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The Immortal Rules
Julie Kagawa
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Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful, #1) - Jamie McGuire Abby and Travis are a disaster, and not a very beautiful one. They are two very dysfunctional college students, one age nineteen, that latch onto each other for some reason. I can only think that Abby is attracted to Travis because he represents a life she is familiar with and trying to leave behind. As for Travis, we don’t get his viewpoint in this book, so I’m not sure why he is attracted to Abby, other than she is probably one of the few females who manage to resist his many so-called charms and she doesn’t seem to mind his really huge flaws.I have some real mixed emotions about this book. The writing is not very sophisticated and this is noticeable in the beginning of the book. It could have used some editing to replace telling with showing. There are definitely some cringe-worthy lines in the beginning.Both of the main characters are dysfunctional as hell. I know, I said that already, but really, they are. Him more obvious than her, but they both have issues. He's volatile and controlling.. she's got family issues, and a background that includes the mob. They are both immature and fecked in the head. But I did finish the book, and there is a story here. Not a fabulous one. but one that held my interest until the end of the book.There are many contrived scenes, and many actions that really don’t seem plausible, for example, giving a girl you have been dating for a very short time a diamond bracelet? Sorry, didn’t buy that one. Or Abby being a super-card shark who can win thousands of dollars in Vegas to get her dad out of trouble with the mob. Or students beat up in the cafeteria and there is no judicial consequences to the beatdown. Oh, and Abby giving up her v-card to a guy she has no intention of staying with? And the ending ? That one came out of left field..All very unrealistic.Readers should be warned that there is also underage drinking, smoking, gambling, fighting, unprotected sex and driving under the influence. All without consequences.I didn't see Travis as a "hero" at all or Abby as a "heroine" ..more like two very messed up teens helping each other get through life. If this were a real-life couple, it's probably just a matter of time before everything explodes with dangerous consequences. I could easily see Travis drunk and using his fists on Abby. But I also didn't feel that the author glorified his bad behavior either, although it was Abby’s POV in this book, so that may have been the difference. I can definitely see where readers would have some major issues with these characters, particularly Travis and his violence.If you can't handle really dysfunctional characters, and the nasty things they do to each other then this is not the book for you. The question I always have in a book like this is whether the bad behavior is glorified and what the characters have learned from the experiences. These characters don’t really seem to grow much over the course of the book. If this is part of a much longer series, then I hope there is some way these two can mature and redeem themselves. I'm interested in reading Walking Disaster, Travis' pov just to see what it adds to this story, if anything.