Title: If Only
Author: A.J. Pine
Release Date: March 24th 2014
Publisher: Entangled Embrace
Age Group: New Adult
Age Group: New Adult
Source: eARC from publisher
Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to figure out where you belong.
It's been two years since twenty-year-old Jordan had a boyfriend—which means it's been forever since she, well, you know. But now she’s off to spend her junior year in Aberdeen, Scotland, the perfect place to stop waiting for Mr. Right and just enjoy Mr. Right Now.
Sexy, sweet (and possible player) Griffin may be her perfect, no-strings-attached match. He’s fun, gorgeous, and makes her laugh. So why can’t she stop thinking about Noah who, minutes after being trapped together outside the train’s loo, kisses Jordan like she’s never been kissed before? Never mind his impossible blue eyes, his weathered, annotated copy of The Great Gatsby (total English-major porn)…oh, and his girlfriend.
Jordan knows everything this year has an expiration date. Aberdeen is supposed to be about fun rather than waiting for life to happen. But E. M. Forster, Shakespeare, and mistletoe on Valentine’s Day make her reconsider what love is and how far she’s willing to go for the right guy.
A year abroad in Aberdeen, a new school, new people – I really wanted to like If Only, but after reading this roller coaster of confusion and aggravation, I now know that I can’t handle too much drama. Or, more specifically, too much boy drama.
See, this book had a lot to work with: the European setting, two equally-gorgeous love interests, and the smattering of entertaining secondary characters. So why didn’t it work for me? After hours of contemplating, I’m now pretty sure that that’s because the entire book only seemed to revolve around the main character Jordan’s boy problems. It’s been two years since she broke up with her first and only boyfriend so, according to her best friend, that time has practically given her virginity back. And now she’s determined to let go of her inhibitions and her newly-issued v-card to someone she meets in her year in Aberdeen.
Jordan had no idea, though, that her search for, as she called him, Mr. Right Now is going to begin as early as her train ride to Aberdeen. There she meets Griffin whom I fell for at first read. Hot and smart? Sold. Griffin is an unapologizing womanizer who admits that he doesn’t do long-term relationships, and that’s exactly why Jordan thinks he’s exactly who she needs: someone she can have fun with on her year abroad but can break up with a year later, no tears involved. But then, literally minutes later, she gets stuck outside the toilet with Noah.
His grin widens, and I struggle for air at the sight of it, not just because of its beauty but because of what put it there in the first place—a book.
No, I didn’t think Noah was gorgeous enough, but he’s a freaking bibliophile so I might have swooned a bit. Both guys had their setbacks – Noah’s being his freaking girlfriend – but I personally liked Griffin more because he’s honest, if nothing else, so I didn’t appreciate Jordan pining for Noah just because he, what, kissed better than Griffin? Because he had a worn-out copy of The Great Gatsby ready to be read in his backpocket? Sorry, but I just didn’t get it. I couldn’t see Noah’s appeal the way Jordan did; I hate cheaters and cowards, and the way he didn’t break up with his girlfriend but obviously wanted something with Jordan was simply cheating and cowardice. I’d take the serial monogamist any day.
But despite all my rants, I put up with all the boy drama in Jordan's life for the entirety of this book so that's saying something, right? I actually enjoyed it at first, but it got old fast and soon I just wanted to get it over with. The ending also didn't do it for me because I don't think the guy she ended up with was worth all the trouble, but maybe that's just me and my cynicism. Anyway, If Only had an easy humor that made me laugh more times than I could count, and classic literature lovers will surely love the numerous references made in this book.
MY FAVORITE PART was Jordan getting a tattoo if only (lol see what I did there? ;D) because I want one too.