Tuesday, October 7, 2014
As Long As You Love Me by Ann Aguirre
Ann Aguirre is a good writer, there's no question about it. This is book #2 of her 2B trilogy and a stand-alone. It has a lead named Lauren who has returned home to Sharon, Nebraska after flunking out of college and her always crush/love, Rob who is her best friend's brother and her always love.
Lauren has crippling social anxiety which was a huge part of her falling apart at college as she used alcohol and acting-out to cover up. Which led to some horrendous decisions. And Rob, well, he's movie star gorgeous, an accomplished carpenter and construction guy but not a genius. Which apparently everybody who has ever met him likes to let him know that his flame is dim. His color is muted. His B-I-N-G-O is missing the O.
Anyway, Lauren recognizes that Rob isn't book smart but he's brilliant in other ways. A fact which nobody else seems to understand because they all treat him like a drooling neanderthal (something that made no sense to me at all).
So Lauren and Rob crush on each other, finally get together, split up and then have a HEA. It was readable and everything but... well, the book just missed so much with me.
I constantly felt like the story was written not with a huge desire to tell a love story but rather with a desire to make a point. Lauren hooked up a bit in college and she's unashamed. There's nothing wrong with female sexuality no matter how it plays, she states a few times.
Rob is perfect except for his astonishing low IQ (which we never see evidence of except when he doesn't know the meaning of a couple of words, words that many people wouldn't know the meaning of) but he's understanding of Lauren's issues and he just... um, isn't realistic at all.
But more than anything it's about Lauren's growth and her multitude of messages. So really good writing that emotionally was connected to getting messages across rather than the story it was telling.