Book Review: Third Degree by Julie Cross

18590125 This was a very different take on the New Adult genre and it was a great change from the typical books I’ve read in this genre. I love being taken by surprise when I pick up a book and this one did in a few ways.

Isabel Jenkins, “child prodigy”, has always known what she wants to do with her life. It’s pretty obvious since she has been on the same path since was twelve. When that path falls apart right when it should all be coming together and she should be starting her medical residency program, Isabel falls apart even more than she was before. Ironic since that path falling apart involved her failing her emotional readiness test – showing that she is not ready to deal with patients on her own.

Isabel chooses to re-enroll as a college Freshman to see if she can re-learn how to be a teenager and an average person with feelings she considers normal. Her RA, Marshall is on the scene to help her out with all the things she doesn’t understand.

What I was expecting when I started this book was somewhat more of a typical New Adult book, with a dewy eyed girl having an emotional or tragic past, needing a heroic and mysterious guy to fix all of her problems. However, what I got was a quirky and lovable heroine in Isabel. She is anything but weak, and while she is working on her emotional issues those are needing to find her emotions and that leads to some really funny moments and surprisingly touching ones as well.

My favorite aspect of this book is how Marshall and Isabel’s relationship evolved. It was completely unexpected to me and it really worked well within the plot and characters. I loved how it was a slow evolution but when it happened it was still not something I saw coming.

This isn’t a book I’ve heard a lot about but I think it should be. I would say it’s up there with other great New Adult books and I would definitely recommend if you like this category but haven’t read anything refreshing in a while!

4 Stars

~Melinda

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