Friday, May 13, 2016

Review: Claire (Hard University #2) by Abigail Strom

Series: Hart University #2
Release date: April 26th 2016
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Synopsis via Goodeads:
It’s sophomore year, and Claire Stone has sworn off romance. She’s just gone through a breakup and she wants some time to find out who she is on her own. The only flaw in her plan is her friend (and hot quarterback) Will McKenna, who’s a walking temptation to forget all about her singlehood pledge.

Will has had a thing for Claire since freshman year. Now that they’re both single, he wants more from her than friendship. But Claire doesn’t want to be anyone’s girlfriend right now, and with football season underway, Will’s got issues of his own to deal with.

When an injury on the field changes everything, Will and Claire are driven apart. But when the two of them end up trapped together in a snowstorm, they’re forced to deal with each other again. Can they confront their feelings without ruining their friendship? Or will their friendship turn into something more?

*Author provided ecopy in exchange for an honest review.

In spite of my frustration with the two characters in the first book, I truly loved Rikki (see review) and was super elated when Abigail Strom gifted me a copy of the sequel. I don't remember Claire or Will from the previous book, but I did end up finding their story just as interesting if not as FRUSTRATING as well, and it felt like I was just introduced to their characters so I was able to develop a fresh understanding of who they were.

Again, Claire is as infuriating as Rikki, it's pretty much just another set of two complicated individuals denying their strong feelings and trying hard to convince themselves that they should lay off relationships and focus on their future. That's good and all, but when you feel that intensely for each other, there should be no reason to wait. No time is better than the present. 

In regards to how I feel about the characters, I did like them, but wasn't as connected as I was with Rikki and Sam. Claire came off as a headstrong girl and I liked that about her, but often times she'd contradict herself. Like how she came up with this silly idea about not dating when she knew very well she wanted to be with Will. And she even asked for something ridiculous as wanting to meet any girl he decided to date. Like why put yourself through that torture? Another thing that frustrated me about her was a slight bit of selfishness on her part. For instance, when Will went through a difficult situation, she was all concerned about him not talking to her above anyone else, when the guy was already having a rough time trying to figure out his next step. It was still nice of her to take it upon herself to give him an "intervention" when times got tough, but sometimes I just couldn't figure her out.

As for Will, I liked him. But in a way I wanted more from his character. It's almost like there wasn't enough of him whenever it was his POV, like I wanted to be in his head space more and try to connect deeper. Still, he was a good guy that had dealt a terrible blow and I'l love to see what happens with his future, should he make a reappearance in the third book. 

Overall, an enjoyable story with complex characters that in a sense reflect new adults in college. I can relate to some things, and I'm sure other readers will if they give this series a chance. Looking forward to the next book, Abigail!

About the Author
Abigail Strom
Abigail Strom started writing stories at the age of seven and has never been able to stop. On her way to becoming a full-time writer she earned a BA in English from Cornell University as well as an MFA in Dance from the University of Hawaii, and held a wide variety of jobs from dance teacher and choreographer to human resource manager.

Now she works in her pajamas and lives in New England with her family, who are incredibly supportive of the hours she spends hunched over her computer. When she needs a break from writing she watches episodes of Doctor Who, Sherlock, and Monty Python with her husband and son, and talks to her cats in a British accent.


  1. You've got the patience for frustrating characters. I'd have to be in a forgiving mood. Lol.

    1. Lol yeah I don't mind frustrating characters if there's going to be a great ending.


Share your thoughts. I respect them. Leave a link to your blog and I'll stop by.

Related Posts