Title: Because of Low (Sea Breeze #2)
Author: Abbi Glines
Published: February 7, 2012
Series: Sea Breeze
Good to know: reading first installment, 'Breathe', isn't essential
Amazon Summary: Marcus Hardy had hoped to enjoy a year away at college while he put the summer he’d rather forget behind him. But instead, he’s jerked right back to the coastal town of Sea Breeze, Alabama due to a family crisis. His dear ol' dad found himself a girlfriend only a few years older than Marcus. So now
his sister needs help dealing with their mother who is mentally falling apart. The only bright spot to returning is the fascinating red head who sleeps over several times a week. The problem is she's sleeping in bed with his new roommate, Cage Watson.
Willow “Low” Foster needs a place to live. Running to Cage’s apartment every time her sister kicks her out isn’t exactly a long term solution. Juggling her courses at the local community college and a part time job doesn’t produce excess income. But Cage has a new roommate and suddenly sleeping over at her best friend’s apartment isn’t such a bad thing. Not when she gets to see those sexy green eyes of Marcus Hardy’s twinkle when he smiles at her like he wants her there.
Even though Cage seems a little territorial where Low is concerned, Marcus finds time to spend with Low without upsetting his roommate. Cage may use his small college baseball star persona to sleep with every hot female in his path but he’s still under the disillusion that when he’s through sowing his wild oats, he’s going to marry Low. Marcus intends to change that assumption for both Cage and Low. Until his carefully laid plans come crashing down with a revelation he never expected. He’ll have to choose between Low or his family. Because once the truth comes out.... there’s no other choice.
I haven't read the prequel, Breathe, in the series but since the protagonists are different and 'Because of Low' stands as its own novel, it didn't feel essential (nor did I find as much interest in 'Breathe'.)
'Because of Low' was a fast read. It had that unbalanced effect on me - I like it, so-so, I don't know, okay, pretty good - somewhat in that order.
I'm not so much for insta-romances, only because, in those cases, I feel like the hero and heroine skips over the phase where you really get to know each other and jumps directly from the stage of physical attraction to the relationship. To me, the foundation and support of the relationship holds a lot of weight in how I'll feel about it.
Though, having two strangers fall in love in theory and make it somewhat realistic, is not easy, and although it happens fast in 'Because of Low' I wasn't too badly bothered by it.
I went into the novel with a mind of finding out 1) how Low and Marcus' relationship was going to work out with Cage having "first dibs" on Low and 2) what will eventually tear Low and Marcus apart.
The latter wasn't too hard to figure out. I'm never sure if authors intentionally drop hints for you to figure out the outcome of the plot (fairly fast) on your own, or if it's unintentional. But as always, I likely would've preferred the unexpected. I like that jaw-dropping reaction, even if it's mostly caused by something you don't agree with at all - such as when, say, the hero suddenly dies on the last page. Not cool, but sometimes worth the reaction.
The first half of 'Because of Low' had me doubtful with the events mostly consisting of Low and Marcus's physical attraction towards each other - when Low described Marcus's bare feet as "downright sexy" I couldn't help but laugh out loud. Since the point of PDA and lust (and more lust) had undoubtly succeeded to come across, I was looking for more emotions and, I guess, meaning.
I liked Low for being determine but also for her vulnerable side where she's been so scarred by people leaving. How she, sometimes desperately, relied on Cage felt real and needed. Although the concern of her well-being in return from Cage and eventually Marcus could be a little overwhelming considering Low's ability of taking care of herself in most cases.
There's a good body of difficulties involving family, trust, and betrayal. Low and Cage have lived a tough life, having to fend for themselves. They look at Marcus as someone without the ability to understand where they're coming from, but Marcus has a handful of his own family issues and it was troubling seeing how his family was coming apart, hurting. And in the end, pain can't be measured.
Though I have a complaint: Glines major lack of commas throughout (in her other books as well). One example: "You should see him with her mom." Instead of "You should see him with her, Mom." Even if, when you're reading, you get that this someone isn't referring to someone's mom but talking to her own mother.. there should just be a comma there. Also there were a few "drug" instead of "dragged." And now I'm going to stop.
The second half of 'Because of Low' only got better and the story didn't leave off without giving the reader a portion of closure.