Review: A Beautiful Wedding

Here’s a little short story to lead into this book review.

I hate reading books on my iPhone or any other electronic device. I was fine growing up reading books with the tangible book in my hand and I will always be fine with the real deal, so when I found out that Jamie McGuire had released a Beautiful Disaster series novella, I was chomping at the bits to get it. With my luck, however, I could not find the paperback version, so I resorted to buying the book on my iPhone. I finished the book after several tears shed… nekk minnit, I see the paperback version everywhere. That’s just my luck.

Solstice Satisfaction reviews Beautiful Disaster
Solstice Satisfaction reviews Walking Disaster

Enough about me, onwards to SS in Review! Travis Maddox and Abby Abernathy/Maddox are back! Jamie McGuire must’ve heard me whining for more TrAbby interaction, so A Beautiful Wedding was released!

NOTE: If you haven’t read Beautiful Disaster and/or Walking Disaster yet, there will be some spoilers in here. I totally suggest you read these before continuing, also because they’re phenom.


I'm so glad I bought this copy after I finished the digital version... not.

I’m so glad I bought this copy after I finished the digital version… not.

In case Walking Disaster didn’t fill in all the gaps for you in Travis and Abby’s love story, A Beautiful Wedding will fill in the rest. Why did Abby and Travis run off and get married in the first place? How was the wedding? Who was there to witness the two lovebirds get married? Well, all your questions will be answered in this novella that fills in the gaps of Travis and Abby’s wedding day (and night) in a way only Jamie McGuire can describe. A Beautiful Wedding details the events of the infamous Maddox wedding, the “second wedding” and their respective bachelor/bachelorette parties, and all the fun stuff in between.

The first thing I’m going to say is this… I still feel as if Travis and Abby’s story isn’t complete yet. I mean, without trying to spoil too much, Abby’s true motivation for wanting to marry Travis still hasn’t been revealed to the tattooed hunk and if I were him, I’d be royally pissed if I found out. That one fact alone just makes me feel as if there is still more to the story that needs to be told. If Travis ever finds out, how will he react? What will that mean for Pidge and Maddox? I’m sure they’d still be as rocksolid as ever, however.

Travis and Abby’s relationship is magical. I feel as if I’m a part of it; I felt it when I read Beautiful Disaster, I felt as I read Walking Disasterand all those months later, I felt it with this novella. Jamie McGuire has done superb work with the Beautiful Disaster series in capturing the true love between these two damaged young adults. I was dying to get some more Travis and Abby and I’m glad I found it with this one. A Beautiful Wedding‘s purpose was to fill in gaps that readers were wondering… there was no real other point to this book, so it serves its purpose well.

Style of writing: 8/10
Overall: 7.5/10

A Beautiful Wedding was short and sweet and, as stated before, served its purpose well. I’m just sad that I felt all those feelings reading it just to have it cut off at the best part! HOW CUTE IS AMERICA’S DAD. That’s all for now, but Jamie McGuire, if you’re reading this… feel free to release another in this series. I’m not finished with Travis and Abby yet.

– by The Black Widow

The Bachelors of the Books

Since women (and men alike) were introduced to the devilishly handsome vampire Edward Cullen and “shutup you’re not really 18” heartthrob Jacob Black from the Twilight series, there has been a noticeable influx of paperback princes in romance novels with authors trying to create that perfect man for readers to swoon over. Insert GPOY here.

As a romance novel enthusiast, I’ve decided to list my top 6 “Bachelors of the Books”. These men, commonly referred to as “book boyfriends”, not only steal your heart but make you feel that love – because everyone deserves to be loved, even if it’s within the confinement of a novel. Brace yourself and get ready to swooooooooon.

NOTE: The images provided are pictures of men who I believe represent the character exceptionally or actors who have been cast as the character in movie adaptations of this book.

#6 Dean Holder (Hopeless by Colleen Hoover)
“Dean Holder? Messy brown hair? Smoldering blue eyes? A temper straight out of Fight Club?” This quote represents Mr. Dean Holder perfectly. Dean Holder has this captivating aura of confident swag about him – “You probably faked passing out the other day, just so you could be carried in my hot, sweaty, manly arms.” However, like most bad boys, he’s troubled. Women loooooove their troubled men. Here’s to thinking that Sky is one lucky, lucky gal.

