I remember reading this book when it first came out on Wattpad with millions of reads and votes and comments. To be honest, I loved this book… back then. I was beyond excited when I heard that Fighting to be Free was finally going to be published. But despite the talk of changes in the book, I really didn’t see many changes at all. In fact the changes I did see, weren’t really changes I liked. Some of the funny comments by the characters, and little details commonly missed during the first read through.
Overall, I thought it was an enjoyable read. Not my favorite, but not the worst either. Somewhere in between, which is why I would give this book 3 stars.
Jamie Cole has lived a hard life, he joined a gang when he young and did menial tasks and stole cars in order to provide for himself and his little sister, Sophie. When he was fourteen, his already hard life, gets even harder as he’s arrested and spends the next four years of his life in Juvenile Detention. After getting released for good behavior, he strives to make a new life for himself, and meets Ellie, a high school cheerleader. Now he wants nothing more than to be free of the past he left behind. If only things were that simple.
So, now that the summary’s out of the way, let’s talk about what I liked. I really like Jamie, or as some people like to call him, Kid Cole. He’s talented with cars, is a little shy, and apparently a total hunk. Not that I mind. I liked his relationship with Ellie and how he’s actually not a total d-bag, unlike some other main characters. As much as I love the obvious ‘good guy’ title he’s got going on, I kind of felt like he was a a baseless hero. I didn’t get the essence of why he was such a good person. I mean, he had every right not to be. Nothing in his life went well, he lost the only family that he loved, had a terrible mother, and spent four long years in jail. Why should he be such a pure white good guy? It doesn’t seem realistic enough.
Ellie, I felt, was a bit more realistic. She breaks out of the typical cheer captain mold that’s been placed in many books to date, by actually being nice. However, she remains in the mold by dating the football captain (who, by no surprise, is a total possessive d-bag). She doesn’t like attention (don’t ask me how), and is a total daddy’s girl. In order to not put any spoilers into this I”ll end her review here. But one more thing, with the maturity of the characters (and the amount of mature content – don’t worry it doesn’t go into detail), I had a hard time believing they were teenagers. I’m alright with it, but it makes me wonder how the story would change if they were adults instead.
Now the end. It seriously pissed me off, and not in a good way where I want to read what happens next. I mean, I understand why he did it, but that doesn’t mean I liked it. It was a tad too cliche, and only solidified the unrealistic nature of our protagonist.
The overall story was great, the bare bone plot was definitely what kept me reading, not so much the little details. I would probably recommend this book to a friend, but probably not an avid reader friend, if you know what I mean.
SO that was my first ever review, I hoped I covered everything. This is something I would like to continue regularly, so let me know if there’s anything you think I should add, or remove, or whatever. Follow my blog for more reviews!
I love constructive critique, so leave any comments below and we can engage in fabulous conversation!