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The storm of the century is about to hit Little Bridge Island, Florida—and it’s sending waves crashing through Sabrina “Bree” Beckham’s love life…

When a massive hurricane severs all power and cell service to Little Bridge Island—as well as its connection to the mainland—twenty-five-year-old Bree Beckham isn’t worried . . . at first. She’s already escaped one storm—her emotionally abusive ex—so a hurricane seems like it will be a piece of cake.

But animal-loving Bree does become alarmed when she realizes how many islanders have been cut off from their beloved pets. Now it’s up to her to save as many of Little Bridge’s cats and dogs as she can . . . but to do so, she’s going to need help—help she has no choice but to accept from her boss’s sexy nephew, Drew Hartwell, the Mermaid Café’s most notorious heartbreaker.

But when Bree starts falling for Drew, just as Little Bridge’s power is restored and her penitent ex shows up, she has to ask herself if her island fling was only a result of the stormy weather, or if it could last during clear skies too.

384 pages, ebook

First published September 24, 2019

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About the author

Meg Cabot

209 books33.9k followers
Librarian note: AKA Jenny Carroll (1-800-Where-R-You series), AKA Patricia Cabot (historical romance novels).

Meg Cabot was born on February 1, 1967, during the Chinese astrological year of the Fire Horse, a notoriously unlucky sign. Fortunately she grew up in Bloomington, Indiana, where few people were aware of the stigma of being a fire horse -- at least until Meg became a teenager, when she flunked freshman Algebra twice, then decided to cut her own bangs. After six years as an undergrad at Indiana University, Meg moved to New York City (in the middle of a sanitation worker strike) to pursue a career as an illustrator, at which she failed miserably, forcing her to turn to her favorite hobby--writing novels--for emotional succor. She worked various jobs to pay the rent, including a decade-long stint as the assistant manager of a 700 bed freshmen dormitory at NYU, a position she still occasionally misses.

She is now the author of nearly fifty books for both adults and teens, selling fifteen million copies worldwide, many of which have been #1 New York Times bestsellers, most notably The Princess Diaries series, which is currently being published in over 38 countries, and was made into two hit movies by Disney. In addition, Meg wrote the Mediator and 1-800-Where-R-You? series (on which the television series, Missing, was based), two All-American Girl books, Teen Idol, Avalon High, How to Be Popular, Pants on Fire, Jinx, a series of novels written entirely in email format (Boy Next Door, Boy Meets Girl, and Every Boy's Got One), a mystery series (Size 12 Is Not Fat/ Size 14 Is Not Fat Either/Big Boned), and a chick-lit series called Queen of Babble.

Meg is now writing a new children's series called Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls. Her new paranormal series, Abandon, debuts in Summer of 2011.

Meg currently divides her time between Key West, Indiana, and New York City with a primary cat (one-eyed Henrietta), various back-up cats, and her husband, who doesn't know he married a fire horse. Please don't tell him.

* Airhead
* The Princess Diaries
* Mediator

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Profile Image for laurel [the suspected bibliophile].
1,502 reviews451 followers
January 4, 2020
City girl Bree has been enjoying life in Little Bridge, Florida, after fleeing from NYC, her mother, her boyfriend, and The Incident. She's revamped her life and image, and isn't going to run anymore. Not even with the storm of the century bearing down on her new home in the Florida Keys. Not even from hot but bossy carpenter, Drew, who thinks she should get out of dodge. Because Bree is taking a stand. For herself.

Buckle up bitches, because I have feelings.

First of all, please let me establish some (minor) street creds:

1. I have been through 3 hurricanes (Irene, Hermine, Dorian), and evacuated a fourth (Florence). All but Dorian were direct hits on my house—as in, the eye passed over where I lived.
2. Hurricane Michael obliterated my in-laws' house (and destroyed a lot of my friends' homes and businesses), and my wife and I drove through the wreckage to find them five days later.
3. I've been a part of state and county planning (a very small, eensy weensy part, but still more than this author) in Florida and North Carolina for hurricanes.
4. My wife and her family have lived in the Florida Panhandle for generations. They've seen shit.

The vast majority of my feelings for this book come from Bree and her attitude towards preparing for this storm.

I understand that the girl is a spoiled naive ninny, but in the aftermath of Michael (and being published two weeks after Dorian demolished the Bahamas), the entire tone of this book just felt like it was exploiting a natural disaster for a love story. It felt super wrong, particularly with how the hurricane in this book was portrayed.

The Preparation

First of all, Bree is an idiot. Let's establish that right now.

Granted, she's an idiot who has been seriously emotionally abused, sexually assaulted and gaslighted, but that doesn't take away the fact that she's an idiot.

Her entire justification for refusing to evacuate, and spreading lies to friends, family and coworkers about her future whereabouts for the storm?

I'm not being stubborn. For once in my life I'm standing up for myself and not running (paraphrased)

Bitch, it's not called running, it's called being smart. This is a category five hurricane with 170+ mph winds bearing down on you. Nothing in the Florida Keys is built to withstand that, and lemme just say that 20 feet above sea level is um, not that high when you're on a small island.

And don't give me that bullshit about your beloved cat being sick and recovering from surgery and not traveling well so you can't leave your home. Nuh uh. You have the means and the funds and the ability to leave. Leave. Trust me. You're only putting yourself and your precious cat in danger.

She gives this excuse over and over and over and it's never convincing or a solid reason.

Also, while the author does a good job capturing Floridians' attitudes towards hurricanes, she doesn't really do that great of a job portraying the storm preparation itself? Or how county, state, town and federal officials and entities handle storms? While yes, the water and utilities do get shut off before the storm particularly on islands, what she didn't really mention was the mandatory curfews implemented before the storm itself.

She's got people evacuating to shelters...in the event of a hurricane of this magnitude, there would probable be no shelters open in the direct path of the storm (shelters are only open if they are rated to withstand the category of storm...usually a cat 3—there are very few buildings rated to cat 5 wind speed, much less storm surge). There would be mandatory evacuations for everyone—not just tourists. There would be government transportation to help those who couldn't get out on their own get out. There would be shelters available outside of the direct hit zone for those who need it. Curfews before, during and after the storm are standard, not implemented on a whim so that it'll look good.

The hurricane parties though...accurate, to a point.

The Love Interest

Maybe dips in barometric pressure affect one's sex drive (paraphrased)


I just don't see it. Bree gets wet at the mere sight of Drew, but this half baked enemies-to-lovers (why tho? why are they enemies??) romance is all wet, and not in a good way. Sure Drew is like, the one person in the world who believes her sexual assault was a sexual assault (what is this, 2008?), but come on. They had no chemistry at all. That they hook up right away seemed...weird.

He treats her like she's an idiot throughout the entire story (granted, that's the truth), while hypocritically staying in his house by the water to defend his land against the storm. Like a Real Man, he's going to stay throughout the storm—with his five dogs in the house—so that he can make repairs on the spot. Because his house will withstand 250 mph wind and is strong on forty foot pilings (what an eyesore this house is, plus...forty feet?? Really? wtf no that's ridiculous).

Also, this quote:

That was the way with males. It took some of them longer than others to learn not to play rough.

Granted, this was about her cat, but it seems pretty fucked up coming from a sexual assault survivor.

The Storm

Welp, Bree got a full night's sleep in a 200-year-old mansion, sooo. My in-laws said Michael sounded like a freight train coming at them for five hours straight. I guess Bree can just sleep through anything.

The Aftermath

Oh lawd.

