on November 16, 2012
This is, hands down, one of the best books I've read this year! Not just because of how original, emotional and brilliant the story is, and not because I'm a huge sucker for road-trip/traveling stories, but it's written in exactly the way I like it and I am just blown away by it.
Actually, I'm writing this on zero sleep because I got the "one more chapter" disease reading it - I really just wanted to read the first chapter while getting ready to go to bed to see if I'd like it...and see how that turned out!
Andrew is the perfect hero! I have never said this before, and probably never will again, but yeah, he really was perfect. He is a genuinely nice guy with just the right amount of cockiness, but there are just so many more layers than that to his character. You seriously can't help but fall in love with him and everything about him!
I loved Cam, too. She is strong but fragile at the same time, and honestly, I admired her bravery to just get away from everything and leave. I love it that she breaks all her rules and doesn't fight herself breaking them.
And I loved their banter and camaraderie, the way they were teasing each other (the pool playing scene? brilliant.) the chemistry between Cam and Andrew was just...perfect. Somehow their relationship progressed in very realistic way and I really really liked that.
So many feelings about this.
You don't see the twist coming at all, at least not one like that. I mean, I guessed there was something going on, but it kind of all comes crashing down when you least expect it with a BAM! and it's a lot to take in.
The last two chapters made me gasp and cry in turns.
I mean, just wow. The pacing of this is perfect, the switching of POV was unexpected but welcomed - I was concerned about this in the beginning, but really, the author handles it perfectly, she gives these two characters two completely different voices! Oh and yeah, some of the best sex scenes I've read in a while.
I haven't read anything by J.A. Redmerski before but I will definitely try to, now that I've seen what she can do!
on November 30, 2012
This book wasn't terrible by any means, but I don't understand all the OMG GLOWING 5STAR THIS IS THE BEST BOOK EVER reviews.
The characters were, for the most part, likable and well written. I like how they both had fleshed out back stories and most of their stories were not dumped on us via weird monologues, but instead was slowly revealed over time.
I had some issues with the book though. At first, I really liked how Camryn was independent and interesting, but she ended up being a complete wuss. I also don't like how the author constantly had every male character (except the few good guys) turn in to a wannabe rapist. I hate that.
First, Camryn is at a club with her best friend. She's on the roof of the club chatting with a guy and her best friend's boyfriend shows up, beats the crap out of the guy, then tries to force himself on Camryn. Ok, he was a total jerk and I get that. No problem.
Later on, Camryn is on the bus and she's chatting with Andrew. There's another guy on the bus who later tries to rape Camryn in the bathroom and she has to be saved by Andrew.
But then Andrew goes into this macho man mode that totally put me off. He tells Camryn that she can no longer travel by bus, he will not allow it. She MUST either take a plane home or go with him. She agrees. WTH? She barely knows this guy and she's letting him tell her what to do?
Fortunately, Andrew acts decently throughout the majority of the book so I didn't flip out too much by his "I'm the man, you will do as I say" behavior. But later on, he and Camryn have this weird conversation where he tells her that he won't have sex with her because he can't do that unless she agrees that he will own her.
Then Camryn starts talking about how she's sexually submissive (girl, you are submissive in EVERYTHING, not just sex) and there is this whole dominant/submissive thing that's just thrown in there and seems completely opposite to Andrew's personality throughout the rest of the entire book.
I also just can't stand the whole "I can't breathe without you" or "I will die without you" or "I want to own you" crap, and there is a lot of that. Whenever I read that kind of stuff (and there's a decent amount of it in The Edge of Never) I want to just FACEPALM!
I didn't have a huge problem with the reveal Andrew made at the end, though I did think it was out of nowhere and went bad way too fast.
Overall, the book wasn't bad. I liked the main characters (outside of those issues above and most of that wasn't commonplace in the book, it happened sporadically). The plot was interesting and the writing was decent.
on December 11, 2012
I finished this book in one sitting because I kept holding out for it to get better. It had so many good reviews that I felt surely at some point I'd be pulled into the story. A lot of the issues I had with the book are mentioned in other reviews: slow start, contrite plot, a terribly rushed epilogue with a stereotypical happy ending for characters claiming they wanted a more atypical free-spirited life and a submissive/dull lead female. Both the main characters spurn higher education and have no aspirations other than to travel around on savings and menial jobs. The traveling goal I guess is something but it comes across more like trying to escape reality rather than having a passion to see the world. It wouldn't have bothered me if they felt strongly passionate about something that would have explained having no life goals. Instead it feels more like they are unmotivated and I just found their future really bleak and depressing.
