Thursday, August 21, 2014

Review: I Want It That Way

I WANT IT THAT WAY
2B Trilogy #1
Ann Aguirre
Contemporary New Adult
352 pages
Harlequing
Available August 26th
Source: BEA

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
Nadia Conrad has big dreams, and she's determined to make them come true—for her parents' sake as well as her own. But between maintaining her college scholarship and working at the local day care to support herself, she barely has time to think, let alone date. Then she moves into a new apartment and meets the taciturn yet irresistible guy in 1B….

Daniel Tyler has grown up too fast. Becoming a single dad at twenty turned his life upside down—and brought him heartache he can't risk again. Now, as he raises his four-year-old son while balancing a full-time construction management job and night classes, a social life is out of the question. The last thing he wants is for four noisy students to move into the apartment upstairs. But one night, Nadia's and Ty's paths cross, and soon they can't stay away from each other.

The timing is all wrong—but love happens when it happens. And you can't know what you truly need until you stand to lose it.


MY THOUGHTS
I Want It That Way is everything there is to love about the New Adult genre with none of the overly familiar elements that make so many of this book’s contemporaries frustratingly repetitive. Over the top relationship drama is replaced with a believable obstacle for our couple to overcome, and we’re thankfully graced with two people who are mature and level-headed enough to both talk–and listen–to the other person on good days and bad. The romance between Nadia and Ty is one that feels beautifully genuine, the challenges they each face with school and life splashed across the pages, coating us in their accomplishments and struggles until we’re so invested in the outcome of their story that we can’t bring ourselves to set the book down before the last page is reached.

Nadia is gloriously real, someone who feels as though she could have easily lived down the hall from us at school, free of any kind of fictional exaggeration to make her more interesting to readers. She’s not running from a dark or sordid past and is free of trust issues courtesy of past relationships, instead she’s financially strapped but on a scholarship, determined to make her way through school but open to having fun while she’s at it. Despite her complete understanding that Ty doesn’t want a relationship because his first priority is his son, she stays endearingly calm and collected when affection turns into so much more, tucking her love for him away without any pity for herself or resentment toward Ty. Even as their romance reaches its breaking point, Nadia proves herself to be heads above the rest, nursing her hurt without doing anything stupid to deliberately hurt Ty before deciding to fight for what she wants.

Ty is as real as Nadia is, his romantic appeal stemming from his obvious love for his son and his desire to provide for him while working to make sure his own dreams come true as well. He’s tired, stressed, and on any given day in over his head, but we feel how every ache and pain he experiences is more than worth it when Sam smiles or laughs, and the caution he exercises with Nadia in order to protect Sam only serves to make us fall a little more in love with him. He doesn’t fight his feelings for Nadia or push her away, instead he makes it clear how much he wants her and a life with her even if it’s not a possibility for the two of them at that exact moment. His reaction to Nadia’s slight voyeurism kink is enough to make us break out a multitude of fans, waving frantically to reduce the blush in our cheeks as we root for their happily every after with every fiber of our being.

Overall, I Want it That Way is New Adult at its very best, Nadia and Ty on their own gorgeously layered and infinitely relatable, but they're also surrounded by an extraordinary cast of secondary characters in Nadia’s roommates. Up next is the romance between Nadia’s brother Rob and her best friend Lauren, and I couldn’t be more grateful that we have so short a wait in between books.

Rating: 4.5/5
 

Find Ann:


This book was sent to me by the author free of charge for the purpose of a review
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.

30 comments:

  1. Ann Aguirre is ALL over the map with her books these days, and it seems like she really knows what she's doing! You know my general aversion to NA, but this one sounds really remarkable, and Ty sounds like the type of love interest that I'd absolutely die for. Fantastic review, Jenny!

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    1. YES! I love that she writes a wide variety of things, and for me, she does all of them really well. I was a huge fan of this one and simply can't recommend it enough:)

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  2. And then everyone is writing NA, sigh, ok good the book is awesome but still

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    1. An awesome book is an awesome book I say, regardless of the popularity of the genre:)

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  3. I agree completely! Ann's extreme realism, so very unusual for this genre, is what makes this book (and the remaining two) stand out. Those small details from Nadia's everyday life made her seem so real to me! And Ty...there are no words! I felt that man's pain so strongly!
    I'm glad you loved this book as much as I did, Jenny! What a gorgeous review!

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    1. YES! I wish I could have hugged her after reading this book. It was just everything I want from this genre, with realistic problems for this age group that aren't blown so far out of proportion as to be ridiculous:)

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  4. I absolutely agree with you! I don't read much NA but I will read any and all NA written by Ann Aguirre after reading this one! I loved how crazy-drama free this one was, and I was indeed rooting for Ty and Nadia like mad!
    Great review, Jenny!

