Thursday, March 28, 2013

Review: After Math by Denise Grover Swank

Goodreads Summary:

Scarlett Goodwin’s world is divided into Before and After.

Before she agreed to tutor Tucker price, college junior Scarlett was introvert, struggling with her social anxiety and determined to not end up living in a trailer park like her mother and her younger sister. A mathematics major, she goes to her classes, to her job in the tutoring lab, and then hides in the apartment she shares with her friend, Caroline.

After junior Tucker Price, Southern University’s star soccer player enters the equation, her carefully plotted life is thrown off its axis. Tucker’s failing his required College Algebra class. With his eligibility is at risk, the university chancellor dangles an expensive piece of computer software for the math department if Scarlett agrees to privately tutor him.Tucker’s bad boy, womanizer reputation makes Scarlett wary of any contact, let alone spending several hours a week in close proximity.

But from her first encounter, she realizes Tucker isn’t the person everyone else sees. He carries a mountain of secrets which she suspects hold the reason to his self-destructive behavior. But the deeper she delves into the cause of his pain, the deeper she gets sucked into his chaos. Will Scarlett find the happiness she’s looking for, or will she be caught in Tucker’s aftermath?

Wow this book has officially started my jock boy book kick! Tucker, the hot soccer star, had me swooning! Besides my new book crush, I loved how the novel was so much more than a cute nerd girl/popular jock boy romance and the author brought together two broken people to heal one another.

The story is told from Scarlett’s POV, a math major suffering from anxiety problems. Anxiety disorders are fairly common, but this was actually one of the first books I read that I felt accurately showed the thoughts associated with the conditions. I wanted Scarlett to snap out of it, but empathized with how simple things were incredibly hard for her such as attending parties or walking in late to class.

Tucker starts off as the cliché bad boy soccer star. He has a rep as a womanizer and wild partier. Although his past is hinted at, I liked that it wasn’t thrown in the reader’s face. I sometimes find it hard to cheer for a couple when the boy is shown sleeping around at the start of the book. When Scarlett starts to tutor him, she sees a softer side and what the “real” Tucker is like. They both try to deny their attraction, but they build a connection quickly.

Tucker and Scarlett both had rough upbringings and I thought the way they tried to help each other through their problems was very sweet. Anxiety controls Scarlett’s life while Tucker is forced onto the path of trying to play pro soccer, although he no longer enjoys the sport. They have a very intense relationship and I loved how Tucker tried to help her get a handle on her anxiety in social situations. Scarlett was so supportive and honest with Tucker, something he feels he never had in his life.

The writing flowed well for me and I liked how the author really didn’t shy away from sharing many of Scarlett’s insecurities. The characters felt very authentic to me and a lot of the drama that can happen on campus was realistic.

SPOILER ALERT My only complaint is that once the romance happens between the two, it felt sort of rushed. After all the buildup, I wanted more of the drama that could’ve came as two characters with major issues tried to have a relationship. END OF SPOILER

Can’t wait to see what else is available by the author since I really loved this one! I don’t think a sequel is planned, but I definitely would love to see another story featuring Scarlett and Tucker.

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

I received a copy of this book for my honest review.


  1. Very well written review, Heather! I'll have to add this one to my TBR list. :) Thanks for sharing. WRITE ON!

  2. I just recently found out about this book! :) IT sounds awesome. This sounds like both an emotional and fun read. Awesome review :)

    Janina @ Synchronized Reading