Thursday, September 29, 2011

Double Clutch Review


Double Clutch (Brenna Blixen #1)
by Liz Reinhardt
Released September 6, 2011
What happens when you fall for the perfect guy...twice...in one day?

Brenna Blixen spent her freshman year homeschooling in Denmark; now that she's back in the States, she's determined to make her sophomore year unforgettable. And by unforgettable, she imagined awesome classes, fun friendships, and maybe a little romance.

What she got was a whole lot of romance, and all at once.

The same day that dark, brooding Saxon Maclean charmed her with his killer good looks and whip-smart wit, Jake Kelly stole her breath away with his heart-wrenching smile and intelligent, thoughtful focus.

But Saxon is a proud player who makes it clear that he doesn't know why he can't get Brenna off of his mind and out of his system, and Jake's sweet and humble attitude hides a secret past life that might be darker and more complex than Brenna is willing to deal with.

Complicating the matter is the fact that Saxon and Jake were once best friends and are now arch-enemies...and the more Brenna finds out about their connection to each other, the more intrigued and worried she becomes.

Between keeping the peace with her lovingly over-protective parents, designing t-shirts for her high school's rising punk band, keeping up her grades in classes split between academic and technical high school, and running the track like a maniac, Brenna has enough to worry about with out juggling two guys who make her heart thud and drive her crazy all at once.

She has to make a choice, but how is she supposed to do that when giving her heart to one of them might mean breaking the other's?

When people ask me why I review self-published works as well as works published by major houses instead of just reviewing for major houses only, I want to point them in the direction of fabulous books like this one. If I just reviewed for publishers only, then I would miss out on some really incredible stories.

Double Clutch is not a book that is driven only by its plot. As a matter of fact, the plot takes the backseat to character development. Sometimes in stories, this is a downgrade because the story tends to drag and there always seems to be too much brooding and melodrama. Thankfully, this is not the case AT ALL with this book. The funny thing is that Brenna starts out as a strong character to begin with - she's pretty confident and sure of herself with a nice dose of independence. However, we get much more from her as we proceed through the novel. She grows significantly, maturing and adapting to everything that comes along with being a teen, as well as having a boyfriend and feelings for a guy that seems to be a little more than just a friend.

Normally, this is where I post my doubts about how a love triangle could possibly be good for a story.. but I just can't do that with Double Clutch. This is one of those instances where there are two guys that are attracted to Brenna that are both flawed but inevitably both nice guys who show their adoration in different ways. Relating to the main character and trying to figure out which guy is best for her really keeps you turning the pages in this because it isn't a typical cookie cutter love triangle. This is one of those rare instances where there's no clear "better" choice for Brenna and that really turns the intrigue up. Jake and Saxon are both great guys in their own ways with their own sets of pros and cons. Add to that a history and story between THEM as well (not romantically), and your head is spinning from all of the revelations and swoon-worthy moments between the three of them.

As far as romances go, I give this book an A+ and then some. I would have loved to see a little more to the plot - maybe a little more conflict. Like I said though, the story keeps you so hooked with everything going on with the main characters, there's no way I could give this anything less than 5 stars. I thoroughly enjoyed Double Clutch and cannot wait to read more in its sequel, Junk Miles.

(Note: Older YA)

Rating: ★★★★★
Source: Purchase



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