Series: Out of Line,
on 06 September 2013
Source: Inkslinger PR
Also by this author: Play Me
Place(s) Traveled to: San Diego, California
First Line: I leaned against the wall and surveyed the crowded room. All around me, people were in the pursuit of the three majors of college: getting drunk, getting laid, and then getting even drunker.
That was my response when I read the opening lines to Out of Line by Jen McLaughlin. Yes, there are some that believe in that philosophy of college but that is by far not the majority and it just put this dread in my soul as to where this book was going to go. So this just set my teeth on edge as did the heroine of the story, Carrie, who was a spoiled little brat. Her father is this very overprotective (read: creepily so) father and has sheltered her for her entire life. She thinks that he finally let her attend college (all the way across the country) without any bodyguards and she’s estatic at her freedom as maybe now she’ll finally make some friends. But she never seems to make friends although granted a lot of this book happens in short span of time so maybe that is to come.
Enter in Finn, a marine and surfer with a big secret in that he’s working undercover for her father. This isn’t a spoiler as its revealed in the very first POV switch to Finn. He tries to keep her at a distance and be all professional. And yet he’s drawn to Carrie in the physical sense. We know this as many of his thoughts are focused on what looking and touching of her body does to his. He’s very one note this Finn. He also had made moments about douche-baggery and if I could have smacked him I would. Finn wasn’t all bad and he is in his mid-20s so perhaps I was just hoping for more maturity from him than I got.
The story itself was just so-so. Carrie finds out Finn’s secret and goes all meltdown and then stomps her foot and blackmails (extorts?) Finn into following her commands. Carrie was a character that I wanted to like but I found it difficult to do so. There were also some awkward WTF type scenes like when they are in the surf shop looking to buy a wetsuit and the shop girl in trying to put Carrie down asks if she’s an A cup. To which Finn, a proclaimed expert in female frontal anatomy, corrects her to say Carrie is a C cup. There is a big difference between C and A and also…expert in frontal anatomy, really? That phrase came out of his mouth. Like I said douche.
Some of the dialogue was awkward and almost cringe worthy but beneath all this awkward there wasn’t a bad story. There were some moments that made my heart ache for Carrie and Finn. The two characters were just a bit too immature at times but they are young and that is the time when you make stupid emotional mistakes. Life is still filled with so much change and emotion so while I didn’t always like Finn or Carrie I did understand where they were coming from.
Even with all that I disliked about Out of Line I still may have given it a 4 star as there were no love triangles or crazy out of no where mysteries or other randomness tossed in just because. At least, that is, until the end. When there is this mysterious phone call, a thought that it will change everything, and then a sentence saying that the story with continue in 2014. Head meet desk. This is where all my real angst of Out of Line comes from. The forced, random, no point to it cliff hanger ending. I don’t know if there is a full book coming but there will be a novella at the end of December and if that is all then I just have to ask, why not just include all of the story into one book. Why have a novella? It just makes my head hurt and think not so good thoughts about how people just want to divest me of my hard earned money for little return. These crazy half-stories are increasingly popular and they just annoy me. A lot. If there is a reason for a second book then by all means have a second book. But there doesn’t seem to be one here.
I wanted to like this book. I wanted to say all the good things but it is hard as my brain just keeps flashing to that ending. Carrie and Finn have issues and if given time they could work through them. They are flawed characters who could benefit from a course in communication. But then most humans find it hard to say what they are really thinking. I do admire Carrie for trying to become her own person but she was just too much sometimes. Too good and it was hard to connect with her. Finn, I liked better, he was flawed and real and he’s what kept me reading this story until the end.
Overall, Out of Line left me a bit iffy and I am unsure on if I’ll read the novella or not. The story didn’t wow me but I have read worse. Do with that as you will, dear reader.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Desperate to break free…
I’ve spent my entire life under my father’s thumb, but now I’m finally free to make my own choices. When my roommate dragged me to my first college party, I met Finn Coram and my life turned inside out. He knows how to break the rules and is everything I never knew I wanted. A Marine by day and surfer by night, he pushes me away even as our attraction brings us closer. Now I am finally free to do whatever I want. I know what I want. I choose Finn.
Trying to play by the rules…
I always follow orders. My job, my life, depends on it. I thought this job would be easy, all the rules were made crystal clear, but when I met Carrie Wallington, everything got muddy. She’s a rule I know I shouldn’t break, but damn if I don’t inch closer to the breaking point each time I see her. I’m ready to step out of line. And even worse? I’m living a lie. They say the truth will set you free, but in my case…
The truth will cost me everything
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jen McLaughlin is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. She writes steamy New Adult books for the young and young at heart. Her first release, Out of Line, came out September 2013. She also writes bestselling Contemporary Romance under the pen name Diane Alberts.Since receiving her first contract offer under the pen name Diane Alberts, she has yet to stop writing. She is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.
Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, a cat, and a Senegal parrot. In the rare moments when she’s not writing, she can usually be found hunched over one knitting project or another. Her goal is to write so many well-crafted romance books that even a non-romance reader will know her name.
Jen is offering a one-of-a-kind prize for a lucky reader! Anyone who helps spread the word about OUT OF LINE (through tweets, facebook messages, leaving a review, etc.) gets entered to win 30 pages of the manuscript, which include editing marks and special never-before-seen notes from Jen! You will have all the deets on what Jen changed, deleted scenes, and special extras.
OTHER STOPS ON THE TOUR:
Wednesday, September 11th
random jendsmit – Review Stop
As the page turns – Excerpt
The Book Goddess – Character Interview & Review
Into the Hall of Books – Review Stop
The Quiet Girl Talks – Review Stop
Living in a Bookworld – Review Stop
Thursday, Sept. 12th
Friday, Sept. 13th
Saturday, Sept. 14th
Monday, Sept. 16th
Tuesday, Sept. 17th
Wednesday, Sept. 18th
Thursday, Sept. 19th
Friday, Sept. 20th
Saturday, Sept 21st
Reviews by Tammy and Kim – Review Stop
Monday, Sept. 23rd
Tuesday, Sept. 24th
Wednesday, Sept. 25th
Thursday, Sept. 26th
Friday, Sept. 27th
Saturday, Sept. 28th
Sunday, Sept. 29th
Monday, Sept. 30th
Tuesday, Oct. 1st
Wednesday, Oct. 2nd
Thursday, Oct. 3rd
Friday, Oct. 4th