PJV QUICKIE: A very dark read with a difficult premise; not for easily offended readers.

Title: Thoughtless
Author: S.C. Stephens
ASIN: B006NU4A8E
Publication: December 18, 2011 by Amazon Digital Services
Source:  Personal Copy
Links:  Author Facebook >> Purchase Book >>Goodreads
[xrr rating=4/5 imageset=blue_star]

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Review

Kiera and Denny have been dating for two years.  Now that Denny has graduated college, he’s gotten a dream job in Seattle and Kiera is transferring schools so she can finish her last two years there.  They move in with one of Denny’s best friends, Kellan.  Kellan is a musician in a popular local band, and a notorious womanizer.

All seems well at first, until Denny’s job sends him out to Arizona for a few months and he leaves Kiera behind.  While Denny is gone, Kellan and Kiera start spending time together, and there is an attraction and some flirting, but no lines have been crossed.  Denny’s calls are getting further and further apart, and then one evening Denny calls to say he’s staying in Arizona and when Kiera graduates in two years she can come out to be with him.  Kiera freaks out and breaks up with Denny on the spot.  Then, she pours her broken heart out to Kellan.  After a few drinks, they act on their attraction to each other and it’s absolutely amazing… until Denny shows up the next morning and tells Kiera he loves her and gave up the job for her.

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WARNING – SPOILERS:  This book is not for the faint at heart – it’s dark and angsty and the hero/heroine cheat on the heroine’s boyfriend.  If you don’t think you would enjoy this type of story, I’m not going to encourage you to try it.  BUT, if you’re looking for something a little different, a story that tests your own personal reading boundaries, this might be the book for you.  By the very nature of their deception, it felt wrong to want a HEA for this couple, but I did.

You know how much I love stories with an internal conflict – no bombs or mysteries, only character interaction creating the conflict, so Thoughtless fit that niche for me.  I liked the setting and secondary characters, especially the band.  I felt like I was sitting in class with Kiera, or  hanging out in the smoky bar with the band.  It’s good storytelling, if a bit long.

As much as I’d like to hate them, Kiera’s boyfriend Denny was not without his own issues. He had a tendency to make decisions without talking to Kiera first and expecting her to accommodate him, which led to the turning point in the story.  Would Kiera and Kellan have embarked on a physical relationship if Denny hadn’t made that decision?  Was the relationship Kiera and Kellan had before that cheating if there was no sex?

For as much as I liked this book, there were a few negatives – I found Kiera to be annoying and wishy-washy a lot.  She’s also a crier.  (I told you – lots of angst in this one, lol).  Kellan is pretty much a man-whore but I really liked him *winks*.  The way he handled himself after Denny came back was painful to read.

I have to add, that for some reason, this book kind of reminded me of Twilight – if you added a band, sex, and infidelity, and took out the sparkles and fangs.  Why?  It’s set in Washington State, Kiera was so ‘innocent’, she blushed a lot, didn’t know her own beauty, and didn’t see what Kellen or Denny saw in her.  Kellan chuckled a lot, had a perfectly sculpted body, and women of all ages could not help staring at him and hitting on him.

I recently finished the follow-up to this book, Effortless.  I really enjoyed it, and think after you finish Thoughtless you’ll be wanting to know what happens next.

Recommendations:

Romance readers who enjoy reading high emotions, college-aged characters, some pretty good “angry sex” scenes, and who don’t give up on heroes/heroines with serious faults.

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