Monday, 5 September 2011

Review: Overprotected by Jennifer Laurens

Overprotected by Jennifer Laurens
Publisher: Grove Creek Publishing
Released: April 29th 2011
My Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Find it on Goodreads

Ashlyn: A lonely society princess living in New York City.

Daddy hired you to be my bodyguard.

Colin: Childhood enemy, now her protector.

Daddy thought I’d be safe. He thought I’d never fall in love. He thought he could keep me forever.

Charles: obsessed with keeping her safe, keeping her his, he hires the one person he knows she could never fall in love with: Colin.

Daddy was wrong.
(from Goodreads)

Ashlyn has live a sheltered life for almost eighteen years – she’s never allowed anywhere without a “companion” (read: bodyguard) and she’s sick of having no freedom to do what other girls her age are doing. After her bodyguard of three years is fired for being too attached to her, Ashyln thinks that maybe her father will finally realise that she’s old enough to take of herself. Wrong. Her father hires an old family friend – Colin, twenty-one and once an enemy of Ashlyn’s – to be her new bodyguard, hoping that this time, there will be no chance for either of them to get “too attached”. However, things don’t always go to plan, and soon Ashlyn is struggling to remember why she ever hated Colin in the first place.

Overprotected was a very interesting book, and I liked how it focussed on how parents could go too far when trying to protect their children. Ashlyn’s dad, Charles, was not only careful with his daughter, he was obsessive – Ashlyn was literally caged, not allowed to live a life of her own. He checked her phone on a regular basis, monitored all her friends, never let her out without doing check-ups on the places she was visiting, made sure her bodyguard was with her at all times – it was almost creepy, the lengths he went to in order to keep his daughter safe. I could see why Ashlyn was so frustrated and angry all the time.  To tell you the truth, I didn’t really like Ashlyn very much when the novel started, because she seemed quite whiny and your typical “poor little rich girl”, but as the story when on and the extent of her father’s obsession was uncovered, I started to understand her a lot more, and with the influence of Colin, I felt she definitely became more likeable in the second half of the book.

I really liked Colin (though didn’t really understand why Ashlyn’s father, who was so fixated on protecting his daughter, would hire him to be her bodyguard when he had no previous experience in any such field).  I think he was one of the only people that actually understood Ashlyn, and was the only one willing to stand up to people on her behalf. He wanted to protect her because he cared about her, but even he could see that Charles was going too far in trying to keep his daughter safe, and even spoke out to his employer on a few occasions. I really enjoyed his scenes with Ashlyn – it was obvious there was an attraction between them, but Colin could never act on it because he was an employee of Ashlyn’s father. I never really got why Ashlyn hated Colin so much anyway – he played a few childish tricks on her, but that was a long time ago – so I was glad when she started to realise that Colin had changed, and was a much kinder, sweeter person now.

One thing that stayed constant throughout the whole novel was Ashlyn’s passion for music, and I thought it was great how this was worked into the story, because it helped enhance Ashlyn’s character as well helping her feel free – this was the only thing she could control, and was the one thing she knew she wanted to pursue - it played an important role in her life. I really liked the chapters leading up to the ending and I think what happened needed to happen in order for Ashlyn and her family to understand what really was best for her. Even though things still weren’t perfect, I liked how everything worked out in the end – it was realistic and a good conclusion to the book.

Overall, Overprotected was an enjoyable read with a great concept, and I would definitely recommend it to fans of contemporary YA, or to anyone who has enjoyed Jennifer Laurens’ previous works (which you should definitely check out - the Heavenly series is one of my favourite angel series, it's awesome!).

13 comments:

  1. Awesome review! I've been eyeing this one for a while now - will have to purchase it! Along with Heavenly. :)

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  2. Ooh! I keep reading reviews for this and forgetting to buy it. I'm going to download it to my Kindle this week!

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  3. This sounds like such a cute YA, also nice to have overprotective rather than neglectful/absent parental figures for a change!

    The Cait Files

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  4. Wow, her father sounds a little creepy in his overprotectiveness. I'm curious to see the Colin/Ashlyn romance play out, sounds sweet! I haven't read any of Jennifer's novels, but I do have the first two books in the Heavenly series, so I definitely need to check those out on your recommendation! Overprotected sounds like great read, awesome review!

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  5. I've been interested in this book for a while since I've read the author's previous YA series. This one sounds interesting . . .

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  6. I need to get Overprotected!! I loved Heavenly so I am expecting a lot from this one. =) I love how you describe Colin!! =D

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  7. I love Jennifer Laurens' writing - it's honestly refreshing. This one sounds as intriguing as ever, so that's enough to convince me! Great review :)

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  8. i haven't really looked into this book because i'm not loving the cover (i know, i know i shouldn't judge a book by it's cover and all that). i am glad to hear it's a great read though. thanks for the review :)

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  9. I've had this on my list for a while now! Glad to hear it's a good read. I'm definitely going to have to check it out!

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  10. Sounds like a fun contemp! I might give it a try sometime! :)

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  11. I have Jennifer's Heavenly in my TBR. I've read good reviews about her books. I've read sort of mixed reviews on this one though. But it sounds intriguing and I totally like the sound of the romance that the synopsis promises.

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  12. I haven't read anything of Laurens' yet but I've heard good things about her books. I like that the parental figure in this one is really involved with his daughter's life even if it becomes obsessive. That's quite different from what you normally see in the YA genre.

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  13. Great review,
    I may have to get this one soon!

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