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Out of Frame by Megan Erickson

OutofFrame I’m a fan of Megan Erickson, and this series in particular, so I figured this book would be good, but it really exceeded my expectations. I loved it. There was really nothing I didn’t like about this.

This book is… a bit of a departure from the first two books, I guess. One of our main characters, Quinn, is a collage senior, taking a spring break cruise with his best friend Jess. Our other main character, J.R., is a reality TV star, who’s now on the same cruise as Quinn. Quinn is kind of quiet and safety conscious and has never really done anything exciting or of his own choosing. J.R. is angry and frustrated, and has to hide who he really is in order to protect his job. But when they meet, these two characters kind of bring out the best in each other.

So, we don’t have the cross country journeys of the two books before (I liked reading about those, but it was nice to have a totally different setting) and this book was missing a lot of the heavier angst and stress of the first two books‐ although, I’m going to say, there was a still a good deal of angst. I was glad there was‐ I’m a sucker for angst, so a nice, balanced dose of it never goes wrong for me, and it didn’t here, either.

And overall, this was a just a super, super enjoyable read. It was so easy to slip into, to get to know the characters. The writing, as usual, is smooth and neat, as well as funny and exciting and, where it needs to be, a bit dramatic. I was never bored, but never overly stressed, either. I liked both of the characters and I appreciated how individual and well‐rounded they felt. I loved the different issues they had‐ J.R. was not only really interesting, in particular, but I felt a really important character‐ and I liked how they dealt with those problems.

The romance was really sweet, but, at the same time, very believable. I really liked how neither of the characters depended on the other to make them happy. J.R. didn’t want Quinn to do anything that would hurt him, in the long run, in order for them to stay together, and Quinn felt the same about J.R. They had to depend on themselves to solve their problems before they could get their relationship right, and that really worked for me.

And the cruise ship setting was interesting and fun. I’m not much of a party person, and honestly, a cruise ship like this sounds like the stuff of nightmares for me, so getting to read about this and kind of live it vicariously was pretty cool.

I can’t recommend this book and this series enough. Incredibly enjoyable, but packed with a lot of real life issues, all of which are handled really carefully and well. I’m not sure this book, just because of how it was a little more fun than the two before, had quite as much of an emotional impact on me‐ but in other ways, I liked it better. It just really depends on what you’re in the mood for at the time. But this is well worth reading.   -SEL







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