Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Review + Giveaway: The Girl I Was Before by Ginger Scott

Series: Falling #3
Release Date: June 23, 2015
Publisher: Ginger Scott
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Source: Copy provided for honest review
Rating: ★★★ ½

I’m the selfish one. I suppose that’s the nicest thing people say about me. I’ve heard the other things, too. “Paige Owens is a pretty girl with nothing else to offer. She’s just a good time at a party. She’s stupid, heartless, cold and useless. All she cares about is getting a guy to look at her. Why would anyone want to be her friend?”

Some of those things are true. Others were true. They’re all hurtful.

None of it matters.

I’m ready to make the hard choices. I’m ready to face the consequences. I’m ready to be the girl I was before, and I’m done being the one who lost her way.

I’m ready to become the girl Houston Orr sees when he looks at me.

Houston isn’t a star athlete. He doesn’t play in a band. He’s never going to be president, and his life is so far away from simple and easy it isn’t even funny. He wasn’t part of my plan. But I’m starting to think plans are overrated, and maybe our stories are what we make them. And mine depends entirely on me, and the choices I make…starting now.

Houston is my fairytale. He’s perfectly imperfect. He’s poetry and life. He’s truth and heartbreak, all rolled up in a tall body with dark hair, broad shoulders and green eyes that lull me into submission. He’s nothing I ever thought I wanted, but the very thing I need. He’s the only guy I’ve ever really loved, and he thinks I’m a princess. I fell into him, and now I’m holding on.

But sometimes life takes away our ability to choose. Sometimes…things aren’t in your control. Sometimes, it hurts to be selfless. My only hope is that when it comes time to choose, I get it right.

Welcome to my once upon a time and wish for happily ever after.

Well. Ginger Scott did it. She made me not completely hate Paige Owens.

If you've read the first two books in the series, you know Paige is not the most loveable of characters. She does some pretty horrific things. She's easy to dislike. Now, with The Girl I Was Before, we get a better understanding of Paige and why she did those things.

Better yet, we get to see how she struggles to change.

Paige has made mistakes that have not only alienated her from family but from friends as well. She's in the middle of a bit of a shit storm and has some things she really needs to make right. Not easy things either.

While she's figuring out her path, Houston ends up being the only stable thing in her world, as unexpected as that is for both of them. But Houston's life does not resemble the life Paige has pictured for herself. Houston's relentless ways of handling Paige make it impossible not to fall for the guy though.

I have to applaud Scott for keeping Paige to the character she was before yet showing the struggle she goes through to learn about herself and the reactions she has caused.  It would have been too easy and not believable to have a very selfish and bitchy character wake up one day and decide that they were just going to be a better person.  Paige has that bit of epiphany, but thinking it and proving it are two entirely different things.

I also have to give props for how she crafted Houston. It takes a strong person to see past someone's faults when they are so determined to show them.  Houston takes it all in stride, he sees Paige for the person she is trying to become more so than the girl she still is.  

I wish that I could have warmed up to Paige just a bit more. Understanding her and actually loving her...not the same thing. And, while I missed so many of the feels I got from This is Falling, I still really enjoyed this book and the very real and honest life struggles it presented.  I've said this before but it's worth another mention, Scott is quickly becoming an absolute favorite of mine!

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