Title: I Want It That Way by Ann Aguirre
2B Trilogy Book One
Publisher: Harlequin HQN
Genre: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher
Nadia Conrad has big dreams, and she’s determined to make them come true. But between maintaining her college scholarship and working at the local day care to support herself, dating’s the last thing on her mind. Then she moves into a new apartment and meets the taciturn yet irresistible guy in 1B….
Daniel Tyler has grown up too fast. Becoming a single dad at twenty turned his life upside down—and brought him heartache he can’t risk again. Now, as he raises his four-year-old son while balancing a full-time construction management job and night classes, the last thing he wants is noisy students living in the apartment upstairs. But one night, Nadia’s and Ty’s paths cross, and soon they can’t stay away from each other.
The timing is all wrong—but love happens when it happens. And you can’t know what you truly need until you stand to lose it.
I Want It That Way is the delightfully charming first novel in Ann Aguirre’s new adult 2B Trilogy. This engaging series features college roommates and their sometimes rocky road to happily ever after.
I Want It That Way opens with Nadia Conrad and her friends, Lauren, Max and Angus moving from the dorms into a new apartment. Nadia’s interest is immediately piqued by one of the other tenants, Daniel “Ty” Tyler, but he is definitely giving off a “stay away from me” vibe. Not at all put off by his unfriendliness, Nadia soon learns that Ty is a few years older than she is, and he’s juggling work and night classes while raising his four year old son, Sam, on his own (with a lot of help from his parents). She and Ty become friends and their attraction for one another soon spills over into “friends with benefits” territory.
I absolutely adored Nadia and Ty right from the very beginning of I Want It That Way. Nadia is focused on getting her degree and although she always makes time to hang out with her friends, she is serious about her commitment to school and her job. She is sweet and friendly but she is not a pushover. She genuinely cares for her friends and she is quick to offer a shoulder to cry on when they run into problems. Nadia is pretty unflappable and remains friendly and respectful even when someone is behaving like a jerk (cough, Ty, cough 🙂 ). Speaking of Ty, he is wounded by his past and he has a few insecurities but overall, he is a great guy. He is a wonderful father-fiercely devoted and just a tad over protective. Ty is scarred by how things ended with Sam’s mom, and he has no intention of getting involved in a serious relationship.
I love how Ty and Nadia’s relationship develops over the course of the story. They take the time to get to know one another and Ty reveals things to Nadia that he has never admitted to anyone else. Underlying all of their interactions is a strong sexual tension that both work hard to ignore. They respect one another’s boundaries and they set ground rules when they decide to give into their sexual attraction. Their sex scenes are exquisitely sensual but also very sweet. There is a little bit of an “insta-love” feel from Nadia, but for the most part, the change in their relationship from friends to lovers is believable.
The secondary cast of characters is just as well-developed and likable as Nadia and Ty. Lauren and Nadia have been best friends for most of their lives but an unexpected distance forms between them after their move. Lauren’s story is next and I cannot wait to read it. Their roommate Angus is an absolute doll and although he experiences a relationship crises, everything goes fairly smoothly for him. Poor Max gets his heart broken and I am pretty eager for his book as well.
Although classified as a New Adult romance, I Want It That Way is a wonderful novel that will appeal to readers of all ages. There is very little angst and the characters handle their problems with surprising maturity (most of the time). The plot is refreshing and the characters are engaging, likable and easy to root for. The novel is well-written with a realistic storyline that is quite compelling. All in all, Ann Aguirre’s fabulous 2B Trilogy is off to a strong beginning that will leave fans very impatiently awaiting the next book in the series.