Title: Beautiful Disaster
Author: Jamie McGuire
Series: Beautiful, #1
Date(s) read: January 7, 2013
Genre: New adult
Source: Purchased (Paperback)
The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.
Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.
When I finished reading this book, I struggled majorly on how to rate it — I liked it and it kept me turning the pages until the very end, but there were some definite things in it that bothered me. I figured to rate it in the middle of the road felt about right — even if I finished wanting to continue on with the series and didn’t find it as bad as some people said it was.
Personally, I really like stories that involve a really good girl getting together with a really bad boy. The relationship between Abby and Travis was just that — at times, it felt like a normal relationship, but there were other times where it felt just a little too intense. I feel like teenagers or young adults who are reading this book might feel like that’s the norm for relationships, when it really isn’t.
I liked Abby’s character and felt like she had a good head on her shoulders, and so did Travis to an extent. I liked the idea of him fighting for money and I liked some of the situations he and Abby got into , but there were other times where I felt like it was a little much. I guess that’s why I felt like it was a good thing these characters were in college because it made the story have some semblence of being believable.
The writing felt very accessible, even if the story felt a little long. Like I said, I was so interested the whole way through, but there were times where I thought there was just too much going on and too many things happening in one book. And, again, that message that love has to be all-encompassing — especially a first love — seemed a little dangerous.
Of course, even when I think that, I am a romantic at heart and kind of liked the idea that Travis and Abby seemed made for one another, ready to do whatever it takes to be together — even if that bordered on being a very disfunctional relationship. Yeah, there was some hokey things going on, and some unbelievable things (like moving in with a strange boy on a bet, having to sleep in his bed, etc.), but I still really liked the story. I can’t really put my finger on it, but it was one of those stories that just wasn’t as bad as people had made it out to be.
With all the issues I had, I still want to read the next book in the series which is told from Travis’s point of view. I feel like it might explain some of the issues I had with him.