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Better Than Okay

(Love Always #1)

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  379 ratings  ·  73 reviews
“Sometimes it’s not whether or not you survive, but HOW you survive. I guess that might be the thing that makes you the person you are... How you survive.”

When Miami music writer Destiny Michaels learned her childhood friend, the always cool and collected Brian Jace, was moving from their hometown of Phoenix to Miami, she wanted to do cartwheels across Ocean Drive.

Published 2014
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Average rating 4.31  · 
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 ·  379 ratings  ·  73 reviews

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Carol [Goodreads Addict]

Better Than Okay is Jacinta Howard’s debut novel, and what an entry she has made. Don’t you love it when you start a book thinking it’s going to be about one thing and then it completely surprises you and turns out to be completely different? That is exactly what happened for me with this book.

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Destiny Michaels is 23 years old and is a music reviewer for UMusic Magazine. After college, she is trying to make it in a very unstable field in Miami Beach, Florida. She lives
Jul 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
An APB Book Perspective Review.....

"Love makes you strong. Love covers your weaknesses. Love fills all of the tiny cracks in you that would be imperceptible to anyone else. Love is there even when you think you don’t want it or need it. Love stays. Love endures. Love covers. Love chooses. Love isn’t weak at all. Love is strength. And if God is love, and love is all of those things, I think that just maybe—well, I KNOW I’ll be okay. Actually… I’ll be better than okay"...... this is my first book
Kendra Lola Kay
MAGNIFICENT!! This is by far one of the best books I’ve read all year!!!! It’s gripping, intelligent and swooningly perfect!

***Received from author in exchange for an honest review***

To be honest here, when I first started this book I wasn't really sure what to think. Sure the story sounded interesting but there wasn't that much out there as far as reviews for the book, so I went into reading it with no impression of what to expect and so on.

Now, having finished it, I realize what a horrible
Delaney Diamond
Wow, I can’t believe this is Jacinta Howard’s first novel. You ever think you’re going to just check out a book and then get dragged into the story? That’s what happened when I read the sample of Better Than Okay. Stephen King said, “Strive to make the reader forget they’re reading a story,” and she accomplished that. Once I started reading, I was all in.

This follows the friends-to-lovers theme, and I fell in love with this couple. Even though we only had the POV of the heroine, I didn’t feel
Jun 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is Jacinta's first book and I was honored that she asked me to review her book. I loved it! Her writing is so good and I felt connected to the characters in the book, which is always a plus :)I loved the music aspect of it too. This had like a Brown Sugar feel to it. (Great movie by the way :))

Destiny and Brian have been friends forever. She lives in Miami but finds out he will be moving there too for a job. I love their friendship and the music references. The other characters in the book
Sophie Sealy
Oct 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was asked to read and review this book for a Romance site. This is NOT romance. Its is cute, serious, sweet, brilliantly written, realistic BUT not romance.

When I first began reading this book I wanted to put the book down...... for good. It mirror a movie I watched and lacked originality. The longtime friend falling in love with their friend blah blah blah. The plot is always an interesting one to read but it started out so predictable. Then the unpredictable happened. Life happened. Read
Babbling Chatter  Reads
I am typically not a fan of stories that are written in 3rd person POV but for this book I will make an exception. Destiny and Brian's story was well written and detailed that I was able to easily see, understand, and feel what the characters were going through when their relationship begins to grow into something more.

Just when I thought this story was about another new relationship starting to work itself out a curve ball was thrown in the mix. In turn, a whirlwind of questions comes to play
Ciarra Hodges
Jun 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: must-read
I tend to be a tough critic, but I really enjoyed this. I found myself very engaged in the story whenever I was reading it. I did not find any pointless moments or dialogue; which, I appreciate so much. Sometimes when trying to make a piece of work relatable, writers will add unnecessary content. "Better Than Ok" is definitely more than just a love story. I love the mystery in the first two chapters. It was establishing, but it did not give away too much. I wondered who Brian was and what he ...more
Lustful Literature
Jul 10, 2014 rated it really liked it

*4.5 I Want Brian Stars*

Well well well!!! I must say this was a pleasant, surprising, very lovely 3rd person story.
A story in third person is getting harder and harder to grab me, keep me- make me happy.

