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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Lefty's Lowdown: Did I Mention I Love You by Estelle Maskame

Did I Mention I Love You by Estelle Maskame
(The DIMILY Trilogy #1)
Published: December 1, 2015 by Sourcebooks Fire
Source: Received an egalley for review via NetGalley, but I promise this hasn't influenced my opinion of the book at all!
Summary from Goodreads:
When sixteen-year-old Eden Munro agrees to spend the summer with her estranged father in the beachfront city of Santa Monica, California, she has no idea what she’s letting herself in for. Eden's parents are divorced and have gone their separate ways, and now her father has a brand new family. For Eden, this means she's about to meet three new step-brothers. The eldest of the three is Tyler Bruce, a troubled teenager with a short temper and a huge ego. Complete polar opposites, Eden quickly finds herself thrust into a world full of new experiences as Tyler's group of friends take her under their wing. But the one thing she just can't understand is Tyler, and the more she presses to figure out the truth about him, the more she finds herself falling for the one person she shouldn't – her step-brother.

Throw in Tyler's clingy girlfriend and a guy who has his eyes set on Eden, and there's secrets, lies and a whole lot of drama. But how can Eden keep her feelings under control? And can she ever work out the truth about Tyler?

Did I Mention I Love You is the first book in the phenomenal DIMILY trilogy, following the lives of Eden Munro and Tyler Bruce as they try to find their way in an increasingly confusing world. 
Okay, when I decided to start blogging again, I made a promise to myself that I was not going to let any part of this be unpleasant. I wasn't ever going to let any part of blogging feel like a chore, because that is what really killed me in my previous blogging endeavors. A big part of that promise includes not forcing myself to read books I'm not enjoying. Unfortunately, that brings me to Did I Mention I Love You.

Obviously I was really hoping to love this book, or else I wouldn't have requested it. However, hopes are not always met. I DNF'ed this book. I hate writing negative reviews with all my heart, but even more than that, I hate writing DNF reviews. Is it really fair to write a review for a book I didn't even complete? 

So let me make this very clear. I got 38% through this novel--I DID NOT FINISH READING THIS BOOK. I am only judging the parts I did read, and I can only give my reasons for not being able to finish it. 

The primary reason is that I hated all the characters, and that kind of leads into all the other stuff I disliked about this story. Every. Single. One. At first, I thought I was going to like Eden, the narrator, a lot. I thought I could relate to her. She was uncomfortable in social settings and seemed like a straightforward person. But she turned out to be a pushover, judgmental, hypocritical, and annoying as shit. I have so much rant to say about this girl that I honestly don't know where to start. She lets all her new friends convince her to do things and go to things she doesn't want to do, and then she complains about it the whole fucking time. She also criticizes everything everyone does and gets in their business when it is not at all her place. Like, I get that what your step-brother does is shitty, but how can you sit there and lecture him and get mad at him when you've known him for a total of two days? 

But oh boy! The step-brother/obvious love interest, Tyler. I never reached the point where they got together, but I don't want to, because everything about him is horrible. He is a teenage brat, acting like a total asshole just because he has a rough past. I get misbehaving, but this is a whole new level. He treats everyone like crap. The very first scene he's in, he interrupts a neighborhood barbecue, cusses at everyone, and insults them. No! And the little scenes where he is actually showing a bit of humanity do not excuse that kind of behavior. I don't want to read about the Eden, I don't want to read about Tyler, so I especially don't want to read about the relationship between them. 

All the secondary characters are more-or-less irrelevant. They party all the time. They care about sex and drugs and alcohol and they have no depth whatsoever. I don't like any of them, I don't care about any of them.

Honestly, I don't think there was a single meaningful interaction in the whole first 38% of the book. In fact, I feel like most of what I read were pointless arguments between Eden and Tyler. Like honestly stupid, melodramatic arguments. I don't need deep philosophical life lessons or anything, but I want something more than empty conversations and shallow interactions between characters. I don't care if that stuff comes later. It shouldn't be lacking throughout the entire beginning. I was bored, and I didn't care about what I was reading. I've read reviews on the book, so I know that there is a lot revealed about the characters in the part I didn't read, but I simply am not interested enough to read on and figure out what they are. 

I really wish I had something good to say about this novel, but I did not enjoy reading this even the slightest. I didn't look forward to picking it up, and I knew I needed to call it quits. 

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Thank you so much for taking the time to read what I have to say and give your opinion on it. It really means a lot to me. And of course, I will do my best to return the favor. However, as easily distracted and scatter-brained as I am, please don't be offended if I forget to comment on your blog.