Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Review: Belonging by Karen Ann Hopkins


Belonging
by Karen Ann Hopkins

Available as: paperback, Kindle edition, ebook
Pages: 408
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication date: April 30, 2013
Suggested tags: young adult, Amish, romance, contemporary



Second in the Temptation series. From Goodreads:
"I left everything I knew behind.

But it was worth it. He was worth it.

No one thought an ordinary girl like me would last two minutes living with the Amish, not even me. There are a lot more rules and a lot less freedom, and I miss my family and the life I once had. Worst of all, Noah and I aren't even allowed to see each other. Not until I've proven myself.

If I can find a way to make it work, we'll be NOAH & ROSE

together forever.

But not everybody believes this is where I belong.
"

{ I received this as an ebook ARC from NetGalley. }


I hate to say it, but Belonging made me fall completely out of love with Rose and Noah. When I read the first book in the series, Temptation (read my review here), I was hooked on their little star-crossed romance. There were a few issues in Temptation that bothered me (SPOILER - highlight to read: mainly, Noah's absolute refusal to compromise in any way while expecting Rose to do all the sacrificing for their relationship, and their very immature and shockingly stupid idea that having a baby will solve all their problems), but overall I liked the book and rated it highly. But I realize now that those issues should have been warning signs, because they completely blew up in Belonging. To the point where I went from really enjoying the first book to not even looking forward to reading the third.

In Belonging, Rose and Noah go from star-crossed to just not meant to be. Rose is living with the Amish, trying to learn their ways, but she hates it. And while Rose is making these sacrifices (to the point of being kept away from her family), Noah makes absolutely no effort in their relationship. He will not compromise; Rose must conform to everything he demands of her, while he will not give an inch. Despite these circumstances, I didn't feel that bad for Rose, because she is clearly giving up her life for all the wrong reasons. Rather than working together to make their relationship work, Noah and Rose seem to be in constant struggle with each other, plotting how to make the other one do what they want and, when things start to go sour, how to get back at the other with maximum emotional damage (despite how damaging said plot might be to themselves). (SPOILER - highlight to read: Once Rose and Noah are no longer an item, Rose jumps into a relationship with another guy, who is totally sweet and utterly devoted to her. But she doesn't care because she's just doing it to make Noah jealous. And Noah proposes to an Amish girl that he doesn't even really care for to get back at Rose. What. The heck. Is wrong with these two. Can they not see that they're ruining their own lives and those of innocent bystanders by pulling these immature moves?)

And then the end... ugh. To be fair, I can see how some readers would find the dramatic events of the ending exciting and unexpected. But to me, it came out of nowhere and seemed so farfetched and random that, had I been reading a hard copy instead of an ebook, I would have thrown the book against the wall. Lucky for the book, I love my Kindle.

I find it hard to stop in the middle of series, so I probably will still be picking up Forever at some point, despite my disappointment with Belonging. But I certainly will not be going out of my way to read it. Unfortunately, Belonging significantly cooled my enthusiasm for this series.


Overall rating: 2 out of 5 stars


More about Karen Ann Hopkins }

Karen Ann Hopkins's Goodreads profile
Follow Karen Ann Hopkins on Twitter


{ Temptation series }




Book 1: Temptation 
Read my review
!








Book 2: Belonging 








Book 3: Forever 

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