Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Out of Tune

Out of Tune by Michelle D Argyle - 1 STAR 

Out of TuneSynopsis-Twenty-year-old Maggie Roads’ parents are legendary in the country music world. She wants nothing more than to follow in their footsteps, but the limelight isn’t reserved for singers who can’t carry a tune, let alone keep a rhythm.
When her parents tell her they’re getting divorced, Maggie decides it’s time to leave home and take her future into her own hands. Moving in with Cole, her best friend and sometimes boyfriend, might not be the best of ideas, but she’s got to start somewhere. Their off-and-on romance gets even more complicated when Maggie crushes on her new voice teacher, Nathan, who unlocks her stunning potential. A sensational music career of her own is finally within reach, but Maggie might need more than perfect pitch to find what she’s really looking for.

*Netgalley provided an ARC in exchange for an honest review

Overall--This one was difficult for me to review and read. I loved Breakaway, so I really wanted to like this one. Unfortunately it never happened. I felt no connection to the characters, and I felt frustrated with the characters, their behaviors, their actions or lack thereof and the entirely overly scripted conversations. (not to be mean). There was a consistently lack of connection to the main characters, many of conversations and characters felt contrived, forced and often awkward. I absolutely hated Maggie. It seemed that at her age she was privileged, spoiled, selfish, dependent and annoying, with little personality. And considering the plot, the book never made me feel like I was getting anywhere with the characters. I think the one character I did like was Cole. He at least seemed genuine. 
I hate writing bad reviews, I do. Its uncomfortable for me, and I end up feeling mean. But I also know from experience that one cannot grow without harsh criticism. I think this book could have used some revisions, specifically in the plot and development of the characters. At the end, I felt like I was back at the beginning. I would have liked for the relationship with Cole to take off more, and for the singing aspect with Nathan to have been less. In the end, I finished the book, because I don't like not knowing what happens, but was disappointed anyway. But Im still a fan of the author so I will keep reading her work. One book I don't like won't forever keep me away! 

Plot - Generally, the plot was interesting. I thought that the idea sounded different, perhaps an angst romance plot with some singing, think pitch perfect but more angst less comedy. But thats not what I ended up with. Instead I read way more about Maggie's inability to "hear" and be in tune with music. And followed her as she battled herself with the vying gentlemen. Now Im all for love triangles, but I did not care for one that felt weak. I never felt that there was a connection between Nathan and Maggie. I think the twist with Maggies parents, and with Cole were interesting and deeply saddening, but unexpected and certainly piqued my interest. I would have liked to see Maggie and her relationships develop more but considering the length it was acceptable. 
Maggie-Ugh I hate Maggie. She was so selfish, and annoying. For being 20 she sure was immature and lacking in confidence even though she's been in the spot light forever. I didn't understand her. I got the trust issues and the friendless thing, even the singing issues (which got really annoying) but I felt that she got annoying sometimes when she would get whiny and immature regarding some small issues. Perhaps I just don't understand because I can't relate. I didn't care for her relationship with her parents, which seemed awkward. But she was wonderful when it came to Cole, thats where the author got it right! 

Cole- Poor Cole. He seems to be a genuinely nice guy to Maggie. It was evident he cared about her throughout, and once we know his secret, it explains his behaviors. I think of all the characters I know Cole the best. His love for Maggie was obvious and sweet, but also heartbreaking. I could see his pain. But it was also very touching, he was giving up one love for another, trying to keep happiness in Maggies life when all else seemed to be failing her. I truly loved their interactions and would have liked to have seen more. 
Nathan- Aw what a sweet guy. But seriously. What guy is actually this sweet and hot and intelligent?! I mean he seemed almost too good to be real at times. (which I guess is true…) I liked his role, which was to help Maggie develop in more ways than one, but was disappointed with the level of depth the author went into n building his character. 

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