Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover
After reading The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory, I was seriously craving some more romance. I thought it was the perfect time to finally pick up Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover. I was right!
Tate Collins is a 23 year-old nurse and grad student. She just moved in with her brother in San Francisco to go to school and work at the hospital there. The night she moves in, her brother is working. When she gets to his apartment, there is a very drunk man leaning against the door. That man ends up being her neighbour, Miles Archer.
It’s not exactly love at first sight, but when she sees him the next day with his wits about him, she has to admit that he is very attractive. And it turns out the attraction is mutual.
Soon, Tate and Miles decide to start a physical relationship. This seems like a good idea for them–Miles isn’t looking for love and Tate doesn’t have time for it. What’s more, Miles also has two rules: Never ask about the past and don’t expect a future. They think they can handle this without catching feelings. But can it really end well?
By now I’ve read six Colleen Hoover books. And damn, she’s QUEEN. She writes completely engaging New Adult/Young Adult/Contemporary Romance and I love it.
Ugly Love is a contemporary romance intended for adult audiences. And it’s amazing. We get the present in Tate’s perspective, and the past in Miles’. We don’t know exactly what’s gone on in Miles’ past, but we know something bad happened that makes relationships and opening up hard for him.
I found the characters complex and compelling (generally). I loved getting to know more about them and what makes them tick. Sometimes, this was a little frustrating though. Like, the way Tate keeps seeing Miles even though she has feelings for him and he is admittedly only using her for sex.
She keeps telling herself that he was honest about it from the beginning so she should be okay with it… But she isn’t always okay with it. And he doesn’t always treat her the best. Telling her from the beginning that’s how it’s going to be doesn’t actually make it less shitty.
I loved them and loved seeing the way they grow. But, at the same time, I was often mad at them. It’s not a good idea to stay with someone hoping that they will change. Their relationship is often toxic.
In the sections set in Miles’ POV, it’s six years in the past and serves to explain his emotional state today. In the moment I was a little taken back sometimes, but it’s mostly upon reflection that I find some of it weird. Like, his past is all about his first love. Which makes it hard to stay invested in his current love interest? Also when it’s in his POV the format is oddly stylized. This didn’t really bother me, but it was kind of inexplicable. Furthermore, the tragedy in his past was… a lot. In that I didn’t like it as a plot device. And, no matter what happened to you in the past, it doesn’t excuse the way you treat people today. It may explain it, but it doesn’t make it okay.
Although I had some problems with it, overall I really enjoyed Ugly Love. For the most part, it was exactly what I was looking for–an engaging romance that kept me hooked. I can hardly be surprised though. Colleen Hoover is amazing.
Want more CoHo? Check out my review of November 9, the first book by her that I read! You can also check out my post on Book Riot where I chatted with her about Confess!
Beth O’Brien is a library assistant and book blogger. Born and raised in Atlantic Canada, she lives in picturesque Nova Scotia with her cat Edith. You can often find her rocking double denim with her nose in a book and a craft beer in her hand. Follow her on Twitter @fuelldbyfiction.