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Kate Bell isn't perfect. Not even close. The things she got up to in college would cause her parents to fall off their pedestals in shock. Home for the summer vacation, Kate settles in for a long, boring break in the tiny backwater of Winter with folks who still treat her like she's twelve.
Then Ben Parker arrives and suddenly Winter gets interesting. He's hot, mysterious and good with his hands. Kate falls for him instantly, but her cop father warns her to stay away. But how can she stay away from someone as compelling as Ben? Someone who thinks she's perfect just the way she is?
When Ben's secrets catch up to him, not only is Kate's heart in danger of being broken, but Ben's entire future could be ruined.
RUIN is a new adult contemporary romance intended for mature readers. It contains strong language and sexual situations.
Ruin is a quick read, and the characters are quite well done for such a short story.
Kate and Ben met by chance in Winter’s only diner, and all Kate could think about from the start of Ruin was how hot she thought Ben was. Kate’s best friend, Jane, is one of the only people her age who stayed in Winter when everyone else left for college, and she is nervous about strangers in general, and Ben in particular. When it’s obvious that Ben won’t be able to leave their little town that day, Kate decides he should stay with Jane and her grand-mother, work on their crumbled mansion for room and board at least for a day or two.
Unfortunately, novellas are hit or miss with me, and while there were things I enjoyed in Ruin, there were some other things that were a little difficult as well. Kate changed between a self-assured young woman and a petulant child – depending on whether she was with Jane or with her parents. While I can agree that her parents were a little overwhelming at times, Kate knew how they were, and that her dad never put his cop-hat off.
Ben was quite the mysterious character, but I never really got the attraction. OK, so he was good-looking and polite, but someone holding back as much as he did just wouldn’t do it for me the way he did for Kate. I enjoyed Jane and her grand-mother quite a lot, though, and they made Ruin more interesting than it would have been without them.
Written in first and third person past tense point of view, the readers were still kept in the dark about Ben until Kate finally found out about him, and I think it took something away from the story overall that I, as a reader, wasn’t in the know.
“You and I are very different,” she said. “You think that guy’s hot, for example, but I just see a potential ax murderer.” I laughed and she laughed too. She wasn’t as uptight as she appeared.
I had to snap out of that mind-set. I didn’t usually get sucked in by a sexy voice and polite manners. A good set of shoulders and eyes, yes, but not on such an early acquaintance.
We ate dinner at six and talked about nothing in particular. It was nice, but dull. Time dragged.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: