Release date: August 25th 2015
A new Abbi Glines series. Maggie comes to live with her aunt and uncle after a tragedy that leaves her unwilling to talk. West is a big shot on the football team but barely holding it together at home. They shouldn’t work, West knows Maggie should be running away from a guy like him, but somehow they find their way to each other. For him, Maggie is someone he can talk to without worrying about his secrets getting spilled as gossip. For her, West is someone who needs her and gives her a purpose. Slowly, they’re helping each other find their way back.
I was excited going into this book. I’ve enjoyed Abbi Glines’ other books and this one was no exception. If I had to put them in order, The Vincent Boys series would still be my favourite just because they were first but this new one is a very close second. I really liked the character, the setting, and the feel of the small town.
The book went back and forth between Maggie and West’s POV and I found myself enjoying them both about the same. Both were suffering in different ways and both were avoiding dealing with reality in different ways. Maggie stopped talking and did her best not to be a burden to anyone. She was good at observing people so it was easy for her to see through West’s mask even when his best friends couldn’t see. She was really sweet and while she did have some insecure moments, she showed she was strong and could be an anchor for West even through her own tragedy.
West was almost the exact opposite. He deflected his pain and suffering by being loud and crude and he used girls to distract himself. Really, I should have disliked him. But I found myself empathizing with him as he opened up to Maggie, the way he treated his teammates like family, the way he protected Maggie. I wasn’t a fan of the way he, and the other guys, spoke about girls but it was believable that their characters would talk like that.
The interactions between the football players were great. It was obvious some of them were closer than others but they were a family. They cared for each other, they would be there to help if any of them needed it. Their interactions quickly became some of my favourite scenes in the book. I found myself wishing Maggie had some girlfriends to interact with as a counter balance but that could come later in the series. Hopefully.
I really liked the way both Maggie and West’s stories were handled. It was never going to be a ‘flip switch, over it’ resolution, it took time and struggle for them to open up to more than just each other. It was the same with their relationship. Maggie was quite innocent and West was not, but they were both trying and they really fit well together.
The writing was that familiar Abbi Glines style I’ve come to enjoy. It was easy to read, the plot kept moving forward at a good pace, there was some set-up for which characters might be staring in the next book of the series. This is definitely a series I know I’ll be enjoying for a while.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.