The other thing that really bothered me was Andrew. He behaves really selfishly. This is made worse by the fact that it happens towards the end of the book and Cam completely lets him off the hook. Andrew not only lies but considering he knows her past and how that past led to her depression (though the book never says she's depressed out right, it's pretty much implied with her not finding enjoyment in anything, running away, not able to genuinely smile/laugh, and feeling emotional detached from people) it seems cruel to potentially make her go through that specific experience again.
The other aspect of Andrew that I really didn't like and was surprised to not find in a lot of the other reviews was his violent behavior. I can get behind the whole alpha male protecting his damsel and/or taming the bad boy thing. I didn't think it was well done here though. First, his violent behavior was too over the top for me. It was less noble protector and more emotionally troubled aggression. I think most women have at one point or another been approached at a bar by a drunken idiot and have successfully extracted themselves from the situation without the need of beat-down so brutal that someone loses a tooth. It wasn't like they were attacking her and it wasn't like they were being horrifically persistent- I would estimate all of 2 minutes passed before Andrew gave up asking them to leave and started punching. Andrew and Cam could have just left the bar, or kept the violence at a minimum (say a few pushes or one punch at best?). It didn't require face pummeling. In other parts of the book he also beats a man into unconsciousness in a 'protective' rage, he destroys his car with a bat, and he breaks his phone by throwing it against a wall.
Honestly, I would be scared to be around anyone who jumped that quickly to violence, especially to that degree. He just comes across as a poster child for domestic abuse. At no point is he violent towards her (except during sex, which didn't bother me considering she had already stated that was her fantasy) but she also never crosses him during the book. I could have gone along with it maybe if Cam provided a voice of reason and helped him by curtailing his violent rages. Instead she proudly (and ineffectively) joins the bar fight?! He's violent to the point of being scary and Cam condones it. It also seemed really at odds with him encouraging her to say what she was feeling. He was made out to be both the mature guy who understands what she's feeling before she realizes it herself, while also completely unable to express his own emotions in a mature self-aware way. I found the combination conflicting and weird.
All and all it wasn't the worst book I have ever read but I wouldn't recommend it.
on November 16, 2012
There are really no words for the awesomeness of this book! I couldn't put it down. It was so realistic and gripping.
This book shows you that you can get through loss and come out the other side. The story was touching and so romantic. If only Andrew Parrish existed in real life:)
Camryn is such a real human character. She's been burned by life and has erected walls all around her to keep everyone out. She wakes up one day and realizes there has to be more to life than what she's living. She packs up a bag and heads out to nowhere, just away.
Andrew is dealing with his own losses and can't help but be intrigued by Camryn. He knows he should stay away, but he just can't do it. He ends up joining her on her crazy adventure and the two become inseperable.
This story deals with overcoming the ghosts that haunt us all and how we deal with them. The book is heart wrenching and tears will come, be warned.
I have to give this book five plus glittery stars for being one of the best reads of the year. The author shows us a book with real heart. It comes highly recommended for any romance lover, old or young.
on November 18, 2012
When I first started this I thought it was a little slow. BUT, as I continued to read, I learned that the beginning part was so important and any thoughts of being slow were tossed out. The reader learns how depressed and unhappy Camryn is in her current everyday boring life. You get to feel her pain and want nothing more for her to take this journey of leaving all behind in hopes to finding what is missing.
The writing and development of Camryn makes her one of the most realistic fictional characters I have read. Some people only wish they had the courage to wake up one day realizing there is more to life and pack a bag to leave. To just go anywhere. To get away from it all. Camryn does just this and takes the reader a long for the bus ride. She is so easy to connect with. She is so real.
Andrew is dealing with his own losses, and he can't seem to stay away from Cam. They eventually becomes joined at the hip when he decides to join her on her journey. Together they try to overcome the ghosts that are still holding on.
