Book Review: JEM by Michelle Abbott

Title: JEM
Author: Michelle Abbott
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 168 pages
Rating: 3 stars

Two injured, stubborn souls meet unexpectedly. Will they save each other from their demons or have they been too damaged for too long to see past the pain?

Growing up, all Jem knew was hatred and the pain from his father’s fists. Taunted by the kids at school, he was alone, until a girl with carrot coloured hair sat next to him.

She smiled.
She listened.
She cared.

She was his angel, and he knew he’d love her forever. But Jem’s father hurts him in a way he never expected by taking him away from her.

Now eighteen, scarred inside and out, Jem trusts no one and has worked hard to ensure he’ll never be helpless again. But then he runs into his angel. The only problem is she doesn’t recognize him. Jem needs her to remember him, to show him that their time together meant to her what it did to him. For once in his life he wants to have mattered to someone, to her.

Devon is attracted to the muscular, tattooed, pierced hottie standing by the pub quiz machine. That is, until he punches a guy clean across the bar for daring to touch him. She’s had her fill of violent men and intends to avoid this one at all costs.
This is a standalone, new adult contemporary romance. Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.

Michelle's Review

Reading the synopsis drew me in and I thought I was going to encounter a book hangover. At 70%, I swore there was going to be a cliffhanger, but there isn’t.

We meet Devon (she was 8) and Jem (he was 4) and they were on holiday. Jem being Devon’s neighbor and she being an only child, she asked her parents if he could come on holiday with them. They were so cute together, but during their interactions, Devon notices bruises on Jem’s little body. He makes her promise not to tell. Oh how I felt for poor Devon. Should she do the right thing or continue to let poor Jem live in an abusive household?

Moving forward 14 years, Devon has lost contact with Jem, but has never forgotten him. Devon is now 21 with a 3-year-old son, Luke. She too is getting away from her abusive ex-boyfriend. Devon is pretty weary of men, so when her new neighbors come by to say hello, she is super suspicious. Turns out, they are both gay. Who doesn’t love a gay best friend?

While hanging with her new friends at a pub, Devon cannot take her eyes off the hot looking guy with tattoos only drawback is that he is the epitome of bad boy since he causes a fight at the pub. And who is this bad boy, none other than Jem, but she does not recognize him. Jem on the other hand recognizes his “angel”. He has always wondered what happened to her and why she never came looking for him.

Lots of miscommunications between these two before finally Jem admits to Devon who he really is. Like I mentioned before, I thought this was going to be a cliffhanger. Although well written, I felt the story felt rushed. I wanted to know more about Jem’s childhood, or how Devon met her douche bag of an ex-boyfriend. I loved second chance love, but I wanted more depth from this book. You get a small glimpse as to what Jem’s suffered, but I needed more of a storyline, especially Devon’s story. If you want a quick read, then this is the book for you, but do not expect more than what you get.

– Michelle

*An ARC was provided for an honest review.



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