Monday, May 20, 2013

Jen Fredrick, Undeclared - Review

For four years, Grace Sullivan wrote to a Marine she never met, and fell in love. But when his deployment ended, so did the letters. Ever since that day, Grace has been coasting, academically and emotionally. The one thing she’s decided? No way is Noah Jackson — or any man — ever going to break her heart again.

Noah has always known exactly what he wants out of life. Success. Stability. Control. That’s why he joined the Marines and that’s why he’s fighting his way — literally — through college. Now that he’s got the rest of his life on track, he has one last conquest: Grace Sullivan. But since he was the one who stopped writing, he knows that winning her back will be his biggest battle yet.

This is a mature New Adult book. I see that it is classified as YA - not sure how to change that - but I wanted to be clear that it has explicit love scenes in the story.

The Review :

As soon as I read the Blurb for this book I knew it was something I had to read it, it had every I was looking for in my next read; A Marine (aka alpha male), Falling in love through letters, A secret, Finding ones self and untimely trying to win the girl and falling in love.

Grace Sullivan has been in love with the same man for year, the only problem? She has never actually met him instead they have been communicating through letters for year because he is a Marine and stationed over sea's. What first started has a class project turned into a true friendship and then eventually love, but what do you do when the love you feel appears to be unrequited and then disappears all together. 

"I'm not getting married. I plan to live a life of bachelorette-hood. I'll be eccentric, have nine cats and wear blue eye-shadow and fur int he summer,"

The 'love' letter in this book - and I use that loosely - where a big draw for me, i love the unique approach to the story that i hadn't seen before, it was genius but to tell you the truth after reading the letters I was left feeling a little empty. We mostly read the letters from Noah to Grace and they seem very formal, nothing chatty and flirty that you would expect, in fact if I had been receiving those letters I would have gotten a little bored from the one side-ness of Noah's letters, he rarely asks Grace anything and I cannot personally see what made her swoon - but then again perhaps I just don't get it. 

Noah has enlisted into the Marines with his best friend Bo to try and better his life; he has a terrible home life with his father and his bother died during child birth - The marines is a way of him making something of himself and proving he isn't as worthless as his father has always told him.

Ever since Noah's letters stopped two year previous she has always been stuck in the past - yet again something that just doesn't sit right with me but then again I don't see the connection between them to start with. Then one day Noah turns up at Grace's university in a bid to win her back, - Get out of the Marines, get a degree, get Grace - but of course nothing is that simple.

"Bo had to physically restrain me from following Grace out of the theater. I fought back the urge to tackle her, throw her over my shoulder, and escape through the back exit. I'd take her to my truck and we'd drive to San Diego. Or maybe South Carolina. There had to be someplace within the eight thousand acres of marine property on Parris Island where I could stash her,"

At times Grace seems a little immature and unlikable and even now I am not sure what to make of her as a character. I would have liked to see a lot more of Noah 'winning' Grace back as it all seems to go rather quickly and for a girl who has been heartbroken by him for the past two years she is awfully quick to forgive him and move on.

"I know that your greatest fear is that you aren't good enough. But you are. You are the best kind of person, Noah. ... You are even better than Odysseus because he was an imaginary character dreamt up by some writer. You are real. And amazing."

This book had so much potential and I would love to see what else the author comes up with because she can only get better from here; The story was original it just needed a little more oomph for it to warrant a higher rating. Don't get me wring this book was not terrible in the slightest, it was just perhaps not my cup of tea (especially as I was expecting coffee)

3/5 stars.

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