February 27, 2014

REVIEW: ROME by Jay Crownover

ROME by Jay Crownover (Marked Men #3)
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Publication Date: January 7, 2014
Rating: 5/5 stars
Get it: Amazon | B&N
Sometimes the wrong choice can be just right . . .

Fun and fearless, Cora Lewis knows how to keep her tattooed "bad boy" friends at the Marked in line. But beneath all that flash and sass is a broken heart. Cora won't let herself get burned again. She's waiting to fall in love with the perfect man—a baggage-free, drama-free guy ready for commitment. Then she meets Rome Archer.

Rome Archer is as far from perfect as a man can be. He's stubborn, rigid, and bossy. And he's returned from his final tour of duty more than a little broken. Rome's used to filling many roles: big brother, doting son, supersoldier—but none of those fit anymore. Now he's just a man trying to figure out what to do with the rest of his life while keeping the dark demons of war and loss at bay. He would have been glad to suffer through it alone, until Cora comes sweeping into his life and becomes a blinding flash of color in a sea of gray.Perfect may not be in the cards, but perfectly imperfect could just last forever . . .

My Review
Oh my freaking god, Jay Crownover just knows how to write a romance and one that completely rocks you to the very core. ROME was the best out of the Marked Men series thus far. It totally skyrocketed my love for this series and Crownover’s writing 10 fold. 

I have to start with Cora because that girl was so kick ass. I always wanted to know her story since she was first mentioned and now I really got to know the loud mouth fireball of a girl who took care of all her boys. And I must say that I loved her to death. She was just so fierce and loyal, I really admired her for never backing down without a fight. I understood her fear of giving her heart to another after being burned and her quest to find Mr. Perfect, I was glad she finally opened up herself to someone. She did her best to be there for Rome, to keep his demons at bay by helping him make things easier. She meddled and got her nose into everything but she surprised me by being straightforward and pushing through. She was match for match when it came to Rome. 

When I thought I couldn’t have loved Rome more.. boy was I wrong. While Rome wasn’t the warm, fun, carefree older Archer he was before, he was not with his loving, protective nature and sexy as hell self. He was really lost and frustrated and all his hardships and brokeness really made me feel for him. Rome definitely struggled with the aftermath of Remy’s lies, how he felt like no one really needed him anymore and mostly the survival’s guilt that continued to haunt him. Despite all these setbacks, Rome was an honorable, dependable, and completely selfish when it came to those he loved. He tried his hardest to be the best he could be for Cora. He loved her as she was and took her as she was. She was the balm that soothed Rome’s wounds. And no matter what, I thought Rome was an amazing guy who needed to realize that he didn’t have to carry the weight of the world on his shoulders and had to accept the help and love from others just as he gave them.

Out of all the books in this series, I thought that ROME just had more depth, seriousness, and maturity in the relationships and in the issues the characters faced whether it dealt with family, friends or love. I really liked seeing both Rome and Cora go through ups and downs together and individually. Cora worked on loving Rome, while Rome worked on trying to keep his nightmares in check. I also thought that this book was exceptionally emotional and intense, especially with certain parts that nearly had me in tears. I can definitely say that Crownover really moved me with Rome and Cora’s story. I also appreciated how ROME skipped all the small bullshit fights that I tend to roll my eyes at in other novels. The characters in this book made mistakes, but they own up to them rather than make halfhearted excuses. I also have to mention Crownover’s ability to write descriptive yet sensual sex scenes that leave much to the imagination. She always gives the perfect amount of tension, seduction, and heat that I’m always looking for. 

Crownover didn’t just give me an impeccable and exquisite story that deals with grief, guilt, loss, and love. She gave me a book that had meaning, that reminded me that perfection can be found in most imperfect people and that there are always people there to love, help and support you. And fans of RULE and JET will also appreciate the appearance of many beloved characters that stole our hearts from the very beginning. The whole gang was this in one and we get a glimpse of what they are doing now, what their future may entail and Crownover leaves a shocking revelation that will certainly have you (especially me) squirming for NASH’s book.

*Thanks to William Morrow for sending a copy for review purposes
I was not compensated for my opinion. 

Read my review for JET (Marked Med #2)
Read my review for RULE (Marked Men #1)

Favorite Quotes

"I bet if he ever bothered to smile, panties across the nation would melt."

"Captain No-Fun better get with the program real fast or it was going to get ugly."

"Love isn't perfect. It's hard work and sometimes it's more effort to be in love than it is to just run away. If you keep looking for perfect, the real thing is going to pass right by you."

"I don't know, Half-Pint, something tells me reining you in is probably a pretty good time."

"My perfect guy has got to come already together and be good enough no assembly required by me."

"You suck."
"Only when asked nicely."

"That's okay, little brother has enough down there for you and everybody else in the room."

"I've been there and done that and seriously I wish I could give the T-shirt back."

"Oh, old friend, how I missed you."
"You talking to me or my dick?"

"Thanks, Half-Pint."
"Anytime, Captain No-Fun."

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