February 1, 2015

Book Review: Beautiful Redemption (Maddox Brothers #2) by Jamie McGuire

Beautiful Redemption (The Maddox Brothers, #2)
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Get a copy here!
“I wasn’t the first, but I would be the last. 
That didn’t make me the second prize. It made me his forever”
A story of Thomas James Maddox!

I became damn excited to read this third book of Maddox Brothers series after I read Beautiful Oblivion last month. In BO, we got a glimpse of the calm and mature Thomas. He was kind of become more appealing to me there (and with the mind-blowing ending I literally begged to get my eyes on Thomas’ story next). Added with the seducing snippets of Beautiful Redemption by Jamie through her media social accounts, my expectation for this book leveled up from 100 to 1000. But then once I finished, I am sorry to say that this book doesn’t get the love that I have for BO, moreover those I have for BD… *sigh*. Well, I’ll let you know why in a bit.
Usually I always write a brief synopsis of the story before I gave my review. But with this book I find that it’s actually hard to do the usual. There’s a big possibility that I’ll spoil a lot of things from Beautiful Disaster and Beautiful Oblivion. And I don’t like having spoilers in my review. So I guess I’ll just choose my words carefully to outline the story in general.

Thomas Maddox was a Special Agent of the FBI. All these years he’s been working undercover in the bureau without any of his family and friends known of the fact, well, except for someone from the past. Someone he’s been trying to forget and trying to move on from for months. People says that moving on is easy once you meet the right person to begin again. But not for him. Or never for him, as he thought so. Thomas felt miserable day by day. Working harder seemed to be the only escape he could run to. But surely it didn’t give him even the slightest of comfort feels inside him. Doing his job as a boss with ‘inhuman personality in the area made people around him chose to keep the distance from him instead of giving him a small touch of warm. Until someone came along, someone even ‘more inhuman’ than him. 

Liis Lindy was transferred to San Diego as secret language analyst of FBI. After separating with her seven-years-long-time-fiancé, Liis committed to marry her job. Reaching her dream job as top analyst in Quantico was her only focus that she kept in mind when she first stepped into the Squad-Five office in the bureau building. But it all crumbled down into total dust the second her name was called by her new boss where she was assigned to. Her new ‘inhuman’ boss. Also known as her last night stranger…

When two people with scars from previous relationship met in the same path, things tended to become more sensitive between them. Thomas whose heart was broken and Liis who broke someone’s heart didn’t sound like a perfect pair. But as things went on, they found themselves needing each other’s presents without realizing. Thomas used to think that he could never meet someone and fall in love again. But seeing Liis, the beautiful, smart, stubborn, brave, strong, loyal, ‘lack of finesse’ Liis has shifted the layer on his false perception all these time. He realized that his heart would not gone cold forever. He found his sun.

Liis could not not be attracted to Thomas. But as hard as she tried to deny it, the stronger the attraction pulled her in. Liis had several reasons for this. First, she never fancied commitment, the last time she was in one, she failed it miserably. Second, she was scared of hurting the only person she ever cared of. Third, even if she fought the first two reasons above and accept to be put second after their jobs, she could not risk herself to be crushed by uncertain future with someone who seemed could not move on from his past. 

“I wouldn’t even come second. I would be third.”
He shook his head, confused. “Third?”

“After the woman you’re in love with.”
Stumble and fall, Thomas and Liis were faced with a lot of internal fights to set the same pace. Whether Liis would be Thomas’ redemption or payback, the answer could only be found by them both.
Oh oh, guess I was succeed in writing the brief synopsis without any spoilers intact. Yay!
So okay, I truthfully don’t fall in love with this book, no offense. But I don’t dislike it either. This book is okay, the story is good, and the detail insights of FBI are pretty cool. Sometimes I thought this could be really cool to be made into movie. But I cannot not looking at Maddox brothers books as romance books. And as in romance book, I always find a hero with fierce but caring personality, a heroine with uneasy but loyal character, and a sweet romance with or without lots of barriers. In Beautiful Redemption, sadly I couldn’t find the last factor. The romance was not as sweet as in BO or BD. I suspected it because surprisingly Jamie made Thomas kind of weak in the beginning. Well, I’m just going to be a bit spoiling here to make my point: (just block this space between the brackets) [In BO, breaking up with his girlfriend didn’t seem like a big deal for Thomas. The ‘Thomas’ in BO was way calmer, mature, and also seemed just fine with the break up. That’s why it was kind of confusing and surprising that the ‘Thomas’ in BR seemed so heartbroken and could not move on at all in the beginning] It made my imagination of cold gentleman special agent Thomas who I’ve been drooling over for a month ruined by the appearance of his mellow side in this book… very unfortunate, though (but anyway he’s still blazingly hot, so I guess he’s a bit forgiven…). Liis character is tough and straightforward. Just like Abby, I loved her. Even though I was a bit not interested at her at first, but the more I read, the more I find her character interesting (confusing, eh?)
“I always a firm believer that a person couldn’t love two people at the same time”
Way to go, girl! I am a 100% in line with Liis, even for a guy as hot as Thomas, this rule is firmly placed in my front door. But somehow I am in line with Thomas when he said this:
“You can love someone without wanting to be with them. Just like you can want to be with someone before you love them.”
Okay, boy, you got my attention! *wiggling eyebrows*

I found myself could not stop grinning like an idiot several times because of Thomas’ childish act. Seriously Thomas??? The dinner scene with Sawyer in the restaurant was the winner! It was damn hilarious. And also I almost shed some tears whenever Thomas ‘obliviously’ broke Liis’ heart. Oh and the ending was… well, it was okay, but it just didn’t kick hard. 
Altogether, I enjoyed reading this book but it’s just not my favorite romance this year. I liked Liis, I (still freaking) loved Thomas (because of his hotness and his strong love for his younger brothers), but I am just not okay with several parts I mentioned above. Oh, almost forget one thing, also in this book somehow Travis was shown a bit like a jerk for being selfish to his brother (AND I REALLY REALLY COULD NOT ACCEPT THIS!! TRAVIS IS THE LOVE OF MY BOOK-LIFE, YOU CAN’T JUST MAKE PEOPLE WHO NEVER READ BEAUTIFUL DISASTER BUT DECIDE TO READ THIS BOOK FIRST HATE HIM!!!!!!!!!!!!). Oh, and again (God, just how many things I plan to forget…), I felt so so bad for Trenton here. He looked like bad little brother for Thomas and also (block the space again) [Cammile seemed like a bitch here]
My only advice though, you SHOULD read Beautiful Disaster and Beautiful Oblivion before reading this one. SHOULD, okay, once again, SHOULD! If you don’t want to ruin everyone’s loves for Travis and Trenton Maddox. 
And sadly, I have to settle with 3.5 stars :(


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