Monday, 13 January 2014

Review: Sweet by Erin McCarthy


Sweet (True Believers, #2)

Sweet by Erin McCarthy
Publisher: Penguin Group InterMix
Publication date: October 15th 2013
My rating:  4 stars

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18113253-sweet

Jessica Sweet thought going away to college would finally make her free of her parents’ constant judgments and insistence she play chastity club role model for their church events, but if anything, the freedom has made her realize she can’t go home and be a hypocrite anymore. Tired of dodging their questions, she stays at school over the summer and lands in an unexpected crash pad: Riley Mann’s house.

Sarcastic, cocky, and full of opinions, Riley is also sexy personified with tattoos and biceps earned from working as a roofer all day. Not the right guy for her even if Jessica was looking for a relationship, which she is definitely not. But Jessica knows that Riley hides the burden of having to raise his younger brothers behind that grin and as she helps him get his house in order for a custody hearing, they begin to fall hard for each other, and she is forced to question what she’s hiding herself.

Jessica has never had a problem getting naked with a guy, but when it comes to showing Riley how she truly feels inside, her fear of rejection may just ruin the best thing—the best guy—to ever happen to her…



I must admit I wasn’t sure I’d end up enjoying Sweet because it centered on Jessica, one of Rory’s friends I met in True.  My opinion of her wasn’t very high, so I was pleasantly surprised that the story sucked me in so completely. 

Jessica Sweet is the stereotypical “preacher’s daughter” in that when she got out from under her parents home, she partied and had casual hookups galore to the point she’s slept with a lot of her guy friends without any sort of strings attached.  Jessica doesn’t want any strings with any guy, because she doesn’t want anyone to think they have the right or power to tell her what to do, like her parents did.  Jessica can’t bear the thought of returning home for the summer, trying to act like the sweet virginal “preacher’s daughter” when she’s anything but.  So she makes up a fake mission, spending the summer building houses for the needy, but actually stays in town close to campus.

When her rooming situation becomes a little complicated, she ends up crashing at an unlikely place: Riley Mann’s home, Tyler’s brother. This is a little awkward at first because Jessica and Riley have made hating each other a sport.  Because Jessica doesn’t have many options, she makes nice.  Being one on one with Riley, she slowly realizes what a great guy he is, caring for his younger brothers and shouldering the responsibility selflessly, and before you know it Jessica’s falling hard for him.

I got to know Jessica a little from the previous novel and didn’t really care for her.  I didn’t like her casual ideas on sex, screwing a lot of her guy friends, and others whenever she felt the itch. I’m not being sexist, I don’t like it when guys have this attitude either because I think sex should mean something.  Some might disagree with me, but that’s the beauty of opinions, everyone gets to have one.  Plus, it bugged me that she (highlight text to see spoiler)  slept with Tyler before Rory, and then paid him to “help” Rory out by sleeping with her, and thereby getting rid of her “pesky” virginity.  See my review for my thoughts on that move.  So, yeah, I wasn’t a huge fan of Jessica’s, so I was surprised how much I connected to her as I got to know her better.  I didn’t always agree with her actions or her thoughts, but Jessica’s honesty and giving spirit was appealing.  I loved watching her fall for Riley, and seeing the affect his character had on her views.

I had only love for Riley. In spite of appearances, and sometimes his mouth, he was such an honorable man.  The care and love he showed for his brothers was moving. He had a crap situation but tried to make the best of it being the oldest brother. 

Erin McCarthy continues to impress me with her original take on the New Adult category, and I’m excited for the next in the series: Believe.  There was a teaser at the end, and it promises to be interesting considering what Robin has done.  Oh, boy. I’m cringing just thinking about it, but I’m definitely reading it! 





Connect with Erin McCarthy:



 



 

30 comments:

  1. I've seen the covers for this author's books around but haven't given them a try myself. It seems as if Jessica, as a character, is quite complex and morally ambiguous, which I like, though like you I'm not sure if I'd enjoy her philosophy on paper all that much. Still, it seems this book won you over so I'll have to add this author to my TBR for sure. Wonderful review, Rachel! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Keertana. I think you'd like this NA better than most out there, so I'd like to see what you thought. :)

      Delete
  2. I would normally overlook a novel like this based solely upon the cover, but you've captivated me with strong reviews every time, Rachel! I think this one sounds sweet and inviting, though I feel as though Jessica might not be the right MC for me. Lovely review!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't think she'd be the right MC for me, either, Melissa which is why I was pleasantly surprised to find that I like her. And thanks! :)

      Delete
  3. I agree, I think sex should mean something too. I'm glad that you enjoyed this one, when you weren't sure if you would! I like when a book can surprise you. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yeah the whole concept on sex is not exactly the message you want conveyed to your younger readers. I do like that you ended up changing your mind a bit regarding Rory. I still need to read my ARC of True. Sounds like I am missing out!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, Heidi, so thankfully this was a NA instead of YA, and that Jessica had some positive character growth and changes in attitude. :)

