Publication Date: July 8, 2013
Page Count: 362
Source: purchased from Amazon
Genre: New Adult
18+ due to adult language and situations
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Growing up in small-town Belcrest, Maddy Jennings always thought she was destined to be with her childhood sweetheart, Trent Basso. Throughout the complicated road she has traveled with Trent, someone else has had a strong presence in Maddy's life. Trent’s older brother Gabe has always been someone she could count on, therefore neither of them can be blamed when lines blur from friendship to something more. However, promises made between brothers threaten to ensure that neither of them will have a permanent place in her life.
When Maddy returns to her hometown for her brother’s wedding, she is forced to face both Trent and Gabe for the first time in two years. While the two Basso brothers fight to win her heart, she is busy struggling with a past that won't seem to let her go. Whether she wants to or not, Maddy must decide to either forfeit her own happiness or forever tear a family apart.
Love Me Back was just an alright read for me. I didn't love it, but I didn't completely hate it either. While reading, I was all over the place with my emotions. Now I'm somewhere in the middle and feeling a bit 'meh' about it. There were some aspects that I enjoyed, and some things that drove me absolutely nuts.
Maddy was such a weak character. She LET things happen to her rather than take charge of her own life. Gabe and Trent had so much influence over every aspect of her life. I just wanted her to stand up for herself and stop having her life dictated by these 2 men. They weren't all that great, and neither deserved to be put up on a pedestal by her. Trent was so familiar to her that it was difficult for her to break ties with him, even though he treated her badly. Gabe was her rock when things went south with Trent, and she grew to depend on him.
Trent and Gabe were both very possessive of Maddy. The little pissing contests between the brothers grew extremely tiresome. I also had my fill of the brothers wanting Maddy to choose one of them. Like that was the only viable option for her. I really wanted Maddy to pull a Kelly from 90210 and say 'I choose ME!" That would have pleased me immensely. Especially because she was causing so much turmoil between the brothers. Aren't there any other men out there in the world that she could have been with? Just sayin'.
Trent had absolutely no redeeming qualities. I honestly don't know how his own mother could stand up for him after some of the things he did.
I thought Gabe was an alright character. I didn't like that he was a bit overbearing at times, and he had a sense of entitlement that I didn't understand.
I loved the friendship between Maddy and Trent when they were younger. Maddy's home life wasn't the greatest, and Trent's entire family was quick to take her in and treat Maddy like one of their own. Maddy and Trent progressed to girlfriend / boyfriend, and both thought they would be together forever. But when Trent breaks up with her before leaving for college, everyone knows he just wants to sleep around guilt free. Trent takes advantage of the fact that Maddy is loyal to him, even though they aren't together anymore. He knows she isn't the type to sleep around, and she always ends up taking him back. But time and distance take their toll on their relationship, and they are no longer as close as they once were. Maddy can (finally!) see Trent's flaws and see that Gabe is always there to pick her up. She and Gabe didn't mean to be attracted to each other, but when Trent finds out about them, Gabe promises that he will stay away from Maddy as long as Trent promises to do the same. Cue lots of drama and angst. Insert eye roll.
The timeline switched from past to present with each new chapter, which became a bit confusing. Maddy and Trent's relationship was so on-again, off-again that I had a difficult time remembering if they were together or apart with every chapter. I wish this aspect of the story had been more streamlined because it took until the end of the book for the full picture to come together.
Last, but certainly not the least, is my problem with the writing. It didn't have good flow at all. Every spoken word is grammatically correct without any slang, or even any contractions. AT ALL. It was almost painful at times, and it pulled me right out of the story so many freaking times.
Overall, this turned out to be just an okay read. It was overloaded with angst and drama. I liked the premise of this book, and it had a lot of potential, but I thought the execution was lacking.
My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars