>> Friday, December 21, 2012
Rescued by a stranger.
Haunted by a secret
Sometimes, love isn't easy...
He watched her, but never knew her. Until thanks to a chance encounter, he became her savior...
The attraction between them was undeniable. Yet the past he'd worked so hard to overcome, and the future she'd put so much faith in, threatened to tear them apart.
Only together could they fight the pain and guilt, face the truth - and find the unexpected power of love.
A groundbreaking novel in the New Adult genre, Easy faces one girl's struggle to regain the trust she's lost, find the inner strength to fight back against an attacker, and accept the peace she finds in the arms of a secretive boy.
Jacqueline Wallace is having a hell of a month. Her boyfriend of three years, whom she followed to his chosen university, even though as a musician, it was really not the best choice for her, has suddenly broken up with her. And then, leaving a party, she's attacked by one of his frat brothers, who attempts to rape her. Fortunately, she's rescued by Lucas, a guy who turns out to be in her economics class.
This is a class, you'll probably not be surprised to hear, she picked only because her boyfriend was in it, and she's skipped it in the weeks since the breakup. When she realises she's missed a midterm exam, she begs the lecturer for mercy. He agrees to accept a research project in lieu of the exam, and puts her in contact with the class tutor.
And within a couple of days, Jacqueline has begun both an email flirtation with the tutor, and a real-life one with Lucas.
Reading back this bare summary of the book's setup, it makes it sound awful. And at first, I feared it would be. I felt a bit queasy when I started it, because in a couple of short scenes, we have: an attempted rape that is not reported, a mysterious bad boy who beats the crap out of the wannabe rapist, a heroine who forgot all about her dreams just to follow her boyfriend to a uni that wasn't right for her, and a seemingly airheaded, shallow roommate. I was definitely worried.
But then Webber proceeded to take each of these worries and smash them, one by one. This turned out to be a book with messages I could stand behind proudly, a book which revolves around its heroine's growth and empowerment, celebrates a relationship where she's valued and respected, and even has some stand-up-and-cheer scenes of women supporting each other and behaving like sisters. The mysterious bad boy is not a bad boy after all, and he's not a violent rage-monster, but a guy with plenty of self-control. The previously idiotically self-sacrificing heroine ends up going for what she wants careerwise, with the full support of her new boyfriend. Oh, and the airhead roommate? She doesn't change outwordly at all, it's just made clear that there's much, much more to her, and she's one of the strongest women in the story.
And guess what? It does all this while not feeling one bit like an "issues" book. The story had a bit of that feeling I tend to associate with those "cracktastic" books. The romance made me sigh and go all tingly. Honestly, it felt a bit like a guilty pleasure read, but with absolutely no guilt.
So, I really loved it, and I honestly think that if I'd read it when I was in my late teens, early 20s, it would have become my favourite book ever. Even now, though, I could identify with some of the characters' issues, much, much more than if they'd been just a few years younger and in secondary school. I think I'd be keen to read more romances in this New Adult genre. These are stories of a stage in people's lives you don't really see in regular romance novels, and where the HEA can definitely feel plausible.
MY GRADE: An A-
AUDIOBOOK NOTES: It was this version that I listened to. It was narrated by Tara Sands, who was the narrator who made me give up the audiobook of Katie McGarry's Pushing the Limits. She was definitely less annoying in this one.