So you're telling me, that this storm that was worse than anything that's ever hit the Keys, to include Irma and Wilma (the recent ones) and that Little Bridge sustained a direct hit but really didn't have much damage beyond the bridge (THE BRIDGE BITCH NO YOU DID NOT) washing out and a bunch of boats going missing???

Oh—why did the good folk of Little Bridge not have a lot of damage to their homes aside from some light flooding?

They boarded up their windows.

That's what saved their houses against a Cat 5 hurricane.

Boarding. Up. Their. Windows.

Fun fact: boarding up windows does a great job protecting your windows and limiting glass shards going everywhere, but know what it doesn't protect against? Your roof coming off due to the wind.

Also, yes, you can take a near direct hit from a cat 5 and get away relatively scott free due to bands, wind, tides and surge, (see: Panama City Beach vs Panama City), but this is UNUSUAL AND ONLY FURTHERS PEOPLE'S MOTIVATIONS TO NOT EVACUATE.

FFS at least get some basic information right.

I guess this was a wind event, even though apparently there was 10 foot storm surge over an island where the highest point was 20 feet above sea level (the highest point in the Florida Keys is 18', which IS NOT HIGH).

No Judgments

And to the pet rescue.

Look. I don't give a flying fuck about Bree's no judgments resolution, since 1) this bitch is the judgiest thing on the planet and 2) I have no sympathy for anyone who evacuates from a hurricane and leaves their pets behind. Period.

The author did her damndest to make the characters who did this as sympathetic as possible, but I'm telling you no. No. No.

Pets are your family. And this book more than played up the catastrophic nature of the storm, so those who were like,"oh I just thought I'd be able to come back in a couple days and get them and it'd be okay" I'm just going to scream eternally into the night.

1. This book is set on the Florida Keys. There is one road in.
2. That road is built like a bamf (seriously, those bridges are the stuff of my wet dreams they are amazing). No, I'm not talking about the smaller roads but Highway 1.
3. Priority on the roads is for FDOT, emergency personnel, relief and recovery efforts, and line crews. Not civilians heading home.
4. Everybody and their second uncle is going to be heading down to check out the damage/go home. Good luck getting back quickly.

So no. Leaving your heat-sensitive birds in the attic during the hurricane (knowing the aftermath is the worst because of the lack of electricity, AC and care) is not going to garner any sympathy. Leaving your dogs chained in the back yard during the worst hurricane ever is going to get a phone call from Animal Services and your ass thrown in jail.

This book glamorized animal abuse and I'm not having it.

Yes, I get that there are circumstances where you might not be able to evacuate with your pet, but you'd better make damn sure you try your hardest to take all members of your family with you.


1. A community can fully recover from the worst hurricane ever (without hardly any structural damage) in four months. (lol author needs to visit Panama City...and I'm not talking about the beach).
2. Boarding your windows will 100% protect your entire house from 155+ mph winds
3. Bridges are structurally weaker than Drew's beach house
4. Leaving your pet behind? Don't worry—a sympathetic rich girl will be their savior and will enlist the help of her super famous mom to get resources in!

Yes, this is 100% a work of fluffy romantic fiction but please, please, please don't romanticize natural disasters

This is perhaps not the most appropriate setting for a romance

Anywho, definitely don't read this is you've lived through a hurricane, been part of the planning for a hurricane, are/were employed by FDOT, are a sexual assault survivor, or want to preserve your remaining brain cells.

I received this ARC from NetGalley for an honest review, but held off reading it due to preparations for Hurricane Dorian. I ended up listening to the audiobook.
Profile Image for megs_bookrack.
1,616 reviews10.7k followers
Want to read
September 23, 2019
Raise the flag!!
I won a giveaway!!

Confession: I have never read a Meg Cabot. Now's a good time to start.

Loving this cover -- looking forward to having it on my shelves!
Profile Image for Sarah.
351 reviews17 followers
May 22, 2019
Unfortunately, I will have to pass judgement onto Meg Cabot's newest work.

No Judgements is the story of Bree and Drew, two twenty-somethings that have elected to remain, among other residents, on a tiny island in the Florida Keys as a Category 5 hurricane bears down on them.
Bree moved to the island after the emotional shocks of death of her father and a sexual assault from her then boyfriend's best friend. She is incredibly unprepared to deal with any sort of inclement weather, and is lucky to have made a new group of friends in the months leading up to the storm - otherwise, she surely would've perished trying to prove how tough she is to herself.
Drew is Bree's boss' nephew, recently out of a relationship and the victim of many a rumour about how he's the town bicycle (which was so disturbing, because almost all of our background players are related to him or are snowbirds)
The themes of this book read like a smoothie of news from the past few years - category 5 hurricanes, sexual assault, gun violence, radio show conservative "judges". But all are handled so weirdly:
- There's a scene in which Bree confronts her assaulter and I was sure I'd somehow opened another ebook, it was so out of place and such a bad example of gun usage
- This book seems to point to the heroism of weathering a storm, rather than getting out - while also minimizing the devastation of a category 5. I highly doubt anyone stuck in the paths of Katrina or Maria were hyped to be there/throwing lavish dinner parties leading up to it
- The lack of support around Bree following her sexual assault does seem on brand for what we know happens to victims, but how does no one believe her? Why does she have so many supportive friends in Florida and literally none in her home city of New York?
-Bree's mom is a radio version of Nancy Grace/Judge Jeanine and just such a bad mom -but there isn't really any commentary surrounding what the outrage jockeys do to civil discourse, she could've just as easily been a Nancy O'Dell knockoff or a society lady, since having a wealthy, famous mom seemed to be the only part that mattered.
-I didn't understand the whole plot line of Bree being treated differently (better) because of who her mom is, I don't think radio hosts generate the same level of sycophancy as TV hosts. Maybe if it weren't modern times and radio was still where it was at?

Drew and Bree's interactions were cute and I liked the background characters, but overall this was not an auspicious beginning to The Little Bridge series. I'll still read the next one, because I'm trash for Cabot but I hope the series course corrects from this one.

Thank you to the publisher, via Edelweiss, for providing me a copy for review. This has is no way influenced my opinion.
Profile Image for Berit Talks Books.
2,024 reviews15.7k followers
October 17, 2019
This was a fun, flirty, feel good story just what I was expecting from a Meg Cabot book. Small town Romance, delightful setting, witty banter, and loads of adorable animals, yes please! Bree has fled to Little Bridge Island (a small island off the coast of Florida) after a bad break up. Little Bridge is just as quaint and quirky as you would want from a small town. When a category five hurricane is approaching Bree decides to hunker down with the long time residence and ride it out. She and her cat Gary find themselves at the home of her boss because her apartment is in a flood area. She also finds herself catching feelings for the island heartbreaker Drew. can Drew really be all that bad? He is an animal lover after all. What follows is a fun sweet will they? Won’t they? Romance that had me humming the song “ Kiss the Girl��. 🧜🏻‍♀️

Not going to lie Gary the cat was the star of this book for me. No teeth but all Cattitude! Bree and Drew were likable and I enjoyed the back-and-forth between them. There was some serious subject matter in this book and I do believe it was handled very well, however I’m not sure it was necessary to the book? There was a scene in the story that I felt was a bit out of character , and I’m not certain if I feel good about it or not? But I’m going to take a cue from the title of this book “No Judgment“ and not judge. Love tower Bree and Drew help take care of all the animals that were still on the island after their owners had evacuated. This was a good start to what looks like will be a fun small-town romance full of lovable characters and cute animals!

