Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:
Love Unplugged Series
Synopsis for All the Ways You Saved Me (from Goodreads):
Bianca Easton is the perfect senator’s daughter.
Law school? Check.
Camera-ready smile? Check.
A dull and boring existence? Double check.
But that was before. Before she lost her best and only friend in a tragic accident. Before she found that friend’s unfinished bucket list. Definitely before she turned her life upside-down by deciding to stay in New York for six months to finish it.
It’s while she’s checking off her first item on the list–buy coffee for a stranger–that she meets Ian Mathis. Between the tattoo sleeve curling up his right arm, his guitar-roughened fingertips, and the secrets shadowing his past, he’s a complication Bianca doesn’t need but desperately wants.
With every item they cross off the list together, Bianca uncovers a piece of herself that she’s buried under what’s expected, all the while breaking her own rules by falling hard for Ian. But when her six months run out, Bianca has to decide if she’s willing to risk her empty but picture-perfect life for a chance at real, messy love.
SERIESous’ Top Picks:
Must Read Author –> Favourite Author
Series: Love Unplugged
Author: Jamie Howard
# of Books: 4 (All the Ways You Saved Me, The Feeling of Forever, The Way Back to Us, After All This Time)
Book Order: Connected
Complete?: No, After All This Time is to be published
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Heat Rating: really warm
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Date: November 1, 2016 – ongoing
Source & Format: Netgalley–eARC | Thank you St. Martin’s Press!
**This post was originally posted as a Fresh Friday review of the first book of the series. It has now been updated to include the newest publications in the series.**
Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:
If you’ve been following my blog at all this year, you should know that I found one of my new favourite authors in Jamie Howard. Her novel, Until It’s Right is one of my all-time favourite NA reads–like I plan on rereading it over the years to come–because it is perfection. So when I was asked if I wanted to read her latest novel, I think you know what my answer was…after I jumped around like my butt was on fire!
Even if Howard wasn’t the one to write this one, the premise of All the Ways You Saved Me sounded fantastic. It promised to have amazing character growth accompanied with a heartwarming romance. And given my experience with Howard’s other works, I knew that was just what I was going to get!
What I Liked:
–The Character Growth–
Without a doubt, this is the strongest aspect of this novel. If you want a solid NA story where both characters transform before your eyes: this is it.
Bianca was a great lead! I worried I wouldn’t be able to connect with her given her family background but I didn’t find that to be the case. I think anyone who has ever dealt with others pressuring them to live their life a certain way will empathize with her. I loved her story from start to finish.
But it was really Ian’s story that really surprised me. I didn’t expect to love him as much as I did! His story is told as flashbacks to the past and I thought that was a great method. Instead of simply getting told during some “grand reveal” scene, the reader gets to experience what he went through–and let me tell you, it is a heart-wrenching (albeit beautiful) story…
–A Romance Focused on Friendship–
What I really liked about these two together was how their relationship made them better people individually. I hate when couples get so absorbed into each other that they lose sight of themselves. That really isn’t the case here. It’s easy to see why these two work together. They start as friends that challenge each other to do things they might not usually do and it blossoms from there.
It’s just a heartwarming story that makes you believe in love.
What I Didn’t Like:
I really can’t think of anything I didn’t like. It was just a really good, solid story that captured my attention from start to finish and reminded me what I love to see in romances.
My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:
OMG, there are so many great directions this series can go. I know I have a few stories I would like to see unfold…so I can’t wait to see what happens next!
–January 15, 2017– Book #2: The Feeling of Forever
Is it possible to rate a book higher than 5 stars? Seriously, this book deserves more than 5/5!
WOW, just WOW! This is one of the best Contemporary romances I’ve read recently. No doubt about it!
This story had it all for me: extremely likeable characters, a heart-melting romance and a heart-pounding plot. I could not put this one down!
Jules and Felix are just a great pair. Their relationship had a solid foundation right from the start. The way they communicate and interact with each other: swoon. It’s just a beautiful story. I loved these two so, so much.
As for the rest of the book, it was great. It had the perfect balance between the romance and the drama. And what fabulous drama it is! It just added another layer to this already great story but without overshadowing it.
Honestly, Howard has perfected her craft. I literally cannot wait for the next book in this stellar series!
–December 6, 2017– Book #3: The Way Back to Us
This novel was easily one of my most anticipated reads of the year. To say I was super duper excited to start this is an understatement of possibly epic proportions.
It was nice to get some closure for Gavin. I was super curious to learn more about the girl who captured his heart and I was not disappointed in the journey to learn all about it.
Like The Feeling of Forever, this one has a romantic suspense vibe to it. Which was a little unexpected but kept me hooked and constantly coming up with new theories for what was happening. Of course, I was totally wrong so bonus points for that twist! But the whole premise gave this story a unique feel to it and I found it to be a refreshing take on the second chance romance.
My only complaint is that I wanted to see how these two fell in love. For me, it almost read like a sequel novel to their first book where they fell in love and this was the novel to wrap it all up to see if love can conquer all. Instead of being shown why they belong together we are told why they shouldn’t be together. I’m a reader who likes to see those romantic moments where couples fall in love. It doesn’t always work for me to be told why these two love each other as they battle the dramatic plot lines.
However, it did work here in a way. Obviously, these two make a great pair and I loved them together. As I reader I definitely got why these two would fight everything to be together. In that aspect Howard succeeds in her writing. But I wanted a little bit of that “so called” first book of theirs because I’m a huge fan. I wanted to see them meet and establish what is a great relationship and partnership instead of seeing it already exist. We get little tidbits here and there but I craved more because I just loved these two characters so much.
My Rating: 5/5
All the Ways You Saved Me 5/5 | The Feeling of Forever 5/5 | The Way Back to Us 4/5
If you want a New Adult romance that is somewhat lighter on the romance but features strong characters that transform before your eyes while melting your heart: this is it!
Read if You Like: character development, books about grief
Avoid if You: want more sexual content, dislike New Adult