Monday, March 16, 2015

Review: Third Degree

Third Degree
Julie Cross
Contemporary/ New Adult
Flirt/March 25, 2014

I used to be “Isabel Jenkins, child prodigy.” As lame as that sounds, at least it was an identity. But now I’m not sure what I am. I just failed the most important exam of my life—the emotional readiness test required to get into a medical residency program—and it turns out my parents can’t stand each other. Now I’m trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces of my life, and that means re-enrolling as a college freshman, but this time I’m shutting the books and majoring in being eighteen.

But so far, my roommate hates me and I’m not into the party scene. The only good thing about school has been getting to know my insanely hot RA. Marshall Collins makes me wonder about everything I missed while I was growing up too fast. Pretty soon we’re hanging out constantly, but for the first time, I find myself wanting more than a no-strings-attached physical relationship. And the lesson I really need is one Marsh definitely can’t teach me: love. Because I’m going to be alone forever if I don’t learn fast.

Oh, this was such an enjoyable story! I'm surprised at how much the young me inside could identify with Izzy and it has nothing to do with her genius IQ. Izzy's an oddity in the world of medicine. An eighteen year old with her M.D., she is freakishly book smart but her life experiences are so limited when it comes to human interaction she stumbles and falls often.

After failing to get into a residency program, the genius Izzy heads back to college. Not so much for the traditional classroom experience but for the life experience. To help Izzy gain this experience is her R.A. (resident adviser), Marshall Collins. He's hot, funny and attracted to Izzy. He also genuinely likes Izzy for who she is. He does give her advice about tempering her need to diagnosis everyone as he helps Izzy learn to fit in.

Marsh comes up with a plan for Izzy to experience college life and teen life to the fullest. To experience what she has been missing out on while she was busy earning her doctorate when most teens were in high school. Marsh is playful, cheerful, mischievous and sweet and just an all around good guy. Yes, we females tend to be intrigued by "bad boys" but there is something to be said about the good guys.

Izzy and Marsh's relationship is running along fairly smoothly but we know it will hit a rough patch and it does. How they both handle it shows that maturity and intelligence do not always go hand in hand. Izzy begins to realize just how much she has missed out on because of her unconventional upbringing. She has had great opportunities but missing those everyday teenage activities has lead to her struggles to form healthy relationships. Cross does a good job showing this through Izzy's revelations about herself as she works through her new emotional side.

Third Degree is a smart, funny and adept look at how Izzy and Marsh cope with their challenges and how they learned to lean on each other's strengths.

Rating: B+

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