My rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Introductory synopsis via Amazon:
Jude has spent the whole twenty one years of his life running. From what, he wasn’t quite sure. His mother tried to keep him safe; a low profile, a constant move on the horizon, a week’s pay always stashed away. She tried to instill in him that he was special somehow. He never felt different. He was so completely normal and vanilla that he wondered if it had all been in her head. But then she was murdered and all he saw was a running silhouette of a man as his mother said three final words to him. Three words that changed his whole being.
Never stop running…
Now he’s semi-settled into a big town. The college is huge and easy to blend into. It’s been three months since he had to move because ‘Biloxi’, as he calls the man who killed his mother, found him once more. Then Marley, an eighteen year old girl who is as infuriating as she is blissfully ignorant of her gorgeousness, smashes into his car with hers. Then smashes into his life as he realizes that whatever it is he has that Biloxi wants, she has it, too. And now, they’re after them both.
Me: After getting hooked on Shelly Crane’s writing after reading the Significance series I was really excited when Smash into You came out. I’ve always been into conspiracy theory books and movies and this book sounded right up my alley with a little bit of mystery and good romance. Overall I really enjoyed this book and the storyline. I liked how the reason Jude and Marley are being chased is revealed slowly in bits and pieces throughout the story until the ending climax. Each event kept me hooked in the mystery and guessing. When everything was finally laid out on the table I was surprised, yet everything made sense and was believable. Though I like conspiracy theory/mystery plots lines, sometimes I‘m disappointed in the final reveal when a plot element is ridiculous or scientifically impossible. As a scientist myself one of my pet peeves is when the author or producer violates the basic laws of physics or includes some sort of technology that’s ridiculously beyond the current century. This plot line stayed true with the setting with plenty of suspense to keep the reader interested.
As usual Shelly Crane wrote an excellent romance while successfully integrating the action and mystery elements of this novel. My only critique is that I would have liked to have seen more dialogue between Jude and Marley. Specifically, elements in Marley’s past I felt we’re not as fleshed out as I would have liked. I really like a lot of dialogue when I’m reading a romance because I feel it gives the reader a better insight in the the relationship between the two people that is developing. Since Jude and Marley are being constantly chased from the beginning, it appears that some of the action scenes take the place of the additional dialogue I was looking for. Overall both the romance and mystery worked well together and it was great to read something different and unique.
I’m a sucker for happy endings and this book didn’t disappoint with a fabulous ending and conclusion to all the questions the reader is presented with throughout the novel. As a whole I think this book was excellent and not one you want to miss!