Sunday, December 9, 2012

{Review} Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Title: Beautiful Disaster 
Author: Jamie McGuire
Format: NetGalley e-book
PublisherBold Strokes Books
Release Date: May 26th, 2011
Date Read: June 8th, 2012
Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.

Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby wants—and needs—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.


This review will not be in normal format, instead it will be in freehand.

I have been putting reviewing BEAUTIFUL DISASTER off for a very long time. I finished this book on August 3rd, 2012 and today is November 26th, 2012. It's not because my thoughts are very conflicted. In fact, my thoughts are very simple. I truly hated the book, without a doubt.

It was one of the worst books I have read this year and quite possibly of all time. The book is absolutely horrible. BEAUTIFUL DISASTER promotes abuse, possessiveness, degradation, and other horrible ideas that completely disgust me thinking about them.

The reason I haven't reviewed it is because I was sure that I would not be able to review it to the fullest extent. My hatred for this book is too deep to fully convey through my words, but I will attempt to cover everything. It will be a very long, through review.

BEAUTIFUL DISASTER is about a girl and a boy who enter a relationship together. I do realise how archaic that sounds but I do not consider their relationship to be centred around love. The relationship of Abby and Travis is centred around lust. It is a purely physical relationship with some "I love yous" exchanged. Saying "I love you" and meaning it are two very different things. 

Travis and Abby also have a very unsteady and abusive relationship. There are many examples of this but one of the most popular ones is this one: Abby is at a bar and a man offers her a drink and talks to her. Travis sees them and decided to beat the guy up because he was "looking at her the wrong way". He then yells at Abby for talking to him, telling her he could have beens trying to drug her and rape her. From the way this conversation was written it is clear he was yelling and it sounded very much like he would have hit her.

Abby does not see the abuse till very far into the book and when she did she came right back to Travis and even went as far as marrying him. What really gets me is the fact that Abby ignores the abuse past that even though he did enough to make her leave him. 

I have a small question to ask you women who enjoy these sorts of characters. How does Travis as a character, ignoring any physical traits, appeal to you as a reader? It's a very simple question and I mean it quite earnestly. 

You see, I don't get it. I do not find any appeal in a man who would beat a man up because of his possessiveness over "his girl". I do not find a man who would lock me in my room until I changed
my clothes because he doesn't like it on me sexy, at all. I don't like a main character who would change into a "more suitable outfit" just because her lover doesn't like it on her.

Yet, obviously a lot of women do like these sorts of characters, otherwise there wouldn't be many of them around. Why do so many women like this? Maybe it's in our culture nowadays to support these notions that women are superficial and that it is okay for men to order around us and use us.

I won't get too deep into this because after all I've spent 580 words without even doing any of my normal book review topics. Without further ado, I will begin the character analysis, beginning with the most interesting character, in a completely horrible way, Travis Maddox. 

Travis is somehow considered to be the perfect boyfriend for Abby and possibly the reader as well. The readers are supposed to swoon over him. In this book, I honestly think that Jamie McGuire wanted you to adore Travis not only because of his physical attributes but also for his personality. 

This is obvious because he is not described as often as some of the love interests I have come across. McGuire focuses on his personality, which would be good thing would it not be for the fact that Travis has a horrible personality. 

He doesn't care about privacy, in fact when Abby was having a shower, Travis came in and decided to make himself at home. Not to mention he also handed her some shampoo from her bag, which he admits to searching through. He is controlling and possessive. Needy and clingy. Self-absorbed. These adjectives have all been used numerous times to describe Travis. He likes to beat the crap out of random guys who look at his girlfriend and has a creepy penchant for nicknaming random girls he just met. I mean, you name your girlfriend after an annoying bird that shits on everything (her nickname is Pigeon). 

Travis appears to be very emotionally unstable. He can't handle loss or not getting what he wants. When Abby leaves him for a day (or something like that - someone please correct me) he destroys his room. Completely. Basically, he's no better than a little child.He seems to be unable to express himself verbally as well, resorting to violence, screaming, and temper tantrum. Another thing to add to the "Unappealing, Thou Name is Travis" list. 

Abby. Abby is a very plain character. She had no real personality and I found her entirely idiotic. She had no brain as well. The odd subplot to the book was centred around her odd family which makes absolutely no sense and is not related to the rest of the story at all. Apparently, her dad's a huge, famous gambler and Abby is a gambler prodigy. She always wins and can make thousands of dollars in a few hours. Umm... it doesn't make sense with the plot (isn't it sad that the subplot is more of a plot then the actual plot?). Even as the plot and not the subplot, the book would be horrible as it makes zero sense and is centred around Abby being a speshul snowflake. I found her extremely boring. 

This is where my words run out honestly.There is nothing else to say about her. Next up is the other guy in the story. 

Poor Parker, what he do to deserve this? He's part of the "love triangle" but it's no more of a love triangle then in Twilight. Did you honestly think Bella would not choose Edward? Did Jacob even have a standing chance against him? No.

Parker is a Med school graduate who is pretty nice. He is a Gary Stu but anything beats Travis really. He's rich and smart. And, guess what, he really does like Abby. He treats Abby like a gentleman, even when he was sidelined by her. 

What McGuire did with Parker was put him in the story for no real reason other then some cliche tension. He's almost always sweet except when McGuire decided "Ok folks, let's kick him out." Then, Parker says some horrible things to Abby, completely out of character, just to make Travis look like the good guy. 

Seriously? That's just... wow. I'm speechless. Even though this happens all the time when an author wishes to get rid of the other guy. 

The writing is fast but very under-edited. It was cliched and choppy for the most part. Awkward dialogue tags which messed with the flow. This all could have been avoided if the author got a decent freaking editor. 

Frequent slut shaming and the casual usage of words like slut and ho made this experience worse. I don't care about coarse language for the most part, but those two words (which I have put in parentheses for the sensitive people) make me really mad. 

To quote Rose Summers (her review here):

The thematic of this book bothered me considering the misogynistic language that's prevalent in this. If not just for the events themselves (i.e. Travis dropping a woman from his lap after she insults Abby or Travis saying that he wouldn't want his future daughter to open her legs for a man so easily)...


To be quite blunt, this book is very bad. It was a complete, and utter disaster which I immensely regret reading and wasting my time on this. I do no, and will not, ever recommend this piece of shit. 

Lisbeth is an American teenager who enjoys blowing shit up in videogames and discussing decapitation in great detail. She's also obsessed with Oceana, but you're not supposed to know that.

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