Friday, September 7, 2018

Robin York - Deeper

In this New Adult debut by Robin York, a college student is attacked online and must restore her name--and stay clear of a guy who's wrong for her, but feels so right.
When Caroline Piasecki's ex-boyfriend posts their sex pictures on the Internet, it destroys her reputation as a nice college girl. Suddenly her once-promising future doesn't look so bright. Caroline tries to make the pictures disappear, hoping time will bury her shame. Then a guy she barely knows rises to her defense and punches her ex to the ground.
West Leavitt is the last person Caroline needs in her life. Everyone knows he's shady. Still, Caroline is drawn to his confidence and swagger--even after promising her dad she'll keep her distance. On late, sleepless nights, Caroline starts wandering into the bakery where West works.
They hang out, they talk, they listen. Though Caroline and West tell each other they're "just friends," their feelings intensify until it becomes impossible to pretend. The more complicated her relationship with West gets, the harder Caroline has to struggle to discover what she wants for herself--and the easier it becomes to find the courage she needs to fight back against the people who would judge her.
When all seems lost, sometimes the only place to go is deeper. 

Comment: Why do I keep trusting that a YA/NA story would appeal to me I can't explain. I saw a good opinion about this story back in 2015 and I added this to my TBR but honestly, this desire I have to be engrossed in a great story when the protagonists are so young should be a lesson learned already. I always hope I'll be proven wrong and as it happened recently, some books do prove it.
This, however, was not the case for me.

In this story we meet Caroline and West, two different people but who attend the same college. The story begins with Caroline discovering an ex (she believes) has posted sexual pictures of her in the internet. She is embarrassed, terrified by the outcome and angry something like this happened. She tries to deal with it on her own but of course there are things can't do.
West is one of those "bad boys"  that often populate these sort of novels and he ends up being a support for Caroline although he also has a lot of issues to work out and deal with. The two form a team at a time things are very complicated, emotionally, but together they can achieve anything (or not).

I'll include some mild spoilers.

When I read this story would address the subject of online shaming and privacy being exposed, I thought it would a very contemporary theme in the NA genre which made me interested in seeing how the author would portray this terrible situation and how victims can't usually easily defend themselves.
I was even more curious because the author is Robin York, a pseudonym for Ruthie Knox, whose contemporary adult work I've read before and enjoyed immensely. 

This book, I can imagine by looking at some comments and grades on goodreads, can be quite amazing and resonates with some but for me, it was simply a waste of a good premise.
So we have a potentially interesting story about a girl who has never done wrong but who is the victim of a crime and I thought, surely the plot will focus on this, even more so as a sort of awareness tool for readers so that they can try to protect their privacy online as well. I have to say that although this is mentioned, the focus of the story is certainly NOT this subject.

It's understandable that the usual NA books marketing, especially if romance stories, would focus on that. But sincerely, I couldn't just accept it easily. Or maybe I'm totally different from everyone else. Or maybe I wanted a story that others just took for granted somehow and that is why the plot felt silly at times and without focus most of it.
So the poor girl has her life turned upside down, she has her trust, her confidence attacked, her good name and privacy squashed and what matters to her is the attention and the support of a bad boy who often doesn't care about her? Come on!

The message of this book should be that women/girls should not give up their rights and should protected themselves and fight for what is right but I felt this was all lost among the constantly annoying talk about what it could be like to have sex with West and why both lust after one another. Arggh! 

So annoying, what's the point of that! Yes, she should be able to have sex with whomever and no one has any business about that but she was the victim of a crime! How can she even think about being with another person so soon after such a terrible situation caused precisely because she has as any right to have sex as everyone else. I truly think the emotional and psychological aspects were not addressed correctly, even assuming Caroline is strong enough to put it aside when necessary.
Belief the next YA/NA could be gold: the trust on the partial thoughts of readers who, as always, have different perspectives of looking at things.
Other people didn't see it this way, I know. 

This is a first person narrator and that is beyond annoying. Should I be aware of or know where is the "rules book" about New Adult plots/stories being only labeled so if the narrator is 1st person? The narrator alternates between West and Caroline but this doesn't help at all. What they think, what they focus on... what does it matter they match sexually? Don't these people have more serious issues to deal with?
And I won't even start about their academic aspirations, much less West's past and experiences which are absolutely pointless in this story (but certainly didn't impress me at all), even if real life is filled with Wests trying to make a living after bad pasts/origins.

I thought something would be different about this story considering who the author is. 
This just isn't totally negative because there are references about self worth here and there and some situations were well portrayed, I think. But this could have been so much better!
There's a continuation but no way I'm wasting time reading it, with so much to read already...
Grade: 3/10

No comments:

Post a Comment