Monday, September 9, 2013

Book Review: Belonging

Belonging (Temptation #2)
Published By: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: April 30, 2013
Page Count: 408
Source: ARC Kindly Provided for Blog Tour by Publisher
Audience: Young Adult - Contemporary Romance

I read Temptation before it was released and loved it, but Belonging is even better. The tragedy at the end of Temptation made me eager to dive into this one. I had to know what was in store for Noah and Rose next. Rose realizes that she cannot live with Noah and decides to join the Amish in order to be with him; her father isn't crazy about the idea, but he is convinced that Rose will come running home after a few weeks of the rigid lifestyle. He couldn't be more shocked that she seems to be adapting to her new circumstances. The major conflict within this novel arises when different people try to keep Rose from joining the church.

The romance in this one is certainly swoon-worthy. I enjoy the relationship between Noah and Rose. Their circumstances often seem impossible, but they continue to fight against the odds to be together. There are some Romeo and Juliet moments running throughout the course of this novel, but I do like that the societal structures are what is truly making love difficult between these two. The ending of this one delivers a pretty big shock that will have you longing for the final book, Forever.

In addition to the romance, I like the emphasis on friendships and family in this one. A new character, Summer Sage, is introduced and she becomes an integral part of the story. Summer is one of those girls we should all be lucky enough to have as a friend. She is loyal, smart, and doesn't take any crap from people. Her friendship with Rose becomes crucial as the novel progresses.

I found myself frustrated with Rose and her family from time to time as I read. Rose makes some pretty dumb decisions - particularly towards the end of the book - that irked me. I wanted her to trust in her heart and Noah's a little more. It bothered me that she didn't choose to fight harder when her family makes things difficult for her. I had to remind myself that she is only seventeen and that does impact her behavior. The frustration with her family stemmed from the fact that Rose's father and Sam do some pretty shady things to try to keep Rose and Noah apart. I understood that their actions resulted from their love from Rose and their desire to have her return home, but that didn't make their methods okay. 

All of the conflict and tension kept my stomach in knots. I honestly didn't know how things would end up, but I needed to know so I kept reading at a frantic pace. There is something addicting about this series and these characters. I also enjoyed learning more about Amish culture. At this point, I can only hope that Noah and Rose will get their happily ever after.

All in all, I loved every moment I spent with this novel. The series has certainly earned a spot on my favorites shelf and Karen Ann Hopkins' future works will be highly anticipated. I love the realness of her characters, the way she explains the emotions that accompany first love, and the delicious anxiety her plots cause me to feel. 

One Last Gripe: Levi is such a creep. I have to hand it to Hopkins for making such a creepy villain sort, but his scenes really freaked me out.

My Favorite Thing About This Book: The relationship between Noah and Rose, but I also really enjoyed getting segments from Sam's perspective as well

First Sentence: Peeking out the window, I watched Noah limp down the pathway behind his mom.

Favorite Character: Noah

Least Favorite Character: Levi

I left everything I knew behind.

But it was worth it. He was worth it.

No one thought an ordinary girl like me would last two minutes living with the Amish, not even me. There are a lot more rules and a lot less freedom, and I miss my family and the life I once had. Worst of all, Noah and I aren't even allowed to see each other. Not until I've proven myself.

If I can find a way to make it work, we'll be NOAH & ROSE

together forever.

But not everybody believes this is where I belong.

About the Author

A native of New York State, Karen Ann Hopkins now lives with her family on a farm in northern Kentucky, where her neighbors in all directions are members of a strict Amish community. Her unique perspective became the inspiration for the story of star-crossed lovers Rose and Noah. When she’s not homeschooling her kids, giving riding lessons or tending to a menagerie of horses, goats, peacocks, 
chickens, ducks, rabbits, dogs and cats, she is dreaming up her next romantic novel.

We have 3 copies of Temptation and 3 copies of Belonging to giveaway during the Review Tour and the second is a HarlequinTEEN Surprise Package full of books and swag!!

Contest is open US/CAN only and will run through September!


  1. This is a great review. I loved this series too and you are totally right - Levi is such a creep. And I really enjoyed the chapters from Sam's POV too. :)

    1. Thanks for your kind comment about the review. I'm glad you enjoyed reading it and Belonging. Sam can be a jerk at times, but I also find him endearing in many ways.

  2. Great review. I love Noah. This series has made me nostalgic because I am from Lancaster, PA and grew up around the whole Amish culture. Can't wait to read more!

    Jesus Freak Reader

    1. I'm always happy to meet another fan of Noah's. I have always wanted to visit an area with Amish culture.


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