Sunday, March 6, 2016

ARC Review: But First Must Come the Storm by Brooke Radley

But First Must Come the Storm

On the blustery first day of her fall semester, twenty-year-old Millie Carrera is determined to start her junior year on the right foot. She has a great GPA, a nice apartment, and if she plays her cards right, she might even graduate a semester early. It's everything she's ever wanted. That is, until she runs into Summer Evans. Literally. Summer is older, gorgeous, and because of Millie, has coffee seeping through the front of her blouse. She also happens to be Millie's new Science Writing professor. 
Millie worries their embarrassing encounter may haunt her for the entire semester , and Summer's lingering glances don't make her feel any less self-conscious. Millie makes every effort to get back into Summer's good graces, and soon she can't tell if she's drawn more by guilt or attraction. Summer's passion for her subject strikes a chord with Millie, who wants desperately to get to know her better. Astoundingly, Summer seems to want the same thing. 
As the two get to know each other, their friendship grows into something more - something forbidden. Acting upon their feelings would jeopardize Millie's education and Summer's job, but when they're together, it's hard to care. Will they be able to keep their hands off each other long enough to get through finals, or will the semester end in heartbreak?

Arielle's review:

But First Must Come the Storm was a decent fun, read.

Brooke Radley created characters that were definitely drawn to each other and in one of my favorite tropes (professor, student). There was definitely chemistry between Millie - short for Mildred - a new student in a Science Writing class taught by Summer.

The meet-cute was a little overdone, but still likable - Enter Millie, rushing for class. Bumps into Summer, drinking coffee. Coffee spills, Millie is embarrassed, Summer is annoyed but forgiving. Summer turns out to be Millie's professor. The two spend a little more time together and discover hidden (not-so-hidden) feelings for each other.

My main issue with this book was that the characters were somewhat one-dimensional. Millie is a timid, polite student who has a crush on her professor. Summer is a professor trying to get on the tenure track and hesitant to break any rules - especially the sleeping with students one, or at least, sleeping with current students. Apparently, once the class has finished, this rule no longer applies.

The chemistry, which started out strongly, tended to fade as there wasn't even a kiss until after the book was 50% over. Personally, I prefer to have the chemistry build throughout the book and I've found that if the characters don't act on their attraction (at least a little bit) I tend to lose interest relatively quickly. When the scenes in question did happen, I felt...a little let down. I was hoping for a steamier ending.

That said, I did read the book in one night. I didn't put it down once, so I was definitely entertained. But First Must Come the Storm earned every bit of a three star review.

Buy the book:

An ARC of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. 

Thanks for reading my review!

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