This is a difficult book for me to review. I am not conflicted about my feelings for it, but rather, it's hard to put them into words objectively. I enjoyed the book. But it drove me nuts. I can't remember the last time I was so frustrated with a novel.
My Rating: ❀❀❀
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Addy's character is determined that no one ever find out that she was ganged raped at the age of sixteen. She's afraid of re-living the experience, of what it would do to the town of Whiskey Creek, and she's even afraid of no one believing her considering the ring leader of the assault, Cody, died that night and is well loved and fondly remembered by the townspeople. Since Addy hasn't lived in Whiskey Creek for fifteen years, I can understand why she's kept it all quiet. But the minute she arrives back in town, her life is danger. Someone abducts hers and throws her down into the mind where she was raped, leaving her seemingly to die. Luckily Noah arrives on the scene and saves her. This is how the novel opens. And shockingly, Addy refuses to pursue what happened to her. She's not cooperative with teh police, covers up what she thinks happens (that one of the men who raped her is behind this) and essentially down plays everything.
I struggled with this. I understood her reluctance to come forward at such a late date, to relive that experience, but I wasn't sure how smart keeping it all under wraps was considering that Addy was being threatened. It made no sense to me as she was putting her life on the line. So throughout the book I kept hoping Addy would tell someone...but she seemed determined not to since she had no plans to stay in Whiskey Creek permanently.
Let me talk about the romance. Addy and Noah's romance was...lackluster in my opinion. Addy isn't interested in building anything long term with Noah, and keeps trying to pull away from him or keep things as friends with benefits. Why she was even attracted to him I wasn't entirely sure, nor was I clear on what the attraction was for Noah as well. Honestly, their romance felt way too pushed in that Addy was always pushing Noah away, and these two didn't click for me as a romantic item. When Addy finally confesses to Noah what his brother Cody did to her, it occurred all off page which infuriated me. I can understand how this is a delicate topic and why the author might want it all to happen off page, especially since we as readers didn't really need the re-cap, but I had been hoping that this scene would cinche the romance for me. Alas, it didn't turn out that way.
This is a suspenseful read, more than the other Whiskey Creek novels I've read, and tells a complex story. I enjoyed reading this novel even though I was disappointed with it as a whole. I feel as though I would have enjoyed it more if the romance was more well developed.