***Not suitable for younger readers due to sexual content and language.***
Guys like Joel Wentworth weren't supposed to fall in love with girls like me. He could have had his pick of the girls on campus, but somehow the laws of nature were defied and we fell crazy in love. For a short time, I thought it would be for infinity. On July 10, 2006, immediately after graduation, Joel left for New York. And, despite him wanting me to go with him, I'd refused, unwilling to disappoint my parents and risk the judgment of my friends. I hadn’t seen him again. Never even spoke to him. I've spent the last eight years working hard to put my career front and center in my life, dodging any personal complications. I have a strict no-dating policy. I've managed to piece together a reality that works for me. Until now. Now, Joel's coming back to London. And I need to get over him before he gets over here.
✯✯4 Shiny Stars!!✯✯
This is a story of love and second chances. It's a story of 2 people in love. One wanting to scream it from the roof tops. The other one wants to keep it a secret for their own selfish reasons. It's about 2 people being apart for 8yrs. Now, that they are seeing each other again after so long what comes next? This is my 1st book by Louise Bay. I definitely would read her next.
Ava Elliot & Joel Wentworth have never had a easy relationship. They met in college. Ava and Joel had the same group of friends. But, it was there time spent in the library studying that changed everything. They finally gave into temptation after awhile. The funny thing was is that is wasn't Ava making Joel wait. Joel made Ava wait until she knew that this is what she wanted. Joel never hid his feelings for Ava. So, when they finally committed to each other it was for infinity. For forever. So, what's the problem? Ava!! Ava was the problem. Joel wanted to let all their friends know that they were together & happy and in love. Ava on the other hand had a weird way of thinking. She didn't think she was pretty enough for Joel. Ava thought once everybody found out they were together that people would talk Joel into doing better.
No matter how much Joel told her he loved her. No matter how much he showed her. It was never enough for Ava. He could never touch her or stand too close to her in public. I felt so bad for Joel. I can not tell you how many times I yelled & cursed at Ava while reading this book! Here she has a man who can legitimately get any woman & is destined to do big things loves her with everything he has. He wants to scream from the highest rooftop that he loves her. Yet, she somehow makes him agree to wait until after her final exam to tell their friends.
Now, that finals are a week away Ava is wondering what Joel's plans are after they graduate. All of their friends have said what they are all doing. Ava herself has everything planned out. Everybody has discussed what's next except for Joel. Ava decide's to ask. Joel lets her know he's got this awesome opportunity to go to New York for a year. Joel asks Ava to go with him. To defer school & her internship for the year. After discussing it with her parents she decides to stay.
Now, 8yrs later and Joel is moving back to London. Ava has managed for the last 8yrs to avoid Joel every time he's come back to visit their friends. Not only has she managed to avoid Joel like the plague she has also never dated anyone in that time. Ava's life has revolved around work and not much of anything else.
Ava has had this imaginary relationship with Joel. Her heart has and always will belong with him. Yet, Ava is afraid his heart is with someone else. Ava talks her friend Jules into getting her on a dating website to get her mind and heart off Joel.
Now, with Joel back in town the old gang is back together. They are back to getting together for dinner. Going out to the bars. Yet Ava and Joel never seem to speak to each other except for a "Hello" "How are you" "Good bye" thing. And, that literally drove me insane!!
It wasn't until Joel showed up at Ava's doorstep that the present got good. He was there demanding answers. Finally!! He also gave her a time frame. 1 week. Ava had 1 week to prove to him she was ready for a relationship. A public one. Not behind closed doors. But, to let all their friends & anyone else around that they were together. It was all or nothing!
I'm so glad the story went back & forth from past and present time frames. It really filled in their complete story. Seeing them falling harder and harder for each other was nice. Because, they really genuinely did love each other. I just wish Ava wasn't so worried about what everyone else thought and went with her heart. Because, they spent more time either hiding or alone. There was so many unnecessary things with them that never should of happened.
I was so pissed from the start of the book to the end of the book in the present time. For the first 72% of the book in the present time that Joel & Ava didn't speak! There was too much description and not enough dialogue. I felt like the book could of used more conversation's between the characters. And, I am sad Ava & Joel didn't get anywhere in the present until 72%.
I did love all the characters in this story. I loved how they all remained friends after all these years after they graduated college. They truly did care & love each other. I really hope Louise decides to write another book revolving around one of Ava & Joel's friends. Because, they really are a group of great people.
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Ruined by romantic mini-series of the seventies and eighties, I love all things romantic. There's not enough of it in real life so I'll settle for books and films. I love the rain, the West Wing, London, days when you don't have to wear make-up, being alone, being with friends, elephants and champagne.