WARNING: The book WILL bring tears.
on January 14, 2013
Now, before I start getting bumbarded with comments like, "Whaaaat?! Are you crazy?! EVERYONE loves this book!" let me just say that I didn't HATE The Edge of Never...I simply wasn't swept away as it seems the majority of readers were. It wouldn't be the first time where I felt like I was swimming against traffic in the book world, haha.
Usually I give a bit of a summary of the book prior to my review but I'm not going to say much more than the fact that Camryn took an improptue bus ride after a series of life events lead her to seak answers and an outcome she's not all too certain she'll even find. From there...it's hard to say much more than "she met a boy (Andrew)". I'm keeping my summary vague because when I started this book I had no clue what it was about or what to expect. I enjoy reading books in this way sometimes because it makes the reading experience that much more interesting and kind of thrilling.
For this book, however, I did end up thinking, what the hell must the blurb have been like because I'm feeling kind of like there's a lot going on here I probably wouldn't have expected even if I HAD read the blurb prior.
For me, this book can be broken up basically into three parts. Story one. Story two. And story three. Yes, the three stories were tied together throughout but they were kept pretty separate in general.
First let me just say that this book gets VERY EXPLICIT. If you read the blurb you'll get kind of an idea of the sexual nature but only if you REALLY read into it. But I'll get to that...
In the first part of the story you learn that Camryn lost a love she thought was perfect, a young love that was so pure she felt as if she lost herself when she lost her love. This story is the one I was really enjoying. And when Camryn met Andrew I hoped that she could learn to love again. So my hopes weren't TOO far off but the thing is...I was kind of disapointed by the fact that through her new experiances with Andrew she kind of lost respect for her previous relationship. Maybe I'm bias...I fell in love at 15 and ended up marrying the man who waited almost two years to be intimate with me. The man who I believe to be my partner in crime. We learned to love and to be intimate together. We didn't know what was ahead of us but we didn't care, we just loved and we trusted that love to take us anywhere. If I'd lost him like Camryn lost her first love, Ian...I don't care WHO came into the picture later, they could NEVER UNdo what we had. Never. I'm blessed and lucky not to have lost that...but I feel like Camryn's new views of "first love" almost cheapen what she had with Ian. Downgraded it to something less than what she had once thought it to be. Like it was really nothing after all. That put a bad taste in my mouth. And I KNOW that because of my own personal experiences that this is a personal preference scinario. But still...come on now.
The second story is almost entirely sexual. Andrew opens up Camryn's eyes to a sexual world she's apparently been craving secretly. I, however, am a bit disapointed that this seems to be the whole plot and backbone to her and Andrew's love story. I mean, what girl doesn't want to be turned on and pleasured to some degree. But to make it seem as if Andrew is better than Ian because he's so forward about it...come on. Young love blooms into something much less juvenille if given the chance. Camryn really can't hold the fact that Ian never had the chance to prove that to her against him. So, strip the sex away, and what do you have? Well...I'm not really sure to be honest with you. The only thing Andrew was really open to Camryn about was sex. And that to me cheapened sex in general and even their relationship at times.
The third story, the tragedy end of this story which I won't get into for the sake of spoiling things, was so short and crammed together that I didn't have time to FEEL anything. Sex was such a potent topic that the third part of this story was almost entirely lost for me. Was I happy with how this story ended? Yeah, sure, all things considered. But I didn't LOVE this story and I don't even know that this story was about love at all. It just felt like a story about sex and sexual exploration. I'm all about reading a love story with sex involved but give me more to hold onto. You can't build a relationship on sex...you just can't.
The more I write this review the less satisfied by this book I feel. There are plenty of people out there who just loved this book but I'm coming to find that I just can't base my own feelings on a book off of what the general readership thinks. If you ask me, I think the general populous doesn't believe in young love and they think that something like sex is a much more valid connection to base a relationship off of.If you ask me...give me the guy who will wait for as long as it takes for me to say I'm ready. Give me the guy who will learn about my fears and my dreams and share his with me. Give me the guy who's not sure of what he wants at any given time and will work with me to try and figure it all out. Keep the guy who can rock my world sexually but holds everything else back. There seem to be plenty of girls more than happy to have him.
****************** After Thought Review Additions **********************
You know those books that stay with you for days that you can't stop thinking about and your love for them grows? I had the exact opposite experience with this book.
In my previous review, where I gave the book two stars I focused mainly on the love and sex aspects of this story. After reading more reviews by readers like myself, the rare few who weren't swept away, I was reminded of a few points I'd like to mention. Points that REALLY took away from the integrity of this story.
Firstly, Andrew is a very violent person, you see this in many scenes where he gets hot-head (not unlike Damon) and beats some guys up for Cam's sake. Damon apparently overreacted (well...YEAH) but as it would seem, Andrew was totally justified in pulverizing guys within an inch of their life. Sure, one case was understandable, but even then...Andrew is just really possessive. Especially over a girl he hardly knows.
Secondly, Cam and Andrew talk about living outside of the box, not conforming, living on their own and not getting tied down by responsibility. Well, that's easily done when you can essentially TAKE your father's classic car and use his money to feed your desire to "live off the land"...or more accurately, off of daddy's wealth. Lucky for Cam she found a rich kid to tag along with otherwise she might have had to face reality like the rest of the world and head back home. For two people so determined not to conform they certainly never questioned spending the money Andrew's father EARNED through his conformist career.
Now, I'm not a big promoter of college. I think it can ultimately just be a means to an end...or debt that you now need a high paying job to pay back. But getting a degree isn't satanic either. There's honor in having career goals and wanting to accomplish things like completing a degree and "making it" on your own. Sure, some career paths are more fit for trade schools or rising up through the ranks but if I was to find out that my doctor hadn't gone to college and gotten a degree I'd sue him until his eyes started to bleed. There's a place for college in society.
Doesn't it bother anyone else that Andrew is 25 and seems no closer to finding a path or a focus in life? I understand that everyone finds themselves at their own pace, but given how this book ended I'd say that Cam is bound to smack face first into a reality check. And it's going to hurt. Andrew dropped out of college and lives off of his father's wealth. He either has to conform...and fast, or he's going to be trying to support them with a minimum wage job or two...or three. Then again, the way this book was written, these characters will be sure to find the easy way out of everything life has to throw at them.
My last point, something I haven't seen mentioned yet in other reviews of this book is Cam's mother. I get that Cam is old enough to make her own decisions but come on people. Her mom hardly seems to care that her daughter just up and left and has been gone for months. I'm 24 and I KNOW my mom would be pissed if I ever pulled something like that. Especially taking into consideration everything that's happened in the past.
I don't know...I hate to tear a book down and it is RARE that I do it. Being an author myself always makes me hesitant to be too harsh or critical of other works, but my problem here is that this book seems to have captivated a HUGE audience and I feel it's for all the wrong reasons. Namely: hot sexcapades...and, if you ask me, they weren't even that great for all that was sacrificed to make them possible.
I guess that's it for me. If you're thinking about reading this book and are looking for a well-rounded opinion by reading both SATISFIED and DISSATISFIED reviews, then I commend you for that. We all have our own taste and preferences. I just hope this review can help you approach this read with a more realistic expectation.
To those of you reading my review because you also felt lost and unsure as to why this book got the hype it did, I hope I helped assure you that you are in fact not alone.
on April 3, 2013
I am SO disappointed in this book!
I had it as a sample in my Kindle for a long time, then, after reading so many glowing reviews, decided to give it a go. It started out promising and then nothing happened, it dragged on and on and on, for God knows how many pages! It kept building up to something that never came, or well, if you like, it all unfolded in the last 50 pages, but with what purpose? Stun the reader? Blah, the ending was predictable, ridiculous and cliched!
The characters seem to go from having a budding friendship to being desperate for each other overnight, the constant "I can't breathe without you, you are the air that I breathe" was annoying, because again, they have only known each other for two weeks!
The sex comes out of nowhere..if you're attracted to someone and they're attracted to you, you kiss and do stuff, why not have sex? Instead the author drags it out...and when he says "if you were to let me f*** you, you would have to let me own you" WHAT THE HELL did he mean by that??? If a guy told me that I would be seriously creeped out!
I also hated that he wanted to change her all the time....I didn't think that she led a boring life, she's just a normal, insecure 20 year old, who isn't so sure about what she wants in life and who's had a terrible experience with her boyfriend dying......yet he wants to change her, all the time, because she's not living the hell out of life, what does he know?, he's known her for 20 minutes!
