I wanted to enjoy this. It was funny enough, more than enough really. Had fairly decent flow, got to the action at a nice point and was almost on its way to making sense. But then the end just derailed everything.
The blurb specifically says that Everly gets attacked on a visit to see her mysterious aunt and has to make tough choices because of this. What actually ends up happening is after the book finally gets interesting, her memory is wiped and then she’s storming into her aunt’s house asking where her father is. This seems so far out of left field. Why, even after a memory wipe, is she suddenly interested in her father’s whereabouts when her original plan was she had no plan. Everly was simply going hoping answers would come upon arrival. Also, this is the end of the book. What happened to her finding out something about herself and being forced to make life-altering decisions?
Though this is short, after the brain wipe I quit. There weren’t enough pages left to do what the blurb said it would do, and it was also impossible to do it because Everly had no memory of the events anyway. And then a bit of cheating boyfriend was thrown in at the last moment because why not. Honestly, this story was doing pretty good but then it didn’t deliver on what it promised by having the lead learn so much stuff only for it to be wiped from her memory. Which, again, means the blurb promise cant be fulfilled.
I had high hopes for this and I’m honestly shocked I didn’t finish it but the whole ending of this pretty much ruined all the expectations I went into this read with. All this story does is introduce some characters, tell us some stuff and is basically bait to buy the second book. The problem there is that since it doesn’t do anything the blurb promised the hook doesn’t really work. I’m definitely not a fan of things being written to force me to buy the next book because they are incomplete. I want the completeness of one part of a story to be structured in such a way I feel compelled to follow the journey not because I have zero choice in the matter. Being forced to do something sucks. And since I actually enjoyed the first half of this for it to slide down the slope so fast in the second half as the book just turned out to be a tease, I’m not interested in reading the second book for the answers I went into this book expecting to find.
This is not a self-contained story and reads like part of a normal-length novel that was just spliced into a part one in hopes of convincing readers to buy the second part. To be fair had this been a longer book and, more importantly, the confusion around the ‘where is my father’ stuff hadn’t happened, and also the fact she never talks about the visit she can remember having with her aunt before, had these things been solved somehow on top of actually doing what the blurb said, my opinion might have changed. Mostly because showing the readers stuff is okay, but the blurb and the first half of the story were specifically about Everly meeting her aunt. After the memory wipe, she does do this still yet this meeting was never shown on page and even if it was, it has no purpose now because with all her memories gone what is the point of Everly visiting her aunt now anyway. Even for a short story, this one had time to at least deliver on that one promise and definitely without the confusing random where is my father bit.
This book just did not live up to what was promised and turning out to ultimately be a teaser book was a let-down and frustrating. I thought it might be just me but a decent enough bit of people were put out by this idea of misleading people into thinking they are getting a full novel when they aren’t and hoping that because it’s free readers won’t care and will be enticed to get the next book. I have never been a fan of this particular tactic and making the book free won’t change that. It’s still a hard pass as it didn’t, one last time, deliver on anything written in the blurb. Not a single thing. 2 stars is even being generous but I was going through a no-one-star phase way back when I read this and wrote the review the first time before revisiting it to post it.