Monday, 3 March 2014

Down London Road by Samantha Young

About the book
Down London Road is the second new adult book in the ‘On Dublin Street’ series by Samantha Young. The book was published by Penguin on 9th May 2013 and the book is 464 pages long.

Johanna has always been the one to take care of her family and especially her younger brother Cole. Her father is nowhere to be seen and her mother an alcoholic so she’s been acting like Cole’s mother for as long as she can remember. God knows where they would be without her. Jo isn’t rich though and she makes her money working two jobs and dating men with money, as shallow as that sounds, it works.

Even with a boyfriend she actually really likes and takes care of her, she cannot deny the attraction to new bartender Cameron. Her stomach flips whenever she sees him and she’s definitely tempted but knows she has to put her family’s needs first. If it wasn’t hard enough working that close to someone you’re attracted to and can’t have, it gets even harder when Cameron moves downstairs from Jo and begins to break down every single wall she’s every built up!

What I thought
On Dublin Street was the first book in this new adult series and I couldn’t wait for the second instalment. Although it is in the same series, the book follows different protagonists from the first book.

Johanna has a pretty tough life. Her mother is an alcoholic who can’t take care of herself let alone Johanna and her younger brother Cole so it is up to Jo to pay the bills and the feed everyone. Jo had to leave school in order to support her family so she’s determined that Cole will turn out better; everything she does is with him in mind. In On Dublin Street, we get snippets of Jo’s character and I have to say, I wasn’t impressed at first. She openly states that she dates men with money and I didn’t like her for it. However, Down London Road gives a lot more insight into Jo’s life and the reasons for what she does. I had to admire her for working so hard and supporting her family, even when it wasn’t her responsibility.

Cameron is the love interest in this book and Jo meets him at an art showing that she attends with her boyfriend. Cameron comes across as a complete arse to begin with and although Jo is quickly attracted to him, she also cannot stand him! He also judged her on first appearances and wasn’t afraid to show his dislike for the way she lived her life. It isn’t until Cam begins to work with Jo that he realises that he was wrong in judging her and can sense something much deeper is going on. It is only by accident that he finds out what is really going on in her life. Even though he’s pretty horrible to Jo to begin with, you can easily see the attraction on his side and the sexual tension between the two.

As the plot unfolds and Jo and Cam become quite close friends (as he moves in downstairs), the secrets come out slowly. Cam is there for Jo whenever she needs him, even if she doesn’t want to have to turn to him. Cam becomes a really close friend to Cole also and that was such a lovely friendship to see. As Cole doesn’t have a father figure in his life, Cam becomes the friend he can talk guy stuff with and also someone to turn to when things go wrong at home. Not only do we see a friendship blossom between Cam, Cole and Jo but there is the wonderful sister/ brother relationship to love! Jo and Cole are extremely close and really look out for one another, even though Cole is younger than Jo.

The plot of this book does not only surround the building romance between Jo and Cam but the lives of each character. There are some really surprising twists and turns throughout and most of them extremely exciting. I loved how dramatic and intense the story was and it kept me gripped the whole way through. Although not completely about the romance, that definitely helped. Jo and Cam have a quite sweet relationship once it gets going but is also explosive once it gets into the bedroom. I really enjoyed the contrast between soft and sweet and hard and intense!

Down London Road was actually better than On Dublin Street for me and I can’t wait to read whatever Samantha Young does next. 

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