And another review!
Author: Lyla Payne
Title: Broken At Love
Release date: 8th of March 2013
Series: Whitman University #1
Reading level: FICTION – ADULT: Romance, Contemporary, New Adult
Pages: 340 in Kindle e-book format
Source: Bought from Amazon.com for Kindle
When a knee injury ends twenty-year-old Quinn Rowland’s pro tennis career, he’s not only dumped by his hot Russian girlfriend but ordered to attend college by his disinterested billionaire father. A rich kid who’s not used to being disappointed by life, Quinn and his sociopathic half-brother Sebastian create a frat house game intended to treat girls how they see them—as simple game pieces to be manipulated for their pleasure.
College sophomore Emilie Swanson knows Quinn’s reputation—after all, he did send one of her sorority sisters into therapy earlier in the semester—but the game and his charm bring them closer together and soon she starts to believe there’s more to Quinn than people think.
But what if the more is something darker than a game of toying with emotions and breaking hearts?
Quinn and Emilie might be falling for each other, but there are secrets he’s not ready to tell—and lifestyle changes he’s reluctant to make. She willingly stepped on the court, but if Emilie finds out she started out as nothing as a pawn in Quinn and Sebastian’s twisted game, she might never forgive him.
To his surprise, Quinn finds that he might finally care about someone more than he cares about himself…even if that means letting Emilie walk away for good.
The book wasn’t something overly original or had some plot devices that managed to surprise me or did anything remarkable to get out of this typical NA plot trap. Nevertheless, it was a decent college romance story with quite an addictive plot.
I read reviews saying that Quinn was a complete douche and unredeemable, but let’s be honest, he never promised any of the girls something he didn’t intend to give them: a relationship, love, a steady and loyal partner, etc. It was the girls’ choice to enter into this… affair (?) with him, so yes, I was ready to hate his guts, but it didn’t really occur. However, this doesn’t mean that his intentions and methods were in any way right, but someone who was beyond redemption he was most definitely not – it takes two to tango. Also, several times I read that Emilie should have stopped chasing after him like a lost puppy and ended things after the multitude of times that Quinn disappointed and hurt her. Here, I was ready to be frustrated with her, but again, this didn’t really happen, because I wasn’t quite sure if you could call her behavior “naively running after him.” Yes, she gave him chances, was there for him, slept with him, BUT she did that accepting that he didn’t want a commitment, but she still decided by herself to wait till he was ready, because obviously she felt that something, knew what she wanted and gave his douche behavior the benefit of the doubt – and it seems it paid off.
Ok, I don’t know how many times I’ve said this, but please let’s stop with the compromising photo hassle for the final conflict. It’s just bothersome. Also, the brother was such a creeper, it wasn’t even funny, but he fit as a villain. Both of the fathers were worse douches than Quinn, so if you want to hate someone in the book, then hate on either of them or both. Another con: The steamy scenes didn’t really do anything for me, they just were. The ending seemed to be too polished and bright in a sense as well, but I actually like happy endings for people with huge issues and hard times, so it was fine.
Emilie – I loved that she wasn’t some naïve virgin, she knew what she got herself into and took it with arms wide open – and I respected her for this. If you think about it, she was incredibly strong, determined and a true fighter who went after what she wanted. I also liked that she wasn’t a wallflower or outcast liked many NA heroines I’ve read about lately.
Quinn – His way of dealing with the pain was destructive and wrong not only to himself, but also to the people he intentionally hurt, but it WAS real, stabbing and heavy pain he had to go trough nonetheless. His ego crushed, career ruined, father hates him, no real goal in life anymore, psycho brother, etc and he obviously wasn’t up to the challenge to fight this by himself – not everyone can handle so many issues and come out clean without any additional aid. However, him reacting to this one beating so carelessly and knowing about that gave him real minus points. But, he could also be incredibly sweet and considerate, eg. on how he secretly helped out Emilie with her problems.
It had its flaws, but I was intrigued enough to definitely continue with the series. I’m looking forwards to Ruby’s story.