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- Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle
Garth Black's name is rather fitting, given that he's always been the black sheep in town. And in a community where no one expects him to amount to anything, he makes sure he doesn't disappoint. He throws back drinks the way he throws away women, and there aren't many who can be bothered to care what happens to him, so he does his best not to care either. But he's been hiding his feeling for Josie for years, from the time they were five years old to when she fell in love with Jesse to when Garth betrayed them both. And for reasons he can't understand, she's there for him again when what little he has left in life falls apart. He knows he doesn't deserve her, that she deserves better than anything he could ever offer, but even at his worst, he can't stop loving her.
But... Shoddy editing again. No real surprise there, I guess. I still liked the story plenty, but I don't think I'll be buying any more of this author's books unless it's more than clear a skilled editor is involved. Such little, simple mistakes should be worth fixing before expecting people to pay for a product.
Judging Covers: Like the first book, I don't feel like this cover really illustrates the story very well. It's a really nice design, in line with many of the new adult romances out right now, but there's nothing in it that really hints at all the drama taking place on a ranch in a little community where pick-up trucks and Johnny Cash are practically required by law. I would have completely missed this series if the first book hadn't been free. However, if I'd just randomly run across it with a cover that hinted at the country setting? I'd have jumped all over it much faster.
The Verdict: I had a little trouble getting into the story at first, but I think I was just having problems coming back up from the angst in the last book. And stepping into Garth's mind there at the beginning wasn't exactly an angst-free experience. But once things really got going, I was all in.
Garth's a complicated character, a good guy who's pretty much never had anything good happen in his life, save for his friendship with Jesse and Josie. Of course, he went and ruined that the one time he forgot himself and fell into thinking he could have something he actually wanted -- the love of the only girl he ever truly noticed. But Jesse and Josie are both too good at heart to hold a grudge forever, and since Jesse's moved on with Rowan, Josie's finally got a chance to reflect on Garth, even if he does get on her last nerve. Garth has certainly given up on himself, merely surviving each day in a repetitive, self-destructive routine, but Josie won't let him fade away. When what little he has is taken away, she takes him in, standing up to her parents, who don't want him anywhere near their family, much less sleeping in their guest room. And that's what made this story different.
In many books, when parents pressure their child to stop seeing someone they deem bad news, the kid inevitably gives in. Josie, however, refused to let Garth be run off. Her snappy answers, even when her mother was all but demanding that she date someone else were a refreshing change from what I normally read, and they made me love her all the more. There was also a stand-out scene, an ugly fight over Josie that had Garth showing his true heart of gold, and while I was disappointed that he never sought any retribution or revenge, his devotion to Josie was perfectly delivered.
Finders Keepers is a wonderful romance between a misfit and the perfect daughter, and while it's a somewhat standard premise, the story was anything but cliche. It was angsty and sweet and funny and just a little dark -- all at once -- and it was really just the perfect combination. It's characters like Garth who have generations of readers swooning over those damaged bad boys, but you know, after reading this, I can't blame them at all.
- Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle
I'm a big fan of Nicole Williams' books. I fell in love with Jesse and Rowen nearly immediately in Lost and Found. I followed them obsessively through Near and Far and hated to give them up at the end. After reading the first two books, if anyone would have told me that I would wind up falling head-over-heels in book love for Garth Black, I would have told them they were out of their mind. It's not that I didn't *hope* that there was more to Garth than met the eye, but I just wasn't sure. There were hints in his behavior at the end of the first book and during the second that led me to believe there might be more to him, but not every character has redeeming qualities, after all, despite how badly you might want them to. I was prepared to deal with that, if it was the case.
"That's exactly the kind of guy you leave behind."
People have been leaving Garth Black behind his entire life. He's come to expect it. He doesn't do relationships. He has very few actual friends. Jesse, Rowen and Josie are pretty much it. I won't say he treats them badly, for the most part. His past has definitely shaped his present. What he needs to realize is that it doesn't have to shape his future.
