Bad Reputation

Bad Reputation - K.B.  Nelson *A free copy of this ebook was provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*. Thank you, NetGalley!

Review in SPANISH (y con videos de Cruel Intentions, para variar): en La Loca de los Libros.

"I'm not begging for understanding or empathy, I know exactly who-and what-I am. But like a house of cards built of nothing but face cards, I know the Queen will always rest atop the throne. And I know as soon as my reign is over, I'll become a nobody again-just another useless two of cards.

I have no intention of ever losing my crown."


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This book had an excellent premise and a great potential plot.

Basically, the story could be considered a "Cruel Intentions" remake- and by that I'm obviously referring to Cruel Intentions, the movie with Sara Michelle Gellar, and NOT the original movie Dangerous Liasons with Glenn Close, and obviously NOT the book that gave "inspiration" for all of the above, the excellent [b:Les Liaisons Dangereuses|49540|Les Liaisons Dangereuses|Pierre Choderlos de Laclos|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1298425654s/49540.jpg|3280025] by Choderlos de Laclos (I dare you to say that name out loud, I DARE YOU!).

We have a main character, Apple...

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Her equally "evil" bff, Brick..

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And the "victim", professor Jensen...

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Only that in this novel, the genders are swapped. So, basically, Apple would be Sebastian, the bad boy with a kind heart (in the end); Brick would be the manipulative Kathryn; and the Anette in this bet would be the "high and mighty" Jensen sort of, since he turns out to be not "pure" at all.

The novel started great. Of course, I might be biased since Cruel Intentions was one of my favorite movies when I was a teen, and the tropes that film used (and, in consequence, this novel as well) were my favorites.

You know: (A) THE BET (b) The Alpha Bitch: Kathryn/Apple (c) Villain Protagonists and (d) The boy/girl mean team .

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All this put together in a New Adult/Erotic novel and Bad Reputation had the perfect premise and the perfect main characters. What could possibly go wrong?

Well, a few things.

I'm not going to get into many detail because I don't want to spoil it for you (and I totally think readers of the genre should read it); however, my main problem was this: I felt that the Jensen character was not very well-written.

Why? You may ask. or not, whatever. Well, First, he is presented as the cold/bitter leader of a purity group, and we are supposed to think of him as, well, since we are in te subject, an Annette... (at least, at the beginning, that's the vibe I got.)

Remember Annette? She was the responsible girl; the educated, charming girl who stood up for her beliefs (no matter how ridiculous they were); y'know, the basic and outdated "pure girl"; so smart and so innocent she, eventually, wins the bad boy's heart; the Madonna to the "whore" and "evil" Kathryn. The ultimate and extremely-annoying good girl.

Well, the thing is, Jensen was definitely NOT the Anette I'd expected him to be. (And I don't think he was suppossed to be one.) He was -kinda- introduced as one, but turned out to be a the opposite. He was more close to being a Sebastian (without the "evilness") than the leader of a purity group (In my opinion, of course.)

He is a college professor who has sex with a student after just a few days of starting working with her. I mean, talk about ....

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right?

- Everything happened way too fast for my taste: the insta-lust, the insta-love. I mean, after only two weeks Jensen and Apple were already declaring their love for each other!! I was expecting A LOT more of sexual tension; I was expecting Jensen to be a LOT more difficult than he turned out to be. I wanted the challenge Jensen appeared to be in the beginning, but he was just...easy (?). Completely at odds with what he was preaching at first- seemed out of character to me.

So, sadly, what started in SUCH a great manner, in such an "original" manner (sort of), eventually gave way to the usual insta-lust/love and a ridiculous resolution.


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And it could have been so much better than it was.

GREAT CHARACTERS (Apple and Brick)✓
GREAT PREMISE✓
GREAT DIALOGUES✓

"...'You are so bitter' He laughs because it's either a joke to him, or most likely because he's prepared to revel in my misery.
'You're wrong, but let's pretend you're right. Why the fuck wouldn't I be? If you win, it's not because you're better than me . It's because society gave you a hugely unfair head start, Men are expected to fuck everyone and everything. It's the cool thing to do. If I should ever do the same-'
"You do," he points out.
'When I do the same thing, I'm a Goddamn whore. The whole city is ready to gather in town square to stone me to death. I was branded a slut long before I ever even sucked a dick."


...and many of them really funny, too...

"...[Jensen] exhales and cracks a wide smile, showcasing sparkling white teeth that would give a run for his money. "A blowjob or two wouldn'thurt either."
I let out a sigh of relief. 'So much easier-'
'I'm kidding', he snarls and shakes his head again."Something tells me I'm going to regret this.'"


"'So, are you not going to tell me why you came to that meeting?'
'Sometimes,' I say, followed by a pause where I throw my hands in the air, trying to invent some bullshit excuse, 'Jesus talks to me.'
'Apple...' He's not buying it, which is expected because he's an intelligent-presumably-educator.
'Look, I can't help it. I didin't choose to be a prophet of the lord.' If nothing else, I commit to my stories."


Anyway...,

In spite of my problems with this particular novel, I'm still dying to read the next book BRICK'S STORY! . I'm sure it's going to be A LOT better than this first part and and it's surely going to be a Sebastian/Anette situation between Brick and Tyra, DUH I sure hope so, at least.