Rating: 3/5 stars
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Summary from Barnes and Noble:
There was the time before Tessa met Hardin, and then there’s everything AFTER… Life will never be the same. #Hessa.
Tessa is a good girl with a sweet, reliable boyfriend back home. She’s got direction, ambition, and a mother who’s intent on keeping her that way.
But she’s barely moved into her freshman dorm when she runs into Hardin. With his tousled brown hair, cocky British accent, tattoos, and lip ring, Hardin is cute and different from what she’s used to.
But he’s also rude—to the point of cruelty, even. For all his attitude, Tessa should hate Hardin. And she does—until she finds herself alone with him in his room. Something about his dark mood grabs her, and when they kiss it ignites within her a passion she’s never known before.
He’ll call her beautiful, then insist he isn’t the one for her and disappear again and again. Despite the reckless way he treats her, Tessa is compelled to dig deeper and find the real Hardin beneath all his lies. He pushes her away again and again, yet every time she pushes back, he only pulls her in deeper.
Tessa already has the perfect boyfriend. So why is she trying so hard to overcome her own hurt pride and Hardin’s prejudice about nice girls like her?
Unless…could this be love?
I recieved this book from Gallery Books in exchange for a review of the book.
**This book contains mature content**
I LOVE fanfiction. I applaud those who write it and bend and shape pre-existing stories to create new adventures with old characters. For those of you who have not explored the world of fanfiction I highly encourage it. Although I would express a word of warning when searching topics for fanfiction and searching websites for fanfiction. Normally they are well labeled for how appropriate they are for certain ages, but just so everyone is aware I make no guarantees of what you will find.
I went into reading After blind. I did very minimal research on the book before I requested it, but I did this for a reason. I have found that many people are unhappy about fanfiction being published like original works are. I understand their reasoning for this but I didn’t want their unhappiness about it or bias opinions to taint a book that I otherwise might enjoy. And I did enjoy parts of this books. However there were some problems I found with it that forced me to give the book 3 stars instead of a higher rating.
What I Enjoyed:
I thought that the pace of this book was excellent especially considering how long this book is. While most new adult/romance novels run at about 200 pages, this book comes in at a whopping 600 pages. It is nothing to sneeze at. When I first picked up the book the fact that it was so large was definitely daunting. I wasn’t sure how the author was going to stretch the story in order to get it to the length that she had. While the book does drag at some points and there were some things that I could see being taken out to shorten the book, I felt that it kept a decent pace throughout and allowed the reader to continue at a steady pace throughout. The other thing that I rather enjoyed about this book is that, while it was a bit cliche in how it was written, for the most part the mature content in the book was well written. Also please note that I am basing this book off of fanfiction for the most part. I thought that as far as fanfiction writing goes, this book was well written and kept to the format for new adult and romance novels with their “love” scenes.
What I Wasn’t As Fond of:
Some of the portions of this book seemed a bit repetitive. Events that happened earlier in the book felt like they repeated or occurred in a similar matter later in the book which was something that got on my nerves a bit. However that was a minor thing compared to the scheme of things that could have been wrong. The other portion of this book that bothered me a little were the hints of emotional abuse that I could see in the Harry Styles character. For me this was a bit of a turn off but let’s be honest if we look at literature that is circulating today emotional abuse in main characters isn’t terribly uncommon *cough* Twilight *cough*. For some people I know this was outraging and something they could have done without in the book. For me I saw less of it than they picked up on but could still sense undertones of it.
This book is definitely still worth a read if you are intrigued by it. As far as fanfiction goes I was pretty alright with how this book turned out, even if I might not pick up the rest of the books in this series.