"Are you decent?" That was a question I didn't need to answer. "Never mind. Most obvious question ever. How about... are you clothed?"
On the surface, Garth is stubborn. He's an a**hole. He does things to piss people off, whether deliberately or not. He likes to drink, sleep with women and fight. He's a cowboy from the wrong side of the tracks. He lives in a horrible trailer with his alcoholic and abusive father. At first glance, Garth isn't a very nice guy. He's hot as hell, there's no denying that, but that's about all he has going for him. He uses his looks to his advantage. He doesn't sugar-coat things. He tells it like it is. Or it seems like he does, anyhow.
"Don't tell me who to love, Garth Black. And don't you dare tell me it's a waste to give it to you."
In addition to hiding a great, warm heart, Garth's also keeping secrets. The biggest one being that he's in love with one of his best friends, Josie. He and Josie hooked up one night when she was dating his best friend, Jesse, effectively ruining friendships and relationships both. It was assumed it was Garth being Garth, but in reality it was so much more than that. It wasn't a cheap and meaningless one-night stand for him. He loves her, but he knows believes he doesn't deserve her. That he could never deserve someone like her.
"Without realizing exactly what I needed, I suddenly had it. A measure of comfort exactly when I needed it. A silent need picked up on and responded to. It was foreign in the best kind of way. Josie's hand heated mine, its warmth traveling up my arm and spreading around until no sign of a chill was left to be found. No sign of the winter I'd lived in my entire life was still around."
"Because you deserve better than my best. You deserve the man I can and should be. Not the one everyone else knows."
Feelings come out pretty early on in the book after Garth experiences a huge loss that shakes him to the core. He begins to question everything he's known and everything he thought he didn't want or couldn't have. More than a love story, this book is about Garth's journey of self-discovery. He finds that there can be more to him - that he is deserving of friendship and love. He and Josie's journey is pretty uneventful, considering how tumultuous Jesse and Rowen's was. Sure, there were some dramatic and angsty moments. Not everyone in town was happy with their relationship and they both had to deal with that in some very different ways. But, I always believed they would come back to each other in the end.
"I've known Josie Gibson since before I figured out girls like here were disastrous to guys like me."
It would have been easy to dislike Josie early on in this series because of her past with Jesse. But, she really never seemed like a huge threat to his and Rowen's relationship. I connected with her nearly immediately in the books. She's a strong, stubborn, sassy, yet somehow sweet, country girl. She became a great friend to Rowen, giving her the grounding and clarity she needed so badly at times. She does the same for Garth in this book. She's an incredible woman. They're all lucky to have her in their lives - and she's just as lucky to have them.
"It doesn't have to be Garth Black against the whole world, you know. Give your friends a little more credit."
"That was one misfit telling another misfit that she's got your back should you need it. That was one misfit telling another that you don't have to go through whatever you're going through alone. That was me telling you that you've got friends. So lean on them, god dammit. Stop acting like every battle you face is a one-man-war."
I loved that Jesse and Rowen were back in this book. I really wasn't ready to give them up. If you've read the first two books in this series, you know that Rowen didn't have an easy time opening up to the possibility of love with someone as, for lack of a better term, good, as Jesse. She was able to take her experiences and help Garth in this book.
"These two are the couple to beat. The love they have for each other is the kind to aspire to. I don't know about you, but I sure wouldn't mind having someone beside me who could give these two a run for their money."
I just loved everything about this book, it was easily my favorite in the series. Nicole Williams writes amazing characters. They are so complex, have so much depth, but they are somehow totally relatable. This book took me through the full gamut of emotions. I laughed, I cried, I smiled. I wanted to yell and shake Garth. I won't say his journey was beautiful, because there was too much pain for it to be that, but it was special. There are so many swoon-worthy moments in this book. I never thought I would get that from Garth Black. Who knew there was an insecure romantic underneath that tough cowboy exterior?
"She taught me how to love. She taught me who I wanted to love. Even though I failed at it, stumbled over my own two feet so many times I was face-planting more than I was walking, she showed me the perseverance of love."