Title: I Want It That Way
Series: 2B Trilogy, Book 1
Author: Ann Aguirre
Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Sensuality Rating: Steamy
Source: review copy provided via NetGalley
Published: August 26, 2014 by Harlequin HQN
Nadia Conrad has big dreams, and she's determined to make them come true—for her parents' sake as well as her own. But between maintaining her college scholarship and working at the local day care to support herself, she barely has time to think, let alone date. Then she moves into a new apartment and meets the taciturn yet irresistible guy in 1B….
Daniel Tyler has grown up too fast. Becoming a single dad at twenty turned his life upside down—and brought him heartache he can't risk again. Now, as he raises his four-year-old son while balancing a full-time construction management job and night classes, a social life is out of the question. The last thing he wants is for four noisy students to move into the apartment upstairs. But one night, Nadia's and Ty's paths cross, and soon they can't stay away from each other.
The timing is all wrong—but love happens when it happens. And you can't know what you truly need until you stand to lose it.
Reviewed By: Laura
Why I Read This Book: I read Ann’s YA dystopia (Razorland series) & loved the world she created and the way she weaves a story. When I saw her name pop up in a New Adult series I was intrigued. After reading the blurb I was hooked. The description just sounded so real. It’s not all that common to find children in these types of book and certainly not in New Adult books. Kids take romance to a different place most of the time and change the dynamic. I wanted to see how Ann would handle that situation.
What I Liked: So much! Nadia was a fun, but still serious college student who epitomized junior waffleness. It’s a tough time in college because you’re out of the “intro” classes, into your major courses, and the end is getting closer. Pressure starts to build about “what you’re going to do with your degree” and Nadia is no exception to this pressure. I enjoyed watching her struggle & work her way through her work/school issues, while falling for a guy she’s supposed to just be neighborly with.
The cast of misfits in apartment 2B are also fantastic! They spend most of the time in the background, naturally, but they are present enough that you actually care for them. Watching Nadia wrestle with waning friendship bonds and supporting other friends during difficult times is heartwarming without being too mushy.
Most of all I loved Ty & his son. It’s not often that I see a young, single dad in books that isn’t “cashing in” on his kid so Ty was a breath of fresh air in that department. I was impressed that he also didn’t relinquish his dreams and goals just because he had a kid a little earlier than planned. He does what he has to, both for his son and himself, to make sure they have the best chances.
What I Didn’t Like: My two biggest issues with this book stem from Ty. While I love him (for the most part) I wasn’t thrilled at all with the reason behind how he became a single dad. No, he’s not a murderer, but he did “force” his girlfriend to have a child that she had no interest AT ALL in having, and then she ran off when the baby was a few weeks old. He seriously screwed up her life just to satisfy his issues. While he admits to feeling guilty for this and wishing he could just know that she’s alright, it doesn’t make up for that horridness.
My other issue was with the “friends with benefits” set up. I get that this is more common with this age group and that they are very “hook up” friendly, but I can’t stand that kind of blasé approach to relationships. I like things to have parameters, but not be secretive. It’s one thing if you’re hiding it from family & friends (ex. Romeo & Juliet), but just to mess with one another’s emotions by saying you’re “just friends who happen to have sex sometimes” is a bit silly.
Overall Impression: I really liked this book. I flew right through it! Honestly, the ending took me a bit by surprise. I didn’t see that particular situation coming into play & think Ann did an incredible job with how she wrote Nadia handling it.