The Year We Fell Down (CBR7 #67)

I rely wholeheartedly on the advice of fellow Romance readers as I continue to broaden my reading horizons. There is simply too much good stuff available to waste time with the bad stuff. Cannonball Read has been hit with a couple of reviews for Sarina Bowen’s The Ivy Years series, a Contemporary/New Adult romance series set at a prestigious university in Connecticut. The reviews have been nearly unanimously positive. I of course downloaded the first one to my Nook and when trapped without my copy of Persepolis I started reading this on my phone. It is a testament to how good it was that I continued to read it on my phone (which I don’t like to do, but emergencies happen) until I finished it today.

While The Year We Fell Down fits itself in with almost all good genre romance novels out there right now by following the pacing and tropes we’re expecting, it also dunks us into a portion of the world we might not be expecting and is unflinchingly honest about it, or as much as it can be in 200 short pages. You see, our protagonists have their meet cute in the accessible dorm on their college campus. Corey Callahan suffered a spinal cord injury which has left her unable to walk unaided or have sensation in her legs and Adam Hartley broke his leg in two places and will spend the next several months healing. Both were meant to be playing for their school’s hockey team, neither will do so.

Each character also brings other baggage to the table, and in perhaps my favorite saying these characters share, they get to shoveling the shit. They are a believable pair, dealing with mostly believable issues in a completely believable way. This is good storytelling. There are a few dings against the book, focused heavily on the fact that for the life of me I often couldn’t remember the first names of our two main characters (they refer to each other almost exclusively by last name, which itself doesn’t bother me).  I’m excited to see how the stories continue and am excited that Hartley’s best friend Bridger is the protagonist in the next in the series.  While the dating stuff was cute, I really fell for these characters when they all went to Hartley’s mom’s house for Thanksgiving and I’m excited to dig more deeply into the character of Bridger that we were given a glimpse of. I’ll be ordering the rest of the series immediately, and suggest you probably just buy the whole set like Mrs. Julien suggests.

This book was read and reviewed as part of the charitable Cannonball Read.

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About Katie

Museum educator, caffiene junkie, book lover, student of history, overall goofball.

6 thoughts on “The Year We Fell Down (CBR7 #67)

  1. Aww these guys sound great! I’m so with you, so many great books, gotta keep an eye on reviews to make sure you get the good ones.

  2. […] school seniors. College, fine, that works for me. So when I reviewed the Contemporary/New Adult The Year We Fell Down I had no trouble with the age of the characters or believing their life in college. Which is what I […]

  3. […] be found in darker, grittier fiction – not the Romance Novel department. Bridger, who we met in The Year We Fell Down, is in his junior year of college studying for Bachelors and Masters Degrees simultaneously. He’s […]

  4. […] such relatively heavy topics and subjects. As I’ve discussed previously The Year We Hid Away and The Year We Fell Down each tackle heavy topics with a deft hand, and The Understatement of the Year, the third full novel […]

  5. […] Bowen was tackling new adult feminist romance with intense, relatable, and realistic characters. The four full length novels and one novella are indicative of some of the best storytelling that is out in […]

  6. […] The Year We Fell Down by Sarina Bowen (The Ivy Years #1) […]

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