Review: Unfixable by Tessa Bailey

unfixableReviewed by Carrie

Bailey’s foray into the New Adult sub-genre begins as a spin-off from her wildly popular novel, Protecting What’s His.  I was super excited to see what direction the author would take – would it be super tame or would the hero still be deliciously dirty-talking?  It turned out to be a little of both.

For a brief moment, Willa Peet made the mistake of believing that she could be normal.  Her sister, Ginger, pulled her out the hell hole they grew up in with their prostitute mother and moved them to Chicago to give Willa a chance at life.  Willa started to believe in normal when she met Evan at school.  Evan was sweet, kind and patient with her and Willa tried very hard to be the kind of girl that she thought Evan deserved; only she lost herself in the process.   Willa finally figures out that she can’t be who Evan wants her to be and ends the relationship.  Willa enters a photography contest to win a trip to Ireland in an effort to escape Chicago, heal her broken heart and try to regain a sense of the person she used to be.  What she didn’t expect, is having to deal with an infuriatingly sexy Irishman and his wacky family that run the B&B Willa is to stay at.

Shane Claymore doesn’t want to pick up this beautiful surly American.  He’s not even supposed to be home.  He’s supposed to collecting more trophies and making money racing the Grand Prix circuit.  Yet, Shane is home to take care of his mom and sister while sorting out the family business following his father’s death.  Hosting the photography contest winner was just supposed to be a quick influx of cash.  The last thing he needed was some pain in the ass girl talking to his family and questioning his choice to sell the B&B but somehow Shane can’t get Willa out of his head.

The beginning of this book was largely uneven.  Willa’s internal narrative seemed to be on repeat and didn’t really lead the character or story anywhere.  Instead of exploring how her early life formed her defensive behaviors, Willa goes on ad nauseam about how she was “broken” because she couldn’t be what one boy thought she could be.  The story really picks up when Willa starts to interact with others.  I absolutely loved the cheeky buskers she befriends, the odd encounters with Shane’s mother and her early love/hate relationship with Shane.

Rest assured that Shane is very much a deliciously dirty talker that the author writes so well.  The love scenes are charged with the perfect amount of tension and passion that get the heart pumping and the eyes glued to the words.  He’s a really great mix of contrasts – angry, passionate, aloof and needy.  Instead of coddling Willa, Shane pushes her and doesn’t allow her to run away.  Once they got down to it, Shane and Willa worked well together and I really enjoyed them as a couple.

The ending felt a bit rushed but perhaps that’s because the story started so slow.  I would have loved to see more of the sarcastic biting Willa than the introspective one.  It also would have been interesting to have a larger peek into Shane’s racing career.  It was great to see Derek and Ginger again, if only for brief moments.

I love to read books set in Ireland and Bailey has done a wonderful job of capturing the vibrancy of the place and the often colorful nature of Irish people; from the thieving busker brothers to the wise wisdom of Orla, the Claymore’s waitress.  Having worked around Irish folks for many years, these were the characters that reminded me most of the type of Irish people I know.  As they would say, it was good craic.

Rating: C+

*ARC Provided by Entangled

Click to purchase: Amazon

Unfixable
by Tessa Bailey
Release Date: April 14, 2014
Publisher: Entangled

Comments

  1. I can’t wait to read this! I hosted a spotlight for it this week and have heard nothing but great things from readers. I’m a sucker for books set in Ireland too, sounds like an enjoyable story with great tension between the characters…thanks for sharing!

    • I love Bailey’s characters. I seriously would read an entire series based on Derek/Ginger/Willa/Shane.
      If you like Irish settings, check out Cara McKenna’s novella His Best Laid Plans.

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