      Delete
  5. Oh, I really liked TRUE so I'm glad to see you liked the follow-up, too! I honestly don't remember Jessica much, so it's interesting to hear you had a few reservations going into it...but glad that it turned out to be so enjoyable anyway. :)

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't realize you read True, Wendy. I'm happy to hear you liked it! I do think this author does well with the NA category accomplishing what others do not: a candid view of that age group. Hope you enjoy this if you pick it up. :)

      Delete
  6. Man, sometimes I read your reviews for NA books and I want to read them so badly as they sound amazing and when I actually do something within me ruins the whole experience. I have no idea why but it's not working. Anyhow I'm so glad you enjoyed this one more than expected. Great review, Rachel :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's good to know what works and doesn't work for you, Tanja. That way you love what you read, so I totally understand why this might not be your cup of tea. And thanks! :)

      Delete
  7. I've only read one of McCarthys books, from an adult series, and I loved it. But, I haven't began the series, and one of the reasons is the sex for pay angle. I'm glad you gave sweet and chance, Rachel, and liked it. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Andrea! I totally want to try Erin's adult books. There's one in particular and it might be one you reviewed on your blog. :)

      Delete
  8. I just wasn't sure about this one. I mean, I liked the other one in the series but I'm just not a massive NA fan. Plus, like you, I wasn't the biggest fan of Jessica from the other books. Think this one is a maybe!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I felt the same way, Mary, but I'm glad I ended up reading it. Hope you do too if you pick it up. :)

      Delete
  9. I don't know much about this series, Rachel. So tell me it's not a cookie-cutter NA? Lol. I enjoy reading them once in a while so I might give this series a try.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, not the cookie cutter, so you might like this one, Joy. :)

      Delete
  10. Just reading about Jessica lifestyle is making me very uncomfortable, I don't like this "sleeping with guys" and "meaningless sex" bit either, Rachel! Though I like that it's a sort of love/hate romance because those are always fun to read. I'm glad that you actually ended up liking her and enjoyed her story. Great review :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My thoughts exactly, Aman, which is why I almost didn't read this. Thanks! :)

      Delete
  11. Hmm, I don't think I'd like this book with meaningless sex and everything but I've still heard a lot of positive things from this author!

    Great review! <33

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Melanie! Jessica was all about meaningless sex in the last book. This one she's has some positive character growth. I'm still not sure this would be a read you'd enjoy, though. :)

      Delete
  12. I really was not a huge fan of her either for all the same reasons Rachel. I get she thought she was "helping" Rory, but honestly who does that to a friend? She just assumed Rory would want to get rid of her virginity instead of making sure that was a step she actually wanted to take. So glad that despite the fact that you disliked her going in, you ended up enjoying her overall. I'm a huge fan of the enemies to lovers setup, so now that I know your opinion on her changed over the course of her story, I'm definitely going to pick it up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, that just made no sense to me, but I know she meant well. I can't remember but I think she felt bad for doing that to Rory by the end. I think you'd fall for Jessica, once you got to know her, just as much as I did, Jenny. I can't wait to see your thoughts. The next book should be even more interesting after reading what Robin did! Oh my! :)

      Delete
  13. I'll make you a deal--I'll comment right now with my ramblings about how I suck at writing reviews right after I have finished a book and say that Sweet is still unwritten for me--hence I'm not going to read your review, though I did peek at your rating (I think I'm going with a 3.5 myself though). So the deal? Heh. I'll read your review on GR when I'm done with writing mine :) Glad you enjoyed this story, babe!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Woot for an original take on the NA, need to read this soon

    ReplyDelete
  15. I am so confused about starting Sweet. I had liked True but I wasn't a big fan of Jessica either so I never really bothered with it. But now I'm seeing that Believe is coming out soon too so t will be nice to catch up with the series. Thanks for your review Rachel! :)

    Janhvi @ The Readdicts

    ReplyDelete
  16. As a person who for several years considered sex to be a fun sport best enjoyed with much variety rather than a lovey-dovey thing (I still do, but I've been with my husband for 7 years, so I've been monogamous. For Seven. Years.), I tend to really enjoy this type of character.

    I'll have to give this series a try.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you'd like this series, Kate. It's a little different that what's usually offered in NA. You might enjoy Jessica's antics in True a little more than this one, because she got up to a little more fun, lol. Can't wait to see your thoughts if you give it a try. :)

      Delete
  17. I stalled out on reading the first book after seeing some negative reviews and I'm not sure I have it in me to make it to the best friend, who I'm still not sure I could sympathize with. I agree, I have trouble with guys AND girls who treat sex casually, though it's usually the guy in books so I guess I applaud the author for at least switching it up. For me sex will always mean something so it's painful for me to see it used like this. But I'm glad that this girl grows up and figures things out. Great review.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...