Shatter Me by Alex Grayson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I have very mixed feelings about this book. It contains a lot of unnecessary brutality, although not too descriptive, but right through until the end. Similar to Enslaved (The Life of Anna, #1) by Marissa Honeycutt - if you loved her book, you probably will love this one. I don't mind abuse, I love The Beast And Me (The Beast And Me, #1) by D. S. Wrights, but it's more twisted and a more psychological and not brutal for the sake to be shocking.
Warning: (view spoiler)[The lead pairing gets a happy, happy end but not without a traumatizing death and ruin of a secondary beloved pairing. (hide spoiler)]
The story in its development is neatly wrapped and very predictable because the author increases the description around the people that will get involved in a dramatic way. But it's still not a story that I would recommend for people who scare and overly worry about stories easily, because the contents of this book, and the initial ending are very dark and too disturbing for the faint hearted. And it's definitely not a book for people who went through abuse themselves, although the character development might be inspiring for people who went through similar situations.
However, the story has some issues. An abuse victim like Bailey is usually driven by shame first and by protectiveness second. Not telling her loved ones about the threat would be also because of shame. I had problems believing the protectiveness Bailey here. Her explanations of not telling didn't make any sense to me.
Even worse though is a tremendous plot hole that I cannot ignore because it's part of the main plot: (view spoiler)[Husband Steven calls her on her burner. There is no way finding the number of a burner unless you are called by it. Only bestie Chris has this number at first. Anna has the number, too, but these two characters meet after Steven already has called Bailey several times. There is no way he could have gotten her number like that. And it is not explained how he got it. (hide spoiler)]
Only the story around Bailey and her protective love Jaxon gets neatly double-wrapped with shiny ribbons... the whole package. But other stories stay unexplained. I would have loved to hear the story behind Mac and Mia. That' being said: Bailey's and Jaxon's story is just too perfect when everything else is not.
Additional to that Alex Grayson is overly descriptive regarding houses and their interior, clothing, food and so on. The same goes for sex scenes. They were too analytical, although I was happy to see that were some of them and that there was a long way towards them first. But I couldn't entirely enjoy them, just as I couldn't entirely feel the connection between Bailey and Jax. Sadly it's the dark scenes that felt a tad more realistic to me.
It was an okay read for me, but the book deserves more than just two stars because it is an easy read. However it lacked uniqueness and surprises and left me dissatisfied, especially because of the epilogue. What I want to point out as positive are the flash-backs of Bailey and her reaction to them. This is why the book gets three stars.
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