Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout/J. LynnPublication Date: June 16, 2015
Publisher: Spencer Hill Contemporary
Series: Frigid, book 2Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Recommendation: 17 and up
Rating: 5 stars
Sometimes life leaves a mark…
Most days, Andrea doesn’t know whether she wants to kiss Tanner or punch him in the gut. He is seriously hot, with legit bedroom eyes and that firefighter body of his, but he’s a major player, and they can’t get along for more than a handful of minutes. Until now.
Tanner knows he and Andrea have had an epic love/hate relationship for as long as he can remember, but he wants more love than hate from her. He wants her. Now. Tomorrow. But the more he gets to know her, the more it becomes obvious that Andrea has a problem. She’s teetering on the edge and every time he tries to catch her, she slips through his fingers.
Andrea’s life is spiraling out of control, and it doesn’t matter that Tanner wants to save her, because when everything falls apart and she’s speeding toward rock bottom, only she can save herself.
Sometimes life makes you work for that happily ever after…
"Sometimes life leaves a mark..." and sometimes books do too.
So straight up I am going to admit that this is going to be an extremely tough review for me because it feels like a very personal review. I am likely going to cry through most of it and I am going to ramble. You are going to learn more about me than you ever wanted to know and I am hopeful that you will at least not walk away rolling your eyes. In fact I am hopeful that you will realize what an amazing story this is and how important a book can be to the right person.
I know you are wondering what that even means, aren't all reviews personal? Well, yes. All of my reviews come from my thoughts and feelings about a book, but this book moved to a different level of personal. This book at times was like looking at myself through a mirror .
As I type that I think, this is also something crazy to admit considering the outcome of Andrea's challenges, so let me say I am not saying that what went on in this story is a true reflection of my life, her choices and actions are not the necessarily ones that I have taken. But, Andrea herself feels like a reflection of who I am...and even that is a bit scary to admit publicly.
In fact, I have thought about not doing this review at all, just star it on Goodreads and call it a day because sometimes saying things 'out loud' is hard. I have thought about just sending my rambling feelings in an email to Jennifer L. Armentrout in the hopes that she would read it and know that she touched me on an emotional level that I have never felt with another book. That I look at Andrea and I look at her red-hair, her build, her thoughts, and feelings and I wonder how she delved into the essence of who I am and put me on her pages even though unintended (This is where those disclaimers about books being a work of fiction come in handy because otherwise I might start looking over my shoulder every now and again to make sure I'm not being followed. Although, if Jennifer wants to follow me around I'm actually okay with that, haha.); that I wonder how she so clearly describes the pain of being a person with depression and anxiety, the feeling of watching a person fall apart in front of them and not being able to help them. I want to say to her that I wonder how she knows the everyday struggle and pain of living with the thoughts and feelings that nothing will go right or your way because you aren't good enough, that you can never be good enough, whether you strike out on your own path or you follow a path set before you. That the path will never matter because you don't matter to yourself. I want to tell her that this is a book about more than love. It is a book about sacrifice and most importantly hope. It is a book about friendship and loneliness. A book about learning who you are, learning to let go of the hate you hold inside and learning to love yourself. This book is not a book of answers, it is a book of questions that for myself and a few others will make us look at who we are and wonder if it is who we are meant to be. A book that shows us that while being loved is a wonderful thing, a wonderful feeling, loving yourself is the most important thing. If you suffer from depression and/or anxiety you know this feeling:
"Did he even really know me? The answer to that question was what scared me the most. I didn't think that he did know me. At least not the "me" that existed when there were quiet moments, and that was a "me" I didn't know how to deal with." - Andrea
This quote alone brought me tears, because I know this feeling intimately. Does anyone really know who we are and if they don't why? Is it because of us or because of them? Does it really matter who is to blame, does it come from not feeling like we have anyone to talk to no matter who they are in our lives because we tell ourselves over and over that no one can understand, that they will think less of us, that they will think we are 'crazy', that we aren't good enough for them. These are all the things we say to ourselves in those quiet moments and it is those quiet moments that we hate, because it is the quiet moments that drain us. We learn to never allow those quiet moments, always keeping our brains moving, focused on so many things that there is not time to think because when we do we can't stand the words that we hear in our own minds.
