Review: Random, by Lark O’Neal


Category: New Adult
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Warnings: None
Pages: 300


New Adult Romance

Life is random…

19-year-old Jess Donovan knows better than most that life is random. Her mom is dead, and she’s on her own, patching together a living as a waitress when a car crashes through the restaurant where she works. In two seconds, she loses her job, watches her best friend hauled away in an ambulance…and meets Tyler Smith, one of the hottest, most fascinating—and mysterious guys she’s ever met.

Both for the good and the bad…

Within days, Jess is swept up into the mesmerizing force that is Tyler. Their every touch sizzles, every kiss dissolves them both, and the sex is…fierce. But there’s more to Tyler than his hypnotic eyes. He’s adrift, too, and his body—and his soul—are covered with scars. How can she find herself with a guy who is lost himself?

Until you take charge….

Jess is determined to find her way, and make a life that is better than the one she was given. But how?

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About the Author:

Lark O’Neal has waited tables, dispensed drugs to schizophrenics, loaded trucks, answered phones in a call center and tended bar, but the only thing she ever really wanted was to write novels. She writes new adult contemporary romance, Going the Distance trilogy (Random, #1 will be released November 12), and paranormal young adult, The OtherLands Chronicles (#1 released Jan 15).

She has won many awards for her books, and writes full time from Colorado.

Author’s website


I received this novel after I requested on Netgalley. It doesn’t influence my review.

I just finished and maybe I should wait a little longer before writing my review, thinking more about the aspects of this novel, but the fact is that I’m very disappointed even if there are good things going on for this book. That’s why I’m rating a little higher than I first thought I would.

The main issue here is that I couldn’t connect with the characters, couldn’t enjoy the romance or the pain they felt. Nothing. I read the story, always feeling a distance from it. It’s not often that I can’t connect with the characters to this extent. And that’s very, very disappointing.

Otherwise, the plot is not too bad even if things are not explored to their fullest, in my opinion. It’s like I could almost touch the amazing that this story could have been without ever reaching it because something was missing to make it all click.

Yet, it’s very different from other New Adult novels you can find out there and it’s a damn good thing. But different isn’t always enough when the characters are not that insteresting despite their issues, their painful past. And to be honest, I was expecting an amazing chemistry between the main characters after reading the blurb, but in the end, I am left wondering if I missed something. Again, it’s because I didn’t connect with the characters. This novel lacks in emotions to be a hit for me. And many times I had a feeling that the dialogues didn’t sound ‘true’.

Believe me, I hate to write such a review because I’m pretty sure that other readers will enjoy this novel as it is not badly written. It’s just not what I love in that kind of books and I’m left…bored.

The secondary characters are not enough characterized in my opinion and it makes the whole story and the environment flat, which doesn’t help when you already have a hard getting into the story. Henry is interesting, but he’s almost too flat. Rick disturbingly intrigued me and I’m annoyed that his role was so short in the story. He would have been a good addition to put some more density to the whole story. Instead, Rick is too much of the useful one to get the story to move on twice. And Virginia could have been perfect to bring a huge dose of emotions, but it’s almost too clinical.

Also, the ending is fast, more told than showed. The big revelation about Tyler is not even well brought or used to create a real climax that is always important in books. The end is rushed when the whole book is quite slow.

So, you get it, I’m not all that thrilled after reading Random and it bothers me. I hate writing such a review, but I can’t hide the fact that this story is a miss for me even though the author has qualities.

Who read this book? What do you think about Tyler? Hot stuff or not?


20131112-191943.jpg 2.5


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