Rematch (The Vortex Series) by Janine Caldwell
Publisher: CreateSpace, March 11, 2012
Last week Judith and I got together for the first time in a month and of course a lot of our time was spent discussing the books we’ve been reading. When this one came up I have to admit that I believe my exact words were “well, I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it, and it didn’t set off any of my rant buttons, but it also wasn’t very memorable”. I feel like that’s a bit harsh but, unfortunately, it’s the truth.
Plot: Neither Cassie nor Trent are exactly your average high school seniors. As a child Cassie was so talented on the tennis court that her coaches believed she could make it to the big time, until she was shot during a tennis match by the father of her opponent. Not surprisingly, the trauma of that experience led Cassie to quit playing tennis. Then at the beginning of her senior year, hottie musician Trent and his snobby sister move to town. There’s something very familiar about Trent but Cassie can’t figure out what it is until she looks at a scrap book about her shooting – Trent is the person who stopped the shooter. But how can that be since in the news photos Trent looks the same but the shooting was years ago? Well, for reasons that are eventually explained, Trent gets visions and then travels back in time to alter events and, in this case, save Cassie’s life since originally she died during the shooting. Of course Cassie and Trent then begin dating, despite Trent’s worries that the people who are after him will try to get to her and guilt over the fact that he wasn’t able to completely stop the shooting.
Review: You guys I just don’t know what to say about this one. It honestly wasn’t a bad book, it just didn’t fully draw me in. One thing that worried me was that I felt in many instances it was far too similar to “Time Traveler’s Wife”. While there were definite differences, several times I knew exactly what would happen because it was the same as in TTW. I do have to say I was SO shocked that the reason Trent can travel through time isn’t because he’s a vampire or an alien or some sort of immortal or a member of a certain group of beings I no longer mention. I’m not sure how believable his whole situation was, but I can handle it. I thought the relationship between Cassie and Trent was fairly predictable but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
The one major complaint I have about the book is a bit SPOILER-y, so you might want to skip this paragraph. As I previously mentioned, Trent feels incredibly guilty that he couldn’t stop the shooting and after he (conveniently) meets a dude with the same ability and learns how to control where he goes, immediately travels back to the shooting and stops it before the father enters the tennis court. Since the shooting never occurs, Cassie never sees him, she never feels drawn to him, and they never start dating. Trent is upset about this but feels he made the best choice for Cassie since she still has her amazing tennis career. Okay – this bugs me. I really dislike it when one person in a relationship decides, without consulting the other person, to make huge decisions that will seriously affect the relationship because of some probably misguided notion of what would be best for the other person. I understand that there are times when this is necessary but Trent’s obsession over Cassie playing tennis was just NOT one of those situations for me.
In the end I’m going to give this one a 6 out of 10.
Based on the following criteria:
How much did I like the heroine: 6. While Cassie stood up for herself in terms of not going back to the tennis court after a truly harrowing experience, why didn’t she also stand up to her peers? These people joke about the fact that she was shot and she does nothing? And then she doesn’t say anything when her asshat boyfriend basically makes out with another girl in front of her, harasses her about sex, and generally treats her emotionally like crap? Not okay. She did seem to gain confidence as the book progressed, and I liked how supportive and accepting she was after finding out about Trent’s ability, but her eagerness to forego all her life plans in order to leave town when Trent does?? Yet again: Not okay.
How much did I like the love interest: 7. All in all Trent seemed like a decent guy. While the girls in the book seem to think he’s a hottie, according to the physical description he’s definitely more Judith’s type than mine. I did love that he worked so hard to protect and care for his sister after they’re orphaned, and the fact that he isn’t all “woe is me” about his new responsibility was another bonus. However his actions and near-obsession with Cassie’s lost tennis career bugged me.
How believable is the plot: 6. I’m not saying the manner in which Trent receives this ability is completely implausible, just improbable. And we all know that parents can get crazy over child sports but I’d like to believe shooting a young girl is too far for almost anyone to go.
How much did I like the writing style/editing/etc: 10. Nothing stands out in terms of this stuff, the author did a great job with the editing.
How much did I want to keep reading: 5. If Judith wasn’t silently harassing me to finish this I could have put it down, forgot about it, and then picked it up in like a month.
Glasses of wine I drank while reading: 3. The second half of the book needed a little medicinal assistance. Cassie’s attitude about running off with Trent combined with Trent’s actions were too much to handle sober.
Final Score: 6/10. Yet another series I am happy to leave at the end of the first book. As always please let me know what your thoughts were, and if you read the book whether you agree or disagree with my review.
****Disclaimer: I got this book for free from the author. I swear I didn’t bribe her in any way, or get paid for my review. And we might not be legit enough to need this disclaimer but after working at a law firm for many years it’s better safe than sorry!****