Ok, So What Had Happened Was: *snaps fingers* What’s her name—Cassidy, yeah, Cassidy is her name, has been abused since she was six or seven, and her homeboy Tyler—who’s known about this for forever—has FINALLY, after 10+ years, said: ‘To hades with your evil legal guardians, we’re hitting the road and going off to Texas. You will live with me. And my cousin. And like it.’ So, Cassidy, being the emotionless, effed up chick that she is, agrees to pack her bags. When she gets there, and once again submits to Tyler’s wishes in attending parties and making friends, she walks into the biggest case of instalove I’ve ever witnessed in my young life. This is bad because the boy with the frozen face and escalating hard-on at the sight of her happens to be the cousin of the only boy who ever had her stitches sewed up instead of gotten her help. What a dilemma. Will Cassidy survive the testosterone battle for her
I really should listen to April when she mouths off on a book. ‘Tis so rare for her to loathe a book so, and yet I didn’t let that stop me from reading this bound pages of WTFery. From Ashes by Molly McAdams chronicles Cassidy Jameson’s life once she ditches the abusive drunkards back home and takes off in a new direction. This girl is ALL KINDS of MESSED UP. In the very beginning, she shows absolutely no signs of a genuine personality. She’s like… like… a blank wall—you just want to cover it up with happy times and artwork and poorly tacked on celebrity shots to make it mildly interesting and somewhat pleasing to the eye. She clings to the ‘protection’ of her best friend, Tyler, and can’t leave his side for more than a second. Because she was beaten in disgustingly scary ways, he’s been the only constant and he’s also the only one who knew what was going on and NEVER SAID ANYTHING. I might’ve overlooked that if afterward he hadn’t gone gorilla-boy on her with all this claiming business and then continued to act like the most childish character in the book. Like, really? Furthermore, WHY are they best friends? WHAT does he KNOW ABOUT HER besides where her bruises are? Their relationship had nothing solid to ground it in believability.
Then we have Tyler’s cousin Gage, who falls prey to one of the oldest television tricks in the book: miscommunication started by the angry middle man who is not happy with his best friend’s lack of romantic interest in him. First of all, WHATEVER HAPPENED to the good TRUE platonic friends who actually have a wonderful relationship? This Gage hunk makes nothing better, except Cassidy’s sex life. They’re both FREAKISHLY attracted to each other and I was frankly a bit creeptastically turned off to say the least. Her skittishness around men is completely vanquished by the few seconds she spends in this guy’s presence. The sudden tingle in her girl parts does NOT go unnoticed, and so Tyler spends months manipulating both characters into believing neither one is in lust with the other. Instead of finding out for themselves, there are months-long lulls in their progress that are explained away by all the tragic miscommunication.
Tyler loses several more inches down the totem pole when he puts disgusting pressures on our main character, throwing out ultimatums and pressing for her sexy times. Ugh. Add in the fact that Cassidy loses her darn mind somewhere around page two and starts acting like this sex-crazed, irrational, excessively co-dependent, wishy-washy wench... Her WHOLE LIFE becomes consumed by Gage, and she never sits down to think about what she might ACTUALLY WANT out of life. Now, I try my dang darndest not to judge people for their choices because they don’t go about life—any part of it—the way I do. BUT. As a character, with no dreams or desires beyond the ones making her hot for Gage, what is there to LIKE about her? Who is she and how can I get to know that person if SHE doesn’t even know who that is?
Needless to say, between all the orgasming and uncertainty going on in this book, I never saw her realize any potential to become an interesting, likable person. More, From Ashes by Molly McAdams delivers messages I definitely don’t agree with and wouldn’t want anyone important to me picking up on: Everyone’s answer to anything bad that happens is violence, miscommunication, or running away instead of dealing with the problem. Cassidy is NEVER without a guy up in the mix, even when she’s supposed to be finding herself. Cassidy NEVER makes up her own mind and listens to what other people tell her without trying to find the answers for herself. In fact, she’s constantly letting others change her mind with no actual thought behind any of it. And life isn’t meaningless up until there’s marriage, children, and a bunch of household duties to perform. Those things aren’t the be-all cure-all.
I didn’t so much as poke fun at this book as let myself get absorbed by what I found ridiculous about it. I didn’t hate the story or the characters in it—to do that there would have to be SOMETHING for me to have feelings toward. It was entertaining enough to keep me from realizing that I’d spent two, three hours of my life reading it, but definitely not something I’d recommend for peeps interested in a strong, beautiful love story.
I requested this title from an imprint of Harper Collins via Edelweiss.