3.5 stars, Recommend, Viki's review

ARC review ‘Into your arms’

Title: Into your arms
Author: Chelsea M. Cameron
Series: Squad stories #1
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, New adult
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Freya has secrets she doesn’t intend to share. Not with her new friends on the cheerleading squad at Maine State University, and certainly not with sexy lumberjack-look-alike Rhett. Just because sparks flew between them at a bar one night doesn’t mean he gets to know why she transferred to MSU. When Freya dares Rhett to come to cheerleading practice, she never expects to see the dark-haired lumberjack again.

Except Rhett is the last person to turn down a dare, especially when it comes from a pixie-sized blonde. When Rhett wows the squad and becomes Freya’s stunt partner, his hands come far too close for comfort. But as Freya and Rhett’s hot post-practice sessions bring them closer, she risks her secrets being revealed. Can Freya chance exposing who she really is to the guy who wasn’t supposed to win her heart?

I received an ARC copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange of an honest review.

Why did I request this book? First of all, I absolutely loved the author My favorite mistake series. Then there s the pretty cover which always helps and I also found the synopsis intriguing. Overall, I liked the book well enough, it’s a cute and sweet little romance story, which is also light and quick. However, I’m not a cute love story kind of a girl and I had a few issues with the main character too. So in the end it only falls into the middle ground for me.

Let’s start with the writing style. I didn’t expect anything horrible since I read a couple of other books from the author; still I found I few things worth mentioning. The biggest one is that the story mostly reads really fluidly and easily but there are a couple of instances where I got the impression as if I was reading a telegraph from the old ages. You know how they communicate them, the dear xy stop I miss you stop ect. This manly happened in the beginning of the story and wouldn’t say it’s something really bad but definitely strange and caused a disconnection between sentences, paragraphs. Then there are a lot of contradictions in the story, in one sentence even. Like they start the sentence saying something but finish it stating the complete opposite of it. It wasn’t that noticeable but after a while it started to confuse the storyline a bit. Other than this the writing is pretty solid, interesting even with the tendencies to highlight the strangest, most uncommon elements from the plot which I found absolutely delightful and even funny.
Loosely connected to this, but more about the plot than the writing is the fact that it contains a lot of stereotype regarding the roles or preferences of man and women. I didn’t love the judgmental effect it put on the whole book, especially onto one of the main characters but fortunately the other character disprove these particular motions really quickly and effectively.
Also regarding the plot I found it pretty original and interesting to see another side to the cheerleader lifestyle opposing to the usual slutty, bully kind of cheerleaders from YA contemporary. Not to mention it is a really big part of the storyline and the author presents it accordingly. With a lot of little details and shows the hard work her characters put into it. Yet I also think it’s a bit overdone, there is too much focus to it and takes up more time in the book than it would be ideal. Especially since the characters Rhett and Freya has a lot of other intriguing parts in their life that doesn’t get enough attention.

Well, as for the main characters one of them surprised me and the other annoyed me to no ends. We see the story from both of their points of views and what is true about both of them that they are not the usual personalities I encounter in contemporary books a leads.
Let’s start with Rhett. The first impression I got about him in the very first chapter wasn’t all that pleasing but something I find in a lot of new adult romance. He seemed like someone who perfected picking up girls into an art form and a good looking fellow with a healthy dose of arrogance. I geared myself up for him being like this in the rest of the book too, but boy was I wrong.  As I started to read the second chapter my whole opinion started to change about him surely and quickly. He is charming and even sweet, caring with a lot of uncommon traits, like his dorkiness or love for old school and long words. He is honest and persistent and mostly patient. He has a lot of awkward moments where he doesn’t know what to do but you can see that he sincerely tries and cares. But around the end of the story he started to feel a bit too cheesy and too much of a pushover, or not even that but he gets a lot of shit from Freya and her friends still he is patiently waits her out. I want one for myself.
Then we got Freya whom I disliked from the moment she first talked. She has a really negative vibe going on about her with all of her misplaced bitterness caused by her not so stellar decisions.  She is hostile and defensive after the most basic conversations even especially towards Rhett. He is nice to her she practically bites his head off.  Yes I get that she didn’t have a perfect childhood but Rhetts was worse yet he can act in a civilized fashion. But you know what; she overdramatized everything so why should I be surprised. Then there are little things like the arrogant way she talks about her talent and her new squad lack of it. But really the thing that I disliked the most about her was her attitude, the way she attacked and pushed away everybody who just simply talked to her or asked a slightly personal question. I mean she states that she hates Rhett for his sincerity, come on get real. Her constant fighting not just others but herself too gets tiring fast. And even there was the thing with her big secret, I really didn’t see what her deal is but I felt like she has a fairy tale idea or at least a bit of an ulterior motive regarding it. So simply said she annoyed me but I can’t deny that she and Rhett has an explosive chemistry, a really strong sexual tension between them. It took the story for a certain point bat around halfway through I started to get bored.
Oh one more thing about Freya, her so called firecracker personality as everybody describes her so not founded. Yes they say she is that but she doesn’t proves it with her actions and unfortunately in this particular book this telling not showing thing was true about the emotions, feelings too. They didn’t come through for me especially not the more serious ones.

For the supporting cast there are not too many of them and they had even less role or appearance in the story so I can’t really evaluate them.  There was Jem, Rhett best friend the ultimate play boy who definitely has something going on. Or Tobi, Freya friend who is supportive but aggressively so and slightly overworked who doesn’t have time for the other gender. They are a bit superficially created but have potential so I assume they are going to get their own books.

In the end it is not a bad book, but doesn’t really fall into my preference category or among my favorites. For one read it was great especially since I only had a couple of hours to read and I easily finished it in that time but I didn’t fall in love with it.

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