by J.A. Huss
Publisher: Science Future Press (May 2013)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Format: eBook (282 pages)
Source: Free book from blog tour host for honest review
Purchase: Amazon Print | Amazon Kindle | Barnes & Noble
Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 stars)
Rook Walsh is TRAGIC
Because life so far – just sucks. Some girls get parents. Rook got the foster care system. Some girls get Prince Charming. Rook got an abusive frog. Some girls get lucky…
Rook got a second chance.
And she took it. Because when fate throws you a bone – you grab it with both hands and run.
Antoine Chaput knows the minute he spies Rook in his photography studio that she’s got The Look. The dark and desperate look he must have to land the exclusive TRAGIC media contract.
Rook is paired up with top model, Ronin, and he’s everything her abusive ex-boyfriend wasn’t. Patient, gentle, happy, attentive, and sexy! He knows exactly what to do to make Rook blush for Antoine’s camera.
Rook’s luck changes in an instant and suddenly she’s the darling of the modeling world. It’s a dream job to go with a dream guy and all she has to do is look pretty and follow directions. But there’s always a price to pay – and Rook is about to get the bill.
At A Glance
Tragic has a way of pulling you in and making you obsessed with the characters.
It’s weird how I’d never heard of J.A. Huss a couple weeks ago and now I am reading so many of her books at once. She really comes up with unique storylines and interesting characters. I loved Huss’s Losing Francesca, and I have already read Manic, book two of the Rook and Ronin series, so now I just need to get my hands on her Junco series.
Rook has had a tough life, living in foster care and learning to fend for herself at a young age. But her most recent tragedy was her relationship with an abusive a-hole. On the run from her exes fists, she “accidently” gets a job as a model. Rook can’t be more excited, until she learns her new job is erotic modeling. But things aren’t too bad when she gets to get half naked with Ronin, a devastatingly handsome model that gets her blood pumping. That is until Ronin starts to run her life, which reminds her of her controlling ex. Rook really was tragic. She was so lost when we met her but she grows so much throughout the book. She gained confidence and was pretty down to earth. She had a realistic outlook on life and didn’t expect handouts. I loved being inside her head on her happy days, her sad days, and her thoughtful days. She was so grown up but still so juvenile all at once.
Ronin was so yummy. At first he comes off like every other male model, but he ends up being a much deeper character. Sure, he’s had a rough and seedy past, but he works hard and plays hard. He can’t fight his feelings for Rook, and he doesn’t want to. He loves her uniqueness and vulnerability. But his job leads him to take control of Rook’s life, which is pushing her away. Ronin has strong emotions, but not all of them work for Rook. And some of them didn’t work for me, but I couldn’t help but root for him too. I saw his downfalls and wanted to forgive him because he really is a good guy deep down. As a couple they have their issues but their undeniable attraction and passion for each other overrides their insecurities.
I loved learning about the world of modeling in this book, exotic modeling especially. Man, some of those shoots made me shiver. So. Sexy. But this book isn’t a sex-fest. There is a story, there is character development, and there is drama. The dialogue was well done as was the writing. But it was Rook’s struggle with her past, present, and future that really got me obsessed with this book. It’s like I HAD to know what was going to happen to her. Even the side characters interested me. I want to know more about all of them. If I was going to sum up this book in one word, it would be CAPTIVATING.
There is one big problem with Tragic. There was no big event, no huge conflict. The plot was literally about Rook, her modeling, then her falling for Ronin and having some minor set backs. Plot wise, this book is 3 stars, but the characters and story are 4 stars.
The story lagged a bit in some places.
Though I didn’t always like Ronin, I will admit that Rook and Ronin are freakin’ HOT together. Melt my face steamy. Curl my toes sexy. They are so young but both have been through so much. Each sees something special in the other. But it’s the passion between them that rocked my bookish socks off.
The sex scenes are definitely new adult. OMG, the sexual tension was so palpable.
I don’t think everyone will like this book. It may not be complex enough for some or fast enough for others. But if you are a character oriented reader, this is the book for you. I loved the second book, Manic, just as much and I can’t wait for book 3. Highly recommended.
I’m homeless, jobless, and broke. But at least I’m not scared and at least I’m not broken and at least I’m not letting people who know nothing about me dictate who I am.
“Beauty is fleeting. I know someone important said that, but I have no idea who it was. I just know it’s true. So I’m gonna grab this second chance with everything I’ve got and I’m gonna ride this wave until it spits me back out on the beach of bullshit.”
“I could describe what you look like, but that’s not what I see. You are so much more than a body inside a dress, Rook. You fit me. When I saw you crouching in that stairwell last week I felt like I knew you. You stopped me dead in my tracks, you wiped my mind.”
“I might not be able to make many guarantees in this world, Rook,” he says as his hand travels down and traces the crease between my legs. “But I will say with one hundred percent certainty that you will come tonight.”
J. A. Huss likes to write new adult books that make you think and keep you guessing. Her favorite genre to read is space opera, but since practically no one reads those books, she writes new adult science fiction, paranormal romance, contemporary romance, urban fantasy, and books about Junco (who refuses to be saddled with a label).
She has an undergraduate degree in horses, (yes, really–Thank you, Colorado State University) and a master’s degree in forensic toxicology from the University of Florida. She used to have a job driving around Colorado doing pretty much nothing but shooting the breeze with farmers, but now she just writes, runs the New Adult Addiction and Clean Teen Reads Book Blogs, and runs an online science classroom for homeschoolers. Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter