This book was a rollercoaster of emotion, and I loved it!
This is the story of Zoey. Zoey's not had any good parental guidance, and has essentially been on her own since she was 16. She yearns for her mother's love, while knowing her mother seems to lack in the maternal department. Zoey's best friends are Addy and Maya. Maya married young due to pregnancy, and has some problems come up and has to rely on her friends for help.
Kellen is Maya's brother-in-law who everyone loves because he's a nice guy - except for Zoey. Zoey is a bit of a pistol; when she gets angry, she doesn't hide it. She doesn't sugar coat anything. The f bomb flows out of her mouth easily when she feels it is necessary.
After years of hating Kellen, and initially disliking him more as he comes to Maya's aid, Zoey finds herself drawn to Kellen. Kellen is also a bit confused - how can he be attracted to this volatile, hateful redhead? Zoey tries to resist, because she does start caring for Kellen and wants to avoid hurting him.
The two finally decide to give it a shot. And the story that follows is at times heart breaking, at times makes you angry, and many times, makes you laugh. Zoey tends not to think before she opens her mouth and lets her temper fly. I'll be honest with you - at times, I absolutely loved this woman, and at others, I wanted to throttle her. She didn't piss me off so much that I didn't like her all the way around. Zoey is human, and fallible. We all have our moments where we aren't likeable when we get upset. We all have friends who are the same way, yet it doesn't keep you from caring about them.
Carter Ashby has done a wonderful job with this story. You have your love story with its struggles, you have supporting characters that you like and whose storylines mean just as much to you. You have the "bad guy" who you absolutely hate - well, add a "bad girl" that you also hate as well. You have friends who stand up to each other when one of them is being shitty.
This is a MUST READ story for this year; plus, it is set around the holidays which made it even more fun for me to read.