Title: Before I Fall
Author: Jessica Scott
Target: New Adult
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Stay focused. Get a job. Save her father’s life.
Beth Lamont knows far too much about the harsh realities of life her gilded classmates have only read about in class. She’ll do whatever it takes to take care of her father, even if that means tutoring a guy like Noah - a guy who represents everything she hates about the war, soldiers and what the Army has done to her family.
Noah Warren doesn’t know how to be a student. All he knows is war. But he’s going to college now to fulfill a promise and he doesn’t break his promises. Except he doesn’t count on his tutor being drop dead gorgeous and distracting as hell. One look at Beth threatens to unravel the careful lies Noah has constructed around him.
A simple arrangement turns into something neither of them can deny. And a war that neither of them can forget could destroy them both.
DNF at 22%.
I don't like DNF-ing books. I hate DNF-ing ARCs (because I'm really grateful to publishers and authors for letting me read advance copies for free). And yet...
This book had SO MANY grammar and punctuation errors, chunky sentences and problematic tenses (past or present, pick one already!) that it was really hard for me to pay attention to the actual story. I understand that ARCs are un-proofed copies so they are bound to have some mistakes, but this was just too much. It was completely distracting.
As to the story... in theory it could have been good, but the execution wasn't any better than the writing. (Admittedly, I only read a short 22% so I didn't give it much of a chance.)
These were my problems:
1) Cheesiness and way too many eye-roll worthy lines for my taste. For example: "...I kiss her like she's my first taste of salvation." You've come from fighting a war, have seen friends die, and salvation is kissing a girl you just met?
2) I was puzzled by Noah's CONSTANT remarks on Beth's appearance: "drop-dead smoking hot"; "fucking attractive"; "She is fucking stunning and I suddenly can't talk"; "I can't figure out if she is naturally flawless or if she is just damn good with makeup."; "She's somewhere in between. Somewhere close to perfection."; "She looks at me, and I can feel my entire body standing at the position of attention" (¿?). I mean, I get it. She's attractive. You are really attracted to her. Can we move on to something of more substance now?
3) Beth made so many mentions of feelings in her belly that I started thinking she might have eaten something that didn't sit well with her <-- SARCASM sign in case somebody didn't catch it. This might seem like a small thing, but the repetition of this phrase over and over bugged me:
"There is no need for the tension in my belly..."
"Something tightens in the vicinity of my belly."
"...regardless of the warmth that unfurls in my belly..."
"...Noah looks down in the vicinity of my belly."
"There's something in his eyes that tugs at me. I don't want to be tugged at." (Let me guess... it tugged at her belly, right?)
4) Then there were some bits I just didn't get at all, like when Noah went into a LIBRARY-coffee shop to be tutored and complained about how quiet it was and wondered if the people studying around him didn't know how to relax and have a good time. Huh?
All in all: This book needs some serious editing because the numerous errors were very distracting. It took days for me to get through the first 22% and all the while it felt like trudging through water. As for the romance, the attraction between the MCs seemed insta-love-ish, superficial and cheesy.