I feel it coming and I don’t particularly like when this happens. I.Did.Not.Like.This.Book. Phew, there it is. Now, let me tell you why.
Colleen Hoover has a way with words and stories. She weaves them into a multi-layered story that keeps you riveted until the end. She tells stories that most can relate to in one way or another. It Ends With Us is a great example of a story that almost anyone could read and relate to in some way. With this latest book Too Late, it was all just too much.
It begins with a woman being taken advantage of while she sleeps. What a way to open up a story right? We immediately want to know why this woman doesn’t say no and why this man is forcing himself on her while she sleeps. She wakes up to find him holding her arms down while caring less if she want his attentions or not. This proves to be a common theme throughout this book and while many can find a way to relate to that situation, the amount of times that this occur just ends of being too much.
Sloan is our broken girl. She is in a relationship that she despises. She is with Asa, a college student turned drug dealer. He runs a drug ring on campus and she knows that this is what he does. Yet, she stays with him, stays dependent upon him, uses him for money as he uses her obsessively for intimacy and dysfunctional love. She believes that he is paying for her brothers care in a special needs facility and if she leaves, her brother will be placed back in the hands of her crack head mother. Asa and her both take advantage of a broken situation and prey upon each other. However, Asa is by far the bigger predator and Sloan is trying to find a way out.
Her way out just may have presented himself in the form of Luke/Carter. Carter is an undercover agent trying to bust Asa’s campus drug ring. He meets Sloan for the first time in Spanish class pretending to be a college student. A little bit of insta-love? Yep. Not my favorite. Carter (Luke is his real name) then meets her again while posing as Asa’s inner circle but realizes that he feels the need to protect her more than do his job. He sees what a psychopath Asa is and knows that Sloan is trapped for some unknown reason.
This is all well and good for an angsty romance novel right? As this story spins out of control and direction, we get any number of events that are just too far fetched to suspend belief. Sloan sheds more tears than a young girl at a One Direction concert and her doormat status stays throughout the entirety of the book. Her naivety throughout the story gives no room for character growth and her dependency on men is deplorable. I get that she was a victim of domestic abuse and manipulation but once again it was all just too much.
Once the story finally comes to a close, we get epilogue after epilogue instead of an actual ending. It felt like the author forgot about a few important points in the story like how Asa and Sloane met or how Asa’s troubled childhood made him into a total lunatic. These things would have been useful to know throughout the story rather than a retelling at the end. The end consists of Asa being able to outsmart the law (once again totally unbelievable) and again partaking in non-consensual sex with Sloane. Good god, I felt like the story was just never going to end and finally once again it was just too much.
This of course will not be the last book I read by Colleen Hoover, but I won’t read this one again. I am not even sure I would recommend it without giving a few choice warnings about the ridiculous amount of “too much”. It is certainly a darker novel and much more sexually gratuitous than her others. Darker and more smutty I can handle. Way over the top? Not so much.