#5 Daniel “Monty” Montgomery (Outback Dreams by Rachael Johns)
One of the best things about Outback Dreams was how close to home it was (on the other side of the country, but still). The best thing about it, however – and other readers could attest for this as well – was the character Monty. A true man’s man, this outback handyman knows what he wants and goes for it, regardless of the consequences, whether it be for his dream farm or for Faith Forrester’s heart. A couple of dick moves here and there, but hey, nobody’s perfect. He sure comes close to it though. What confuses me is this: how Faith could overlook Monty for so long is beyond me.

#4 Christian Grey (Fifty Shades Trilogy by EL James)
Everybody’s favourite bajillionaire BDSM dom enthusiast Christian Grey has won over a lot of hearts since Fifty Shades of Grey. The word “damaged” doesn’t even begin to describe how royally fucked Christian is: he’s cold, distant, controlling and unnecessarily possessive. Underneath all of that is a caring, gentle soul that is just in need of some tender lovin’ care. He’s got to be incredible for putting up with Anastasia for so long. He’s also totally baben, but that’s beside the point. I dare you to listen to Prelude in E Minor by Frédéric Chopin (a song he plays on the piano in the first book) and not feel how much pain he’s in. Jamie Dornan might be the new Christian Grey, but I still think Jessie Pavelka is my Christian.

#3 Bennett Ryan (Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren)
The title Beautiful Bastard describes Bennett Ryan to a tee – he’s beautiful, and he’s a deadset asshat bastard. Although, much like Chloe Mills, you couldn’t help but find the young CEO intriguing. Also a gajillionaire so early in his life, Bennett is the type of man that can irritate you one moment and have you wrapped around his little finger the next. His charm is almost outweighed by his arrogance. He’s spontaneous, he’s handsome, and he’s a horny prick. Stock up on underwear and avoid being alone with him in the stairwell… just kidding. Women would jump at the chance of a stairwell encounter with Bennett.

#2 Michael (Sundays at Tiffany’s by James Patterson)
Michael (only referred to as simply Michael) is a dream man – literally. Why? Because he’s imaginary. 9-year-old Jane Margaux (Claremont, if you watch the movie adaptation) needed a friend. Enter Michael, the handsome imaginary friend who knows everything about Jane – her hopes, her fears, her favourite dessert… you name it. Several years later and this imaginary heartthrob is back. Who doesn’t want a big, masculine man to walk you to and from work after giving you flowers? Michael is also willing to punch out his friend for disrespecting women – yeah, that happened. A little spoiler alert: Michael becomes real, so at least you can say you’ve fallen for a real book character, not an imaginary one.

#1 Travis Maddox (Beautiful Disaster and Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire)
Travis Maddox is the right balance of sweet charm and rough badass. A panty-droppin’ player turned one-woman man, Travis is the whole package: he’s big, he’s strong, he’s got killer tatts, he rides a motorcycle and can also fight with the best of them. He’s also motivated and cunning and romantic and knows how to make a woman feel as if she’s the only one. Only Travis can make a nickname “Pidgeon” totally adorable. His never-give-up attitude is infectious and his need for cuddling makes him seem the ultimate gentle giant. If you want a man who is that dedicated to you that he gets your name tattooed on his arm, well, Travis is your man!

If you’re still alive after all that epic swoonage, I suggest you purchase all of these books from your nearest bookstore (preferably Dymocks because I love that place) and join the world in falling in love with fictitious men. It’s not as insane as it sounds.

The storylines aren’t bad either.

– by The Black Widow

Review: Walking Disaster

If you think having your heart broken over a fictitious novel is outrageous, then having your heart broken over the same fictitious novel written from two different perspectives is downright bizarre. With Walking Disaster, the sequel to Beautiful Disaster also written by Jamie McGuire, it’s true. It’s damn true.

RELATED LINKSBeautiful Disaster review on SolSat

Walking Disaster - every story has two sides.

Walking Disaster – every story has two sides.

In Walking Disaster, the reader takes the perspective of Travis Maddox, the badboy hearthrob from Beautiful Disaster. The novel travels through the events written in Beautiful, except from Travis’ perspective, making the story more interesting and intriguing as a whole.

