Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Make It Count / Make It Right - Megan Erickson

Make It Count book cover
Make It Count by Megan Erickson
Series: Bowler University #1
Publisher: William Morrow & Company
Publication Date: July 8, 2014
Source/Format: Bought (recommended by Estelle!) || Kindle e-book

Kat Caruso wishes her brain had a return policy, or at least a complaint hotline. The defective organ is constantly distracted, terrible at statistics, and absolutely flooded with inappropriate thoughts about her boyfriend's gorgeous best friend, Alec . . . who just so happens to be her brand-new math tutor. Who knew nerds could be so hot?

Kat usually goes through tutors like she does boyfriends--both always seem to bail when they realize how hopeless she is. It's safer for her heart to keep everyone at arm's length. But Alec is always stepping just a little too close.

Alec Stone should not be fantasizing about Kat. She's adorable, unbelievably witty, and completely off-limits. He'd never stab his best friend in the back . . .

But when secrets are revealed, the lines of loyalty are blurred. To make it count, Alec must learn that messy human emotions can't be solved like a trigonometry function. And Kat has to trust that he may be the first guy to want her for who she is, and not in spite of it. (from Goodreads)

Friends, Make It Count is yet another Estelle recommendation that hit the spot! It was easy to fall head over heels for this sweet little story. In fact, the entire experience was made of pure delight for my rom-com loving heart (even with the dash of drama that snuck its way in). With memorable characters, a romance to root for and a plot that will keep you turning pages, Make It Count is another NA novel that I really enjoyed.

My favorite thing about Make It Count is how the two parties involved in a romantic way - Alec Stone & Kat Caruso - are great as individuals.  Erickson gives each of them their own story, which I personally think is fantastic. Kat is more than just a girl with a pretty face who has a hard time with academics, and Alec is more than a nerd who knows his stuff. I loved them as individuals, which definitely became the reason I loved them together as well. 

Seriously, the romance that develops between them was wonderful. I seriously think I may have creeped out the people on the subway who saw me reading this from all the Cheshire cat-style grinning I was doing. But I couldn't help it! All the sparks! The romantic tension! There's just one aspect of their relationship I wasn't particularly keen on, but since everything worked out (and life really can get that messy sometimes), I totally let it slide.

All in all, Make It Count was adorable! It was so much fun to read, and after I finished, I found myself eager for more of these awesome characters (the main ones and the secondary ones) and more of Megan Erickson's novels. If you're looking for a new NA author to try, and like fun, sexy, sweet romantic comedy sort of stories, well, Make It Count is for you.

Make It Right Megan Erickson book cover
Make It Right by Megan Erickson
Series: Bowler University #2
Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: September 9, 2014
Source/Format: Edelweiss (Thank you!) || e-galley
[I received this book for review from the publisher. This in no way affects the thoughts expressed in my review.]

Max Payton lives by two rules:
Size and strength win any fight, and never show weakness.

When a rash of assaults sends Bowler University for a tail spin, Max volunteers to help teach a self-defense class. One of the other instructors is the beautiful pixie-faced girl he keeps butting heads with…and who challenges everything he thought he knew. 

Lea Travers avoids guys like Max - cocky jocks who assume she's fragile because of a disability caused by a childhood accident. She likes to be in control, and something about being with Max makes her feel anything but. But during the moments he lets his guard down, Lea sees a soul as broken inside as she is outside. Trusting him is a whole other problem...

When the assaults ramp up and hit close to home, Lea and Max must learn, before it’s too late, that true strength can come from vulnerability…and giving in to trust is sometimes the only way to make things right. (from Goodreads)

Honestly, and it's only now that I'm realizing this, I'm a sucker for a good redemption story. (In fact, here's a link to one of my all-time favorites.) I love it when authors take characters that I'm not sure I'll ever be capable of liking, and write an entire story around them that has me completely changing my mind. Such was the case with Make It Right, the second novel in the Bowler University series.

Make It Right is focused on Max Payton, who was painted in Make It Count as your stereotypical jock guy who is all about size, strength and power, and Lea Travers, who is quiet, contained and got loads of self-control. After reading the first novel, I certainly had strong impressions of both characters - but Make It Right offered up a whole new perspective. It's a testament to Erickson's writing skills that she's able to show me just how complex these two are, and how there's just so much more to them than I thought.

And the chemistry! Right away, it's obvious that they're really attracted to each other. And watching as Max and Lea slowly develop a relationship that's something more than friends was just lovely. The push-and-pull of their relationship (because of their personalities) made for some fun tension, and it also spiced things up when it came to their actual romantic storyline. However, there's also a lot of drama to be had, as both of them have their issues to deal with - and it's not pretty to see how they go through so much.

That, in fact, is probably the one reason that I enjoyed Make It Count a smidge more than this: there was definitely a lot of drama in Make It Right. It certainly felt organic for Max to be experiencing issues with his father, and for Lea to still be dealing with the aftermath of a traumatic event from years before. But that brought a lot of baggage into their relationship, and it made the tone of Make It Right a lot more serious than I expected it to be.

Still, Make It Right was such a fun new adult read for me! I really enjoy Erickson's writing, as she manages to keep it simple and yet still make me feel all of the things for our main couple. Plus, her characters simply pop off the page and stay memorable! I'm definitely looking forward to reading more, and am very excited that Cam is going to be getting his own story, too.

4 comments:

  1. I love a good Estelle rec!! I heard about these from her too and downloaded them from EW. I still need to read them but SO glad you enjoyed them! I'm excited & hopefully feel the same way!!

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  3. I remember Estelle's review of this and thought it sounded ADORBS! I'm glad you liked it as well. I'm sure I'd be grinning in public as well!

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  4. I finished these two recently and agree completely! They are fun, sweet contemporaries, and I'm definitely down for more rom-com in my NA. I liked how minimal the drama was. What bugged me about the first book was that there was a lot of back and forth at the end, whereas with Max and Lea you can predict that fallout but it's very short-lived.
    Great reviews as always!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

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