Better Than Okay can now be added to the small list of 3rd person that I've enjoyed. I felt like I was with them in the room as Brian and Destiny re-connected. Although, they've had an internet connection, them finally seeing each other as time has past has showed they've grown
Romance Novels in Color
This is a sweet and realistic love story, a story of overdue love. Brian Jace is in love with his best friend, Destiny Michaels. He has been secretly in love with her for as long as he can remember.

The story starts off predictably with him making small moves to reveal his true feelings for her and getting her to feel them out as a couple without pushing and scaring her away. Destiny has been burned in the past. She is now guarded, protective of her heart and emotions. Afraid of the unknown. Just
Jul 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Author Jacinta Howard gave me the opportunity to read her book and afterward honestly report what I think.

And I can say that I'm definitely in love with the book. It's writing and it's plot line were interesting and phenomenal.

It is fundamentally a love story and yet so much more! The book really makes readers reflect on their own vulnerabilities and insecurities with love. Howard also deals with sensitive topics in very compassionate and educated ways (that's what I'll say in order to leave no
Jul 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I am reviewing this book for the APB Perspective. I have to say that this was outstanding, this book was a guilty pleasure for me I stayed up all night reading until Dawn. I love authors that write so incredibly well that I can't put the book down or shall I say can't put my Kindle down. I loved all of the main characters Destiny reminded me of my own daughter who is about graduate college and start her future. She is so much like her it was is scary!!! I loved the characterization, these ...more
Read Candy Read
Better Than okay is the best young romance novel I’ve read this year (maybe ever). Sometimes writers try a little too hard to make the characters hip. Jacinta must really be this cool in real life. The whole book was so genuine. The characters were realistic and relatable. Destiny and Brian’s relationship was so special. Lately, it seems like every lead male character is crazy handsome and a great big jerk. Brian was like a breath of fresh air. He wasn’t perfect but he was truly good. Destiny ...more
Sep 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: recommend
This book was magnificent. If I could give it more than 5 stars I would. The author did an amazing job at allowing us as the reader to get a glimpse into the mind and heart of the challenges Destiny faced. Through the words expressed I could feel all of her emotions. When you experience some of the things that Destiny went through, you definitely need an excellent support system. That she had in family and close friends.

I loved Brian. I loved his relationship with Destiny. I loved how he loved
--karen Green-berry
Jul 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely love Destiny and Brian's story. I really love authors who can write a story that captiivates readers even when it's dealing with tough subjects. This author's first published novel does just that and, even though it is not a story about crazy sex, it is a wonderful story about friendship, overcoming adversity and being triumphant in the end.

The relationship between the primary and secondary characters were silly and fun but the love is always there. I would love to see Dorian and
Jennifer Howard
May 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Jennifer by: Family member
This book was a great read! I could not put it down. It felt as though I was watching a movie. It was full of description and it made me feel like I was a part of the story. And who would have thought it would end the way that it did...if you like a page turner...this is the perfect book. I give it five stars because it has an excellent story line that is unlike most books, it also is full of detail to make you really picture what is going on. When you read the book you will feel as though you ...more
Tsunami Robinson
This book is definitely a good read. Music,life,love! What a wonderful combination well put together to keep me turning pages. Chapter by chapter I fell deeper and deeper into the Characters. By the end of the book I felt like they were close friends of mine. This is the kind of story I would love to see a movie made from it. Two thumbs up!
Nasiruddin Al-Mahi
Jul 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
BRAVA Ms Howard!! What a Great story to debut as an up & coming author!!

Better Than Okay is well...Thankfully better than it's title. A well written 'friends to lovers', love story will get me every time and Blessedly, this unexpected surprise fits my "well written" criteria perfectly, in my opinion.

A really good friend of mine, highly recommended this book to me. So, I picked it up & only could/would put it down when my eyes became too heavy to stand on the toothpicks I used to prop
Aug 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
It's hard to believe that this is Jacinta's debut novel. I really really loved Better Than Okay.

Both Brian and Destiny are hands down my favorite book couple thus far.

Destiny and Brian have known each other since they were much younger. Along with Destiny's cousin, who is Brian's best friend. Anyways, on a trip to New Orleans for a work project, Destiny meets up with Brian, who is also their for work purposes. Things between them are just.... different. Brian is giving off vibes that Destiny
Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
After several of my FB friends started raving about this book (as well as Happiness in Jersey), I decided to go ahead and see what all the fuss was about. I have so many books on my Kindle waiting to be read, and I'm typically don't feel the need to read whatever everybody else is, but the buzz about these books was getting pretty big. Friday was a slow day at work, and I wanted to read something 'different', so I took the plunge. When I first started reading and saw how young Destiny was, I was ...more
My introduction to Jacinta Howard was with Happiness in Jersey and the character Zay quickly became by fantasy book boyfriend. I thought no other book boyfriend could compare to Zay until I met Brian in Better Than Okay which happens to be the author's first novel.

