Title: RAINING DOWN RULES by BK Rivers
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Jemma Bowers lives by a set of rules she has compiled for the past three years, a list created through a devastating event when she was seventeen that made her question everything about herself. Now, called back to her childhood home to care for an ailing grandmother, Jemma meets two men who force her to rethink the rules she has guarded herself with for so long – Jordan, bad boy rockstar who threatens to bring her fantasies to life, and Vic, hunky fireman whose charm and wicked dimples seem determined to knock her off her feet. She can only find true love by following her heart and trusting herself.
This book fits the checkmarks I always find in a romance: unexpected arrival of love interest just when the lead isn’t looking, life’s turmoil creating tension, and – of course – intense physical moments. In fact, I think the sexy bits were some of the best written ones! I enjoyed feeling Jemma’s nervousness, doubt, and eventual pleasure if she succumbed to her desires. However, through the piece, it felt like the editor hadn’t really done an efficient sweep into the prose. After the repetitive language, spliced usage of contractions, no punctuation to signify compound sentences, and quite a few of those hang-on words usually deleted in a thorough edit, I was left feeling this novel could’ve shined much brighter had the editor taken just a little more time.
Jemma is a complicated, meticulous character, and for the most part she comes off understandable. Who wouldn’t be playing emotional tug of war when choosing between a rockstar and a fireman? However, I assumed as I read that this was a close first person, but more often than not the character was explaining in detail how she was feeling about certain events instead of allowing me to infer and project these thoughts from her actions. The parts I felt more in tune with Jemma were the sexy scenes, when the majority of explanation came through in her reactions to each man’s touch. Jemma’s rules are a great, telling fact about her, but I didn’t find out the reason behind these rules until around 170 pages into the book! I’m not saying this was badly done but, for me, I couldn’t understand why Jemma acted the way she did for the entire first half of the book.
Vic is by far my favorite character. Despite coming off slightly stalker-ish at the start (running into her three times in one day? No town is that small), he evolved into a caring, dependable, and incredibly likable guy. He really is the type every girl dreams of being with at least once in their life. His affection, patience, even his jealousies fit into the person Rivers was trying to convey, so I count his character a major success.
Jordan…how do I explain Jordan? Yes, the fantasy appeal is there. He’s hot, he’s dangerous, he’s famous (and no doubt has a sexy singing voice). But the temper, the addiction, and the occasional physical violence had me turning off from him damn fast. He became a great character of struggle and survival, but as a potential love interest? I spent most of the book wondering why on earth she would risk hurting Vic for this guy who left bruises on her wrists. This could, obviously, be personal preference, though. Being the one to help a guy reach their potential is a constantly seen relationship.
Gran was PERFECT. Do you hear me, readers? PERFECT. I wish my grammy was as witty and snappy as Jemma’s. Her story is heartbreaking, but that proves she was a character one could easily connect with. From the moment she appeared on the page, she was unforgettable.
This is a fun, fast read. Maybe a vacation flight, hanging by the pool, or just when you’re in the mood for some innocent, sexy tension. For me, Jemma just became rather unlikable by the end of the book. I could not understand the choices she made and the ruin she risked until finally coming to her senses in the final pages. That, paired with the lackluster editing, left me with – while not unenjoyable – a diminished impact. I would still recommend this to anyone looking for a quick, relaxing read with on point writing in the sexier sections.