This book in emojis: 🐈 🐕 🌊 🌬 🌴 🧜🏻‍♀️ 💏
Profile Image for Lizzie.
665 reviews47 followers
January 3, 2020
I will ALWAYS read Meg Cabot. She is Queen. Cannot wait for this!


Well, it wasn’t perfect. But I flew through it and enjoyed it. Sometimes, that makes the perfect book.
Profile Image for Christie«SHBBblogger».
965 reviews1,248 followers
September 22, 2019

Title: No Judgements
Series: Standalone
Author: Meg Cabot
Release date: September 24, 2019
Cliffhanger: No
Genre: contemporary romance

I can't believe this book ended up being such a disappointment. I genuinely expected it to be a guaranteed hit based on the synopsis. Here's a little bit of quick background information about me: I'm a Florida resident who has been here the majority of my life. I've lived through tons of hurricane scares, and recently went through the uncertainty of Hurricane Irma which luckily ended up being only a category one as it passed by my city. The point being, this book seemed extremely relatable. Unfortunately I couldn't find anything relatable about the main character Bree, and by the end I struggled to even finish it. For me, this was just one huge mess.

Bree Beckham is a three month resident of Little Bridge Island, Florida where she has moved after several recent events in her life have left her feeling unmoored and more than a little lost. The island was her happy place as a child, a place where she spent many vacations with her parents so it makes sense she would return at a time when she needs comfort. Though she's from a wealthy family, she's self-supporting and is currently working as a waitress to make ends meet. She seemed okay at first, but the first sign of trouble was chapter one. The news is reporting that there's a potentially catastrophic hurricane heading their way and when her ex and mother start calling to urge her to take a flight out, she responds petulantly as if they are over reacting. She bluntly refuses all offers of transportation and goes radio silent on everyone. Even after the storm when her mother was afraid for her life, she callously disregarded her and procrastinated in calling to let her know that she was safe.

I understand that she's angry at both of them, and rightly so based on what's revealed later. However, this screams of foolish pride when it comes to your own personal safety. There are so many people that are financially unable to evacuate and forced to stay in unsafe conditions and she's acting like a defiant kid. During every encounter with her friends and various town members, she realizes that they are ALL evacuating. They all offer her an opportunity to catch a ride with them to a safer spot. She turns every one of them down with the excuse that she can't leave her cat. I'm sorry, but she has the support and funds to find a pet friendly hotel room somewhere. This is such a flimsy excuse.

Not only does she decline help time after time, but she knows nothing about preparing for a hurricane and would have been in deep trouble had the storm hit them at projected strength. She turned off weather reports because she didn't want to see the warnings, she didn't realize that she could be without water, and she had zero plans or precautionary measures in place in case of an emergency. She had been planning to stay at her apartment in a flood zone without even bothering to sandbag outside for protection. I guess what it boils down to is that perhaps I'm too knowledgable about the topic for all of this nonsensical behavior to not bother me.

Luckily for her, her bosses offer their mansion as a shelter with a generator and an endless supply of food. She reluctantly agrees despite not wanting to "impose" on them. Drew is her bosses' nephew, and apparent resident womanizer. He has a reputation around town, and Bree is not his biggest fan. They quickly fall into bickering at every opportunity, mainly because he likes to tease her about being a "Fresh Water" (a newbie in town who is ignorant about life on the island). For her to claim that she's some expert in living there is beyond laughable, so her anger and protests make no sense. I didn't feel as if these two had an ounce of chemistry or relationship development between them. The majority of the book she's snapping at him for breathing and then you literally turn the page and she's imagining herself in love with him. Possibly since the first time she saw him, she ponders. Who knew? After that point I really struggled to continue.

It seemed like everything out of Bree's head or mouth annoyed or frustrated me in the last half. Things like:

Believing he was "mansplaining" to her about the Milky way when she admittedly knew nothing about it. I call that a conversation where you learn things. That's not an insult to her womanhood.

Thinking that you weren't supposed to fall in love with guys you slept with. They're supposed to be just for "fun." Meaningless sex is the only sex...okay then.

Thinking "fireworks went off in her shorts" while making out.

Acting like an ungrateful know it all when Drew gives her advice or help.

“I could tell you needed rescuing, is all.”
I glared at him. “I did not need rescuing. I never need rescuing.”

Then there's the ending. The heroine has three different unresolved issues from her past, and each and every one of them are instantly solved when the four other people involved show to confront her. All of this was rushed and inserted at the last minute without much of any soul searching or thought on Bree's part. In the last chapter, Bree is wondering where she stands with Drew. Do they have a chance at something more than temporary? Does she even want that? We're not shown any conversation between the two of them. We simply jump into the epilogue where everything is perfect.

I wish I could say that I enjoyed some aspects of this book, but now sitting here writing this I'm really struggling to come up with an example of something that hit the mark. When the female lead character behaves in a way that makes you question her intelligence almost on every page, that doesn't give you a very enjoyable reading experience. That was the biggest issue, and one which there was no coming back from. Unfortunately this one was a big miss for me and not one that I would recommend. However, maybe others will find this a light chick-lit offering they could enjoy.


Profile Image for Jaye Berry.
1,397 reviews129 followers
October 6, 2019
LOL YIKES. Lately I've read SO many bad books and I thought it was just me personally but *checks average rating* 3.49? I'm just shitty at picking.

No Judgments takes place on an island in the Florida keys right before a category 5 hurricane is set to hit. Bree isn't too worried- she's already fled to the island a couple months ago from her emotionally abuse ex- so she figures the storm will be no big deal. When the island is cut off from the mainland, Bree is horrified to learn that people left their pets behind and can't come back to them yet. So it's up to her to save all the animals on the island, while the hot nephew of her boss joins along.

First off I'm going to completely shit on this book for how gross the idea in the first place is. Hurricanes are no joke, especially a category 5 and yet this book just makes it a super quirky fun event that doesn't even show the real disaster that a 5 would do. Thousands of people have had their lives ruined, their houses destroyed, and you know, died directly from hurricanes. In this book everyone is SO chill and they have "hurricane parties" before it hits and just celebrate it coming to their tiny island. Mandatory evacuations are just suggestions and everyone is brave and cool for saying in their homes and weathering the storm! Gross bro.

I honestly hated the love interest Drew (I mean to be fair I also hated Bree). Drew has like 4 dogs that he's saved and that's pure and great BUT he names them all Bob and goes: "tHeY aRe PaCk aNimAlS, tHeY dOn'T NeEd tHeIr OwN nAmEs." Maybe I was already hating the book at this point but this little bit just made me so angry I still want to fight him. Fuck you dude, dogs (especially rescues) deserve their own names! And ewww so everyone on the island knew each other and a lot were related in some way right? And yet his reputation on the island was player? GROSS BRO.

The romance is a big yiKES and just comes 100% from the fact that Bree is horny. She goes on and on about how she's not interested in dating or men because of her ex but the second she sees Drew, ALL she thinks about is how hot he is. It was truly endless but this book was really trying to tell me they were cute. Weird dramatics aside about how awful it is to fall in love when it's only supposed to be sex.

And did anyone else feel icky reading smut by Meg Cabot?? Thankfully it was really only one sex scene but even little mentions of his hardness and I wanted to leave. My middle school self would have been horrified.

The writing was painful and I died laughing because oh my god it was SO RIDICULOUS AND STUPID WTF. There were several plot points that existed through the entire book for Bree: her biological mother and her ex and they were BOTH SOLVED within a couple pages of each other RIGHT after the hurricane ended. It was completely unrealistic and actually so bizarre I can't get over it because they all really showed up on this tiny cut off island for no reason besides "oh shit the book is almost done, gotta wrap up those storylines but going to make it weird!"

