Review: Rinse and Repeat by Amberly Smith

Posted May 13, 2011 by Tracy in Reviews | 10 Comments

After reliving the same day sixty-two times, Repeater Peat Harris is about to give up on his latest case: saving Jake Schwinn. In the past, Peat has solved some seriously twisted crimes, caught the bad guys, and kept an emotional distance. But this time, his heart’s involved, a definite must-never-do on Repeats, and he can’t just walk away—even if that means putting himself into the bullet’s path.

A year ago, Jake’s best friend was gunned down, and Jake has been playing bait to catch the killer. But now a wicked-looking hottie named Peat is warning Jake that he’s about to die—again—unless they can catch the shooter. Yeah, right. Then Jake starts to remember the previous Repeats and how he and Peat hooked up…

Peat is a repeater – he gets “called” (or something similar to that) to certain people and locations and he has to repeat that one day until he changes the circumstances of the day enough that the next calendar day will appear.

He heads to Boise, Idaho to Jake Schwinn who is a young college student and avid skate boarder. The first time Peat sees Jake is in a skate park. No sooner had he found him when Jake is shot and killed. Peat now knows that his job is to save Jake from death and find out who the killer is.

Days pass and while Peat makes some progress on the case he can’t seem to get it right. After two months of trying Peat finds himself falling for Jake – even though Jake can’t remember him from day to day…or can he?

Jake’s not sure what’s going on but he seems to “know” Peat, and things about Peat, but he can’t actually ever remember meeting Peat – which is just all kinds of freaky for Jake. Despite the freakiness of the situation, however, Jake feels inexplicably pulled to Peat and when Peat starts spewing information that is completely impossible, Jake starts to believe.

What an interesting concept – someone who repeats days until they get it right. But unlike the movie Groundhog Day Peat has to save someone else instead of himself. As we see in the story when we learn about some of Peat’s past repeats, they don’t all go the way he wants them to and sometimes people get hurt no matter what he tries. With Jake, Peat just wasn’t willing to give an inch and have Jake end up getting hurt.

I can’t imagine how hard and frustrating the whole situation was for Peat. He’s trying everything he can think of to help Jake and find the killer but yet the day keeps repeating. Then there are Peat’s feelings for Jake that start growing but no matter what kind of headway Peat might make with Jake in a day, at midnight it starts all over with Jake not knowing who Peat is. Wow – that’s gotta hurt the old heart. I know I hurt for Peat on several occasions during the story.

My biggest niggle with the story was the fact that we never truly found out how a repeater comes to be – they just ARE. As a reader I found that incredibly frustrating – I can’t imagine how frustrating it was for the repeaters themselves. When the repeaters were nineteen they just started repeating days until they figured out what to do. There were no guides, no explanations, no clue as to how many other repeaters there were out in the world, no idea if they would be repeaters for the rest of their lives. Ug – maddening! And if that’s not enough how exactly do you have a relationship with someone? I mean, yes there are days in between repeats, normally, but though that other person, in this case Jake, has no idea that a repeat is happening, Peat knows and has to be away from Jake for untold days. I can’t imagine what a strain that would put on one side of a relationship.

This also brings me to the surface thoughts about life being manipulated and whether that’s right or wrong. Since we have no idea who the creator of the repeaters is…God, possibly? How can we say that what they’re doing is right or wrong? Is that person the repeater is helping not supposed to die that day or have that awful thing happen? IDK. I think that gets into a whole theological question that’s a bit deep for this blog but it does make me think.

In the end I liked the book and would definitely read something by this author again.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

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10 responses to “Review: Rinse and Repeat by Amberly Smith

  1. The niggles bothered me less. 🙂

    Now I can't remember if I heard there was going to be a sequel, or if I wanted there to be and then imagined I heard it…

  2. Tam

    The author said there would be a sequel Chris that explains the repeaters and who/what is pulling their chains. Guess we have to be patient to get our answers.

  3. Tam

    The author said there would be a sequel Chris that explains the repeaters and who/what is pulling their chains. Guess we have to be patient to get our answers.

  4. Hmm, it sounds interesting but I may wait for the sequel to come out first and see whether things are cleared up a little then.

    Great theological questions, Tracy :).

  5. Chris – Yeah, like you they might not have some people at all but I couldn't stop thinking about them! lol
    A sequel would be great!

    Tam – Thanks for the info! That would be awesome if we could get some insight.

    Jenre – It was a cute story. A little confusing at first because I wasn't sure what was going on but pretty darned good in the end.

  6. we never truly found out how a repeater comes to be – they just ARE.

    Yes, that would be a niggle for me. I think my second word was 'Why?'. (Hopefully not said with a whine 🙂 I think I'll follow Jenre and wait for the sequel.

    Thank you Tracy – lovely review 🙂

  7. Great review Tracy. I kept skipping over this one b/c all I could think of was Groundhog Day.

    I can imagine if Peat has to see Jake die over and over, especially after he starts to develop feelings for him, that could be pretty darn traumatic. And make him work harder to save him.

    This is definitely going on my TBB list. Thanks!!

  8. Orannia – You're welcome. I hope that sequel isn't too far out – I want to read it! lol

    Ames – I didn't get the Groundhog Day feel – I think because Peat was trying to help others and not himself. It was good.

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