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    1. IT WAS SO GOOD PILI!!! I'm not entirely sure why all the titles are named after Backstreet Boys songs, but it's irrelevant really. I can't wait to read the next two:)

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    2. I don't know why either, but I always end up humming the songs when I see the books! *is humming*

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  5. Oh yes I hear nice things about this one but I confess I need to try many of her others books mainly I have a few of them. I'm just soooo late!

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    1. READ THIS MELLIANE! It's amazing:)

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  6. The new adult genre is so very hit or miss with me, but this one seems like a home run. Ty and Nadia's relationship sounds like on that would keep me flipping the pages. I will have to add it to my TBR list. Great review, Jenny!

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    1. For me as well Christina, but this book blew me away. I adored both Ty and Nadia and was so grateful for the low drama. It was still emotional and engaging, but not over the top as so many NA books are.

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  7. I was a little wary about this book because of all the mixed reviews, but it sounds like something I would really enjoy, Jenny.

    "we’re thankfully graced with two people who are mature and level-headed enough to both talk–and listen– to the other person on good days and bad. "

    This is more than enough to make me want to read the book. I'm so tired of couples who don't talk and then wind up having a huge misunderstanding between them. It's frustrating and irritating, so this might be a refreshing read for me.

    The characters also sound very lovely and realistic. I've only read one book by Ann Aguirre, but I loved it, and since I'm a fan of NA, I think I'll give this a try.

    I love how your reviews always manages to boost my mood about a book, Jenny! :)

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    1. I dread the big misunderstanding in NA. The moment around the 75% mark when everything falls apart and characters tend to do stupid things in their hurt . This is not that book. Yes, the relationship reaches its breaking point, but Ty and Nadia are amazing through all of it:)

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  8. I have seen some bad reviews for this so I am so excited that you loved it Jenny because I really wanted to give this a try but have been hesitant to do so. Now I know I want to try it. If you like it then I am sure I will as well!

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    1. This one was a winner for me all the way around Ali, I really think you'll like it. I need more NA like this in my life:)

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  9. Thanks for the lovely review, Jenny. <3

    RE: Mixed reviews
    I'd never address specific reviews directly but... I think those who don't like IWITW are readers whose favorite part of NA is the high drama, powerful angst, and wild situations. But if you've wanted to read romances set in college with lower-key conflicts, then you may love the 2B series too.

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    1. You're so very welcome! And I agree, those readers who love over-the-top drama and lots of angst will likely find Ty and Nadia lacking in their normalcy, but that's what I loved about them. They felt real:)

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  10. I ADORE YOUR REVIEW, JENNY! :D

    You said everything I wanted to in an even better way! :) I am so glad to see you enjoyed this book and I agree with everything you have to say! Ty was completely swoon-worthy and I definitely agree that his love for Sam makes him all the more loveable. I especially love that he never tries to lie to Nadia or hide is feeling but he doesn't lead her on either.

    I also love how Nadia is so level-headed and when things don't work out, she didn't go do something to hurt him but tried to deal with her hurt in other ways!

    Gorgeous review, Jenny!! :)

    Rashika @ The Social Potato

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    1. IT WAS SO GOOD RASHIKA!!! I'm so, so glad you loved this one too. Nadia amazed me throughout, I kept waiting for her to blow things out of proportion or let her hurt get the better of her, but she stayed so even keel. She just made me happy:)

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  11. Yay! I'm so excited to read this Jenny. "Overall, I Want it That Way is New Adult at its very best, Nadia and Ty on their own gorgeously layered and infinitely relatable-" Beautiful review and this sounds amazing :)

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  12. Glass has read this one and told me that I should give it a try. And taking in consideration how much I avoid NA it tells a lot. Now after reading your review I think that this is something I really need to try. I love how both Ty and Nadia sound and I cannot wait to meet them :) Great review, Jenny :)

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  13. I love how Ty's always got his son's best interests at heart and how he finds a girl who completely understands and encourages that. SUCH a great story! THIS is NA I can get behind.

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  14. Wow, it seems that you LOVED this one when I HATED it. It's incredible how what you're saying in your review I'm like whaaat?? But for me it really wasn't that way at all!! It's crazy how opinions can vary!

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  15. I have heard quite a few mixed reviews on this one as well, but your review makes me want to give it a try! I am always a bit wary of NA in general, because a lot of the books seem unnecessarily dramatic and *not* realistic, but since you liked the maturity and realism of the characters, I just might have to give it a chance after all! Great review!

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  16. Wow, that's a high rating from you, especially for a contemporary! I already feel a lump in my throat from the hero being a young, single dad. Must add to my shelf! Excellent review.

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  17. I have a copy of this and now I'm even more excited to read it. I hate over the top angst and drama between couples so it's wonderful to hear it doesn't happen here. Lovely review, Jenny! :)

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  18. Like you, I really enjoyed this one, Jenny, and the rich characterization combined with the insights into real college life made this such a rewarding read. Wonderful review, dear!

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  19. I so have to read these only because she is naming all the titles of the books after Backstreet Boys song. And when I was a teen I was a HUGE BSB fan. Like EPICLY huge. I look forward to read them.

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