Author: Anne Holster
Format: ebook via Author
Synopsis: It began with a drunken kiss, a furtive but passionate grope atop of pile of discarded winter coats. Downstairs, the party raged on, but all Jess hears is the pounding of her heart as Finn Evans - the guy she had fantasized about for God-knows-how-long - ran his hands along her body. It isn't until Finn staggers from the dark room that Jess realizes she has not only lost her virginity, but her underwear as well. Things only get worse when she sees Finn again and realizes he doesn't even know it was her in the bedroom that night! She heads to the Jersey Shore with her best friend, hoping a summer of fun will heal her broken heart.
Finn awakes with a colossal hangover and a pair of girl's underwear jammed in his pocket. It's not the first time he's had sex at a party, but it is the first time he doesn't know the girl's identity. Thinking he'll never see her again he heads to the Jersey Shore for a summer of sun, sand and sex.
While down at the shore, Jess and Finn find themselves thrown together time and time again, eventually forging an unlikely friendship. By the time Finn realizes he's fallen for her, Jess is with someone else. Will Finn be able to convince Jess that he is the one for her, or will his bad boy reputation haunt him forever?
“Finn, you gotta see this,” Jess said over her shoulder, “Jill’s standing on the porch railing with a
kazoo in her mouth. I think she’s using it to ref beer pong.”
“No shit!” I said, walking up behind her. “She’s gonna end up on her ass in the sand the way
she’s teetering back and forth like that.” I couldn’t help but laugh at the vision of Jill sprawled
across the sand in front of the house.
Suddenly I got a weird feeling of déjà vu, a vague impression of me and Jess in a room. It was
the smell of her shampoo or soap or something... I chased the memory, but came up with
nothing. I figured it was probably all the time we’d spent together over the summer.
We were both startled when someone yelled Jess’ name from the other room. She whipped
around to see who it was and found herself staring right into my eyes. I could have stepped
back, but I didn’t. Then again, neither did she. We just stood there for a minute, our faces nearly
touching, and I knew if I’d had a few more beers in me I might’ve done something stupid like, I
dunno, leaned in and kissed her or something. Instead, I just slowly pulled back.
Anne Holster resides in Northern New Jersey with her husband and two children. When she’s
not writing she enjoys spending time with her family, playing tennis and reading angsty romance
novels. She is currently working on her third novel.
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I have some conflicting thoughts on this one. From checking out other reviews, everyone else seemed to really love it and while I did like it, I had a few issues.
Let's start with what I liked. The premise was sooooo dang good! I read the synopsis and did a backward flip of joy. Seriously. I couldn't wait to read this book even though my review wasn't due until almost two weeks later.
And the beginning was great! I loved the alternating POV between Jess and Finn. I felt connected to them in a way that doesn't happen in all books. To be honest, I cringed several times, which was awesome. I don't mean cringing is awesome but a book that can stir and surprise me, emotionally, is a good book. When Jess realizes that Finn doesn't remember their tryst together, I felt real embarrassing pain for her. And as Jess and Finn began to see more of each other, I could feel both sides of the awkward relationship. Serious points to the author for that, alone.
I was smiling to myself for the first half of the book, loving it. Then I began to wonder if the two main characters would have any actual moments of romance between them. It didn't seem that way. Moments would present themselves and then go awry. We don't get very much love-action or romance between the couple which is a shame because I really liked both characters. Even a nice kiss might have sufficed.
The end left me wanting something. While I want to be hopeful, I am not sure that Finn and Jess' relationship actually stands a chance to last considering for most of the book, there was practically zero romantic interaction between them. Maturing through the story is great, sure. But I want to believe they can find a way to be together and not just take the author's word for it. I wanted to get a glimpse of their HEA.
I loved the characters and the idea of the plot. With, perhaps, an epilogue or if the author writes future books within this core group, I might finally get my satisfaction of seeing the HEA between Finn and Jess. I can't give it just 3 suns because despite my gripes, it was still better than a good read. So I'll bump it up a bit. 3.5 suns!