Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Dear Heart, I Hate You by J. Sterling

Rating: Three stars
Date published: May 9, 2016
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads:
I didn’t plan on him.
Or for him.
Or anything that had to do with Cal Donovan from Boston.
Meeting him had been a complete and utter surprise, taking me one hundred percent off guard. I met new people every single day in my line of work and none of them affected me. Wasn’t that the way of things though? You could meet a thousand people and they’d all mean nothing to you. But then you’d meet that one and they suddenly meant everything.

First off, the cover is absolutely beautiful, but the title is what drew me in from the start. Dear Heart, I Hate You makes me think there's going to be a lot of emotions and some hardships ahead for the characters. It's intriguing. However, I don't really feel like the title and the cover live up to the actual story.

Dear Heart, I Hate You is about two workaholics who live on opposite ends of the country. They know from the start things between them could never work out; they're married to their jobs and they live on opposite coasts. The novel begins with them meeting by chance in Boston - Jules goes over to a table at a restaurant filled with Cal and his friends to ask for a chair and gets so blindsided by her attraction to Cal that she decided to sit at his table. After all, why would you let an opportunity like that pass you by? I admire the way Jules went after Cal like that. It didn't seem like the normal meeting of hero and heroine, despite the fact that it was filled with instalove.

Where this book really grabbed my attention was when Jules decides that she can't have a one night stand with Cal. She can't have it be just one night. I feel like most authors would've just had the two characters have sex in that moment and then find out their chemistry was off the charts. Not J. Sterling. It's that type of surprise that made me really like the book.

From there, Jules and Cal spend time together instead and find they really enjoy each other's company. Unfortunately, Jules has to go home to Malibu, so they only get to spend a few days together. After that, their long distance relationship begins, and that was where I started finding faults.

I'll just admit it. I was bored. Jules and Cal are cute, but I couldn't find something tying me to these characters, something that made me have to know how their story ends. The writing itself was good, but some of their conversations and inner monologues were really repetitive. By the end, it was more whining than angst and I'm sorry to say that I had to skim some passages to get through it. I also found myself wondering why they weren't occasionally using Skype instead of only phone calls and text messages.

Eventually, this book really pissed me off. I kind of wish I had been warned about why people on reviews were saying Cal is an asshole. He pissed me off so much that I honestly didn't want them to get back together at the end of the book. I don't want to give spoilers, but it made me regret picking up the book in the first place.

To sum it all up, Dear Heart, I Hate You was a decent read, but it just felt like it was lacking something. The last thirty percent left me really unhappy. I'm not sure I'd be interested in reading books by this author in the future.

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