Not finishing a book is something that took me forever to master. Now that I have, it’s easy to let a book go when I know there is something else out there just waiting for me to read it. Especially if there’s a chance I’ll love it. Sometimes I can pinpoint why I didn’t love a book in just a few sentences, and other times, it takes more words. In the case that I do have more to say, I’ll do a separate DNF post, but for books that I can sum in a few sentences or a quick paragraph, I’ll be combining them into one quarterly post. Now, kicking off the DNF Quarterly…
Always by Sarah Jio
ARC from Netgalley
The blurb for this one really was too good to be true. It was absolutely gripping with so much potential. The issue with here was fairly simple – the present to past telling of the story. The jumping back and forth was incredibly jarring, and to top that off, I was more invested in the present than I was in the past. Though neither ever fully won me over. This story was also very superficial. There were no undertones here, and the first person present dialogue gave the story a stilted feel.
Raw Deal by Cherrie Lynn
ARC from Netgalley
Cherrie Lynn has been hit or miss for me in the past, so I really shouldn’t have been as surprised as I was. Again, this book had a very superficial feel to it; I couldn’t feel the connection between the hero and heroine. Also, I could just tell where the story line with the brother’s widow was going, and I didn’t like it. It was too fantastical and the groupie feel to her character was immature and quite frankly, premature in the wake of her husband’s death.
One Hot December by Tiffany Reisz
ARC from Netgalley
If there’s one DNF that’s the hardest to write in this post, it’s this one. I love Tiffany Reisz’s writing, but I felt this series was not up to par with other books I’ve read of hers. I know this is the Blaze line and it’s known for its heat, but plenty of books in this category have depth to them. This one didn’t, and it was the banter. There was so much of it that it made it impossible to wade through and see who the characters really were. So sad to have lost interest in this one.
Hell Breaks Loose by Sophie Jordan
ARC from Edelweiss
You have to be able to really suspend disbelief for this series to work, and I just couldn’t do it to the degree needed to enjoy this story. Kidnappers happen to be specifically looking to abduct the president’s daughter at the exact moment she shakes her security detail for a burger? Also, crude ahead – I’m supposed to believe Reid has been just waiting to seek vengeance for 11 years only to get side-tracked by a piece of ass? No. I can’t do it. And to think the captor of several hair-trigger men is thinking how sexy and model-like Reid is? Again, no. Just no. But the icing on the cake for me (HIGHLIGHT TO REVEAL SPOILER) is that this is the second book in the series where the hero has to pretend to rape the heroine in order to save her. It left a very bad taste in my mouth. I won’t be continuing with this series.
It’s Only Love by Marie Force
ARC from Publisher
I have a hard time sometimes with small town or close knit family stories. They often veer from quirky and warm into overbearing, and that was the case with this one. Ella’s family was incredibly meddling, and I felt like everything was oversimplified, from the way Gavin handled his brother’s death to his relationship with Ella. The thing that bothered me the most was how Ella’s family warned her about how messed up Gavin was, and maybe she should stay away from him. This was a family friend who was so obviously hurting, and I am mystified as to why they wouldn’t be pleased she was putting forth the effort the help him heal. I also felt like there was too much of an effort to get me invested in characters that would appear later in the series, which hindered me from enjoying this one.
Save the Date by Annabeth Albert & Wendy Qualls
ARC from Authors
I’ve appreciated Annabeth Albert’s solo efforts in the past, but this one left me feeling…confused. Did we redefine losing one’s virginity? Does it no longer include penetration? That wasn’t the only thing to confuse me. There was a team building exercise leading up to the wedding both of our heroes were participating in, and for the life of me, no matter how many times I read the description, I just couldn’t picture it. Add in an effort to make it appear the ‘weaker’ of the two heroes strong fell flat and just made him look like a jerk, and this one lost me.