Also no one in the entire world gives a single shit the children of radio hosts. Once everyone learns that Bree's mom is one, everyone loses their mind and rolls out the damn red carpet and keeps bringing it up like she's famous?? Y'all weird. I don't even get the point of her mother being a radio host when it didn't even matter besides her being rich.

I hope the hurricane comes back to take this book away forever. Ugh.
Profile Image for Ginger.
789 reviews373 followers
March 29, 2020
Going with 3.5 stars on this one!

No Judgements is an easy, breezy contemporary romance book.
This was a cute book. It isn't meant to be anymore then what it is, an entertaining and easy book to escape to.

I think the setting of being in the Florida Keys is the best part of the book. I needed a bit of island time while dealing with the Covid-19 virus and forced to stay inside.

No Judgments starts with Sabrina (Bree) Beckham's life in New York getting upended and blow apart. Her father has died, her engagement has ended and she's found out shocking information about her family.

Bree has decided to move down to Little Bridge Island which is in the Florida Keys.
The island is nostalgic for her because her family visited every year when she was a kid. She's got a new start, loves island living and all her new local friends.

But a hurricane is heading towards Little Bridge Island and she's got to not only navigate the hurricane but all the old issues from her life in New York that's suddenly popping up.
Bree keeps getting thrown into Drew Hartwell, local handyman and island heartbreaker and the sparks fly.

I thought the book was well written. The characters weren't that complex but they were still nicely written. I liked the conclusion of the book and especially how Bree stands up to her ex-fiancé and friend.

I will definitely continue with the series since the setting of the books really makes this series!
October 20, 2019
Story 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Sometimes you have moments in your life where you feel overwhelmed, but in a bad way.
And sometimes this feeling only gets worse with more things that pile up on you.
You feel like you want to flee, somewhere far away, maybe to a beach.
But most of the times you don’t run away.
But Sabrina (now Bree) ran away.
She fled to a little island with a beautiful beach and a small town full of nice people.
But then a hurricane is said to come, people evacuate, her mother calls her all the time to force her to evacuate too.
But Bree stays and something beautiful and unexpected happens.
Oh, that was such a cute book. I loved the location, the kind people and the little drama in this book.
I enjoyed it a lot.

Character 🌟🌟🌟🌟
I love Bree so much ♥️ she was this animal-loving, kind and loyal person who helped everyone around her as much as she could. Everyone loved her and tried to take her into evacuation with them, but she stayed.
She not only loved her cat, she also loved every animal she came across. It didn’t matter to her which breed of dog, which cat, how many birds or turtles there were. She loved and cared for all of them, when the evacuated residents couldn’t do it.
Such a kind, heartwarming person is so rare and i would love to know more people like that ♥️
Drew was a handsome guy with a big heart for animals and also really good at helping Bree with her new mission - saving the animals.
He was also a kind person, even though sometimes he was also a little bit sassy.
He made the whole story a lot more entertaining.

Relationships 🌟🌟🌟
Bree fled from a relationship where her boyfriend told her that the sexual assault she suffered was nothing and she overreacted.
She left him and what can I say?
That was absolutely the right decision.
I loved that even though so many people told her she was overreacting, Bree had her doubts, yes, but in the end she understood that all these people were wrong.
That wasn’t nothing.
And when she met Drew and after trusting him, she told him what happened and he was supportive of her, told her she did the right thing (maybe threatened her ex-boyfriend and the friend who assaulted her), Bree finally felt understood.
Also he helped her with her animal rescue mission and always supported her and made her laugh. Ugh, he was such a sweetheart in the end and I loved those two together.

Writing style 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Well, I never read the princes diaries (only saw the movie - shame on me), but now that I finished this book... maybe I should read the book. Not now... but sometime.
The writing style of Meg Cabot was addictive, fun, cute and sometimes funny.
I had a lot of fun reading it and it was the perfect book for me right now.

Maybe I should also flee to a beautiful island and be a waitress? Hm 🤔
Profile Image for Syndi.
2,991 reviews689 followers
March 8, 2020
This is super cute book. I remember Miss Cabot book, The Princess Diary. It was a very entertaining YA novel.

No Judgments is a NA book. And it is delicious. I like the chemistry of that small town romance. Drew and Brie are animal lovers who defided ti rescue every pets when their town get hits by hurricane. I love how Brie character grows frim timid woman into a strong kick ass heroine.

Drew is brooding type of hero. I like how slowly he opens up to Brie and falls for her. There is no steamy naughty thing in this book. Just a whole lot heart warming story.

4 stars
Profile Image for Kezia Duah.
392 reviews343 followers
October 20, 2021
I was today years old when I learned that people had hurricane parties. Someone invite me to one!!
It’s been a while since I read such good banter between enemies who later become lovers. Unfortunately, although this was really cute, it was still quite an average read.

Okay, but can we talk about how Sabrina handled Kyle in chapter 32?! Yes Queen! I loved it. Thy scene alone is why I gave it the extra 0.8⭐️.
Profile Image for MissBecka Gee.
1,606 reviews638 followers
September 5, 2019
I completely fell in love with Little Bridge, so much so that I spent a good chunk of this book imagining what it would be like to live there.
The only issue I really had with this book was that the characters all kind of felt hollow?
With all the effort put into creating and developing the island, community and story surrounding it all, the characters seemed like an afterthought.
Gary was by far the best developed character...Gary is the MC's cat.
Much thanks to Meg Cabot for my signed copy (and all the candies--YUM!) I received from her at BookCon.
Profile Image for WhiskeyintheJar.
1,319 reviews543 followers
January 6, 2020
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

After devastating events start to pile on one after the other, Bree decides to escape to Little Bridge Island, where she spent her cherished childhood vacations. She dyes her hair pink and is working on finding herself again but a potential hurricane is trying to disrupt her calm.
Fending off her mother and ex-boyfriend begging her to leave the island, Bree decides to stick it out with some locals, one who is rumored to be the local playboy. Drew's sexy looks have caught her attention before but he seems like trouble she doesn't need.
The storm and fate seem to be throwing them together as Bree gets to know him more, she's starting to want to break her no dating rule.

I had purposefully come to this island to be alone and figure out my next move. None of that had included becoming attracted to darkly handsome brooding men who were kind to dogs.

Told only from Bree's point of view, No Judgments spends a lot of time in her head. Bree thinks about how her father's death, learning the woman she calls mom is not her biological mother, and hints at a traumatic experience that involved her ex-boyfriend's friend for the majority of the first half to let readers in on plot points and reasons for Bree's character make-up. These big issues are all thought about by Bree in her head and never fully get to be flushed out as the outer issue of the hurricane getting ready to hit the island takes up most of the action part of the story.

There was some build up to the hurricane, Bree doesn't want to leave because her rescue cat Gary has health issues and she wants people to think of her as a local and not a “Fresh Water”, but the actual event of the hurricane only lasts a night and Bree basically sleeps through it. The aftermath talks about potential health hazards, lack of resources and looters, but the reader never really feels this as Bree gallivants around the island. At the midpoint in the story, Bree and Drew still had a little bit of animosity to their relationship (and one quick make-out session), due to preconceived notions about each other but Bree decides to risk life and limb to go out and see if he survived the hurricane; her emotions seemed to strongly come out of nowhere.

The second half switches to Bree and Drew trying to rescue, feed, and water animals who's owners abandoned them with the hurricane coming in and now can't get back because of a bridge washed out. Around the 60% mark is where I finally thought I could see some emotional and relationship development between the two.

