Ah, Preston. You are just a bad boy with a big heart. I was glad to see you weren't really the a-hole you seemed in the other books. You definitely chipped away at my heart a little bit, once I got to know the real you.
There are going to be LOTS of spoilers - so do not read further if you haven't read this book.
What I enjoyed about this book was how sweet it was. Preston had a rough upbringing with a mother who didn't care about anything but getting high. He managed to make something of himself, but while he's trying to do that, he's having to play parents to his 3 young siblings. Because of his mom's neglect - Preston shoulders the responsiblity of paying their bills and making sure they are taken care of - which is a lot for a guy his age to have to deal with. Especially one who's going to college on a baseball scholarship. When he should be having fun and living it up - he's worrying about feeding and caring for his younger brothers and sister. This broke my heart and is what earned my respect. It was Preston's saving grace - because what he does to earn money to pay their bills is awful.
Preston is a gigelo. Plain and dirty. The book never went into any details about his 'profession' and I'm VERY thankful for that. I didn't need those images. It was hard for me to stomach it as it was. By the end of the book, the issue of what he did for a living and Amanda's mom knowing about it wasn't ever resolved and it left me wondering how they'd continue a relationship without her family trying to intervene.
The book starts off with a drunk as a skunk Preston having sex with sweet lil 'Manda' and taking her virginity in a shed behind the club they frequent. And he doesn't remember a thing about it the next day. Amanda has been in love with Preston pretty much her whole life and lets him take advantage of her because she's just excited and happy he finds her attractive and isn't looking at her as Marcus' little sister anymore.
I had a hard time with this - she gives up her virginity in a shed and Preston doesn't remember it at all. But then the book took off and I was sucked in by Prestons love of his siblings and his need to prove he was worthy of Amanda's love. Amanda was sweet. She still seemed kind of immature to me and her inexperience was eye-rolling at times.
I didn't feel as much of a connection with these two and their romance as I did when I read about Marcus/Low or Cage/Eva. It was hot but it wasn't sizzling for me. I just felt like something was missing and it was rushed. Normally I love the length of Glines books - but this one seemed to be needing a little more.
I also felt like Preston not grieving for his mother's death at all was a little bit of a stretch. That was glossed over so quickly that I thought I missed it. And for Rock and Trisha to adopt his siblings - it was the perfect ending with a big bow on it, but I wasn't feeling it. Although I admit that Preston raising his siblings at his age was a really bad idea - it was just too easy of a fix for me.
I certainly loved that the whole gang from the first 3 books made their appearances throughout this book. I love how they all tie in some how.
Even though this wasn't my favorite Glines book - I still enjoyed it and will continue to read her books in the future!