Author: Robin York
Summary: In Robin York’s sizzling debut, a college student is attacked online and must restore her name—and stay clear of a guy who’s wrong for her, but feels so right.
When Caroline Piasecki’s ex-boyfriend posts their sex pictures on the Internet, it destroys her reputation as a nice college girl. Suddenly her once-promising future doesn’t look so bright. Caroline tries to make the pictures disappear, hoping time will bury her shame. Then a guy she barely knows rises to her defense and punches her ex to the ground.
West Leavitt is the last person Caroline needs in her life. Everyone knows he’s shady. Still, Caroline is drawn to his confidence and swagger—even after promising her dad she’ll keep her distance. On late, sleepless nights, Caroline starts wandering into the bakery where West works.
They hang out, they talk, they listen. Though Caroline and West tell each other they’re “just friends,” their feelings intensify until it becomes impossible to pretend. The more complicated her relationship with West gets, the harder Caroline has to struggle to discover what she wants for herself—and the easier it becomes to find the courage she needs to fight back against the people who would judge her.
When all seems lost, sometimes the only place to go is deeper. – Goodreads
Review: I have been thinking about this book review for awhile now; I’m having a hard time writing it. Did I like the book? Yes. Did I find it a bit uncomfortable at times? Yes. And that is where I have my issue. The book was a bit graphic in language, which I wasn’t a fan of but then when I think about the issues in the book I can’t help but wonder if York did this as a way to show the differences in use and intent of words. I can’t help but wonder if the book had less if would still have me thinking for days after reading.
The societal issues in this are fascinating to me as well. Caroline’s long term ex-boyfriend posts intimate photos of them on the internet it shatters her world. Leaving her exposed and haunted by the comments posted around the internet; is the guy at the gas station smiling at her because he thinks she cute or because he’s seen her pictures? How do you deal with being the victim but society telling you that you are at fault? That you shouldn’t have let that happen. That it was your fault for allowing the pictures. No blame on the ex-boyfriend that posted them without permission, he holds no fault. This whole topic has my brain turning and how far we still are from true equality.
Moving away from the deep waters, I loved the journey of Caroline and West. How their story slowly unravels and I loved how strong of a character Caroline became. Some in part due to the influence of West but then also from her own journey and self discovery. The strength she shows even from the start. She is surviving, not in the most healthy way but she is trying and is one character that really is my ideal when it comes to females.
There were moments during this read that I was unsure if I’d pick up the second book, but honestly after finishing the book I feel like I have to just for Caroline’s character. I can always skip over the parts I dislike but I just love her character so much.