I’d broken all the rules, and now I was sitting here, like an idiot, by the light of the Milky Way, eating the guy’s steaks with his happy, well-fed dogs pressed all around me, listening to him talk. God. I had it bad.

With the story being told in Bree's point of view, readers get to know her pretty well but Drew's character could have had more filling out. He seemed likable, a laid back island guy who loved dogs, but I never knew him and he felt like almost an after thought for being the main partner in a romance. This had some heavier issues, death, infertility, and sexual assault sprinkled in but they were never fully fleshed out and the tone of the story colored them with a bit too much of a cavalier vibe. Honestly, if someone asked me what this story was about, I'd say the message was “Don't judge people for leaving their animals in a hurricane”, which can be a good message but feels odd for a romance/contemporary fiction.
Profile Image for Mackenzie - PhDiva Books.
478 reviews14.4k followers
November 10, 2019
Is there anything better than a sweet contemporary romance set in a small town and with tons of cute animals? I was so excited to read No Judgments by Meg Cabot. I’ve read some of her earlier works but nothing recent. In No Judgments, we meet Sabrina—who goes by Bree—a woman in need of a fresh start in life and in love. I thought this book was a sweet love story with a dash of some real issues that added some realistic edge to an otherwise light story!

This is the first in a new series by the beloved Meg Cabot called Little Bridge Island. I actually read after I finished that there is a short novella that kicked this new series off called Bridal Boot Camp that I definitely want to read!

Bree fled to Little Bridge Island after a break up with her boyfriend, prompted in part by his disbelief and lack of support after a friend of his tries to sexually assault her. This was a particularly deep issue, and one that I was glad Cabot handled well. Bringing to life the reason why survivors of these incidents often don’t tell anyone, Cabot touched on the shame and doubt that survivors can experience. A thoughtful inclusion in an otherwise light and fun novel!

In Little Bridge Island, Bree is healing. She’s waitressing at the adorable Mermaid Café, making friends, and becoming one with the quirky local scene of the island. When the hurricane heads towards the island, Bree decides to stay through it. I actually assign this as an exercise when I teach decision making, about how people reason through why they do or do not stay when a natural disaster is pending. It’s more complicated than many realize! In Bree’s case, she stays because of her cat Gary. Others stay because of break ins (the crime statistics during a natural disaster would blow your mind), access to medications, and a number of other reasons.

I thought the hurricane would be the grand finale of the book, but actually it’s in the first half, and the bulk of the book covered the aftermath of devastation to the community and rebuilding it. I enjoyed seeing through Bree’s eyes what it is like to experience that type of event firsthand and also see how a community such as Little Bridge Island comes together to repair and help one another.

Bree is also an animal lover, which I think will appeal to many readers. She finds her calling in rescuing stray animals—left behind because their owners thought they would be able to make it back to them. Bree meets Drew as she’s working to set up a helpline for stranded pets to be rescued, and I really enjoyed them bonding over their love of animals and the welfare of their community.

I loved the theme—no judgments, as the title says. I felt that Meg Cabot handled a lot of issues in the book without judgment, such as people leaving without their pets in a storm or even choosing not to leave. Such as Drew having a reputation as a heart-breaker and seeing different women every night. Even Bree leaving her life in New York to work as a waitress in a small town. I thought that everything was handled with dignity and respect. A perfect theme for the book!

Altogether this is a fast read and a lot of fun! It touches on some real issues and is handled with care. And there’s a steamy central love story to top it all off!

Thank you to TLC Book Tours and William Morrow for my copy. Opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Yna from Books and Boybands.
759 reviews344 followers
September 22, 2019
“I hurried into the kitchen, trying not to freak out over the fact that Drew Hartwell-Drew Hartwell-was in my apartment, shirtless, being nice to my cat.”
📖 Buy This Book: Amazon || Book Depository 📖
📚 Series:  Yes, but this is the first book. There's a novella called Bridal Boot Camp, which is the introduction to Little Bridge Island.
📚 Genre: Contemporary Romance
📚 POV:  First person.
📚 Cliffhanger: No.

⚠ Content Warnings:  Dealing with Trauma (with actual traumatic experience scenes), Use of Guns, Animal Abuse
⚠ Read if: you like light and funny reads.

I have always been a fan of Meg Cabot. I went crazy about her when I was younger. Of course, there was The Princess Diaries. I also loved the Queen of Babble series. Because of these series that I loved about a decade ago, I had high expectations for this one. But, before I go further with this review, I have to say this was a good read, but not a great one.

Let's start with what's the story. Sabrina, who has reinvented herself as Bree, moved to Little Bridge Island from New York. In this novel, Little Bridge Island is preparing for a possible Category 5 Hurricane. Though Bree is slightly new on the island, she had made a lot of friends and she has also decided that she would prefer to stay on the island despite the numerous reports enticing people to evacuate from the island.

In the cafe that Bree works in, she usually interacts with Drew Hartwell, which she has a somewhat weird relationship with. Drew is known in the area as a heartbreaker and Bree, who just came from a relationship that ended badly, wants to stay away.

Drew and Bree are both animal lovers. So, at the aftermath of the hurricane, these two have decided to rescue all the animals that got left behind by their owners who did not got the chance to bring them with the evacuation.

Okay, the blurb looks interesting and that's what made me apply for an eARC of this one.

So, before I tell you the negatives, here are the things that I liked:
1. I love knowing about the animals and their personalities in this read.
2. I love the sexual tension and the development of Bree and Drew's relationship.
3. I loved the heart-to-heart talks of the main characters.
4. Drew has redeeming characteristics especially with his love for animals

Things that I did not enjoy:
1. I hate how Bree treated her mom throughout the book, even at the epilogue.
2. I did not liked the scene with gun use, I think it was unwarranted for.
3. The book was entirely written as a light and fluffy read, but the whole ambiance changed because of one particular scene. That scene is very important to the main character, and it was towards the end, so it had major impact. Unfortunately, it is the reason why I removed one star from this read.

This book was enjoyable until about 60% and then it went downhill from there. It felt like two reads merged into one. This pains my heart to say, because I am really a Meg Cabot fan by heart, but this book is really not my cup of tea.

I am still not quitting this series, and will read the other works. I wish though, that the book/s will be much better than this one.


🌼 Blurb:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Main Character:⭐⭐⭐☆☆
🌼 Significant Other: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Support Characters:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Writing Style:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Character Development:⭐⭐⭐☆☆
🌼 Romance: ⭐⭐⭐☆☆
🌼 Pacing: ⭐⭐⭐☆☆
🌼 Ending: ⭐⭐⭐⭐☆
🌼 Unputdownability: ⭐⭐⭐☆☆
🌼 Book Cover:⭐⭐⭐⭐☆

☁FINAL VERDICT: 3.36/5 ☁

Much thanks to Edelweiss, William Morrow, and Harper Collins for this complimentary copy. This review is voluntary and opinions are fully my own. Also, all quotes are taken from the ARC and may be different in the final published copy.

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Profile Image for Tina Loves To Read.
2,534 reviews1 follower
August 17, 2021
This is a Women's Fiction/Chick-Lit/Romance, and this is the first book in the Little Bridge Island. I grow up in the outer banks of North Carolina, so I have ride out several hurricanes. My Grandmother never would leave her house, so I have been in the crazy ride of hurricane before. I love this book, but I understand the reviews of people not loving this book. I loved the main character in this book. This takes place in Florida during a hurricane.
Profile Image for Melanie  Brinkman.
619 reviews78 followers
April 23, 2020
Life is a series of storms and start overs, so what's one massive hurricane?

