed compassion to Blaire? Was it just because of her looks? Why was there no female character, among the country club member status, who were nice, or even civil towards her? I don't believe that there is not one person within that social circle who would automatically judge a person and treat her poorly just because of what has been said about her mother - her mother, for goodness sakes, not even HER. I don't even know what to make of the ending. What was the point of goodbye sex?
I was also disappointed by the number of editing errors there were, seeing that this wasn't even the author's first published work. I am not easily put off by editing and grammar mistakes because ultimately, if it's a good story, I'd finish the book and give it my thumbs up despite its imperfections. Sadly, this story didn't work for me. I am on the fence now if I should give the author's other works a chance because she seems to be popular amongst the romance community of reviewers.