Series: 2B Trilogy,
Published by Harlequin on 26 August 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, Love & Romance, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Young Adult
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Also by this author: The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things
Place(s) Traveled To: Mount Albion, Michigan // Ann Arbor, Michigan // Sharon, Nebraska
First Line(s): There’s always a meet-cute, right?
I first became familiar with Ann Aguirre when I read her young adult series, Razorland, which I really enjoyed and so was excited to try her New Adult Contemporary titled, I Want it That Way. (A title that is impossible to say without getting the Backstreet Boys song stuck in your head.) Unlike her YA series, I Want it That Way was a book that frustrated me on many levels. First there was the insta-love of the two main characters, Nadia and Tyler. Oh how I dislike insta-love in books. I get that its a tool that’s used as a way to accelerate a story but I always feel as though something is lost when there is no time given for a relationship to build over the course of a story. Then there was just how Nadia would seem to over react at the littlest of things. Tyler would tell her maybe and she’d cry for days as if her entire world had just collapsed. The reactions just never seemed to match up with the actions that were happening.
The language of I Want it That Way was also a bit off and was overly flowery, using a dozen words where only 5 might be needed. And then there were all the times when Nadia would use phrases that were inconsistent with a normal 21 year old. At least, a character outside of a John Green novel. A phrase that particularly stuck out at me was when Nadia used the phrase “exquisitely taken” during one of the sexy times scenes and it just pulled me out of the story as its something out of a bad 80s romance novel involving a much older character. This overly flowery way of thinking and many of Nadia’s other mannerisms just made it so hard to connect with her character in any meaningful way.
Tyler was also hard to connect with as he often came across as stiff and two-dimensional. There were many times when reading I Want it That Way that it was also told from Tyler’s POV as then maybe he would have seemed like a more realistic person. As it was he only really seemed to exist in a very superficial sense. He’d ignore Nadia when his son was around, not even saying hello, because that might let someone get too close or give his son the wrong idea. Say what now? The man had no friends and while I get that its hard for a single dad to keep up with the lifestyle of his friends when his son was born its not outside the realm of possibility that he would have made other friendships over the years. Heck, there are teenagers who end up as young parents and while they can’t go out and party every night they still have friends to hang out with and occasionally help with the child. Especially when you stay in the same town that you grew up in.
For me, I Want it That Way, was just one frustration after another and I could go on and on with all the different things that bugged me. But I think that you get the point that this book wasn’t a book for me and at this time I don’t have plans on continuing this series. But I will not give up on Ann Aguirre’s stories as I did love her debut YA series and I look forward to reading her next YA book, Mortal Danger.
People who liked this book better than I did:
What a Nerd Girl Says – “The story of Nadia and Ty is really beautiful, and I think I loved it so much because of the involvement of Ty’s child. It was hard enough dealing with the complications of Nadia and Ty trying to make their romance work, but throwing in the addition of a child just throws everything through a loop.”
Bittersweet Book Love – “I Want It That Way took me by surprise in a couple of different ways. There is real depth to these characters, each contributing something to the story. Furthemore, there’s just something about this book that urges you to turn the pages.”
Stuck in Books – “I Want It That Way hit me right in the heart, and I loved it. The writing made me feel, the characters made me love, and the romance made me swoon.”