Series: Caroline and West #1
Published by Bantam, Random House on January 28th 2014
Genres: Contemporary Fiction, New Adult, Realistic Fiction, Romance
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<p><strong><strong>In Robin York’s sizzling debut, a college student is attacked online and must restore her name—and stay clear of a guy who’s wrong for her, but feels so right.</strong><br />
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When Caroline Piasecki’s ex-boyfriend posts their sex pictures on the Internet, it destroys her reputation as a nice college girl. Suddenly her once-promising future doesn’t look so bright. Caroline tries to make the pictures disappear, hoping time will bury her shame. Then a guy she barely knows rises to her defense and punches her ex to the ground.</p>
<p>West Leavitt is the last person Caroline needs in her life. Everyone knows he’s shady. Still, Caroline is drawn to his confidence and swagger—even after promising her dad she’ll keep her distance. On late, sleepless nights, Caroline starts wandering into the bakery where West works.</p>
<p>They hang out, they talk, they listen. Though Caroline and West tell each other they’re “just friends,” their feelings intensify until it becomes impossible to pretend. The more complicated her relationship with West gets, the harder Caroline has to struggle to discover what she wants for herself—and the easier it becomes to find the courage she needs to fight back against the people who would judge her.</p>
<p>When all seems lost, sometimes the only place to go is deeper.</p>
Continuing on with my recent New Adult kick, Deeper was one I had seen a lot of buzz for and decided to give a try. The buzz is very much deserved!
Caroline is our main character who has recently been the victim of revenge porn after a breakup with her long-term boyfriend. Needless to say, this has had quite a lasting effect on Caroline in many ways. The most obvious is the emotional damage. The constant paranoia that every man she sees has seen the pictures of her naked and mid-sexual act. The voices in her head calling her a slut and a whore. The fear of social engagements. If that wasn’t terrible enough, Caroline had aspiring career dreams of becoming a judge one day, like her father. Internet scandal never really goes away so knowing the pictures would haunt her life and career for a long time was a hard thing to deal with.
The thing about Caroline was, she wasn’t someone to just sit around and completely take it. Yes she had moments of weakness, especially in the beginning, but she also had a take charge attitude that only gained momentum the further we dove into the story. I found her whole demeanor about the situation aspiring in ways. To see the defeated side of her and then watch her change into a strong woman was very well portrayed. It felt realistic to the circumstances at every level. As someone who went to school just before this social network age high on technology, I cannot imagine the pressure on kids to have their mistakes broadcast all over the internet. This story actually had a personal connection to me. I went through something with a similar emotional effect back in high school and I am oh so very thankful it wasn’t made worse by the internet in those times. So as someone who knew a little bit of what it was like to be Caroline, I thought the author nailed her character.
In the struggle to pick up the pieces of her life, Caroline develops an odd relationship with West. Oh West, where do we even start with you? West had his own demons, mostly surrounding his family back home. He had dreams to become a doctor someday but he constantly lived in fear of the day he’d have to leave college and those dreams and return home to pick up the pieces of his family’s life. What he did for his family? Man, so admirable. I couldn’t help but feel for him and the unfortunate situation he was put in. He was so adamant that he didn’t want to become friends with Caroline, wanted to stay away from her and not get attached, no distractions. Let’s just say he was not successful. lol His point of view often made me laugh with how hard he was fighting his attraction. He was definitely a male. But he had so many swoony, swoony moments too. These two fought their feelings over and over and it was such a great slow, slow burn as they both find something in each other that they needed. Not just a relationship and romance, but a deep friendship of being there for each other.
Even though this novel is told in dual points of view, I really felt like this book was all Caroline. Of the two of them, she goes through the most character growth. She learned not to give up on her dreams and to fight for her rights as a woman. Fight for her right to move on and have fun and a good life without worrying about her past. I loved the journey she took to get there.
If I had to point out a gripe, I’d have to say the book was slow moving at times, especially in the beginning. Like I mentioned above, I adore a good slow burn but sometimes I felt certain things were drawn out a little more than I would have liked. I was anxious to get the ball rolling and it is so worth it when it finally does!
As I was nearing the end I realized these characters had a lot of story left to tell, especially our West. I think we just touch the surface of his story and I look forward to more of it in the sequel coming out in June, Harder. If you are looking for a deeper New Adult read (heh), than this is one to check out.
I don’t want to date West. I want him to show me what deeper feels like.
Deep and then deeper. All the way down.