Zeke Daniels isn’t just a douchebag; he’s an a**hole.
A total and complete jerk, Zeke keeps people at a distance. He has no interest in relationships—most a**holes don’t.
Being part of a couple? Nope. Not for him.
He’s never given any thought to what he wants in a girlfriend, because he’s never had any intention of having one. Shit, he barely has a relationship with his family, and they’re related; his own friends don’t even like him.
So why does he keep thinking about Violet DeLuca?
Sweet, quiet Violet—his opposite in every sense of the word.
The light to his dark, even her damn name sounds like rays of sunshine and happiness and shit.
And that pisses him off, too.
I know that everyone said that this book was better than the first one, and I definitely believed them, but I don’t think I really understood how much better it actually was. Like we went from having a good time and cracking jokes to serious tragic backstory and kicked puppy alert. But that’s honestly why this book was better because it went beyond the fun of the first book. I had wanted to know more about Zeke ever since that party scene where it seemed like his anger towards Sebastian and James went beyond them simply being together and I wanted to dig deeper. And deeper we went. Because of the places this book went and how it had pretty much ever single emotion possible, it definitely deserves 4 stars.
I may or may not spoil the entire book so let’s invoke a SPOILER ALERT just in case.
- As I just mentioned, this book had A LOT of tragic backstory to it, and it wasn’t just for Zeke. First we learn how Violet, the other main character and love interest for Zeke, had one of the worst childhoods imaginable. Her parents were killed in an accident and she didn’t have a lot of family available to care for her so she was forced to enter the foster system. That’s just a punch to the gut. But it’s this backstory that made Violet as strong as she is today and it’s why she gives back to the community so much, other than the fact she needs the money. She doesn’t let her childhood define her and has become stronger because of it and it’s why I admire her so much. Zeke’s backstory is potentially worse and I think that it becomes the overall backbone for this book. When I first started this book and Zeke mentioned how his father “barely called him ‘son'” I figured it was because Zeke was just a bad kid and his father didn’t know how to deal with him. But oh no, I was wrong and the real story is completely heartbreaking. While Violet comes from a tragic household, for lack of a better word, Zeke comes from a neglected one. It was like his parents didn’t even care that he existed and never showed him any love and it’s because of this upbringing that he’s the way he is: closed off, emotionless, angry, and basically an asshole. He not only has trust issues but he has abandonment issues that run so deep in him that he doesn’t even know it’s in him. Finding all of this out truly broke my heart and made me want to cry. He doesn’t let anyone get close to him because he feels like they’re always going to leave him and he doesn’t deserve to feel like that. These backstories gave so much depth to this book and it makes you feel so much when you’re reading it and that’s why I feel like it’s what made this book so great.
- I truly loved seeing Zeke and Violet together and I liked how she started off as his tutor, became his friend, and then became more than a friend. Albeit, all of this was done by a reluctant Zeke thanks to his issues, which we already covered, but it’s still so cute seeing how their relationship went on. Their relationship is basically Zeke: “I’m not gonna do this thing”, Violet: “come on, Zeke”, Zeke: “fine but I’m not gonna enjoy it.” I think you’d expect him to bring her out of her shell but it’s her who brings him out and it’s her who helps him through his issues. I also loved how being with Zeke didn’t automatically make Violet’s stutter (which was adorable) disappear. We learn that it was something that developed after her parents died and it definitely occurs more when she’s nervous but it tones down when she’s comfortable around someone. Sometimes I’ve seen something like this just disappear because of a guy in other books and it always seems super unrealistic so I was glad to see being with a boy didn’t automatically cure Violet’s stutter. I think that it just shows how these two characters were really good for each other and you don’t have to fix someone completely to be good for them.
- There was some drama near the end of this book but honestly? It was really necessary. In other books I’d probably be complaining about seeing the couple break up for something stupid but if this drama didn’t occur, I don’t think Zeke really would’ve completed his character development and move beyond his abandonment issues. Treating Violet like that in front of his friends and proceeding to get yelled at by her, which I applaud Violet for, was the wake up call he needed. He wouldn’t have changed any other way and that’s why I believe that this drama was necessary.
- This book utilized the “bad boy falling for a good girl trope”, what more could you want??
- My only complaint is probably that we didn’t have a super clear timeline again. I could see how the prologue initially began in the same timeline as the first book but I don’t know how much time passed between that and the first chapter and then overall I was never sure how much time truly passed. It was definitely a long stretch of time during Violet and Zeke’s story and I know that they’d known each other for multiple weeks, maybe even months, before actually getting together, but there’s never really a concrete timeline.
THE BOTTOM LINE
- While the first book is a light and fun time, this one is not that. But it’s a book that is beyond emotional and has great characters with even greater character development. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll be thankful that you decided to pick up a book as wonderful as this one.
BONUS: how this book made me feel in a GIF
ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: The Failing Hours (How to Date a Douchebag #2)
Author: Sara Ney
Release Date: January 31, 2017
Pages: 322 (eBook)
Until next time,
What did you think of the book? Leave a comment below!