When the storm of the century severs Little Bridges power and connection to the mainland, Bree Beckham isn't worried... at first. She's already escaped an emotionally abusive ex, so a hurricane seems like no big deal.

She does become alarmed when she realizes how many people are now cut off from their pets. Now she must save all the islander's pets. But she's not so happy that the only one to help her is her boss's moody nephew, Drew, a notorious heartbreaker.

Will Bree's heart get swept away as they care for Little Bridges' stranded fluffy friends?

A story of hurricanes and new starts. A tale of helping hands and hearts.

Trigger warning for mention of dead parents, emotional abuse, animal abuse, sexual assault, mention of death, drinking, toxic relationships, and PTSD.

Sarcastic, stubborn Bree was no "Fresh Water". Wether from a hurricane or the troubles of her past, she was done running. As much as I loved her helpful, animal-loving heart, she exasperated me. I understood her need to reclaim some peace of mind and independence, but her decision to refuse the many offers of evading the incoming storm, along with some later on, angered me. There were so many smarter ways to prove her point.

From her kind, well prepared bosses, their brooding nephew Drew, to the judgmental Justine, to many colorful personalities and fluffy friends, Bree was in (mostly good) company to wait out the storm. The small town, tight-knit everybody knows everyone else's business feeling was perfectly captured, as we got to know and saw the citizens of Little Bridges come together. There were a couple of other spoilery relationships that I thought wrapped up a bit too quickly. However, I'd be lying if I didn't admit that my favorite characters were Gary the cat, and Socks the dog.

Hearts to get swept away in hurricanes... Or at least that's what were told happens between Bree and her love interest. Despite being bombarded with reminders of how physically attractive he was, we really didn't know much about him. The scene where the animal lovers truly opened up to each other was cute, but there wasn't enough chemistry between them to light a match after the power went out.

Opening each chapter with advice for before, during, and after a hurricane, No Judgments was cute, but kind of a shallow mess. Light-hearted, repetitive writing lent itself nicely to the ambiance of the island, but did a major disservice to Bree's story when talking about her assault and other things that led her to Little Bridges. The choppy pacing and logic really disappointed me. Even I, who have never been through a hurricane realized the severity of the storm and the damage it should have caused, didn't balance. Despite everything going against it, Meg Cabot's romance was a quick read saved by the heartwarming sense of community and abundance of pets.

I'll be checking out the next books in the series, only because I genuinely enjoyed the charm and wide variety of personalities Little Bridges had to offer.

Will you pass judgement on No Judgments?
Profile Image for Melany.
536 reviews83 followers
December 8, 2022
I haven't read a Meg Cabot book in ages so I thought why not?! WELL, it's been a while and I remember her books being amazing. This one was good but not as good as some others she's written. I did enjoy the main character she seemed pretty relatable. Just didn't seem as fluid as it could've been. Meg Cabot is still a queen in my world though!
Profile Image for Jacob Proffitt.
3,000 reviews1,643 followers
November 6, 2019
A new Meg Cabot is always going to catch my eye because I know I'll have a decent story well-told. And this didn't disappoint, though for a while there, I was worried. Bree spends the first, oh, two-thirds of the story lying to everybody (starting with herself) and vacillating between foolhardy obstinacy and we're-all-going-to-die! freak-outs.

I kept wanting to smack her and tell her to pick a lane. Either you're willingly riding out a dangerous hurricane or you're scared and seek safety. For example, she turns down a handful of offers to shelter with some nice people she already knows and trusts in favor of staying in her apartment that she knows is in the flood zone. Add that she fobs-off the very attractive Drew with blatant falsehoods and I was wondering what it was that Cabot expected to draw readers through to the good stuff. It doesn't help that her motivation during this part is a reflexive negativity* in a way that had zero internal support.

I kept going because, as I said, Cabot is an excellent storyteller and I loved the setting and all the side characters, and I even liked Bree when she could get out of her own way long enough to appreciate the awesome people who obviously cared about her. I was so glad, though, when things started turning around. I liked her concern for abandoned pets and I liked how much thought Bree put into helping others. And I liked how Drew not only fell in line, but had great things to contribute that let you know he wasn't just humoring a woman he wanted to please.

So for those first two-thirds, I was thinking three stars and I hoped the next book would be better. But things shaped up so well after the turn-around that I'm happy to up that to four. The confrontation scene with the selfish ex I had been cringing for turned out so very fantastic that it almost merited the bump all on its own. But really, Drew is the man and I just loved that guy and his steady resolve and care and that protective thing that I find so very attractive.

A note about the Cover Copy: What idiot wrote this cover copy? I hate it when books include details past the midway of the story and the stupid ex showing up happens almost at the end. And it's a lie, too! There's no question of her having anything to do with the jerk and implying otherwise is cheap.

A note about Steamy: There's a single explicit sex scene putting this on the low end of my steam tolerance. It's very well-placed and well-done, so bonus for that.

* Negative Motivations: I kind of hate that the term "negative motivation" isn't widespread, yet. Since it isn't, I'm going to save off this little jag to append to my reviews that feature the term. Jennifer Crusie blogged about it a bit back (or, if that link doesn't work, here's a cache of the original) and it changed how I understand story. The problem with the term is that if you've never heard it before, you'd assume it meant motivations that are harmful or immoral. Not so. What it refers to is motivations not to do something. The thing is that many of us are motivated to not do things for a lot of different, perfectly valid and reasonable, reasons. The problem is that in a story motivations to not do things are a huge drag on the plot—particularly considering the fact that most negative motivations are overcome by the character simply deciding they don't care any more (or, rather, that they do care and are now motivated to do the thing). So not only do you have a counter to action but you also have a situation where to overcome it, all a character has to do is change their mind. Which means eventually, the reader is rooting for the character to get over him/herself already and do the thing we want them to do. Conflict drives story. Conflict between a reader and a main character drives readers away from story.
Profile Image for Zoe.
1,906 reviews200 followers
October 14, 2019
3.5 Stars! (rounded up)

Cute, breezy, and atmospheric.

No Judgments is not my favourite Meg Cabot novel but it is an easy, quirky, quick read if you're looking for something light.
Profile Image for Stacee.
2,740 reviews712 followers
September 9, 2019
I loved the premise of this one and sadly was quite disappointed.

Sabrina and Drew were okay characters. They’re both good people, but I feel like that’s the best I can say about them. Neither of them were captivating and since I didn’t care about either of them, I wasn’t invested in their story.

Plot wise, it was boring. I expected the story to ramp up as the storm did, yet there wasn’t any real sense of urgency. The writing was a bit choppy, the chemistry was all tell, no show, and the sex scenes were cringey.

Overall, there was something that kept me reading and even though I have no idea what it was, that’s why I’m rating it 2 stars instead of 1.

FYI: there a backstory about sexual assault and the scene is described in detail.

**Huge thanks to William Morrow Books for providing the arc free of charge**
Profile Image for Tina Loves To Read.
2,534 reviews1 follower
October 12, 2020
This is a Women's Fiction/Chick-Lit/Romance, and this is the first book in the Little Bridge Island. I grow up in the outer banks of North Carolina, so I have ride out several hurricanes. My Grandmother never would leave her house, so I have been in the crazy ride of hurricane before. I love this book, but I understand the reviews of people not loving this book. I loved the main character in this book. This takes place in Florida during a hurricane. (*)
Profile Image for Ana  Lelis.
459 reviews157 followers
April 12, 2022
I used to love Meg Cabot's books when I was a teenager. I thought I'd like this one for sure but it didn't happen. I didn't connect with the characters and I'm not planning on continuing this series. ( I only found out it was a series at the end of the book lol)
Profile Image for Toni.
515 reviews
September 23, 2019
I really like Meg Cabot- she is a very talented author and has excelled at a variety of genres. Although Jess Mastriani andHeather Wells series remain my favourite, I am always happy to read and review her new books.

