Friday 16 November 2012

Review: Beautiful Disaster - Jamie McGuire

Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful, #1)
Title: Beautiful Disaster
Author: Jamie McGuire
Series: Beautiful (1)
Publisher: Jamie McGuire
Release Date: 26 May 2011
Date Read: October 2012

Beautiful disaster, indeed.

This is going to be more of a rant than a review with a lot of spoilers.

This tops the list of abusive, unhealthy relationships in YA literature, and there are a lot of those nowadays. Abby and Travis insist on hurting each other the first chance they get.

Abby Abernathy went to Eastern with her best friend, America, to escape her past. (I know America is her best friend but that's kind of selfish to go to a college just because you're friend wants to go there as well. You've got you're whole future to think about too, America. But obviously I don't have loyalty to my friends so don't listen to me.) She works hard to seem like a good girl -(she has the appropriate amount of cardigans).

Travis Maddox is the most eligible man in Eastern. He's smoking hot, ridiculously ripped, wins money from fighting in a floating fight club and he's got tattoos to increase his already high sex appeal. He's smart, he got a scholarship to go to Eastern (how and why he needs to be smart, I haven't got a clue since he didn't do any studying of his own and it doesn't fit his personality). There are puddles of drool all over the campus because girls forget their manners, and the fact that they are people that should be treated with respect, whenever Travis walks past. Girls literally throw themselves at him in ways that I can only hope stays in the fiction world. These girls chuck their self-respect out the window to be with Travis even though he's made it perfectly clear that he only wants sex. And how could I forget the fact that he's the Hulk? Abby snags his attention because she's the only girl in campus who's not pining for him and flipping her hair over her shoulder whenever she's around. No, Abby is immune to Travis charms and they proceed to become platonic friends, who secretly want to bang each other.

They weren't even in a proper relationship (by proper, I mean boyfriend/girlfriend since no one in this book obviously knows what a 'proper' relationship is) and it's already unhealthy. Travis threatens every guy that talks to Abby then somehow, Abby ends up the one apologizing for talking to a guy. Travis orders Abby to change her clothes because she looked too hot in it, so Abby goes and gets changed.Their living arrangements was spurred by the most unrealistic reason; the first time (couldn't Abby and America just take the showers at their apartment then go back home? or take a shower in a different dorm? But I guess their brains had to be sacrificed for the sake of plot movement) and the second (stop using the 'bet' excuse, Abby. You know you wanted to stay with him, you even get against yourself. Just stop pretending). So while Abby is sleeping in the same bed as Travis, she's also going out with Parker. She spends one night on a date with Parker then goes home to sleep next to Travis. Her social life literally is spent being a tennis ball bouncing back and forth from Parker and Travis, day in and day out. Freaking tease. Then Abby finally moves out of the apartment but not before sleeping with Travis the night before "for closure". Of course, Travis goes crazy when she leaves him.

“Travis is a fucking wreck! He won’t talk to us, he’s trashed the apartmentthrew the stereo across the room… Shep [roommate] can’t talk any sense into him! He took a swing at Shep when he found out we helped you leave. Abby! It’s scaring me! Abby, he’s gone fucking nuts! I heard him call your name, and then he stomped all over the apartment looking for you. He barged into Shep’s room, demanding to know where you were. Then he tried to call you. Over, and over and over,” she sighed. “His face was… Jesus, Abby. I’ve never seen him like that. He ripped his sheets off the bed, and threw them away, threw his pillows awayshattered his mirror with his fistkicked his door… broke it from the hinges! It was the scariest thing I’ve ever seen in my life!
Uh-huh. That happened. Because Abby moved out of the apartment. Crazy, crazy people. But c'mon. Why the hell did Abby sleep with Travis if she's going to leave him in the morning, knowing that he loved her? Oh, right closure.

What's frustrating is that Abby had moments of clarity where she stayed the hell away from Travis. It was weeks and weeks since they properly talked to each other and they were starting to become friends. But, of course, love always prevails and thirty pages later they're officially together so who even cares that he's a hurricane worse than Katrina, destroying everything in his path? I mean, it's practically history, right? Pfft. Just follow Abby's lead- she's already forgotten the fact that his boyfriend is a violent madman, and so should you. This is not the first of her many great decisions so you're in great hands.

Anyway, the first day Abby and Travis are out and about, proclaiming their undying love to everyone, Travis beats up his 'friend' for making sexual innuendos about Abby. The poor guy was in fetal position, bloody and unmoving, by the end of it. And what did Abby do? She encouraged to "teach that asshole some manners". Oh my god. I don't even know why these people are allowed in school property, much less give Travis a scholarship.

During the few times Abby visited her dorm room, we were burdened by the presence of Kara the 'annoying bitch roommate', at least according to Abby. Far from that actually, Kara is the voice of reason and the single person in the book who's got her head screwed on straight.
"Do you know what co-dependency is, Abby? Your boyfriend is a prime example, which is creepy considering he went from having no respect for women at all to thinking he needs you to breathe."
Nailed it in the head, Kara. But no amount of screaming on my part yielded Abby to listen to her.

A bunch of other things happen and next thing you know, Abby and Travis flew to Vegas, got married and tattooed themselves with each other's names. Some girls find that hot (I suppose?) but I've never really find it attractive when people brand themselves with their partner's name as a sign of being someone's property. But I don't know. Maybe it's just me. Not romantic enough, I guess.

So why the three stars?
I couldn't put the damn book down, that's why. I had to keep reading because I was addicted. I couldn't resist turning page after page to find out how this mess of a relationship would finally get sorted out. Screw chick lit, stuff like this is my guilty pleasure. There was Edward, then Patch and Kaidan, now Travis. I can't get enough. Oh, YA literature, what are you turning me into? What are you turning into? Guilty pleasures aside, though, I hope to God stuff like this doesn't happen in real life.

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