It's been a long time again...
Author: Chanel Cleeton
Title: London Falling
Release date: 7th of July 2014
Series: International School #2
Reading level: FICTION – ADULT: Romance, New Adult
Published by: Harlequin HQN
Pages: 284 in Kindle e-book format
Source: Bought from Amazon.com for Kindle
We weren't a relationship, we were a ticking time bomb… Maggie Carpenter walked away from the hottest encounter of her life when she left the seductive glitz of England for summer break in her South Carolina hometown. Now that she's returned to the International School in London—and sexy, privileged Samir Khouri is once again close enough to touch—she can't help but remember the attraction, the drama…the heartbreak.
She can't help but want him even more.
Samir can't afford to fall for someone so far removed from his world, not when his time in London is running out. It's his senior year—his last chance at freedom before he returns home to Lebanon. There, he'll be expected to follow in his father's footsteps—not follow his heart to Maggie. But when a scorching secret hookup becomes a temptation neither can resist, they'll both have to fight to survive the consequences…and find a future together.
I read the first book of the series and it had a somewhat ambiguous ending, and since it wasn’t a frustrating kind of end (as cliff-hangers and unresolved relationships usually are), then I obviously had to know how everything wraps up. And I wasn’t disappointed, despite the heavy load of angst and self-pitying.
It wasn’t a surprise that there would be a lot of drama and I-want-you-but-I-can’t-have-you kind of sentiment, but I didn’t find it as annoying as I usually would have, because this whining and angsty ping pong came across as logical reactions and emotions in regards to the situation. I also liked that when the obvious doom was clear, they didn’t agree to suffer, but decided to take as much as possible from an unfortunate situation and enable each other the six months to be happy together instead of sparing the heartache early and not have that brief time of closeness at all. Even the final petty and pointless fight didn’t manage to bother me, because nerves were on end and it isn’t unusual that people start to lash out because of that. So, overall, I thought the emotional rollercoaster and all the crying and complaining was authentic and believable.
For some reason I’m always hesitant when dual viewpoint is used. Of course I’m curious to know what the guy is thinking and to get the whole picture, yet it also makes me iffy, because sometimes it takes away the mystery and makes the reader all-wise and I would have just liked to take the journey in the shoes of the heroine and be as confused and blind to the inner workings of the hero as her. In this book, I did like that both sides were represented and each got to show us what’s going on in their heads.
I really wasn’t expecting to be as intrigued and excited to read about Fleur’s story in the third book of the series to come out by the end of the year. The snippets and beginning of that romance in the current book was a nice tease and prelude to what is to come. Can’t wait!
Where I felt the book slightly lacking and what I personally always look forward to, to make the story juicier and provide colour to the characters, is the dialogue. There was some nice banter here and there, but overall, the dialogue came across somewhat generic and simplistic. Fortunately, it was compensated by all the angst and great descriptions of the inner workings of the couple.
I also notices that almost all family relationships in the book were on the rocks or already fallen off the cliff and there were no real conclusions, even Maggie and her father were left hanging despite improvements. Also, you couldn’t even call most of them proper parents, even in the loose sense of the word and I get really irritated by neglecting or bullying parents.
Maggie – She was quite likable if somewhat bland. Nevertheless, she had spine, was a good friend, dealt with a difficult situation within her love-life quite admirably, although, she had her low moments and, overall, was easy to root for.
Samir – Being able to see his side of the story made his first book overconfident and strong persona seem quite vulnerable and he was a huge mess inside, because of his family, because of Maggie and because of the restraints on his life and his set future. There was an interesting contrast to him in this book compared to the first.
A satisfying conclusion to Maggie and Samir’s relationship and I hope to catch up with them again in Fleur’s book.