by Sarah Alderson
Summer:Everybody knows about the Cooper Killings – the Bel Air home invasion that rocked the nation. There was only one survivor - a sixteen year-old girl. And though the killers were caught they walked free.
Now eighteen, Nic Preston - the girl who survived - is trying hard to rebuild her life. She’s security conscious to the point of paranoia and her only friend is a French Mastiff bulldog, but she’s making progress. She’s started college in New York and has even begun dating.
But then one night her apartment is broken into and the life Nic’s worked so hard to create is shattered in an instant.
Finn Carter - hacker, rule breaker, player – is the last person Nic ever wants to see again. He’s the reason her mother’s killers walked free from court. But as the people hunting her close in, Nic has to accept that her best and possibly only chance of staying alive is by keeping close to Finn and learning to trust the person she’s sworn to hate.
Fleeing across a snowbound New England, frantically trying to uncover the motive behind the murders, Nic and Finn come to realize the conspiracy is bigger than they could ever have suspected. But the closer they get to the truth and the closer they get to each other, the greater the danger becomes.
To survive she has to stay close to him.
To keep her safe he has to keep his distance.
I don't really know where to begin with this one... I enjoyed reading the book a lot. I guess I'll start with that -- I really, really enjoyed this book.
I really loved the characters. I liked the plot too, because it was fast paced and exciting (although the twist at the end was predictable), but the characters were my favourite part.
Nic was awesome. So many authors go to extremes when writing characters like Nic, who have gone through something (some have them crying every other page, others have them barely impacted at all) but Sarah Alderson really got the balance right with Nic. She was changed by what happened to her, in both negative and positive ways, and came out the other side of it stronger than before. I loved that she could defend herself but wasn't too stubborn to let people help her.
And Finn... Finn was lovely. He was so patient and kind with Nic, and protective without crossing the line into being possessive or underestimating her (which I see too much in these types of stories). I loved how their relationship developed; in the end, they brought out the best in each other.
Then there's Goz (yes, the dog gets a mention). I loved that dog so much, I wanted him to be real just so I could hug him. The dog may or may not have made me cry at one point during the book (actually, the only thing I hated about the book was a scene where Nic lets Finn feed Goz something that she knows is going to give him an upset stomach, which seemed kind of cruel).
Also, it has to be mentioned that Sarah Alderson managed to write the alternating POV's really well. I don't like books with alternating POV's, that's the rule and there aren't many exceptions (and I hate that it seems to be the thing that most authors of New Adult books are doing now).
But Sarah Alderson is not only an exception to my rule, she is one of the few authors that actually manages to write it in a way I really like--she makes it so I love both characters equally and I'm genuinely interested in what they both have to say, and it doesn't feel like she's using it as a crutch or like it's spoiling the book for me.
Anyway, I'd rate the book 4 stars out of 5 because it was fun and fast paced and I really loved the characters (and, it gets bonus points for not being ruined by my aforementioned pet peeve).