Friday, August 31, 2012

Review: Temptation by Karen Ann Hopkins


by Karen Ann Hopkins
Published by Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: June 26, 2012
Pages 383
Source: Author

Your heart misleads you.
That's what my friends and family say.

But I love Noah.
And he loves me.

We met and fell in love in the sleepy farming community of Meadowview, while we rode our horses together through the grassy fields and in those moments in each other's arms.

It should be


forever, easy.

But it won't be.

Because he's Amish.
And I'm not.

My Thoughts

She was experiencing her first love. He had found his forever love.

As someone who doesn't like spoilers, there are very few times when I want to skip to the very end of a book to read the ending. After reading just the back cover and the preface, I wanted to do just that. I had to know what was going to happen with Noah and Rose. I didn't skip to the end and I am thankful that I didn't because I think I would have missed on all of the anticipation of this compelling story.

The chapters alternate from both Rose and Noah's perspectives sharing the characters thoughts and emotions of their relationship. I was immediately drawn to Rose and her rowdy disposition. She is the middle sibling with two brothers who she is constantly bickering with. It is during one of these fights with her younger brother, that she first meets Noah. They are instantly intrigued with each other because of their differences. Noah is calm and quiet - not like any teenaged boy she knows. Rose is loud and lively - the complete opposite of the girls in his Amish community where boys and girls are kept separate until they begin courting. 

Hopkins gives a lot of insight into the Amish community with her detailed descriptions. The Rose chapters offered the outsiders perspective into this community that seemed so unusual and whose ideas were somewhat primitive. The Noah chapters painted a different portrait - one of custom, but both communicated the overwhelming sense of calmness and order. At first I wanted to read through the descriptive parts and would seek out the dialogue and action, but then I realized these descriptions served a larger purpose in helping understand the Amish ways and how that related to the overall story. It was as though the Amish community was its own character and affected Rose and Noah's relationship.

Rose and Noah's relationship got pretty intense very quickly. The bashful glances and hidden smiles, quickly became secret meet-ups and hand-holding, and then passionate kisses, all forbidden in the Amish world, but worth attempting again and again. Hopkins captures these moments so sweetly that there were times I felt I had butterflies in my stomach. One of my favorite moments that did make me flutter a bit was when Noah's family invited Rose's family to dinner to welcome them to Meadowview and they have just bowed their heads for a moment of silent prayer:
 "Everyone in the room followed suit, and so did I, cheating a little bit when I glanced up with my eyes, without raising my head much, to spy on Noah. I quickly put my head back down after seeing he was staring at me with eyes wide open and his head only partially bowed. I could have sworn, before I looked away, that he had grinned at me." (pg. 46)
Yet with every one of these special moments, there is another moment (or person) reminding Rose and Noah why they can't be together. As Rose was beginning to experience her first love, she had all of this idealist perspective that they would make their relationship work. Noah, who thought he had found his forever love, was desperate to find a way, any way, to keep them together.

* * * *

I'm afraid that if I keep sharing my thoughts I'm going to reveal too much. I need to avoid those spoilers that I first mentioned at the beginning of the post. I enjoyed reading Temptation more than could have ever expected. Their story is intense and passionate and overwhelming. I'd think that anyone who likes contemporary YA romance would enjoy this book.

Disclaimer: I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.  I was not compensated in any way other than the book provided. Thoughts and opinions are my own.

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