Friday, October 3, 2014

SUNNY - BLOG TOUR, REVIEW AND GIVEAWAY: "As Long As You Love Me" by Ann Aguirre

It's been a busy week around here!  We close our the week with a blog tour from one of our favorite authors, Ann Aguirre.  Join us in celebrating the release of As Long As You Love Me. 

As Long As You Love Me
by Ann Aguirre
Book 2 in the 2B Trilogy

Most people dream about getting out of Sharon, Nebraska, but after three years away, Lauren Barrett is coming home. There are the justifications she gives to everyone else—missing her family, losing her college scholarship. And then there’s the reason Lauren can’t admit to anyone: Rob Conrad, her best friend’s older brother.

Football prowess and jaw-dropping good looks made Rob a star in high school. Out in the real world, his job and his relationships are going nowhere. He can’t pinpoint exactly what’s missing until Lauren comes back to town, bringing old feelings and new dreams with her. But he’s the guy that women love and leave—not the one who makes them think of forever.

Though she’s terrified of opening up, Lauren’s ready to take that chance. Because the only thing more important than figuring out where you truly belong is finding the person you were meant to be with.

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Read the First Chapter HERE!
I am not sure this genre features Ann Aguirre’s best writing.  For me, Ann Aguirre creates the most amazing worlds – creative, edgy, and dark.   I’m currently reading another one of her books, Havoc, and I’m enthralled. So I’m sorry to say that I don’t feel the same way about this story.  I miss her imagination and tight-wire storytelling. The irony is that I read many more romance and New Adult books than science fiction. Still, I liked a lot of things about the book, but I didn’t feel compelled by the story.

I like the premise.  Going against the norm, small-town girl Lauren doesn’t want to escape from the small town, she wants to go home. Back at home she reconnects with her best-friend’s brother, a man she has had a mad crush on since she was a kid. 

Every wonder what happened to the BMOC (Big Man On Campus) after high school? Both his family and the community saddle Rob with the reputation as the dumb jock.  Is he doomed to relive the Glory Days for the rest of his life with no expectations to break out of that stereotype? People didn’t expect much for him and Rob lives up to that reputation.

Lauren shares that struggle – both are hiding behind a façade. She learned in her teens that she could hide her true self by pretending to be a extrovert – the Party Lauren. The difference between the two is the Lauren sees herself as a work in progress; Rob hasn’t begun his self-actualization yet.  They get each other.   One of the best lines in the book says this best:

“Lauren, you’re the only person in the world who doesn’t make me feel like half a ham sandwich.”

What was missing for me: I feel like the emotional punch comes too late in the story. This made the pace of the book really slow for the first half of the book. There is very little drama to sustain the first half.  Even where there is a point when Rob has to make a decision regarding his girlfriend – a potential trigger for conflict – it falls flat.

A nice contemporary New Adult romance, it has the emotional power to make it a nice to read, but not necessarily a MUST read.

Other Books in the 2B Trilogy:

Ann Aguirre is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author and RITA winner with a degree in English Literature; before she began writing full time, she was a clown, a clerk, a voice actress, and a savior of stray kittens, not necessarily in that order. She grew up in a yellow house across from a cornfield, but now she lives in sunny Mexico with her husband, children, and various pets. Ann likes books, emo music, action movies, and she writes all kinds of genre fiction for adults and teens, published with Harlequin, Macmillan, and Penguin, among others.


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