Book Review – Checked Again by Jennifer Jamelli

by Maryse on June 15, 2014 · 0 comments

in My Book Reviews

Checked Again (Checked Series Book 2)
I just HAD to read this one as soon as I finished book #1 (considering how it ended – see my review). My heart!! I totally *clutched* my chest with that last line. What a poignant, kind of hurty, ending, and I was just lucky enough that this one had just been released. I didn’t have to suffer for long.

And I enjoyed #2, but I think it’s more of an in-between “read”. Yes, of course it’s #2 in a trilogy, so the “in-between” status is obvious, but this one didn’t freak me out the way #1 did. Not that #1 was all that crazy or anything. Can’t be that crazy when it focuses on a character that is so OCD that every single detail in her life is controlled to a T. Can’t be that crazy, right?

But…with all of that intense control, comes “life”. And when life happens, chaos (or in my opinion, in her case… mostly “normal” things) happens. And when “normal” life happens and dares cross an “OCD’s” path, all hell breaks loose. And that is what I love about this author’s writing. ‘Cause if I re-arrange what I just read (the traumatic event that is causing such chaos and utter *crazy*), and place myself from the outside looking in, I’m shaking my head in shock over this poor girl’s reaction, and her desperate need for help. ASAP!!!!! Usually, just reading from that perspective (outside looking in) normally keeps me at arms length, and at times? Bored. But in this case, I find myself glued.

BUT!!! The author wrote this character’s life (and thoughts) in such a way, that I became her. Her horror, her chaos, her agony… becomes mine. I feel it. I’m FREAKED OUT. I’m dying (or think I could be dying) right along with her. Of course a part of me is all… OMG what is her problem. Sure it’s gross but not that bad!! But the part of me that is in her head (or her in MY head) totally “gets” it.

And while these aren’t action-packed, scary thrillers, or incredibly romantically angsty (loaded in bad boys and their antics), these books have enough of something (everything?) to keep me reading (and enjoying). Don’t forget, I love autobiographies, and this sort of reads like one.

But what it DOES have that we normally love is a SWEET, gorgeous, GOOD guy doctor, trying to ease her through her trauma, and help her deal so she can function properly in society. We’ve got a fun, silly-sweet heroine that has everything going for her (good looks, good family, seemingly good past, great academic achievements, and an excellent, caring, compassionate entourage). But  she’s so lost in her OCD needs, that she simply can’t… live. It’s destroying her, and her chances at fulfilling her incredible potential, for life,love, career and utter happiness. And for some morbid reason… THAT excites my reading needs. ‘Cause I just don’t see it happening for her, even though she is surrounded by EVERYTHING that can make her happy. She just can’t break out of her personal mental prison, and I can’t stop watching this train-wreck.

Now I’m gonna admit (as I started saying earlier in this review), this one’s a bit slow going. We’re mostly stuck in her head, and her surrounding and her OCD issues, over and over and over and over and over and over and over again. And over again. ;)

Her gorgeous doctor/almost boyfriend is having a hard time dealing with his feelings for her, and his fear for his inability to help her (due to his own past issues with his mom and her own OCD hell). And now, Callie is alone, and it almost seems as if his leaving her was the catalyst into a more sever version of her disease. Almost healing… to absolute downward spiral. And this is a look into (and a LIVING of) that life for the reader.

But even if it’s kind of repetitive, and not as much “outside” entourage in her life as book #1 (which introduces tons of dynamic to the story), I still enjoyed this. I wouldn’t scream it from the rooftops, ’cause if you started here, you might be… well… indifferent. Or maybe not. There was still plenty of crazy stuff to keep my fear of OCD-reaction nerves on edge, as she finally left her house, and as her doctor finally came back into the picture. But it takes a bit of OCD-seclusion before we get there.

Still though, there is just something about Callie’s story that has me caring for each and every one of these characters, and I can’t help but think we’re in for a *boom* of sorts. And I will absolutely continue this series as soon as book #3 is available.

Oh yes… how it ends? Cliffhanger like the first one sort of had? Yep. BUT!!! One I can live with, even though I thought to myself… Ohhhhh WHOA. I even re-read the last chapter now that I “knew” ’cause of the last line what was going on, and it had even more impact. The first go-’round of that last chapter was a bit confusing, but now that I know? Yah. *ooomph!*

This author has a way with book endings.

3 stars! <— 3 stars… but I’m absolutely reading book #3 as soon as it’s released. I have high hopes!

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