Better Than Okay follows a trio of best friends: Dorian, Destiny, and Brian. Dorian and Destiny are cousins and they've know Brian since elementary school. Dorian and Brian have always been protectors for Destiny- keeping the male
Feb 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Destiny is fiercely independent and devoted to the music world. She is working hard to build a career as a writer in a world that no longer wants print materials. Brian is her brother's best friend and she has known him for years. A chance trip to New Orleans where they find themselves at the same time allows Brian to follow his heart and show Destiny that he wants to be more than friends. As this new relationship grows, the unthinkable happens to Destiny and she now has to find a way back to ...more
Brynette Turner
Apr 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is the second book I've read by this author, and I must say that I am once again extremely impressed with the way she creates characters that are real, reactions that are believable, and situations that accurately mimic the circumstances of real life. I love the way Destiny's story proceeds -- every minute from the first few paragraphs to the end show a young woman in transition who is thrown a horrible curve in the middle of finding something beautiful. Now she must spend the rest of her ...more
Jul 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing

APB Book Perspective Book Reviews

I was asked to read this book by the author for a review This book right here!! Jacinta Howard is a new author but you would never know that reading "Better Than Okay." I loved this book , I loved the music and Brian and Destiny's friendship. Every time Brian looked at Destiny I felt it, I knew why he moved to the town she was living in before she did because, the way the author wrote him looking at her, I could tell he loved her. But sometimes loving someone is
1-Click Addict Support Group
May 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Destiny is starting to live her life; she has a job she likes and friends that have been there for her since the beginning. The only thing missing is love in her life, but she's in no hurry yet.

Brian Jace is Destiny's oldest friend, one that she's always trusted and counted on but lately she's thought a little more about him...

I won't give away what happens in Better Than Okay but it leaves Destiny a shell of herself and in a hole that it seems like she will never be able get out of, even with
Wilki J
Jan 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Destiny has been sidekick to her cousin Dorian and his friend, Brian since school days. But they're all grown up now and just maybe being friends with Destiny just isn't enough for Brian anymore. Though hesitant with her heart, Destiny senses a shift too. When the unthinkable happens and Destiny's world is left in shambles, will Brian be her saving grace?

I am in awe of this book. It was very appealing to my emotions and undeniably thought provoking. This storyline left my heart pounding and
Sep 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
4.5 stars!

Got a new book boyfriend and a potentially new favorite author! I will be adding a lot of Jacinta Howard books to my TBR!
Jul 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is an impressive debut for Jacinta Howard. Initially, I had prepared myself for a one-note story that would occasionally go flat or sharp. However, Better Than Okay takes some unforeseen turns that give layers to this story, creating a true melody. A story about whether friends can become lovers has to manage the things that life throws our way, whether we have the ability to juggle them all or not.

I wonder why this wasn't written in first person, but I was still able to keep up with the
Rachel's Willful Thoughts
Destiny Michaels and Brian Jace have been friends forever. A tragedy ultimately forces them to redefine their relationship in Jacinta Howard's Better Than Okay.

While more sweet than sensual, I found that the storyline got better as it progressed. Some readers may have difficulty with the inclusion of a violent act, but the author does an excellent job ensuring that it plays a central role in the story.

Ms. Howard excels in her character development, especially Destiny as she works through a
I absolutely loved this book... Not only was it captivating, but it was also poetic, thought-provoking, and well-written. Jacinta Howard definitely has a gift for developing angsty "living color" characters, who manage to take the readers through a roller-coaster of emotional drama... Simply put, this book was awesome!
Looking forward to seeing what Ms. Howard manages to pull out of her "hat," the next go round...

Giving this one: 5 stars.

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A longtime culture and music journalist and lifelong music lover, Jacinta Howard lives in the Atlanta area. For years, she's worked as a writer and editor, covering entertainment, art, and pop culture, and the experiences she gained writing about artists, musicians and cultural trends naturally seep their way into her stories. She is the author of new adult, women's fiction, and contemporary ...more

Other books in the series

Love Always (3 books)
  • More Than Always (Love Always #2)
  • Less Than Forever (Love Always #3)
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