I hadn't read a Colleen Hoover book before Hopeless. I own a different one (Slammed, I think, although I can't be sure.) My beautiful friend, Melissa, who knows way more about new adult books than I do has been suggesting Hoover's books to me for probably a year. In fact, she's the one who sent me Hopeless for Christmas.
It was good, don't get me wrong. But it wasn't great. I expected to want to blitz through it. To get those little tummy flutters that come from reading about great relationships. But I didn't, really. Part of it was maybe the writing style. It was a little...I want to say simplistic, but I think that gives it the wrong connotation. Hoover just had the tendency to have characters say what was happening instead of feeling what was happening. I always hate when I make statements like that without proof, but there wasn't ever a place where I was like, better mark that down for my review. I just kept feeling, okay but show me this. It's a pretty dialogue heavy book which I usually enjoy, but for the most part, I kept thinking but where are the actions to support this? Which is a little ironic considering at one point the male lead tells the female lead, “You don't deserve words, Sky. You deserve actions.” And maybe that's a good point to be like, well you said it, but you didn't really follow through.
My second problem with this book is entirely pacing. I wanted to something to actually happen. And finally about 2/3rds of the way through the book, the plot decided to show up. Then it got really exciting. I really enjoyed the last third of the book. But the first part was largely confusing build-up. I couldn't put my finger on whether I liked Holder or not. He walked a thin line between being a jackass and having the potential to be abusive, which I didn't like. Sky (the narrator and female main character) excuses it by calling him passionate. But that's after she's been afraid of him several times, and I didn't feel the same need to excuse his actions that she did.
Overall, I would give it a cautious recommendation to people who like new adult books and want to continue reading them. I don't know that I would recommend it for a first time new adult reader. And if people are triggered by abuse, I would steer them very clear of this book. I will definitely give Hoover another try, and see if any of her other works click with me.
Favorite Quote: Life can't be divided into chapters...only minutes. The events of your life are all crammed together one minute right after the other without any time lapses or blank pages or chapter breaks because no matter what happens life just keeps going and moving forward and words keep flowing and truths keep spewing whether you like it or not and life never lets you pause and just catch your fucking breath.