Bending the Rules by Susan Andersen
Series: Sisterhood Diaries #2
Also in this series: Cutting Loose, Playing Dirty
Publication Date: July 1st 2009
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Tall, dark and intense, Detective Jason de Sanges excites all kinds of fantasies in Poppy Calloway. But when she suggests the three teens caught spray-painting a Seattle neighborhood be given art-related community service and he just wants to see them pay—all bets are off.
With the men in his family always in and out of the slammer, Jase was raised in foster care. He knows what it takes to walk the line. And his number one self-imposed rule? Avoid his hunger for sexy, irresistible Poppy, who challenges him on everything. But it's a vow that's getting harder and harder to keep.…
I really enjoyed this book overall, but the hero annoyed me quite a bit in the beginning.
Because his father and brother are “bad guys” who’ve spent more time in jail than out of it, he figures he’s a bad seed too. At first I understood he had bad impulses, but as the story progressed I became increasingly annoyed with him. For more than 15 years he’d been on the straight and narrow. Seems like he should have given up on being an idiot long before he did.
I real…more The premise of the trilogy: Poppy, Ava and Jane are best friends. When they were young girls they befriended Agnes Wolcott, a rich old eccentric widow. When she passed away she left her mansion and all her collections (of which there were many) to the girls, with instructions on which ones to sell, which ones to keep and what to do with the mansion in the meantime. Each keeps a diary and the beginning of each chapter features an excerpt from them. I really liked that.
I wasn’t sure what I would think of this novel going into it, because I didn’t love Poppy in the previous book. I didn’t dislike her, I just didn’t love her. As it happens, she turned out to be a wonderful heroine. I really enjoyed this book overall, but the hero annoyed me quite a bit in the beginning.
Because his father and brother are “bad guys” who’ve spent more time in jail than out of it, Jase figures he’s a bad seed too. Especially based on some things he did in his misspent youth and the thoughts he often has now. At first I understood he had bad impulses, but as the story progressed I became increasingly annoyed with him. For more than 15 years he’d been on the straight and narrow. Seems like he should have given it up and stopped being an idiot long before he did.
I really liked Poppy. Her overall attitude was a good one and I like that though she tended toward being flighty, she wasn’t really. Although she was what many would consider a do-gooder, it wasn’t annoying in the least. She truly cared about the kids in her programs, and though her profession is an unconventional one, she made it work. Often characters who are artistic are written in an over-the-top way, but Poppy wasn’t. She was just a down-home girl who was passionate about her work. Her character was well written.
I liked Jase and Poppy together. Because Jase never experienced any kind of family life growing up, he really cherished the little things about his time with Poppy. Even though I was annoyed with him for most of the book, I couldn’t deny his appeal, or the attraction he and Poppy shared. They just clicked.
I loved the relationship between Poppy and her girlfriends. That was once again my favorite part of the novel. They acted like true friends do, calling each other out over silly things, supporting one another, and generally just being there – whether it be with tough love or understanding. Too often I think female relationships are talked about rather than shown, but that wasn’t the case here. We saw what great friends they were, we weren’t just told.
I also enjoyed the other secondary characters, especially the kids Jase and Poppy were working with. Andersen really excels at writing young characters, IMO. She seems to find the perfect balance between youth and maturity, especially considering their backgrounds.
It must be mentioned (again) how pissed I am that we won’t getting Ava’s book. So infuriating.
4 out of 5