But there is one bright spot: Mark Connelly, her very cute, very off-limits 28-year-old calculus teacher. She falls hard for him—a ridiculous schoolgirl crush headed nowhere. She can’t help it. He’s the only good thing at Crestview High. She doesn’t expect him to reciprocate her feelings. How inappropriate, right? But he does. And he shows her.
And that’s when her life goes from bad to good.
I need an older teacher to fall in love with me.
…Like freaking PRONTO.
I’m not kidding guys. God help the next male teacher I run into, because at this point if I think he’s evenremotely attractive then I’m desperate enough to go all psycho stalker on his ass.
So let’s just go ahead and state the obvious, shall we? This book is about a student and teacher falling head-over-heels in love… Be still my heart. I’m always a sucker for those kinds of stories, but sadly they’re not all told that greatly and I’ve yet to come across a book revolving around that theme that was wonderfully told. This book blew any misconception I ever had about that away though- From the first page, I was hooked. Literallythe first page. The heroine Cadence had me busting out laughing on more than one occasion- The girl’s sarcasm knows no bounds and Lord knows, sarcasm is the key to my heart. Cadence had always been a good girl until she made one really terrible mistake, but it didn’t alter who she was. Sadly, no one else seemed to agree though. She made one bad choice that branded her for life to a lot of people- Especially in her parent’s eyes. That bad decision, in turn made her ridiculed and picked on in school- The thing I loved so much about her was that she tried her absolute best not to show others how badly they hurt her, although it wasn’t always easy… After-all, the girl is only human; It was just a shame no one else seemed to see things that way. Life was becoming unbearable and meaningless for her… That is until she caught sight of her new math teacher… Mr. Connelly. AKA: Mark.
He’s now officially one of my favorite heroes to this day, no joke. Forget the fact that Mark Connelly was gorgeous- The man also had a kind heart, good taste in clothes and music and some talents in the bedroom… Now where the hell were teachers like this when I was in high school?
Mark had initially first met Cadence by accident during her little stint of trouble- Only a few words were spoken but there was enough interaction to know that the attraction was there for the both of them- An attraction that eventually turned into much more the moment that Cadence walked into his classroom…
This book made me feel so many emotions- Anxiety and giddiness mostly, but all in a good way… Definitely in a good way. I literally devoured every page of watching their relationship unfold and I’m happy to say that while there was instant attraction, there was no insta-love, thank God. Can insta-love just not be a thing? …Pretty please? I swear to God, I’ve read enough books featuring that crap to last me a lifetime. I think that’s one reason why I loved and appreciated this story so much- The romance between Mark and Cadence developed slowly and naturally the way it’s supposed to, making everything seem much more realistic and believable.
Cadence may have been only seventeen at the first start of their relationship, but she was very mature for her age. Sure, she may have had a bit of immature moments, but she was still in high school for God’s sake- You can’t blame the girl for having teenage feelings and acting on them a time or two. Despite the age difference though, Mark was Cadence’s teacher which they both knew would ultimately be their down-fall in the end. I will admit that I literally almost died from an anxiety attack waiting on the moment they would both get caught the entire time I was reading… I mean that kind of shit is just bound to happen in books like these, am I right? Yeah, well I refuse to give anything away.
I will say this though- This book ends on one bitch of a cliff-hanger. …And speaking of cliff-hangers, is there like some secret rule among authors where they make it mandatory to end their book on a cliff-hanger right when shit goes down, and then wait sixty-eight years to release the next book? Let’s just hope that the next book in this series comes out as soon as possible… As in yesterday.
I honest to God can’t put into words how much I really and truly loved everything about this story- Everything. I commend the author S. Walden for not only blowing me away with her writing, but finally putting a book out there that gives all other books revolving around the “forbidden love” theme a run for their money. That alone deserves its very own special thank you…
angel on the highway
They couldn’t pick a busier road? Let’s just broadcast to the world what pathetic criminals we are.
I was out on Highway 28 dressed in my juvie garb finest—orange jumpsuit with bright yellow vest—walking along the shoulder picking up garbage tossed out of the car windows of other lawbreakers. I’d been assigned to a community service-based juvenile detention center. I guess I wasn’t hardcore enough to make it into the locked-down facilities. And I should have counted myself lucky: I actually got to leave the building on work assignments.