Why do I mention all of this? It's because reading Scorched while painful emotionally for 'someone like me' is also a book that is hopeful, it is a book that is a reminder that we aren't alone. That no matter what we hear in our heads during those quiet moments we are not alone and we will be/can be okay.
There are so many things I would like to say about this book and about what it means to me. About how Jennifer took a topic that is, I wouldn't say taboo, but difficult. It can be difficult for those who suffer with depression/anxiety to understand as much as it is for those who do not. It is difficult because it is a hidden face, people don't want to admit to these thoughts and feelings about themselves and others. We become masters at hiding behind smiles and laughter all the while secretly hating ourselves because of that. To have this put on the page, to have it 'talked' about, to see someone else going through it even if they are fictional is a ray of hope....it's the idea and belief that maybe it shouldn't be so scary to say something, maybe it should be scarier to not.
So now that you know some of my deepest thoughts....
Andrea, we all know that I loved Andrea, that connecting with her would have been neigh on impossible for me. She's more than her challenges though. I loved her wit and humor. She (and Tanner) have that snarkiness that you have come to expect in a Jennifer L. Armentrout book, any of JLA fans will feel like they are coming home with this pair. There is a depth to Andrea though that considering the circumstances of the book was imperative. Jennifer L. Armentrout could have totally missed the mark with Andrea by just making her this angry, snarky, party girl, but she hit it out of the park when she opened us up to Andrea's thoughts and feelings. Jennifer takes us deep into the psyche of Andrea and makes her someone that you want to root for, even at her worst she is someone you want to see succeed and if she can do it with Tanner awesome, but if she can do it on her own...perfection.
Tanner! Tanner! Tanner! Who's ready to go burn the world down with me?
(Charlie D. Keller)
Light 'em up ladies, Tanner is going to melt your heart. He's and ass...now wait a minute. He's an ass, but at the same time he is the most wonderful of guys because once he accepts that he's acting like an ass because maybe, just maybe he's afraid of his feelings, there is nothing left to hold him back. I love that he is both willing to pursue Andrea and back away when she needs it most. That ultimately he is her friend. I can see that yes, Tanner wants to be with her, he wants it badly, but if all he could ever have of Andrea is her friendship he would take it just to keep her close. He would hurt (and being only her friend would hurt) for her because he loves her that much.
I enjoyed that we got to see our favorite couple from Frigid come back in this book, that we get a little peek into how their relationship is going. It is always wonderful to see our 'old' friends come back while we learn more about our new ones. Andrea could not have a better friend in Sydney, although I have to say there were times when I wished Sydney would have been a more forceful presence in Andrea's challenges (easy to say from the outside looking in), but I love her for never throwing in the towel. So many people would have walked away given the circumstances. It's so refreshing to see friendships/love that struggle but never quit.
This is a wonderful read for any Romance, New Adult, Contemporary Romance fan. It will strike a special cord with some people (but don't all books) and it will make everyone swoon. It will make you laugh, cry, yell, get angry, and feel content...basically it will give you ALL the feels. It is told from a dual POV, which I love and there is a good bit of steam, but I think that this book is so much more than it's steam and romance and you should totally read it.
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# 1 New York Times and International Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.
Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV. Her young adult romantic suspense novel DON’T LOOK BACK was a 2014 nominated Best in Young Adult Fiction by YALSA.
She also writes Adult and New Adult contemporary and paranormal romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.
Jennifer would love to hear from you. If you have questions about any of her books, would like to set up an interview, book signing, etc, please use the email address below. Please check out each book/series individual page for more information about each title and the FAQ section.