Author: Taylor L. Stimac
Date of Publication: June 7, 2013
Formats Available: Paperback, E-book
Buy This Book: Amazon
Synopsis: When fifteen year old Tegan Summers catches the eye of local radio personality Rake Johnson, she finally feels like a normal teenage girl. Everything about their relationship feels perfect, except for the unexplained presence that makes her believe she should stay away.
On the same day she meets Rake, another man makes his way into her life: Officer Damien Sanders. His mysterious and often intense warnings urge Tegan to trust him and to end her relationship with Rake. As she works to uncover Damien's motive, she begins to realize that he may end up playing a vital role in her future.
Discover what Tegan must do in TRUSTED, the debut novel by author Taylor L. Stimac.
Would you trust a stranger?
Trusted is a very difficult novel to review; on one hand it was very well written and entertaining in its own right but on the other hand there were just some parts of this story that made me uncomfortable and some that made me unable to take any of it seriously.
The strongest part of this novel was how well written it was. There were a few awkward sentences here and there but overall the story was very readable and flowed really well. It was never a challenge for me to understand what the author was saying and I could tell that Stimac put a lot of effort into writing this novel and she really did do a fantastic job with the writing itself. Even though I didn't sense much of a plot the characters were very well developed and Stimac threw in enough events to keep the novel interesting. I was never bored by this novel, but there were just some aspects that I was a little uncomfortable with.
Despite how well written the novel was let's start by addressing the things that I just couldn't take seriously about this novel. The number one being the age difference between Tegan and Rake. When the story starts Tegan is fifteen, and though she later turns sixteen during the novel, that is still a huge age difference from Rake's nineteen years. While three (pretty much four) years isn't much in someone's twenties or thirties it's a huge difference when the characters are in their teens. Not only is it a huge age difference but Tegan's parents aren't even the least bit concerned that their daughter is dating a much older boy, as soon as she turned the magical sixteen it seemed that her parents didn't care at all who she went out with. The age difference between Tegan and Rake is the same as that between me and my sister and I know that I wouldn't be okay with my sister dating a boy my age; maybe it's just me but even though the romance was cute the age difference was just always in the back of my mind bothering me.
Then we are introduced to officer Damien Sanders. While the relationship between Rake and Tegan kind of bothered me because of the age difference I admit that it was cute and in the end I really did like Rake's personality. Officer Sanders is where this novel really started to make me really uncomfortable. A full on stalker complete with the creepy personality and obsession with Tegan he was the number one reason I gave this novel the rating I did. The worst part was that not only was Officer Sanders a creepy stalker who was "in love" with Tegan but she felt attracted to him in return. I could have dealt with Officer Sanders being a stalker, in fact it might have made for an interesting story line, but the fact that she felt attraction to him in return was what really turned me off to this novel.
Rating this novel was difficult for me, because of how well written it was I wanted to give it a higher rating but at the same time I felt so uncomfortable by Officer Sanders (especially after the ending) that I felt obligated to knock it down a little bit. Stimac truly is a talented writer and I can understand how someone would really enjoy this novel; however it just wasn't for me.
* I received a copy of this novel from the author/publisher/ publicist in exchange for a free and honest review and received no monetary compensation for this post.