Review: Rule (Marked Men #1) by Jay Crownover


Opposites in every way . . . except the one that matters 

Shaw Landon loved Rule Archer from the moment she laid eyes on him. Rule is everything a straight–A pre-med student like Shaw shouldn’t want–and the only person she’s never tried to please. She isn’t afraid of his scary piercings and tattoos or his wild attitude. Though she knows that Rule is wrong for her, her heart just won’t listen.

To a rebel like Rule Archer, Shaw Landon is a stuck-up, perfect princess-and his dead twin brother’s girl. She lives by other people’s rules; he makes his own. He doesn’t have time for a good girl like Shaw-even if she’s the only one who can see the person he truly is.

But a short skirt, too many birthday cocktails, and spilled secrets lead to a night neither can forget. Now, Shaw and Rule have to figure out how a girl like her and a guy like him are supposed to be together without destroying their love . . . or each other.


Rule was angry. But he had every right to be. Since that night he lost his brother everything in his life had changed. Even going to brunch with his family on Sundays was something that he had no interest in. Not because he hated family functions, he did, but because of what ultimately happened each time Shaw drug him to one. Rule’s mother would instantly start nagging Rule and try to take away the identity that he created for himself. She was mean to him beyond reason, but after all, it was Rule that Remy was going to get from the bar when he lost his life in that car accident.

Shaw had been Rule’s brother’s sidekick for years. Ever since that day he found her crying. Remy wanted to protect her. But for Remy it was more than just for her. It was for him to. But what he got out of it was a secret Shaw was going to take to her grave. Shaw had her own set of secrets too. The reasons why Remy took such good care of her. Her family was awful and all about money and connections. It wasn’t about a beautiful daughter becoming a strong and independent woman, for Shaw’s parents, she was to live and act a certain way and ultimately to marry someone who had the connections that they longed for. They want her to meet someone who was connected socially with a great job.

Despite her parents’ wishes Shaw only wanted one guy. There has only ever been one guy for her since as far back as she can remember. But he has never given her the time of day. He’s been mean to her and inconsiderate of her feelings. But one night is usually all it takes to smack some sense into a guy’s head. Even if that guy is a huge playboy that has had more women in his bed than the entire university that Shaw attends.

When Shaw finally reveals her big secret to Rule, he has to figure out how to do the one guy-one girl thing and it kind of freaks him out a little. He has now discovered so much about Shaw and what she is like and all he wants to do is protect her from everyone, even him. But is the attraction great enough to make them fight to be together or is the fact that Shaw was the one for Remy enough to push them apart? Can Rule change enough to be what Shaw needs? He’s not straight-laced, he has enough tattoos and piercings to freak any mother out, but Shaw doesn’t care. She has always wanted the rebel in him. He is the reason she pushes so hard to make family day work, but can she be enough for Rule?

This book had so many ups and downs, I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to get through it. I was happy for them, I was sad for them. Two people who seem to have their acts together are so far from being the perfect couple. Opposite in so many ways, except the one way that matters. They are perfect for each other and their hearts are truly connected. Not only because of the love they shared for Remy, but the love they have found in each other. Rule spends so much of his time believing that he is not worthy of love and it is heartbreaking. Shaw just wants to show him how much love she can give him because she wasn’t shown a lot of it until she found her way into his family but, that is also heartbreaking.

I love the connection that the two of them have, but I love more the connections they are bound by. He is going to protect Shaw and she is going to love Rule. Even though I spent a lot of time in this book with Rule and Shaw’s ups and downs, the most touching parts of the book for me occurred near Evergreen, Colorado at the grave of Remy. The conversations at his grave were the most touching conversations I have read and it just shredded me to pieces.

This book had the angst and the drama that I crave (and a psycho stalker type of ex-boyfriend that I dread). It had the warmth and emotional connection in the characters that I adore. This book was amazing. So yes, my newest addiction to books is now Jay Crownover. She takes my home of Colorado and invites such fabulous characters into its capitol city and surrounding areas and she does it in such an amazing way that I just want to keep reading and re-reading because I don’t want the story to end!


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