Reagan Landry is months away from college graduation, but instead of excitement, she's frozen by the fear of letting go — of her ex-boyfriend, of the comfortable life she created for herself in Portland, of the years-long search for her older sister who abandoned her as a homeless teen. When she’s finally forced to decide what's next, Reagan is met with another complication — her ex’s best friend, Noah Burke, who seems determined that she embraces what could be instead of what has been.
Drunkenly hooking up with his best friend’s ex, Reagan, is a mistake, but being secretly in love with her is so much worse when things seem one-sided. A disenchanted frat boy about to fail out of college, Noah has been living out someone else’s dream after a horrible accident five years earlier. Just when he thinks he's lost any chance he has with Reagan, she surprises him by agreeing to spend the summer together at his family's ranch in Montana.
And suddenly what started out as a complication between them becomes serious...until the past starts ripping apart their future.
Rating: 4 Stars
Book Title: Anything More Than Now
Author: Rebecca Paula
Release Date: 2015
What happens when two people with serious baggage fall for each other? Well, they avoid their problems by distracting themselves with the other. At least, that’s what happens for Noah and Reagan. Noah, who spends a lot of time at the library working on writing his books (he’s a published author), can’t help but notice Reagan, who works at the front desk. Little does he know he hasn’t missed the attention of Reagan, who has been eyeing him up as well. That is, until she meets his best friend, Beau, and ends up dating him.
Fast forward a couple semesters and Beau and Reagan are no longer a couple, but still living in the same complex, a cozy little bungalow that Reagan rents with Beau and a few other people. As if seeing her ex on the regular isn’t bad enough, she’s just learned that he’s dating one of their roommates. For Reagan though, she knows her main focus needs to be getting through to graduation and scraping together enough money for a private investigator.
o Noah: Don’t even get me started. Besides the fact that Noah is your average college bad boy (full of tattoos and even a few piercings) which is typically enough to make me swoon right there, he’s also into books. Shortly after getting out of juvie and writing his first book, which ends up being quite popular, Noah decides to continue writing under a pseudonym, which few people know about (Beau is one of the few). Afraid that his past might catch up to his new life, Noah refuses to put his name on his books, for fear of letting down his fans and perhaps even his family, who could have a hard time reconciling the old Noah with the new and improved version. I loved that he was willing to pursue an education based on his mom’s wishes, even if that requires getting a degree in poetry, something he’s never really understood too well. I knew from the start that Noah had a big heart, despite the cold front he tends to put up around others. Some of my favorite scenes at the beginning were when Noah and Reagan got into it. Their characters were like lighting and thunder and the banter between them was always intense but really hilarious to read.
o The Plot: While I always enjoy a good love story, I like reading NA and even YA books that have more than just the typical whirlwind romance taking place. In Anything More Than Now, not only does Reagan have to deal with the new friendship she has with Noah, but she’s also intent on finding a lost family member, one that disappeared years ago. I just loved the whole plot of this story and how interesting the investigation portion of the book kept everything.
o The Realness: For lack of a better word, I LOVED how realistic this book was. Imagine this: protagonists, with REAL problems! While it may seem like Reagan and Noah have very rough pasts that they are working through, especially at such a young age, I think there are a lot of readers out there who have went through similar experiences who can relate. And even if you aren’t one of those people, I think this book is beneficial to read in that it can give you a whole new appreciation and perspective on the lives of people who DO have to go through tough times such as what Noah and Reagan deal with. It was refreshing to read a book with characters that don’t everything laid out before them and I found myself feeling for Reagan and Noah throughout the entire book.
Despite this being the first book I’ve had the chance to read in the Sutton College series by Rebecca Paula, I really enjoyed Anything More Than Now. You don’t need to have read the first one in the series in order to read this one, as they are more of standalones than a continuation. Fans of Jay Crownover and Dahlia Adler, I think you’ll really enjoy this new release by Paula! I know I did! And I can’t wait to hear what you all think of Noah! I for one, am head over heels. Paula, can you send me my own Noah? Thanks!:)