Yeah . . . whatever. I was freaking embarrassed. I was embarrassed every time they dumped me on the side of some road to pick up trash. My long blond hair was pulled up in a required ponytail highlighting flushed cheeks that turned a darker shade of red when a truck passed by slowly, honking obnoxiously, its passengers hanging out of the windows yelling at me.
“Cadence!” one shouted. “Nice outfit!”
I looked down at my jumpsuit. It was unflattering, clinging to my petite body like a baby onesie, but I could get over that. What I couldn’t get over was the hideous color that washed out my fair skin.
“Do notrespond,” Officer Clements ordered.
“I wasn’t going to,” I mumbled, stabbing a Styrofoam cup with my trash stick.
“What was that?” Officer Clements asked, towering over me.
“Nothing, ma’am,” I replied, and continued my work. Just one more month, I thought, walking and jabbing, walking and jabbing.
I didn’t realize I had walked and jabbed my way down the road next to a car parked on the side, hoisted up on a jack. It was an old black Volkswagen, its owner a young man bent over changing a flat tire. Trash was littered about his work area, and I wasn’t sure if I should pick it up. But he seemed so wholly concentrated on screwing in the bolts that I was positive he’d take no notice of me.
I speared a burger wrapper near the back of the tire, and his face shot up.
My immediate reaction was to turn and run. I was afraid. I remembered a discussion in youth group a while back about angels and how every time they’re mentioned in the Bible, the first thing they say is, “Do not be afraid.” My youth pastor said that this was because angels were scary looking—eyes all over their bodies and under their wings. First of all, how did he know what an angel looked like? And second, why would God make his angels look like a bunch of freaks?
No. I didn’t think angels looked like that at all. I thought they looked like perfect symmetry, and that’s what scared the hell out of people. A form too beautiful to look upon. Like this young man bent over his tire, staring at my orange jumpsuit and trash stick, wondering what a little girl like me could have done to land in juvenile hall. Because I was little, after all. I stood at 5-foot-2 and weighed 100 pounds.
“I’ll be out of your way in a minute,” he said, wiping his brow with the back of his hand.
I nodded and watched him finish tightening the bolts, then stand and stretch his back. He wore the male version of skinny jeans and a black T-shirt that read “Midnight in a Perfect World” across the front in stark white letters. He sported red Converse All Stars, and a bunch of braided bands of various colors were wrapped around his left wrist. His black wavy hair stuck out in all directions, and I couldn’t tell if it was by nature’s blessing or hair product. I hoped it was natural. I didn’t want to think he spent a lot of time styling his hair.
He smiled at me, revealing soft dimples on both cheeks. I smiled back. His eyes were light. Good combination, I thought. Dark hair, light eyes. He was sexy. No doubt about that. Tall and lean. He looked like an intellectual. I figured he was some scholarly Emory University boy. Probably a philosophy major, I thought, smirking. I imagined he sat around chatting about existentialism with his hipster friends in some dive coffee shop (never Starbucks) sipping cappuccinos.
He stood at the trunk of his car putting away his tools and turned around when he heard me.
“What’s funny?” he asked. The smile still lingered on his mouth. “Did I split my pants or something?” He strained his head to look behind him at the butt of his jeans.
I laughed harder. “No. You didn’t split your pants.” I tried not to look at his butt.
“Phew!” he replied. “You know, I’ve done that in the past. Squatted on the ground to change a tire, and rip! Right down the middle. I happened to be on a date at the time.”
“No!” I cried, feeling just the slightest bit sorry for this stranger.
“Well, the date was on shaky ground once the tire popped. The pants-splitting sealed the deal, though. I guess she equated both of those things with ‘loser’ or ‘no money’,” he said.
“That’s awful,” I replied.
“Atlanta women are tough,” he went on, leaning against the trunk of his car. He looked me over and grinned.
“No, I’m not tough,” I replied to his unspoken question. “Don’t let the jumpsuit fool you.”
He shook his head. “What in God’s name could a little thing like you have done to wind up in juvie?”
I tensed. His demeanor. The way he talked to me. Like he’d known me for years. And he used “little thing” like a term of endearment. I knew I wasn’t imagining it. He did.
I opened my mouth to reply then shuddered at the sound of my name.
“Cadence Miller!” Officer Clements yelled.
“Shit,” I whispered, and turned around.