Review: Third Degree by Julie Cross

18590125Blurb from Goodread

I used to be “Isabel Jenkins, child prodigy.” As lame as that sounds, at least it was an identity. But now I’m not sure what I am. I just failed the most important exam of my life—the emotional readiness test required to get into a medical residency program—and it turns out my parents can’t stand each other. Now I’m trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces of my life, and that means re-enrolling as a college freshman, but this time I’m shutting the books and majoring in being eighteen.

But so far, my roommate hates me and I’m not into the party scene. The only good thing about school has been getting to know my insanely hot RA. Marshall Collins makes me wonder about everything I missed while I was growing up too fast. Pretty soon we’re hanging out constantly, but for the first time, I find myself wanting more than a no-strings-attached physical relationship. And the lesson I really need is one Marsh definitely can’t teach me: love. Because I’m going to be alone forever if I don’t learn fast.

ebook, 240 pages
Published March 25th 2014 by Flirt
language edition: English
genre: Contemporary, Romance, New Adult
My Thoughts
“You are a very brave soul, Marshall Collins. I can throw you in front of any challenge and you’re ready.” “For you.” He tucks my hair behind my ears. “For you, I’m ready.”This is a story of boy meets girl. The boy, Marshall Collins is a junior in NIU who wants to become a PE teacher but has to struggle with anatomy class. The girl Isabel Jenkins is known as a child prodigy. She always thinks and acts based on logic and scientific prove. Since she fails the emotional readiness exam, her dream to become a resident at Johns Hopkins is on hold. Hence she enters NIU as a freshman to experience how to being a normal eighteen years old student. Marshall meets Isabel on her first day at NIU. He knows almost immediately she is who he has been searching for. This is a story of boy meets girl, but you should know upfront, this is not just a love story.

The girl, Isabel Jenkins. When I read the blurb, I instantly thought that it’s like my childhood TV show, Doogie Houser M.D. I didn’t remember any detail of the story since it was a long time ago, but I know it was about a teenage doctor who struggles to become a normal teenager, just like Isabel. And then she also has to face that most people misunderstand and sometimes even don’t understand of what she thinks and speaks. She reminds me of Sherlock Holmes from BBC drama, Sherlock. I was kind of wished she will say “is it nice not being me? It must be so relaxing” when Isabel’s roommate, Kelsey asked “what’s it really like inside your head?” 😀 Being a genius makes her feel different from others, not normal. Despite her struggling to become a normal student, I really enjoy reading her awkwardness and clueless when it comes to interact with other students. She even has to think what she should say when she wants to start a conversation. With Marshall help her awkwardness and clueless change slowly. I love this part. I can see and believe that she’s change. It also happens with her relationship with Kelsey.

The boy, Marshall Collins. I love him from the very first time he enter the story. He’s so kind and thoughtful to Isabel. There’s an attraction since they meet for the first time, but he takes it slowly. So when they finally have a relationship, it feels natural. It is just the way it is. I also love his story. He doesn’t let it interferes his relationship with Isabel. He knows that it is a big thing but he believes that Isabel is at the same page as he is, yet he lets Isabel decides what’s best for her.Other characters are also lovable. I love Kelsey, shirtless Carson and especially the Collins. Just like Julie Cross other contemporary book, Letters to Nowherewhich I also love, this book can also pick my curiosity about what happen with Marshall. It means that I learn something new from Marshall and Isabel. It isn’t just another love story that I read for pleasure, it’s also about learning a new thing.

Although the ending is quite predictable, I have to say that I love it. I wish that there is sequel for this story because I haven’t gotten enough of Marshall and Isabel yet.

ARC was provided by the author/publisher via NetGalley in exchange for honest review.

Result: 4 out of 5 stars

Review: Letters to Nowhere #2, Return to Sender by Julie Cross

18524333Blurb from Goodreads

IMPORTANT! Note from the author—Karen and Jordan’s story will continue in shorter installments with more frequent releases. If you haven’t already, please check out the full length novel, LETTERS TO NOWHERE to read how the story began.

ABOUT RETURN TO SENDER (Letters to Nowhere Volume 2)

If only summer could last forever…

Karen and Jordan might be out in the open with their relationship, but that doesn’t make it any easier for them to face events looming in the future. Like Jordan leaving for college halfway across the country. Or Karen’s win at a big international gymnastics competition setting the bar high for her future and adding pressure like she’s never experienced before.

But when Nina Jones (aka-US Gymnastics Dictator), makes plans for Karen and teammate Stevie to train at a gymnastics camp for a month—the same camp where Jordan coaches—romantic summer interludes replace their fears of being apart. Both Jordan and Karen know that when fall comes, some very tough decisions will have to be made, but for now, it’s stolen kisses, racing hearts, and whispered words.

ebook, 110 pages
Published October 20th 2013 by Long Walk Press
edition language: English
series: Letters to Nowhere
genre: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
My Thoughts
When I heard there will be a sequel to Letters to Nowhere, I was really excited. I learn something new when I read it, a gymnastics world, and add it with Jordan and Karen story, made the book was hard to not love.

This sequel takes place right after Letter to Nowhere ended. Karen goes to Pan-Am in Brazil while Jordan graduated from high school and will be a coach in gymnastics camp all summer.

I think this is a good sequel but it’s more a novella than a full-length novel like its prequel. I didn’t read the blurb before I read it, so I was quite surprised knowing how short it is. It made me wanting more!

Unfortunately, it also made the sequel like there wasn’t enough room to explore all of things in the story, Karen’s ability to deal with her lost, her and Jordan’s relationship, her gymnast career, his relationship with his father, and whatnot. I feel like there is still so much things that can be decribed.

However, I did enjoy reading it. I’m happy Karen and Jordan relationship is still the same, despite he has already graduated and is 18 years old now. They didn’t feel like in a rush to upgrade their relationship into second base 😀

But Karen and Stevie relationship changed here and I liked it. They surely are competitive and want to be better than each other. I liked reading their I-can-do-better-than-you attitude because it made them a better gymnast.

While Letters to Nowhere “force” me to search more about Jaeger and Amanar (by read and watched it), this sequel made me want to know more about double layout and double twisting. Now, I’m sure next installment will make me learn about another gymnastics moves.
As much as I liked this sequel and (might be also) next installment, I much prefer a full-length sequel. I wonder why did Julie Cross choose the sequels into shorter installments.
Result: 3 out of 5 Stars