*I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.*
I was excited to read book two in the Woodlands series, if I was partial to Bo in book one (which I was) then I was definitely head over heels for him by the end of book two and I have no doubt you will be also!!
Unspoken tells the story of Bo Randolph, Noah’s best friend whom we met in Undeclared, Bo is trying to keep his head down at school and figure out what he wants to do with his life, but he carries around a lot of anger, he’s an ex-marine and avoids going home at all costs to avoid his lowlife father. So it’s to his delight that he discovers his new biology classmate is AnnMarie West. Bo makes it his mission to get to know AnnMarie as he knows there is more to the girl than the horrible rumours flying about.
AnnMarie thinks she has Bo’s number down pat, she knows how his type operates and she assumes Bo wants a good time from her like every other male assumes she’s good for, if the rumours were to be true. So AnnMarie has trust issues and she doesn’t let anyone in. But she didn’t count on Bo being persistent and hell bent on getting to know the real girl behind the false rumours.
I really liked AnnMarie, one split decision coloured the rest of her time at college, and it can’t even be said it was a mistake as AnnMarie was young, free and single to do as she pleased yet rumours grow arms and legs and become this monster of lies, painting AnnMarie to be someone she wasn’t. There was a good amount of angst and drama in Unspoken that will keep you guessing and entertained to the very end.
We didn’t get to see a whole lot from Noah and Grace as a couple in Unspoken but I was okay with that, Noah made an appearance as a great friend to Bo alongside the other boys of the Woodlands house. I am looking forward to the future stories, especially Mal’s as he featured quite a bit in this one.
Jen Frederick’s writing flows well, it’s so easy to get lost in the story and Bo and AnnMarie were likeable characters so I was rooting for them from the start. Bo has a lot of demon’s he constantly chases away, I felt his repressed anger and believed his story. Bo was also an underground fighter, I felt this wasn’t done as a popular plot point as we have so many hot MMA fighters in books but Bo’s back story explained the path that led him to be a fighter and I genuinely believed this. And yeah it also helped that he was hot. The scene where AnnMarie spots him just before the fight and he gives her his hoody? Yeah that was sexy.
Then we have AnnMarie or AM as she is known although I constantly thought of the radio when I heard her nickname so I will just stick with AnnMarie or as Bo affectionately called her Sunshine :) AnnMarie kept herself to herself and avoided campus at all costs since rumours plagued her since her Freshman year. It was great to see the growth in AnnMarie from page one until the very end. Since meeting Bo, she recaptured some of the fire she used to possess and slowly but surely she took a stand and held her head up high refusing to let the losers rule her life for another second.
The story had depth that pulled at the heart strings, both AnnMarie and Bo had less than ideal upbringings and their dysfunctional backgrounds brought them closer together, they found the stability they sought in each other and I thought that was a lovely thing. The characters were endearing and I really liked them together. AnnMarie’s room mates were also funny, they were a great addition to the story.
I enjoyed this instalment of the Woodlands series, it was great to see the progression from book one to this book. The character development was richer and the plot line went deeper. It is a great New Adult romance about finding that one true person that can handle your demons as well as their own. Also did I mention Bo was hot because a smart, ex marine/fighter, yeah he’s got it all going on!
If you love New Adult stories then Unspoken will not disappoint, this truly was a journey of self discovery and courage as well as finding the one person that will stand beside you and fight for you.
“Even the tinkling of what I assumed to be his dog tags striking each other when he moved generated a Pavlovian response of craving in me.”
“I was still shuddering when he drew back. An earthquake had happened inside my body. He was going to utterly ruin me.”
“And I surrendered to him and my sore heart began to lighten as it absorbed all the unspoken promises Bo made with his mouth, fingers, and tongue.”