The world of Travis and Abby was much more clear in Walking, not just because you saw the second half of the story but just because Travis as a character had a much more clear head than Abby and knew what he wanted from the beginning. It is because of this clarity that I was glued to this book. It tied up all the loose ends created in Beautiful and did it in such a succinct manner that Jamie McGuire needs to be given some sort of medal for it. Seeing all the “skipped scenes” in Beautiful being written in Walking was very fulfilling to those like myself who were thirsty for some more of Travis and Abby shenanigans.

In regards to Travis knowing what he wanted from the beginning – that being Abby – the relationship between the two protagonists was much more beautiful from Travis’ opinion. While Abby was in denial about her feelings for Travis in Beautiful, Travis knew he was head over heels for the fiesty girl from the get go and it was so beautiful seeing this troubled heartbreaker go through such a dramatic change. I empathised with this book so well that I had my heart broken again – in the same parts as last time – even though I was reading as Travis.

Walking Disaster was written in the same manner as Beautiful Disaster but the way the words fell onto the page clearly illustrated the difference in minds between Abby and Travis which, ta da, made this book so great! The language used was grabbing and sophisticated and made the book all the more enjoyable to read. McGuire captured the mind of a young male very well and I have to say that I thought the inner workings of Travis’ mind was much more entertaining than Abby’s.

The storyline was the same as Beautiful Disaster, obviously, but even saying that I still found it interesting just because I was going through the other half of the story, especially with the little tidbits not touched upon in Beautiful. Travis and Abby’s love story is addictive and as dangerously obsessive as they the characters find it. Seeing what was going through Travis’ mind when he made some of his (foolish) decisions made me empathise with him and not mentally throw a shoe at him for bringing home two girls from the Red.

Storyline: 8.6/10
Style of writing: 8.2/10
Overall: 8.4/10

I’m hooked on Travis and Abby and I can’t get over it. I even have a couple of songs on my playlist that remind me of their relationship and I get emotional when I listen to them just because I think of their love story. Walking Disaster is just as great as Beautiful Disaster, if not, greater. I’m hanging out for some kind of third book in the series to fill this void in my life but if that doesn’t happen, I’ll happily go back and read through Beautiful and Walking again – and let Travis break my heart another two times.

Absolutely excellent read and I recommend this to everyone, no matter what your preference in read is!

– by The Black Widow

Review: Beautiful Disaster

Seeing as I’m on trimester break and would rather delve into an imaginary world as opposed to face my reality, it’s time to review another romance novel. I love being a Dymocks member.

Beautiful Disaster, a New York Times best seller by Jamie McGuire.

Beautiful Disaster, a New York Times best seller by Jamie McGuire.

Beautiful Disaster is a romance novel written by Jamie McGuire – which is in no relation to the Beautiful Bastard series previously covered on SolSat. Disaster puts you into the perspective of good girl Abby Abernathy as it explores her life and its relationships, in particularly with loveable bad boy, Travis Maddox.

This novel was so well written it’s #craycray. The language used was easy to comprehend for the casual reader and the imagery was so spot on, it was so easy to imagine what was going on – even if my picture of Travis changed every 5 pages because I couldn’t quite picture what he looked like. The one minor issue that I had with the writing was how it just threw you into the action straight away in the beginning. I’m used to being slowly eased into the fictitious world created in the novel and Beautiful Disaster literally just threw you into it. It was a change, but not necessarily an unwelcome one.

When it came to the characters, my levels of empathy were through the roof. When Abby experienced love, I felt that love. When Abby experienced heartbreak, I literally felt as if my heart was just broken. By a fictitious book character. This all boils back to the writing of the author which was, may I point out once again, amazing. I built such a strong rapport with the troubled Travis; he was just so damn likeable. Abby wasn’t the usual annoying self-conscious book heroine you find in most romance novels so that was definitely a nice change.

The storyline started out somewhat predictable, which gave me as a reader a false sense of security. I kept guessing what was going to happen next and I was wrong time and time again. The storyline kept changing and it had me on my toes. The ups and downs of Abby and Travis’ relationship were so intriguing that I just could not for the life of me put the book down. Not to mention the changing dynamics between the two protagonists.

Storyline: 8.2/10
Style of writing: 8.0/10
Overall: 8.2/10

Overall, I was thoroughly impressed with this book and I definitely understand why it earned its title as New York Times bestseller. I was so encapsulated in the story that I genuinely miss it. Tis the troubles of finishing such a fantastic novel. Fortunately for me, I have Walking Disaster to look forward to, which tells the story from Travis’ perspective.

– by The Black Widow