Review: The One Real Thing by Samantha Young

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Boring. Extremely hokey. Not worth it. And did I mention boring?

What in the ever-loving world happened?! I used to love Samantha Young’s books. Her Dublin Street books, especially book 1, were E.P.I.C. I cried, laughed, and fell in love with her characters. So, to find that I absofuckinglutely hated this was a big surprise… To me!

I wanted to love it. In fact, when I started it, I got really into it. I liked heroine Jessica and her seemingly noble and kind treatment of female inmates, despite her fuck-buddy-cardiac-surgeon of a friend’s lowly opinion of her chosen prison-doctor career. I liked aloof and seemingly alpha-male hero, Cooper. Ms. Young first gave us a few pages of how these main characters met, then I found I wanted to know more, and when I did, welp… I ended up NOT finishing it. It was THAT bad.

(1) Jessica, an M.D. by profession, stumbled upon 3 hidden desperate love letters from a former, dead female inmate, who, apparently, hailed from nearby Hartwell, Delaware. She goes on a self-discovering vacation to Hartwell, fell in lust with Cooper, then fell deeper in love with him, his small town, and its other cuckoo beachside residents. IN TWO MONTHS. She, a 33yo woman, abruptly quits her prison doctor job, decides that maybe being a doctor is not her real passion, has gabundles of student loans to repay, and took a job offered to her by immature and meddling innkeeper, Bailey Hartwell. Oh, and she’s harboring deep and scabbed-over mental trauma from losing her sister to suicide, and she actually begged Cooper, at one point, not to leave her because of her inability to talk about her and her sister’s tragic pasts. Her petty jealousies over Cooper’s ex and hook-ups, while she’s fresh into her relationship with Cooper, i.e., 2 days, were also just too tiring to read about over and over and over and over and over again.

(2) Cooper, the supposedly aloof barkeep and bar owner, was a sham. He’s a goddamned softy. He decides he liked Jessica’s mystery and sets out to make her fall in love with him. The 35yo dude has drama galore in his own life. Examples: he has an ex-wife who cheated on him with his then-lifelong best friend; the same ex reappears repeatedly to try and get him back; has a chain of hook-ups who relentlessly pursue him; and has kinky sexual tendencies he wanted to take on with the good ol’ doc. Makes sense? Nope, didn’t think so. It was, like, Cooper is a Frankenstein of a romantic hero. He’s everything and anything any female would want. As Jessica described him, he’s perfect. Which, TBH, fuckin’ annoyed me. ‘Coz all the women in this book were flawed, flawed, FLAWED. And the man was perfect?! UGH.

(3) Bailey was another annoying character. Her meddlesome and idealistic characteristics grated on me, for some reason. Her book is the second in this series, and without my even reading her book’s blurb on either Amazon or Goodreads, I already know her hero-counterpart would be her self-sworn enemy, New York-transplant and rival hotel owner, Vaughn. Her story is, again, predictable. ho-hum, and has me crying, “NEXT!” as if I were a casting director who’s just not having a good book day.

My conclusion:
(a) I regret buying this book.
(b) I regret auto-buying Bailey’s book, which now sits on my e-shelf, sticking its proverbial tongue out at me, and yelling “SUCKA!!!!!”
(c) DNF-ing it was more than what this book deserves from me.
1 star


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