Review: Hopeless by Colleen Hoover

Posted November 27th, 2013 in book review / 16 comments


Hopeless Series #1

by Colleen Hoover

Publisher: Self-Published (Dec 2012)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Young Adult, New Adult
Format: eBook (332 pages)
Source: Free book from publisher (Edelweiss) for honest review
Find It: Goodreads | Amazon Print | Amazon Kindle | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 stars)

Sometimes discovering the truth can leave you more hopeless than believing the lies…

That’s what seventeen-year-old Sky realizes after she meets Dean Holder. A guy with a reputation that rivals her own and an uncanny ability to invoke feelings in her she’s never had before. He terrifies her and captivates her all in the span of just one encounter, and something about the way he makes her feel sparks buried memories from a past that she wishes could just stay buried.

Sky struggles to keep him at a distance knowing he’s nothing but trouble, but Holder insists on learning everything about her. After finally caving to his unwavering pursuit, Sky soon finds that Holder isn’t at all who he’s been claiming to be. When the secrets he’s been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky’s life will change forever.

At A Glance
This was a very heartfelt and emotional story but I didn’t like the love interest for the longest time.

The Good
I didn’t like some of the messages this book was putting out, but I did love the story. And I loved Sky. I never wanted to cry so much and laugh so hard with one book. No wonder this book has a 4.5 average star rating with over 77,000 ratings on Goodreads. It is such a powerful story. Hopeless is a book you will never forget.

This was an effed up story if I have ever seen one. Hopeless breaks your heart, then crushes it, then grinds it into powder. It’s hard not to get emotional as Sky’s past is revealed and her whole life changes from that point on. Without Holder there by her side, I don’t know if she could have handled all those revelations and exposed secrets. It almost felt too much for me to read alone.  

Sky was an amazing character. As far back as she can remember, she has never been able to feel. She has no sexual urges and no lovey feelings. Until she meets Holder. And when these foreign feelings come drop-kick her, she starts to remember her forgotten past, and she wishes she could stop feeling again. Sky has grown up differently from other teenagers by being home schooled and denied TV, internet, and cell phones. But when she goes to high school for her senior year, she realizes she wasn’t missing much. People are mean and cruel. But Sky never let’s that get to her. Sky instead uses humor to fight the negativity, and I loved her the more for it. She was so freaking hilarious. When things get serious, she handles herself pretty well. She breaks down but she also keeps it together at the same time. Sky is the kind of person who deserves to finally be happy after everything she has been through.

I talk about the things I didn’t like about Holder in The Bad, so here I will only talk about his good parts. Once Holder stops being creepy and mean, Holder is the sweetest most understanding guy ever in the world. He has his own demons to deal with, but he never stops supporting Sky for one second. He’s also so lovable and playful. He brings out the best in Sky in every way. These two just had such good chemistry and the banter back and forth was priceless. I loved the honesty they expected out of each other. Now that was refreshing. I hate when people play stupid games in relationships.

The writing was simply beautiful. I loved how everything came together. The pacing was right on and the storyline flowed well. The dialogue felt natural as well. I just felt more after reading this book. The story in Hopeless was thick with beauty, heartache, and hope. I am excited for the next book in the series.

The Bad
What the hell is wrong with Holder? This guy is rude from the get go. He intimidated Sky, man handled her, even kept her from leaving until she handed over her driver license…to a COMPLETE STRANGER! He is mean, scary, stalkerish, and all around weird, but we are suppose to think this is okay because he’s hot? I didn’t like the message this book was sending at all. This kind of behavior should not be tolerated, no matter the excuses.

Another message I didn’t like from Hopeless was the whole girls who have sexual interactions with multiple guys are sluts thing. Instead of empowering women with discouraging slut-shaming since it’s so ridicules and unfair, I feel like all we got was Sky saying, “I’m not a slut,” then she goes on to describe the standards of what makes a girl a slut. Wow, couldn’t we have Sky sticking up for women who are sexually active instead of deflecting?

The Snuggly
I did not like Holder for the longest time, but when he grew on me, I did love Sky and Holder together. He was so understanding and caring. If I could forget how he acted in the first half of the book, I would say he’s the perfect boyfriend material.

Though this book feels more young adult, the sexual content is new adult. And there is some sexual abuse described, so be prepared.

Final Thoughts
The one star had to go with Holder’s attitude in the first half of the book and the whole “slut” aspect, but the rest of the story was flawless. Even with all the heartbreak, I felt happy by the end. Colleen is amazing with her powerful stories and characters. Very recommended.

“The sky is always beautiful.Even when it’s dark or rainy or cloudy,it’s still beautiful to look at….it’ll be there no matter what…and I know it’ll always be beautiful.”  

“F#%k all the firsts, Sky. The only thing that matters to me with you are the forevers.”  

“The moment my lips touch yours, it will be your first kiss. Because if you’ve never felt anything when someone’s kissed you, then no one’s ever really kissed you. Not the way I plan on kissing you.”  

“Sky, I’m not kissing you tonight but believe me when I tell you, I’ve never wanted to kiss a girl more. So stop thinking I’m not attracted to you because you have no idea just how much I am. You can hold my hand, you can run your fingers through my hair, you can straddle me while I feed you spaghetti, but you are not getting kissed tonight. And probably not tomorrow, either. I need this. I need to know for sure that you’re feeling every single thing that I’m feeling the moment my lips touch yours. Because I want your first kiss to be the best first kiss in the history of first kisses.”  

“My lack of access to the real world has been replaced completely by books, and it can’t be healthy to live in a land of happily ever afters.”  

Book #22 complete for the NetGalley November Challenge. I have reached my goal of 21+ books.

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16 Responses to “Review: Hopeless by Colleen Hoover”

  1. Sarah Elizabeth

    Well done on your challenge! I’ve been trying to read sequels read this month so my netgalley list is getting a bit long!
    I liked this one too, I still need to read the second book though 🙂

  2. Ashley

    WOAH for some reason I totally thought you’d already read this book!

    Unless I’m just not remembering well (which is totally possible), I think Holder’s jerkiness must have slipped right past me. Weird!

    • Jennifer Bielman

      OMG, what is funny is that I thought I read and reviewed this one too but nope, I checked. Weird. It seems like a lot of people don’t notice Holder like that either, so I am in the minority. It just stood out to me.

  3. Bookworm Brandee

    Fabulous review, Jennifer. I haven’t read Hopeless yet but I did love Ms. Hoover’s Slammed series. I understand what you’re saying about Holder and the message the book seems to be sending – and I’d agree with you. I am glad that Holder grew on you and that you ended up loving Hopeless. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. 🙂

  4. Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

    Perfect review Jennifer, although I absolutely loved Hopeless for the emotional, deep story you hit the nail on the head about Holder’s behaviour and Sky’s “sluttiness”. I think if you read Losing Hope you would enjoy it a lot more – it is told from Holder’s point of view and really addresses his behaviour as you see what he’s thinking at the time. Great review!

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

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