And he's specially selfish, knowing about what happened to her boyfriend and not telling her that he's supposedly dying, I mean why not come forward? Sure he's afraid she'll leave him, but that would have been her right too, not wanting to go through something like that again, and come on, the bulls**t that he didn't tell her because he loved her already(or kinda knew that he would end up loving her) and didn't want their last days, weeks to be filled up with sadness, again, she should've had that choice and I also think it would have been far more interesting if that had happened, maybe there could have been more substance to the story, her pushing him to seek treatment and stuff like that.
As I said, it all unfolds in the last 50 pages and we're supposed to believe that he gets over his terminal brain cancer just like that and that two months later he's ready to go on the road with her again...........and to top it all off, she's pregnant! Yeah, couldn't get more cliched than that! Yep, have unprotected sex with a stranger and you'll be just fine....of course not! I've read several stories already that seem to embellish the fact that it is ok to have unprotected sex, that either nothing will happend as a consequence or, of course, you'll get pregnant and everything will be just peachy, the guy will love you no matter what and you'll live happily ever after! Please! I know this is fiction and that there's nothing wrong with a happy ending, but come on, it almost never happens like this! They have zero aspirations, just to travel around and do menial jobs to get some money...and now with a baby, that's some example!
"goosebumps raped me" is this supposed to be a sentence???
Let me say it one more time, I'm disappointed and I cannot understand how this can be labeled as "the best story ever", I just don't get it.
You want a story that will knock your socks off with its plot and how it's written? Go get yourself a copy of The sea of tranquility by Katja Millay, THAT is a true gem!
on November 29, 2012
Let me start by saying that I am an avid reader..I read about 4 books a week..everything from Beautiful Disaster and the Thoughtless series to FSoG, Bared to You, On Dublin Street..you name it, I probably read it and never write reviews although I loved them all...
With that being said, NO STORY has come close to this one. Its beautiful, inspiring and heartbreaking. I NEVER thought I would be this connected to a story (this beat Beautiful Disaster and that was SO hard for me)
First off the characters are absolutely captivating! Both have internal struggles but for me, it's so easy to get annoyed when characters have so much self pity and self destruct. There was none of that here. You related to them, felt every emotion and they kept you wanting more. I have never laughed as hard or shed as many tears while reading and this did it all for me. It was everything you want it to be with its sweetness, angst, character development, love, pain, gut wrenching twists oh and hotness! There is NO shortage of that in this book...but in a total realistic, relationship kind of passion that lacks in most stories kind of way.
I am BEGGING whoever reads this review (as well as many of the other great reviews) to please give this book a try even if you're in a more "bad boy" mood (thats what I was looking for when I stumbled upon this gem but I decided to take a chance and never regretted it for a second).
This one will stick with me for a LONG time! I can't wait to read more from this very talented writer. BRAVO!!!
on December 5, 2012
This book puts forth some ideas that I just don't agree with. I don't think it makes you deep and special to travel around living off your dad's money playing perpetual vacation. It makes you irresponsible and spoiled but according to the characters in this book that makes me sheep-like and conformist for thinking this. I think falling in love is easy but staying in love over the years is hard. Just because staying in love is hard and takes work doesn't make it invalid. I think this makes it more real. I totally disagree with the idea that if it is *real* love that it will always be easy and effortless and if it takes work it isn't really real. I disagree that there is one person we are destined to fall in love with and that anyone else we think we love isn't really love. There are lots of types of love and they are all different. Falling in love a second time doesn't invalidate a prior love. I totally disagree with keeping back what the main male character did and find nothing romantic about not disclosing this at all.
I felt like some of the character's behavior was to move the plot forward rather than because it made sense. But since we are not in their heads I guess I can't really say that so I'll just let you decide for yourself about that.
I could go on, but lets just agree to disagree. I think some people will like it. I just have personal philosophical differences with parts of the story.
on December 26, 2012
Incredibly cheesy, predictable, and syrupy sweet (except for the weirdly graphic sex scenes that come out of nowhere and leave you feeling like you just read some weird grown woman's fantasy fan fiction version of what "hot" young sex is like). After the first chapter I knew this would be bad, but as it went along it got worse and worse. I can only assume this was written by a woman who a) has never had sex or b)a man who thinks he knows what chicks want. Either way, it was bad.
Fans of 50 Shades of grey, however, who probably think this is the fabulous. I'm not one of them.