Nicole Hewitt's Reviews > Ugly Love

Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover
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Aug 22, 2014

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This is one of those books that I’m kind of sad to review because I really WANTED to love it! I’ve adored all of Colleen Hoover’s books - Maybe Someday ranks up there as one of my all-time favorites – but this one just made me kind of, well, uncomfortable. I couldn’t love it no matter how much I wanted to. No matter how much I tried to talk myself into it.

The book is about a woman named Tate who agrees to a no-strings attached relationship with airline pilot Miles. The problem is, she’s attached to him from the very beginning, and his broken past makes it impossible for him to really reciprocate her feelings – or at least admit to them.

What I loved:

Miles’ story.
The book alternates between a chapter in the past that tells what happened to Miles six years ago that has turned him into a robotic, non-feeling human being and a chapter in the present (told from Tate’s perspective) that documents Tate and Miles’ “relationship.” I really loved Miles’ story – what happens between him and his previous love, Rachel, is beyond heartbreaking (WAY more heartbreaking than I originally imagined), and it completely tore me apart. The story unfolds throughout the book, so you don’t find out what really happened until close to the end, but I found myself wrapped up in his story from the very beginning (even though it DOES start out as insta-love – which bugged me, but I was able to get past it). Miles’ story is told in a sort of poetic way that might bother some people (all of the text is centered to highlight the poetic nature of the beautiful side of love). I actually really appreciated this symbolism and loved that once we got to the beauty of Miles and Tate’s relationship, their story took on this poetic style as well. If I was just rating this book based on Miles’ story, I would easily give it at least 4.5 stars. It is here that Hoover does what she does best – pulls our heartstrings and makes us FEEL for her characters. Unfortunately, Tates’ part of the story is where the book broke down for me.

The negatives:

Tate’s story.
Like I said, this is where I just couldn’t love the book. Tate. More specifically, the way that Tate gets treated by Miles. She is basically a doormat where Miles is concerned. Because we know a bit about Miles’ past (from Miles’ chapters), we don’t see Miles as a monster – we kind of get him and we understand why he is the way he is. Plus, he never lies to Tate – he tells her right upfront that he CAN’T and WON’T fall in love with her. He tells her that she is nothing more than sex and that he won’t ever let it go any further than that. He even tries to break things off a few times (albeit perhaps halfheartedly) when he sees that Tate is going to get hurt. So, as a reader, I really couldn’t completely blame Miles for the ugliness of their relationship. But despite the fact that Tate said she was willing to engage in a no-strings attached relationship, that was never what she really wanted. And she did nothing but get hurt throughout the entire book. Both because she wanted more and because Miles occasionally treated her like garbage. I just couldn’t understand why she put herself through it. I didn’t see why she fell for Miles in the first place and why she thought he was worth so much pain. As readers, we could see Miles’ sweeter and better side (through his chapters), but she never really got much of a glimpse of it, so why did she torture herself? And since most of the interaction between Miles and Tate in the book was sex, I just didn’t see a satisfying connection between them beyond the sheets. I kept feeling like if I had been Tates’ friend, I would be telling her to RUN from this horribly dysfunctional relationship. And then there were a few scenes where Miles’ treatment of Tate felt almost borderline abusive – and definitely creepy. I felt myself cringing during these scenes and just feeling really uncomfortable. Tate started to feel like a victim. Not the best for a romance. Honestly, I was feeling all of the ugly, but none of the love.

So, I couldn’t bring myself to really love this book. Even though I sympathized with Miles and my heart broke for him, I couldn’t bear to see Tate live through his tumultuous time of self-discovery. And while things did get better by the end of the book (I was rooting for them in the end), I still couldn’t say that I loved the book overall. In fact, if it weren’t for Miles’ side of the story, I would have given this a much lower rating. As it was, I give the book 3/5 stars.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
August 22, 2014 –
page 50
15.43% "Ha!\n "A guy folding laundry while flaunting his abs and being a pilot is seriously impressive."" (Paperback Edition)
August 22, 2014 –
page 84
25.93% ""I can't believe I just asked you for sex. What kind of guy does that?"\n I swallow. "Pretty much all of them."" (Paperback Edition)
August 22, 2014 – Shelved
August 22, 2014 – Finished Reading
September 5, 2014 – Shelved as: fiction-addiction-read

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