Cait’s ARC Review of “The N Word” by Michelle MacQueen and Ann Maree Craven

By: Cait Marie

*I received a free ARC of this book from the authors for my honest review.*

This is book two in the series. Read my review of book one, The F Word, here.

One tragic accident causes a group of friends to drift apart and deal with grief and guilt as they move on with their lives.

After the accident, with Peyton dealing with her grief and Cameron away at rehab for his leg, Nari Won Song felt alone in the world. Addison and Avery have fully emerged themselves into the popular crowd, completely ignoring her. Except when they’re teasing and calling her a nerd.

Cameron is back, and Peyton is moving on, together they’re finding their way back to happiness. Nari is still struggling to find her place in the world, though. The people of Twin Rivers know Nari as the timid, shy nerd, but what they don’t know is that she’s secretly a rock star.

Along with Peyton’s brother, Julian, one of the well-loved football players, Beckett (Becks), and his younger sister, Wylder, Nari performs in gigs around local towns in a band called Anonymous. They’re four students who don’t normally associate with one another, but together they have created something amazing.

When Avery breaks up with his popular girlfriend, Meghan, he hates all the pity he gets from his friends. To prove he is fine, he comes up with a plan. He proposes Nari pretend to be his girlfriend in exchange for tutoring her. He wants to show he’s moved on, she doesn’t want people to know that their quiet nerd is struggling with school, and together they try and get back to the people they were before the accident.

Alright, if you read my review of The F Word, you know how attached I already am to these characters. I loved the first book because of how real and relatable it was, but I loved this second book just as much… maybe even a tiny bit more. My favorite tropes are childhood friends-to-more and enemies-to-more, and this combined them both perfectly!

The whole story was so heartfelt. While I could directly relate to the two big issues in the first book, I could still relate to this book as well. No, I’m not a secret rock star, but I have always struggled to figure out who I am and where I fit in. Depending on who I am with, I tend to change my personality. I know this is a common occurrence, but in high school and my first attempt at college, it was extreme in my case. I often felt like two different people, which is what Nari struggles with throughout this book. Plus, like her, I don’t cuss. Every time they tease her for saying “I’m a poop” or something makes me laugh because it is 100% me.

“There are different parts of you, but it doesn’t mean one is fake.”

Michelle MacQueen & Ann Maree Craven, The N Word

Avery, on the other hand, is rude and popular, but deep down he’s still the sweet guy Nari grew up with. His tough exterior comes from his internal struggle with the accident, as well as dealing with an alcoholic father who expects too much from him. I have a huge soft spot for characters like this, and I always will.

Then there are the new characters: Becks, Nicky, and Wylder. We don’t get to know Wylder super well, but the other two are in the story quite a bit. Nicky is Avery’s younger brother, and Becks is Avery’s best friend. Both are wonderful characters, whom I love with all my heart. In fact, Becks is now my favorite character in the series. He’s a popular football player, but he’s nice to everyone and funny. I want more about him!

The N Word was very well written. Like the first book, it felt very real and everything was paced well. I really love the dual point of views in this series. It gives a great look into both characters.

I am absolutely loving this series and cannot wait for more. I just really need a Becks book in my life… but until then, I’ll be reading about Julian and Addison next in The C Word, which releases this week (July 11, 2019)!

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