Monday 27 April 2015

✿ Paradise City (Paradise #1) ✿ CJ Duggan ✿


There's bound to be trouble in Paradise . . .

When her parents decide a change will be good for her, seventeen-year-old Lexie Atkinson never expected they'd send her all the way to Paradise City. Coming from a predictable life of home schooling on a rural Australian property, she's sure that Paradise will be amazing. But when she's thrust into a public school without a friendly face in sight, and forced to share a room with her insipid, hateful cousin Amanda, Lexie's not so sure.

Hanging out with the self-proclaimed beach bums of the city, sneaking out, late night parties and parking with boys are all things Lexie's never experienced, but all that's about to change. It's new, terrifying . . . and exciting. But when she meets Luke Ballantine, exciting doesn't even come close to describing her new life. Trouble with a capital T, Luke is impulsive, charming and answers to no one. The resident bad-boy leader of the group, he's sexier than any boy Lexie has ever known.

Amidst the stolen moments of knowing looks and heated touches, Lexie can't help but wonder if Luke is going to be good for her . . . or very, very bad?

 ARC received from publisher via Netgalley for an honest review

I have liked the CJ Duggan books I have read previously, so the chance to read an advanced copy of Paradise City was a no brainer.

Lexie moves from home schooling in the country to high school in the city.  The time of her life, right?

Hmmm, not exactly.  All her romantic notions of going to school with her beloved cousin - who she hasn't spoken to in years mind you - are shattered when she gets to town.

Lexie felt to me still like the 13 year old that was last in contact with her cousin Amanda - who OMG that girl is bipolar!

Luke Ballantine is the guy that gets her attention, sparks her interest from the start.  I liked Ballantine,  I really did.

The interaction between Lexie and Ballantine flip flops between indifference to steamy - well as steamy as a 17 year old virgin will let things get!

This is a road trip, coming of age kind of story. It took me a while to connect with Lexie (at times I felt quite disconnected, but this could just be me).

It had a sort of holiday-seaside town feel to it, and it did remind me of beachside holidays when I was a kid.

This falls on the lower age end of the NA genre, and the characters did feel very young to me - but that is probably just because I am so old!!

The one thing that really did surprise me was the ending.  CJ Duggan is not known for writing cliffhangers, so this was something completely unexpected.

I wanted to scream and shout at Ballantine with that ending grrrr.

Now I am impatiently waiting for book 2, Paradise Road, as I need to know how things go.