No Judgments is the first title in a new series set on Little Bridge Island, just off the coast of Florida. The protagonist, twenty five year old Bree Beckham is a waitress in the Mermaid Cafe and a daughter of a radio super star Judge Justine. Only Bree doesn't want anybody to know about her mother or the fact that she dropped out of a law school. She wants to paint landscapes (or rather cloudscapes), earn her living by working earnestly and serving breakfasts to locals and tourists, look after her cat Gary, and generally think things through. Bree broke up with her jet-setting boyfriend Caleb, after he didn't believe her telling him about his best friend trying to rape Bree. For that matter, even her mother, Justine, tried to downplay what happened. No wonder, Bree (Sabrina) needs time in a safe place trying to figure out what she wants from life. Unfortunately, this quiet time is about to be interrupted by a category 5 hurricane Marylin heading in their direction. Most people are evacuating, but Gary, Bree's cat whom she rescued from an animal shelter, has just had a surgery and is in no condition to travel, so Bree is staying put, despite whatever her boss's nephew Drew Hartwell might be saying. Bree has been warned to stay away from. Drew, the local heartthrob whose truck used to be parked in front of a diffrent woman's house every week, and sometimes every night.

I thought the book was going to follow the passing of the storm, but it happens in the middle, and the rest is devoted to Bree saving pets left behind by the evacuees who thought they could get back home the following day and did not count on the island being cut off in the aftermath of the hurricane. bree and Drew share a passion for animals and their welfare, so this book is definitely going to be appreciated by animal lovers. It is difficult not to judge people who panic or trust another person to take care of their pet only to realise the animal is stranded. Bree's No Judgments appeal allows her to get addresses and get to the animals in need. Applying the same policy to people in her life is not easy, but is the first step to forgiveness and a promising new relationship. At the end of the book she seems to sort her issues with her mother/ mothers ( the mother who gave birth and raised her and the egg donor from whom Bree inherited her artistic side). She even confronts Kyle, her assaulter, although I did not like the gun usage in the scene.

I loved the setting- Meg cabot's descriptions of Little Bridge are delightful and will make you fall in love with this tiny island inhabited by wonderful people. And Gary and Bobby Socks are a wonderful addition to the character cast.

Overall, an interesting book for fans of a small town setting and animal lovers. Will be looking forward to the next title in the series (right now I cannot guess who the next protagonist might be).

Thank you to Edelweiss and William Morrow paperbacks for the ARC provided in exchange for an honest opinion.

Profile Image for Jamie Rosenblit.
945 reviews532 followers
September 23, 2019
2.5 stars

For all intents and purposes, this book should have worked for me. A romance, Meg Cabot and lots of dogs? But, for some reason, this one really felt like it was missing something crucial for a romance novel - and for me that was chemistry. This book felt more like Cabot wanted to write about people who rescued animals during a horrible hurricane and kept them safe but was told that her brand is romance so add that element - I just never felt it between Bree & Drew, despite my best efforts.

I've long been a fan of Cabot's and will continue to be so for years to come, but this one missed the mark for me.

Thank you to William Morrow for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Malli (Chapter Malliumpkin).
786 reviews117 followers
May 13, 2020

Arc was given by William Morrow via HarperCollinsPublishers in exchange for an honest review

This review is being published before the release date (September 24, 2019)

Content/Trigger Warnings: Toxic relationships, sexual assault, manipulation, alcoholism, animal abuse, death/loss of a loved one, anxiety, trauma/PTSD, substance/drug abuse, talk of fertility issues

A hurricane is the last thing on Bree Beckham’s mind. She’s already escaped one storm, what’s one more to add to the list?! However, she is extremely worried about all the animals that end up abandoned due to the hurricane. And when she finds out many pet owners are going to be cut off from the Little Bridge Island for a while, the lives of innocent animals fall onto Bree’s shoulders. But with so many animals scattered all throughout the island, she’s going to need help – help she reluctantly accepts from the broody, yet devilishly handsome Drew Hartwell, the island’s most notorious heartbreaker or at least according to the rumors. And just when Bree thought thing couldn’t get more complicated, suddenly her true identity is revealed and her remorseful ex shows up out of the blue! The real question is will she be able to weather the storm and find paradise in the end? Only the secrets of this book can tell you…

Friends, this is just the kind of book I needed to pull me from falling into a really bad reading slump! After reading a really good high fantasy book, it’s so easy for me to fall into a reading slump, but the sassy, broody, tension rising contents of this book kept me high on cloud nine! And I kind of love it?! It’s been a hot minute since I’ve been so excited about a romantic read, but this book was so good and it was incredibly hard not to fall in love No Judgments! Now let me tell you all about it!

“I hurried into the kitchen, trying not to freak out over the fact that Drew Hartwell-Drew Hartwell-was in my apartment, shirtless, being nice to my cat.”

No Judgments follows our main character Bree Beckham who is full of sweetness, family complications, and one adorable rescue cat named Gary who thinks the world of her! Oh yeah, there’s just one thing about Bree Beckham…she’s riddled with secrets and everyone is dying to know them. No seriously, there’s more than one skeleton in her closet and only Drew Hartwell can peel back the layers that is Bree Beckham. Drew Hartwell is Mermaid Cafe’s notorious heartbreaker. Some say he’s crazy, others say he’s a playboy, but the truth is a lot more simpler than that. And dogs, lots of dogs! When Drew ends up catching the full on phone call Bree has with her mother, he can only assume she’s a “Fresh Water” or tourist and will soon flee to the safety of the main land. But when the hurricane hits in full force and Bree finds herself in too deep trying to take care of all the abandoned pets on the island, Drew immediately jumps in to help! With both of them working as a team, they’ll not only become a beacon of safety for all the animals, but they’ll soon discover that they’ll slowly becoming each other’s sanctuary.

Honestly, I loved the tension and boiling chemistry between Bree and Drew. They’re both these two stubborn forces coming together and boiling so much sexual tension between them. Some of the time I didn’t know if I should be laughing or clutching my pearls. The banter is so good and as someone who loves reading banter between two characters, I was living for it. It’s definitely one of the many things that really get focused between these two characters. So if you’re not a fan of banter being a big focus of two love interests, it might be a bit bothersome. I do want to add about a moment Drew and Bree shared together though. I loved how the author normalized confining in someone so intimately about the trauma a person can suffer. I don’t find many books that will have a causal scene where the main character talks about the trauma that they’re dealing with. Often times in books, I find a lot of moments when characters talk about they’re trauma it’s very intense, but I loved the way Bree and Drew were slowly and peacefully talking about the things they’ve been through, and the weight they carry on their shoulders every day. But other than that, can I just say this is the animal obsessed romance I have been waiting for?! We rarely get to see a romance between two animal lovers in romance, in smut, in fantasy, books in general rarely give us two animal lovers who turn into love interests. And this has added twenty years onto my life for just that factor. The way Drew and Bree not only feel so passionately about their own pets, but about others could warm even the coldest heart. And watching them to come together and put that love into action, not just for their own pets, but to help others – it’s so wholesome, heartwarming, and it’s one of the key points that bring these two so close together. I will forever screech into the void about how precious they are, the how and why to their relationship developing, and how freaking adorable their pets act towards the other person. It was too cute and you should be prepared for cuteness overload.

