The pact is about to change everything.
I have to give it to Karina Halle. This book was like emotional warfare! I think when an author can make me so pissed off at characters – just the mere act of causing such strong feelings – I actually come away loving it. I may not like what they did, who they were or how they acted, but dang, the writing was engaging and captivating. I wanted to throw my iPad so many times and hunt down James and Linden and kick them in the balls! Because really, they were BOTH equally despicable. While this read much like a screenplay, I can’t classify it as a RomCom because there wasn’t tons of comedy in it. There was, however, a TON of angst. So much so, that at times, it was difficult to read because the tension was so tight, so strong, my jaws hurt from clenching my teeth. Call me a wimp, but I feel a little emotionally scarred from this book.
“It’s my heart in a claw trap, bleeding and pierced, and I can seem to loosen it.”
As the blurb suggests, it all started with a pinky swear. But, in reality, it all started with a friendship. Linden, James, and Stephanie became friends at 21 when she applied to work at the same bar where they were both employed. As their lives change and they “grow into their own”, both Linden and Stephanie become as close as you can be with your best friend. You experience each other’s failed attempts at dating and as well as grow to love each other – as friends. When it is decided that at age 25, the dating scene sucked and the future didn’t look much brighter, Linden makes a pact with Stephanie that at age 30, if they are both single they will be married – to each other.
What I liked:
- The progression as friends to lovers. It was slow, it was tension-filled, it was sexy. These two truly belonged together.
- DESPITE my feelings for James (as described below.) He was the only one to come clean about his feelings and actions! Were they despicable, hell ya! But at least he had the balls to talk about it!
- I LOVED, that despite her broken heart, Stephanie stood up for herself! She knew she deserved more than she was being given. I wanted to give her a high-five.
- Their nicknames for one another – Baby Blue and Cowboy! Really?! *sigh
What I disliked:
- Linden had everything he could want, two great friendships, a great job and he made horrible decisions because of guilt and misguided sense of loyalty.
- James, he’s an a$$. Well, I think both he and Linden are actually. But James was a self-centered, whiny boy who hated when others were more successful than he.
While much of the time, I held my kindle with my mouth open, pissed off and raring for a fight, I loved it. It was a quick read. It had many sweet elements and had me swooning, (this book was pretty sexy, and had lots of dirty talk) laughing, (despite wanting to inflict violence on some characters) and even crying. For me, this was another KH hit!