REVIEW: "Beautiful Disaster", by Jamie McGuire

Title: Beautiful Disaster
Author: Jamie McGuire
Format: Kindle eBook
Pages: 361 
Publisher: Jamie McGuire
First Published: May 1st 2011

Taken from Goodreads

The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate percentage of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance between her and the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend America, 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 charming college co-ed. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his charms, 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’ apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.


A few days ago, I posted a rather scathing review of a sappy, tooth-achingly saccharine book I'd picked up free for the Kindle. Well, if Eternal Eden represented all that is dreadful about self publishing for the Kindle, Beautiful Disaster represents a whole bunch of what's good!

I picked up this freebie for three reasons:

1. Despite having a huge TBR pile, I was comfy in bed one night and couldn't quite summon the energy needed to walk to the next room and choose a book from said pile. Instead, I reached for my trusty iPhone, fired up the Kindle app and picked this little gem.
2. It had a pretty cover.
3. The blurb said the character “has the appropriate percentage of cardigans in her wardrobe”. This is very much the case with my wardrobe!

I'm not usually one for books which could be comfortable shelved as “romance”. Never have been. So it came as a huge surprise when I quickly found myself loving this story! Abby has gumption and a mysterious past. Her stubbornness will have you grinding your teeth, but you'll understand her reasons for being how she is.

I expected to hate Travis, given that he is described in the blurb as a “Walking One-Night Stand”. I've never been able to stand it when girls go for bad boys with the certainty that they can change them by showing just enough cleavage. Ergh. So, understandably I was ready to be annoyed by the relationship. However, Travis might have a wild side, but he was also honest and clever and, actually, pretty sweet! He had just the right mixture of dark and dangerous thrown into an otherwise puppy-like mix. 

This was a book that I couldn't put down. The relationship rocks and rolls and rises and falls and it really drags you along for the ride. You desperately hope for Abby and Travis' “Beautiful Disaster” of a relationship to work out for them, but I honestly couldn't predict whether it would or not. Furthermore, I couldn't decide whether it would even be a good thing if they ended up together! There are times in the book when you can't help but think that the intensity of their relationship is almost unhealthy!

I whole-heartedly recommend this book. The characters are realistic, the situation is at times moving, at times hilarious and the relationship between the two main characters is tumultuous. Reading about the ups and downs of their journey really is like an unbearably sweet torture which you want desperately to end, but which is also a whole lot of fun to live through! A well deserved four stars for this gem of a freebie!


  1. Ive heard really good things about this one, its definitely on my wishlist!!

  2. I read this. I spent a good deal of the time wondering why the hell Travis wasn't arrested or sued in this book because he spent most of his time just beating people up! Good read otherwise though :)


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