October 31, 2014

BLOG TOUR REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: All Broke Down (Rusk University #2)

It's my turn to tell you all about ALL BROKE DOWN, the second book in Cora Carmack's football-themed Rusk University series. Can I get a happy dance? Check out my review, then enter the giveaway!

All Broke Down (Rusk University #2), by Cora Carmack
Published October 28, 2013
Publisher: William Morrow
Format: e-ARC, obtained from the author
Genre: new adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon * Barnes & Noble * iTunes

Rating: 5 STARS

(From Goodreads) In this second book in New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Cora Carmack's New Adult, Texas-set Rusk University series, which began with All Lined Up, a young woman discovers that you can't only fight for what you believe in... sometimes you have to fight for what you love.

Dylan fights for lost causes. Probably because she used to be one.

Environmental issues, civil rights, corrupt corporations, and politicians you name it, she's probably been involved in a protest. When her latest cause lands her in jail overnight, she meets Silas Moore. He's in for a different kind of fighting. And though he's arrogant and infuriating, she can't help being fascinated with him. Yet another lost cause.

Football and trouble are the only things that have ever come naturally to Silas. And it's trouble that lands him in a cell next to do-gooder Dylan. He's met girls like her before fixers, he calls them, desperate to heal the damage and make him into their ideal boyfriend. But he doesn't think he's broken, and he definitely doesn't need a girlfriend trying to change him. Until, that is, his anger issues and rash decisions threaten the only thing he really cares about: his spot on the Rusk University football team. Dylan might just be the perfect girl to help.

Because Silas Moore needs some fixing after all.

Cora Carmack has never written the quintessential bad boy before. There was studious Garrick, sensitive Cade, mysterious Jackson, and most recently, dedicated Carson. I would never have used the term "bad boy" to describe any of them. And then, along came Silas Moore. 

Silas is angry. Like, all the time. His relationship with his mom is terrible (and so is she), his BFF is in jail for dealing, and Coach Cole has had it with all the fights that Silas keeps getting in, so he benches him. It's during his darkest moments that a ray of light by the name of Dylan enters his life. Initially, she's just a means to an end, but somewhere along the way, Silas gains something he thought was lost forever - hope. 

Okay - Cora, you can do a bad boy anytime you want to. Silas is full of all the best bad boy things. He is conflicted and troubled and angry and cocky. But, the best part of the best bad boys is his redeemability. If there wasn't some good stuff in there, he would just be... well, bad. And, Silas is full of lots of good stuff. 

From the beginning, he's inexplicably helping Dylan. Sure, he tells himself it's because she's hot and he really wants to tap that, but the reader can tell that there's more to it than that (although, there IS that too). Silas may have been beaten down by his trashy mother, and his best friend may be trying to suck him into a world he has no business being in, but, Silas is fighting all that negativity with everything in him, and Dylan is the key to success. He recognizes the hope she represents, and he wants a piece of it. So, although it chaps his hide a bit, he asks Dylan for her help to get him back on the straight and narrow, and subsequently, back on the football team.

Dylan's granting of Silas' request is a little self-serving. She is looking for exactly the opposite. Where Silas is the typical bad boy, Dylan is your typical good girl. She comes from a well-off family, she gets good grades and is a community activist. And, she's as unhappy and unfulfilled as Silas is. She has this yearning for the grit of life to seep into her pores a little bit, and along with it, maybe she will figure out what really makes her happy. When she meets Silas in jail, she knows that he's just the guy to help her with that. 

I really loved Dylan. She was, at times a bit too eager when it came to Silas, but hell. Who wouldn't be when faced with all that hotness and his talented hands? But, she also had a spine - that's very important. Those girls who fall all over themselves to please the object of their desire make me want to throw my book. Dylan was woman enough to admit that she wanted some things from Silas, but strong enough to walk away when she had to. 

I remember in college, I was in charge of orientation activities for the incoming freshmen. I was taught that one of the best ways to bring a group of strangers together was through pain and misery - namely, physical labor. Never was there a finer example of this than with Dylan and Silas. They bonded in jail and fell in love while toiling away for Habitat for Humanity. It was cool watching Dylan and the satisfaction of a job well done smooth over Silas' rough edges. And, it was also nice to know that once Silas got in touch with his inner good guy that there wasn't enough bad left in him to be interesting. His and Dylan's relationship was hot and sexy and dirty and absolutely perfect.

So, Cora, you can do a sexy bad boy any day of the week and twice on Sundays. In fact - please do. 

About the Author

Cora Carmack is a twenty-something writer who likes to write about twenty-something characters. She's done a multitude of things in her life-- boring jobs (like working retail), Fun jobs (like working in a theatre), stressful jobs (like teaching), and dream jobs (like writing). She enjoys placing her characters in the most awkward situations possible, and then trying to help them get a boyfriend out of it. Awkward people need love, too. Her first book, LOSING IT, was a New York Times and USA Today bestseller.


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1 comment:

Unknown said...

You will find a story in which the characters realize it’s perfectly acceptable to be a little messed up, and the love and respect they develop for each other is magnificent.

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