Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Review: Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Author: Jamie Mcguire
Title:Beautiful Disaster
Publication:August 14, 2012
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: Contemporary
Pages: 432 pp.
Audience:18 and up
Rating: 4.5 out 5
Source: Publisher via Netgalley
Audio Source: Publisher via AudiobookJukebox

The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University's Walking One-Night Stand. 

Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.

Deliciously Insane. Chaotic. Combustible. Passionate.I began this book by listening to the audio book, which I am still listening to.  By the fourth disc sitting in the car just wasn't fast enough for me, so I had to grab the book and I devoured it within hours. The audio is great but I craved the reading experience more at the moment, I had to know what happened right then even though I just got off of work at 2 a.m. That said this review will be of both the audio and the print version of the book. 

Audio: The narrator does an excellent job of differentiating the gender of the characters. Although, the tone of voice seemed deep for both the male and female, it is easy to distinguish which character is speaking. The production is single- voiced and clear, and the volume is just right. I think this book works well in audio format and the narrator makes the book appealing to the ears. The pace is fast, but I could easily keep up; I liked how easily it flows. It wasn’t until I decided that I was going to get the book that I finally turned my CD player off and got out of my car. My listening experience in no way disconnected me from the characters and I felt like the relationship was sweet between Travis and Abby, whereas....

My reading experience enveloped me in the book in an entirely different way. I wasn't focusing on what I was hearing, but rather digesting and visualizing the events that transpire between the characters. Travis and Abby are truly dysfunctional on so many levels, but that is the beauty of how they are that saves them. As a reader some will become focused on the aggressive nature in the book, but I see all sides. Yes, Travis is too obsessed with Abby; yet she is the key to the one thing he has buried since his mother died: Love. He grew up in a male household with no feminine influence at all, so I can see how his treatment of women came about, even though it's not acceptable. 
This is where Abby comes in she calls him out on his mess and that's what he needs. It was nice to see the changes in him as he pursues a friendship with her. Abby is far from perfect.She is screwed up by the past at the hands of a gambling father, who blames her for his bad luck. She leaves to get away from all that and she sees in Travis the past that she is running from, even though he isn't. The only person blind to the chemistry between them is Abby, until she can't pretend any longer that she has feelings for Travis. No relationship is happy go lucky or perfect, nor is it Edward and Bella(even they were crazy)...sometimes relationships are volatile and disastrous, which is exactly what this is. However, it shows that even in the midst of all they put each other through,they realize that they need each other and that together they work well. No, they do not physically abuse each other but in an effort to make each other happy they hurt each other emotionally. I feel that if they just talked about things they would've saved themselves some trouble. 

We as a society are attracted to chaos. Look at reality TV as a prime example. Though we know its pure insanity, some of us get sucked in because we want to know how it ends. Beautiful Disaster is an intense mess, but the love is beautiful. For me, this book is about the ability to live the experience of how it feels to be in this type of relationship. The writing is realistic and it felt like I was inside the book as events began to unfold. I look forward to getting into Travis's head in the next book. Overall, an interesting read that I recommend to a mature audience. 


  1. "She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe." Abby sounds like a SLIS student. ;) Except, most swear and a lot of them drink- they ALL have cardigans. Hehehe. This book sounds like a good read. Thanks for the review. I have issues with wanting to finish a book and I've sat in my car and drove around just to finish a book due to the fact that I do not own the physical copy.

  2. This book was so addicting to me. I've read it three times already, and plan on many more. Every few months I need a fix, lol. It's like watching a car crash and you can't look away, waiting for the survivors to come out. I love that Travis and Abby are survivors.

  3. Yes, train wreck is exactly what it was and I'm glad they figured out how to get out before it derailed

  4. I've heard good and bad things about this book (mostly good, but some strongly opinionated bad reviews), but I just got this book today anyways because it completely intrigued me, and I absolutely love the New Adult genre. Glad to hear another great review--can't wait to start reading!! :)


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