First Published: May 26, 2011
Goodreads Blurb: The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate percentage of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance between her and the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend America, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.
Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the charming college co-ed. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his charms, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’ apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.
This was the best book so far this year, and the best new author that I was introduced to in a long while. I love the writing style, the depth of the characters, the plot and the humor. This book has everything I am looking for in a YA book, without having any fantasy elements in it! I am really not sooo good reading non-fiction, and yes, this is still fiction, but it is not sooo far off from something that actually could happen, so... I was suprised how eager I was to get on and know how everything develops. I thought the end was a little... too much and too God-I-need-to-finish-coz-I'm-fed-up-with-the-characters-and-all-the-shit-their-in. The story itself was a little like a table tennis match -- back and forth, back and forth -- and at some point or the other I thought Good Lord, get over yourself and make up your mind already! but that's kinda part of the whole YA genre, isn't it? And I thought it fit the characters very well, so I'll just overlook those little annoyances. However, since it was like this all the time, I had wished for a more... settled and warm ending. I mean, it was good, yes, and also quite fitting, but I sorta wished for the whole Maddox clan to have an appearance again (Can't say what I mean exactly, so I don't spoil anything, but those of you who read the book should know what I'm talking about).
End of story is that I'll stalk around for more books by Jamie McGuire and hope that all her books are like this, and especially that all her characters are like this, because I really, really loved every single one of them in Beautiful Disaster.
Style: 5/5 -- Plot: 5/5 -- Characters: 5/5 -- Suspense: 4/5 -- Humor: 5/5
Quotes I liked:
He was the worst kind of confident. Not only was he shamelessly aware of his appeal, he was so used to women throwing themselves at him that he regarded my cool demeanor as refreshing instead of an insult. I would have to change my strategy.
(pg. 15, Abby)
He tossed me over his shoulder, making his way through the crowd behind us. "Make way! Move it, people! Let's make room for this poor woman's hideously disfigured, ginormous brain! She's a fucking genius!"
(pg. 25, Travis)
"Now I've seen it all. I was just defended by a girl," he said.
(pg. 26, Travis)
"I've been drinking, all right? Your skin was three inches from my face, and you're beautiful, and you smell fucking awesome when you sweat. I kissed you! I'm sorry! Get over yourself!"
His excuse made the corners of my mouth turn up. "You think I'm beautiful?"
He frowned with disgust. "You're gorgeous and you know it. What are you smiling about?"
I tried to quell my amusement to no avail. "Nothing. Let's go."
(pg. 49, Travis & Abby)
The guests cheered, and America started a drunken rendition of Happy Birthday. I laughed when the part came to say my name and the entire room sang "Pigeon".
Shepley's bed squeaked, and then his feet stomped across the floor. His door flew open as he squinted from the light. "Fuck no, Trav, you're not pulling this shit! You're in love with Ab...", his eyes focused and he recognized his mistake, "...by. Hey, Abby."
"Hey Shep," I smiled.
America stood up. "This is ridiculous! Why are we helping Mick, Abby? He threw you to the wolves! I'm going to kill him!"
"Not if I kill him, first," Travis seethed.
"Get in line," I said.
Shepley and America were in a tight embrace, and making a scene while they kissed passionately.
"I think we're going to the Sig Tau date Valentine's party again," Finch said with a frown.
I sighted. "Shit."
"I'm not your anything," I snapped, glaring at him.
His eyebrows pulled in and he stopped dancing. "You're my everything."
(pg. 307, Travis & Abby)