Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Review: Patch Up by Stephanie Witter

*I received a copy of this from the author in exchange for an honest review.

This is going to be a painful review to write, mostly because I really did not like this book. In fact, at most times, I hated it. Patch Up was such a slow read that I found myself speeding along just so I could finish it. I hated the main character with a burning passion, and the writing style was so awkward. 

Rating: 2 stars!
I don't know how else to explain the writing style, except to say that it was really awkward. I'm a Grammar Nazi, and I still don't know how to explain what it was about it that made me want to stop reading. Not to mention, the MC's voice was very choppy and 

The reason I hated this book so much was the main character. I couldn't find myself sympathizing with Skye at all, nor exactly cheering her on. And I couldn't connect with her, either! She's very judgmental. There was a lot of slut shaming going on! The way she described other women was absolutely ridiculous and just petty jealousy. She calls Duke a player just because he's hot. Like, I'm not even joking. It was like the third time she'd talked to him when she thought he was a player just based on his looks. Skye was also a very weak character who let herself get too easily hurt. I get it--her boyfriend mentally and physically abused her for three years. But honestly? Her constant self-deprecation, whining, and mistrust was so off-putting and hard to take. She should have been seeing a professional for help instead of taking psychology classes so she can figure it out herself, because she doesn't just have depression; no, she has bipolar disorder, anxiety, and numerous other issues. But her constant up and down moods, back and forth feelings, and highs and lows were really difficult to manage. And I didn't think she tried hard enough to fight for herself or to make her life better. 

I also had issues with her and Duke. I honestly did not see the connection between them, other than that they both had painful pasts. Not to mention, their first few meetings with each other were just plain weird and seemed unrealistic. Their third meeting, Duke actually told her she was depressed. I'm sorry, but no one does that! People don't like talking about mental health issues, and most don't even do that with family and friends that they've known a long time. After that, I just didn't get them as couple. Their constant back and forth feelings, push and pull, and petty arguments just made me roll my eyes. I also didn't fall for Duke, or even like him that much. He had bipolar reactions to everything, too! He'd be just as hot and cold as Skye, not to mention he was just as immature in dealing with their "fights" and his "feelings" for her. And other than learning that his girlfriend died in a car accident, and why he has misplaced guilt about it, we don't really find out anything else about him. I couldn't connect with him, either.

And honestly, this book was really boring. The plot was practically nonexistent. Other than her ex causing havoc, nothing happened. Skye would go to her psychology class and do homework. She went to a few parties, in which she always saw Sean (her abusive ex-boyfriend). It'd bring her right back to where she was mentally in the beginning of the book. One chapter, she and Duke would be all buddy-buddy. In the next, they'd go back to not speaking. They'd make up, and then do it all over again. It was a constant cycle of bullshit. And I seriously felt like the characters were in high school! Most of their reactions to things, and the way they acted, just felt like a bunch of YA characters who hadn't matured yet. 

I'm going to bring up the subject of Skye's abuse again, because I may have sounded harsh in the first paragraph. I understand that a painful past like that, especially since it happened for three years, is not going to be something that a character (or anyone in real life) could get over quickly. However, I disliked Skye because of her personality. In truth, it was AWFUL. I understand why she shied away from people, and why she needed to protect herself, but she was so hot and cold. She was harsh, cold, judgmental, and anti-social. She'd push people away one minute, apologize, and then repeat the cycle. Her inner dialogue was extremely immature and was just as confusing and muddled as her bipolar reactions to the other characters and certain situations. And I just can't believe it went on for three years without ANYONE noticing anything. Apparently, her personality had changed a lot, not to mention she always wore baggy clothes and shied away from guys. Those are telling signs for people who know her well enough to actually recognize them, especially her parents. I'm just surprised that no one realized she was faking, because she's not very good at it! And I so wish someone would have made her file a police report or took more action against Sean. I'm surprised her military father let everything go, and I'm also surprised everyone thought nothing would happen after they talked to the president of Sean's frat. It was in how the characters handled this situation, and their reactions, that just didn't feel believable to me.

The only reason this is getting two stars is because the last 20% of the book was actually good. I felt like I saw a real connection between Duke and Skye, and I thought Skye had finally let go of her pain and was moving onto a brighter future. However, it just took too damn long for me to get into the story, and I couldn't forget the past actions and how I felt while reading the first 80%. I still don't like the main character; I'm glad she found the strength to open up and let go of her pain. But I still hate her personality. 

I was really excited for Patch Up, but I was sorely disappointed. Suffice it to say, I won't be reading their sequel. But I would like to read a book with Kate and Derek! I loved Kate's character! And I was more intrigued by their relationship than Duke's and Skye's. I would totally read a story about them. :)