Monday, 4 February 2013

Review - Bad Rep, A. Meredith Walters

"Who gives a damn about their reputation? Oh, that would be me! Especially since mine had gone straight to hell in the span of thirty minutes".

Maysie Ardin is soaking up the summer before her junior year of college, shopping, hanging by the pool and shopping some more. But when her black belt in spending lands her in trouble with her parents, she is forced to take a second job at a local bar to dig herself out of a deep financial pit.

She thought she’d be miserable. But then Maysie didn’t count on Jordan Levitt, the hot, pierced and tattooed, drum playing bartender who also happens to be very interested in her. And the feelings are totally mutual.

It had the makings of the perfect romantic set up. Boy meets girl. Boy likes girl. Boy has girlfriend? Okay, maybe not.
But attraction is a hard thing to ignore and soon Jordan and Maysie find themselves in the middle of a gossip induced firestorm. Maysie has to learn whether she can set aside her fear of public disapproval in order to be with the one she wants. Or will she let the opinions of others dictate her life and her heart?


I should probably start by telling you that Jessica Sorensen (The Secret of Ella & Micha, The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden) has officially ruined the NA/Contemporary genre for me. I can't help but compare everything to her writing, which is just flawless. So when it comes to reading books like Bad Rep, they're really going up against Sorensen in an all out, no holds barred battle for NA perfection.

Unfortunately, Bad Rep started off on the back foot for me anyway, with the whole sorority/fraternity concept. Being a Brit and not having this kind of culture in our Universities, it's hard for me to relate to, and as someone that's never really striven for that kind of nicey nicey social acceptance, I find it all a little melodramatic. And that's how I found Bad Rep.

I didn't enjoy the story line because of this, and I therefore found Maysie as a main character a little whiny and somewhat pathetic. I very much sided with her room mate, Riley, in that it was totally lame to be thinking her whole life was crashing around her because she'd lost the respect of a sorority (for something she brought on herself, may I add).

There was little in the story line that kept me really entertained, and the major plot points weren't particularly dramatic. I was waiting for someone to get hit by a bus or for the school to burn down (anything!), thinking that the entire book couldn't possibly revolve around one half-hearted, teenage affair at a college, but alas, it did.

Another 'unfortunately' for Bad Rep is that it touched on my big big biggest pet peeve when it comes to this genre (and YA for that matter): 24 hour love. And in this case, it was literally, 24 hours. In 24 hours Jordan had become so completely infatuated with Maysie that he decided to screw over his girlfriend of 3 years (who he wasn't happy with anyway, just leave her for Christ sake?!), risk his position in his fraternity, which is apparently so important, and try and get Mays in the sack. It's just everything I dislike about establishing relationships.

Don't get me wrong, I liked Jordan as a character, and it was nice to read a NA book that didn't revolve around the guy being the indecisive one, but it wasn't strong enough for me to really sympathise with any of their actions.

I'm not going to write a long review on this because to be completely honest, I dont have that much to say. I couldn't relate to the story line and the plot points were weak, the writing was okay, nothing particularly superb, and the sex scenes were alright, the characters weren't irritating by any stretch of the imagination, but it wasnt an exciting book.
Theres definitely books I'd recommend above this one in this genre, so I'm giving it a 2.5 out of 5 (3 stars on GoodReads)

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