ARC Review….In Too Deep by Michelle Kemper Brownlow

In Too Deep releases June 6

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Gracie has just finished her freshman year of college in Memphis when she takes a job at a local pizza joint in her home town of McKenzie, Tennessee. She is the epitome of innocence when she meets Noah. Noah is unabashedly handsome, intriguingly reckless and just cocky enough to be sexy. Gracie’s instincts tell her to stay far away from him and based on the stories she hears from her co-workers he leaves broken hearts in his wake. But still, she can’t explain her fascination with him.

Noah puts aside his bad boy ways when what he thought was a summer crush has him unexpectedly falling in love. But soon after Gracie transfers to UT Knoxville to be with Noah, their unexpected love becomes riddled with anger, deceit and humiliation.

Jake, Noah’s former roommate and Gracie’s best friend, can no longer be a bystander. Gracie’s world falls out from beneath her and when she breaks she turns to Jake for strength. As Jake talks her through a decision she’s not yet strong enough to make, together they uncover a truth so ugly neither of them is prepared for its fallout. Will Jake pull her to the surface or is Gracie Jordan finally In Too Deep?


My Review:

I am beyond lucky to have received an advance copy of In Too Deep, the debut work from Michelle Kemper Brownlow. This was a story that pulled me in and didn’t let go….and I loved it!

Gracie is a happy, innocent, southern good girl with a great life, a great boyfriend with her whole college career, and life, ahead of her.  Everything is going well in her life until she meets Noah, the typical handsome, rugged bad boy with a reputation that screams: STAY AWAY.  As much as Gracie knows all about Noah, and his frat-boy ways, she also knows he shows her a softer side of himself that no one has ever had the honor of seeing.  It’s a rare glimpse into his soul she knows she can’t resist and isn’t willing to run from, no matter how bad his reputation is.

Noah has had his fair share of girls…but there’s something about Gracie.  She makes him want to be a better person.  He realizes he’s fallen for her….hard and fast. The problem is, he’s been the bad boy for so long, it’s all he knows.  The revolving door of girls, the parties, the booze and the cocky attitude that comes with it.  Hell bent on getting Gracie, he’s willing to do whatever it takes.  But when Gracie transfers to his college, even the best laid plans can crumble….and soon Noah’s ability in excelling at being a bad boy prick outshines his efforts to be the kind of guy she needs and deserves.

Gracie and Noah have a road ahead that will end up taking a toll on emotions, friendships and will end up crushing each of them in very different ways.

As I had said earlier in this review, this book pulled me in and didn’t let go until I read the very last word on the very last page….even as I write this review, Gracie and Noah’s story is with me.  This was a high emotion, gut wrenching, beautifully bittersweet love story…one that I’m sure many of us can relate to.  It’s a story about being so in love with a person that no matter what their faults are, the want and need to believe in that person trumps all reason…even if you know deep down inside what you are fighting for simply isn’t worth it.  I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to scream at Noah, and Gracie, while reading.  Michelle has done such an amazing job at transporting the reader into Gracie and Noah’s world and feeling all of the twisted emotions in this story.  I audibly gasped and was actually talking to Gracie while I was reading….I’m not sure if I have ever done that before with a book!  I was so utterly conflicted while reading Gracie and Noah’s relationship and the up’s and down’s that came with it.  And let me say, they were some great up’s and dismal down’s…but I loved it and I felt it.  I felt the hurt and the pain and the happiness.  Gracie grew up before our eyes, thanks to some amazing friends, and I was cheering for her to become the woman she had the potential to be from the very first chapter.  Noah is a sad soul, who I was also cheering for…but there are some things that he did that I had to put my megaphone away for.  The back and forth between them took a toll on me, but in my opinion, that’s the sign of a good book.  I want to feel something in the hours after I’ve finished reading, and Michelle has done that with In Too Deep.

I was a nervous wreck for the ending.  Noah had pulled my back into his corner many, many times throughout the story that I was truly conflicted with if I wanted them together or not.  Well, I won’t spoil it, but I will say I was relieved and delighted with how it played out.  Perfect, if you ask me.

Thank you, Michelle, for an amazing story.  I look forward to reading more from you and I know you have a bright future bringing us your amazing writing talent!

* I received a copy of this ebook in exchange for an honest review

4andahalflovesFour-and-a-half Loves


About the author:

Michelle Kemper Brownlow has been a storyteller her entire life. Her debut was on the high school cheerleading bus granting requests to re-tell her most embarrassing moments for a gaggle of hysterical squadmates.
Earning her Bachelor’s degree from Penn State University in Art Education and then marrying her very own “Jake,” she moved to Binghamton, NY where she taught high school. After having two children she quit work and finished her Master’s degree in Elementary Education at Binghamton University.
The Brownlow family of four moved to Michelle’s hometown of Morgantown, PA while the children were still quite young. A few years after moving, her family grew by one when they welcomed a baby into their home through the gift of adoption. The family still resides in PA, just miles from where that high school cheer bus was parked.
Michelle has been an artist for as long as she can remember, always choosing pencils and crayons over toys and puzzles. As a freelance illustrator, her simple characters play the starring roles in numerous emergent reader books published by Reading Reading Books.
“Writing is my way of making sense of the world. When I give my characters life on the pages I write, it frees up space in my mind to welcome in new stories that are begging to be told,” says Brownlow.

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