“I could feel the heat coming off his body through his damp clothes, heard his breath quicken as our hands touched, and when I looked up, I could see that his gaze was on mine.”

Aside from how much I adored the relationship of Drew and Bree, I was very drawn to Bree’s character. I think for a lot of readers, Bree’s character is going to be a little hard to understand or handle because there are times where she’s overly snappy or abrasive towards Drew. Unfortunately, I think the only way someone reading about her character could truly understand why she acts the way she does towards Drew, it isn’t just for her developing feelings for him. Sadly, that reason is a lot deeper and in my opinion, if you haven’t gone through the kind of trauma that Bree experiences then it might be one of those things that might get overlooked or pushed to the side. And for myself, I was instantly drawn to her character because she reminds me so much of myself. Obviously, the very big secret gets revealed at a certain point in this book, but I definitely think if the reader puts how her trauma plays a key part in everything in this book to the side, a lot of readers are going to be frustrated with her character, might not like her, or think that she’s being immature. I think I’m the odd one out because I found Drew’s character frustrating at times or found myself face-palming because of something Drew did. His character was really hard for me to get into. I think the first time his character impressed me, a little, was with the whole Socks situation. That was the first scene where I felt like I had to give credit where it was due. However, throughout the book it was very hot and cold with my feelings for Drew’s character and his development.

Now the reason why this wasn’t a five star read for me was due to a bunch of little things. For example, it felt like Bree was constantly fighting her mom throughout the book (which she was) and at times it became a bit too much with everything else going on in the book. And then, there was the “Me Too” moment that almost knocked me out of my chair. I had to reread it to make sure I wasn’t misinterpreting things, but there was definitely a “Me Too” moment added into this book and that caused a lot of internally turmoil for me. I don’t want to go into details, but that whole bit dragged me through a loop because I am one of those people who have a lot of mixed feelings about that whole movement. There's also a lot of animal abuse throughout this book. I won't go into details, but a lot of it made me cringe. There was also a brief moment where the author used dog breed stereotypes to make the dogs seem aggressive because of their breed. And I also don’t like that in this particular moment the dogs were used as a means to instill fear especially since anyone who is reading this might get a very wrong message and think it’s okay to use dogs in that manner.

However, my biggest issue that really bothered me out of this whole book was near the end of this book and even now I’m still shaking my head at how it was all handled. To prevent myself from going into spoilers, I’m going to keep this as vague as possible. This bit bothered me to know end and I wish I could say I was proud of the main character and how the situation was handled, but I’m not. The whole entire situation changed the entire mood. Even the after events of this one whole scene weren’t able to make me forget what happened in this section because it felt so out of place. Most of this book is very light, fluffy, a fun time, but you get to this part and it’s like a huge mood switch. I feel like this scene could have been written in so many ways and what the author chose…it was very out of place, the situation takes a dark concerning turn, and the whole entire thing felt so unnatural and realistic. In my opinion, physical violence, especially pulling a gun out on someone (no matter if they’ve done good or bad things in their life), should be used as a last resort. Unless the person has physically put their hands on you in that moment, you have no business going into a mode of survival if your life is not in immediate danger. As someone who has gone through extreme trauma in their life and has sat face to face with some of those people who have inflicted that trauma, I have never once found it necessary to put my hands on someone or go to such extreme measures because at the end of the day, no matter how much I wish I could hurt them back or make them suffer, violence is never the answer or a solution. So when that whole scene happened in this book, it felt like I had been hit with a ton of bricks because of all the things that could have been put into this book, it felt like the author went with one of the most extreme actions a person could take in that situation when there was no threat/danger to the main character’s life. Not to mention, in reality, most victims of sexual assault who suffer trauma or PTSD from that particular moment in life usually end up having flashbacks, a build up of anxiety and panic, or they end up flee the scene when they come face to face with with their previous attacker. Also, the main character had every opportunity to turn around and walk away from the situation because she shouldn’t have to face her previous attacker if she’s not ready or evern want to, but instead she chooses to instigate it. So the fact that our main character has a completely sound mind when she follows through with her actions, it’s unrealistic and it’s the most troublesome thing I read out of this whole book. Also, most sexual assault victims only go to such extreme measures if their previous attacker has physically put their hand on them in the current situation. I don’t know if this is how the author thinks someone who has suffered from the trauma of a sexual assault, but let me be the person who has gone through this situation to say this is not realistic or accurate in any form. The fact the author wrote our main character pulling a gun out on an unarmed person who has done nothing in that current moment, it blows my mind away because there is nothing that indicates she has a reason to be doing that or acting that way. I truly wish this scene had been written any other way, but for whatever the reason the author felt this scene was necessary and it kind of ruins the mood for the rest of the ending of the book. It paints the main character in a really bad way and it left a really sour taste in my mouth that I wish I could mind wipe from my memory.

“Whatever the reason, instead of replying, I found myself flinging my arms around his neck, pressing my body against his, and kissing him full on the mouth.”

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book. It really gives me some nostalgic feels of missing my hometown. I am from a small town and this book definitely reminded me of what it means to have a community come together after a tragedy. But even so, there were many other elements that I loved like the passion and love for animals woven throughout this book. For me, my reading experience was mostly positive because it felt like little pieces of me were woven throughout this book and I loved that. However, that one scene was definitely hard to process and if you have similar values like I do, I think it will be very challenging to get through that one scene. I think many readers are going to enjoy this book, but I can definitely see how many readers may not enjoy this book due to a lot of elements threaded in this book. Either way, I do think this book is worth the read. There’s a lot of warm moments and so many animals! And who doesn’t love animals?!

The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.

Profile Image for Chan.
708 reviews38 followers
September 29, 2020
My Judgment on Meg Cabot's No Judgments

Didn't like it. There were parts that were interesting as I have lived through several hurricanes. Some were pretty awful. I remember having to board up windows, filling jugs with water, readying the battery operated radios, charging all devices, and the such. So, the book was nostalgic in a way, but for me that was it.

Cabot wrote a PSA (Public Service Announcement) novel about pets during a hurricane. It read as if Cabot was appealing to her audience to have a mind to pets during such a crisis. While the pet rescue took center stage, Drew and Bree's romance was but a fleeting bystander.

This will teach me to read a book blind. Although I suspect I will still do it.
Profile Image for Zara.
235 reviews6 followers
November 1, 2019
"No Judgements"? Ironic, cuz I'm judging.

Full disclosure : if I hadn't read a Meg Cabot book before then I'd probably have rated this higher but since I have….. 

Well, there's no sugar coating it - 

I was disappointed. Majorly. 

Sure the book had it's funny bits. 

"Gary, in his absolute element, let out a little meow at me, as if both questioning where I’d been and asking why I’d been so slack in making him the social media star that he so clearly was".

But they in no way made up for the boring romance and Bree's transformation from shy girl into… this :

"if I ever, ever hear about you touching any girl—or any person, of any sex—against their will, I will find you, wherever you are, and I will kill you. And I won’t get caught, because I happen to know how to dispose of bodies in places where no one will find them". Did that feel cringey to anyone else?

Plus, it felt like the author, at the last two chapters thought
"I've gotta squeeze in her ex boyfriend, a confrontation with the guy who hurt her, her mother aaaaaand (like that wasn't enough) a meeting with her birth mother. 
But, hey, no sweat, I've got this". Cue cracking knuckles.

I'm still a loyal fan of Meg Cabot's books, just not this one. 
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