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Review of Precious Things

7 Dec 2013


Isabelle Andrews isn’t supposed to be here. She isn’t supposed to be a freshman at Hartford Community College, she isn't supposed to be living at home and working at her dad’s failing bakery, and she definitely isn’t supposed to be taking Intro to Electronic Music Production, a class that will get her nowhere toward her goal of an English Lit Ph.D. by age twenty-five. But when her dad’s latest business fiasco eats up her college fund, Hartford Community College is exactly where Isabelle finds herself—and thanks to her late enrollment, she doesn’t even get to choose her classes. Stuck with Electronic Music and way-too-easy English courses, Isabelle is determined to wallow in all the misery she feels entitled to.

But community college brings some unexpected benefits…like the fact that a certain overworked, over-scheduled Electronic Music professor hands over most of his duties to his teaching assistant. His tall, green-eyed, absolutely gorgeous teaching assistant. When TA Evan Strauss discovers Isabelle’s apathy toward electronic music—and, well, all music—he makes it his mission to convert her. The music Evan composes stirs something inside Isabelle, but she can’t get involved—after all, she’ll be transferring out as soon as possible.

Still, no matter how tightly Isabelle holds on to her misery, she finds it slipping away in the wake of all Hartford Community offers: new friendships, a surprisingly cool poetry professor, and most of all, Evan. But Evan’s dream of owning his own music studio is as impractical as Isabelle’s dad’s bakery, and when Evan makes a terrible decision, everything Isabelle has gained threatens to unravel. Soon Isabelle discovers that some of the most important lessons take place outside the classroom…and that in life, as in Evan’s favorite Depeche Mode song, the most precious things can be the hardest to hold on to.


I absolutely loved the way that college and community college was described. It completely epitomized how people view college and how it changes relationships and life. Yes, I did at times feel like Isabelle was a little bigoted in her opinions about those around her, however her thoughts were those that most people have and are just too afraid to voice them.

I loved the voice that Isabelle gave to life which for the most part allowed me to ignore some of her whiny moments. I felt like there was more she could have done to achieve her college goals, like financial aid or that she could have done more to embrace the cards she was dealt and community college. Ultimately she did some of these things in the end. She made friends and got a life despite her initial feelings about the situation.

I liked the twist in the new adult concept. Despite the fact that Evan was Isabelle’s TA, there really wasn’t anything wrong with that fact in the story.  It was refreshing to not see the forbidden love type of a story between TA and student. There also were no hidden secrets between the characters. There was no drama that suddenly came into focus that the other was hiding. Both were just normal college students, dealing with everyday normal things.

The romance between the two characters was steamy and held my interest. However ultimately it felt a little rushed. It all happened in the blink of an eye making the story harder for me to relate to. I like a book with a little more tension between the two characters. This came at the end, once they overcame their individual hardships. I think I enjoy it more when these things happen at the beginning and make the relationship stronger.

Overall I really liked this book as a quick NA romance.  It focused on real life more than other new adult novels which made the characters easy to relate to.

Try it for yourself! Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK


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