The Chase by Elle Kennedy
Series: Briar U
Genre: New Adult, Romance
Publication Date: August 6th, 2018
ARC from the author
| Book Review |
The Chase, Summer and Fitzy’s story, is the first in Elle Kennedy’s new series, Briar U. It’s a spin-off of her beloved Off-Campus series, which I have, admittedly, not read. But even I have heard of Summer and Fitzy. It seems fans have been waiting for their story for a long time, and what a fun ride this was! I’m not sure what stopped me from picking up the Off Campus series, as HIM is one of my favorite (if not my favorite,) New Adult books of all time. But instead of kicking myself in the ass for it, I’m just going to be glad I have it ahead of me and not behind me. Here are my thoughts on The Chase:
What I liked –
Summer – Summer had a carefree attitude on the outside, but there were many layers to this party girl. She adored her family and friends, and she was loyal to the core. This was also a girl who wasn’t afraid to speak up.
Brenna – Brenna is Summer’s new friend, and I love the way they just ease into their friendship. Even as brand new buds, they’re able to carry serious conversations and offer good advice to each other.
The cast of characters – I liked this new cast of characters, but even the ones that were already paired up and clearly had their own books, I loved them without even knowing them. I love the entire dynamic, and I can’t wait to read more from this universe – old and new.
Fitz’s tattoos – There’s something about a tattooed man that I just love, and I loved hearing about them anytime Fitz was shirtless.
What I didn’t like –
The Love Triangle – Quite frankly, I feel like this is the one aspect of the story that gave Summer a shallow feeling, which I feel like was the exact opposite of what we were supposed to see. The other man in the picture was on his way to falling for her, and even when she knew she didn’t have feelings for him and wanted someone else, it felt like she was leading him on. I think we were shown over and over again that when Summer walked into a room, men’s jaws dropped and they paid attention. This didn’t add any depth to the story, and it felt a bit contrived for drama’s sake. Also, I wouldn’t necessarily call it a love triangle, but apparently Brenna, too, is irresistible, and when this happens in books, it feels more fantasy-like to me than anything, and it takes away any semblance of reality. I don’t need to see someone pining for the heroine to know she’s special or liked.
The constant back and forth – There was so much back and forth in this story, and it went on a bit too long for me. And just when you think it’s over and they’re finally together…it’s not. I want a heroine who can be decisive and has depth, and there were times Summer felt like she was neither.
The smarmy teacher – If someone is a predatory, they can usually tell who will and won’t accept their advances, so this is another aspect of the story that felt contrived to me. I don’t think the teacher would have continued his advances on Summer after she’d already made it clear she wasn’t into him. I’m over the smarmy teacher storyline and would have liked to seen something different for a point of conflict here.
Summer’s cattiness – I don’t mind a jealous heroine; it can be hot. But there were times here Summer’s felt more catty, and that just doesn’t scream girl power to me.
Even with my issues, I found this story incredibly addictive and enjoyed it. I wasn’t sold on the drama for drama’s sake, but there’s no denying it was entertaining. I’m intrigued by this group of friends, and I can’t wait to read more about them. I want all the stories!
| Rating |
Series Reading Order
| Excerpt |
“Dance with me?”
I want to say no.
But I also want to say yes.
I call this the Summer Dilemma—the frustrating, polar reactions this green-eyed, golden-haired goddess sparks in me.
Fuck yes and hell no.
Get naked with her. Run far, far away from her.
“Thanks, but I don’t like to dance.” I’m not lying. Dancing’s the worst.
Besides, when it comes to Summer Di Laurentis, my flight instinct always wins out.
“You’re no fun, Fitzy.” She makes a tsking noise, drawing my gaze to her lips. Full, pink, and glossy, with a tiny mole above the left side of her mouth.
It’s an extremely hot mouth.
Hell, everything about Summer is hot. She’s hands down the best-looking girl in the bar, and every dude in our vicinity is either staring enviously or glowering at me for being with her.
Not that I’m with her. We’re not together. I’m just standing next to her, with two feet of space between us. Which Summer keeps trying to bridge by leaning closer to me.
In her defense, she practically has to scream in my ear for me to hear her over the electronic dance music blasting through the room. I hate EDM, and I don’t like these kinds of bars, the ones with a dance floor and deafening music. Why the subterfuge? Just call your establishment a nightclub, if that’s what you want it to be. The owner of Gunner’s Pub should’ve called this place Gunner’s Club. Then I could’ve turned right around when I saw the sign and spared myself the shattered eardrums.
Not for the first time tonight, I curse my friends for dragging me to Brooklyn for New Year’s Eve. I’d way rather be at home, drinking a beer or two and watching the ball drop on TV. I’m low-key like that.
“You know, they warned me you were a curmudgeon, but I didn’t believe it until now.”
“Who’s they?” I ask suspiciously. “And hey, wait. I’m not a curmudgeon.”
“Hmmm, you’re right—the term is kind of dated. Let’s go with Groucho.”
“No-Fun Police? Is that better?” Her expression is pure innocence. “Seriously, Fitz, what do you have against fun?”
An unwitting smile breaks free. “Got nothing against fun.”
“All right. Then what do you have against me?” she challenges. “Because every time I try talking to you, you run away.”
My smile fades. I shouldn’t be surprised that she’s calling me out in public. We’ve had a whopping total of two encounters, but that’s plenty of time for me to know she’s the type who thrives on drama.
I hate drama.
“Got nothing against you, either.” With a shrug, I ease away from the bar, prepared to do what she’s just accused me of—run.
A frustrated gleam fills her eyes. They’re big and green, the same shade as her older brother Dean’s eyes. And Dean’s the reason I force myself to stay put. He’s a good friend of mine. I can’t be a jackass to his sister, both out of respect for him, and for fear of my well-being. I’ve been on the ice when Dean’s gloves come off. He’s got a mean right hook.
“I mean it,” I say roughly. “I have nothing against you. We’re cool.”
“What? I didn’t hear the last part,” she says over the music.
I dip my mouth toward her ear, and I’m surprised that I barely have to bend my neck. She’s taller than the average chick, five-nine or ten, and since I’m six-two and used to towering over women, I find this refreshing.
“I said we’re cool,” I repeat, but I misjudged the distance between my lips and Summer’s ear. The two collide, and I feel a shiver run up her frame.
I shiver too, because my mouth is way too close to hers. She smells like heaven, some fascinating combo of flowers and jasmine and vanilla and—sandalwood, maybe? A man could get high on that fragrance. And don’t get me started on her dress. White, strapless, short. So short it barely grazes her lower thighs.
God fucking help me.