Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Publication Year: 2018
Part of a series?: No
You can buy it HERE on Amazon.com
“Incognito” is the story of Shawn and Dakota, two people who are attending University of Iowa for different reasons. Shawn is a famous musician, but there is somebody who is trying to hurt him. This is why he decided to change his appearance a bit to go undercover and let his security catch the culprits. Dakota is attending U of I for different reasons: she was admitted into Julliard, but after a tragic event that destroyed her family she decided to major in accounting.
Shawn is a rockstar, and used substances and went to rehab. This move to go to U of I is strategic because it will not only help him get back on his feet, but also hide while the people who are trying to make his life a living hell are caught. Since Shawn cannot be recognized by anyone, he goes by the name of Levi, and he falls hard for Dakota, who is a skillful dancer he sees on the rooftop of the building in front of his place every night. I liked this mystery aura around this story and the fact that Levi was in incognito, but for most of the book he was lying to Dakota about who he really was, and I didn’t enjoy this so much even if in the end his feelings were genuine.
When I started the story, Dakota seemed like an interesting character, but as the book progresses, I found her moving between being naive and unsure of Levi’s reasons for doing things. She shifted from acting all strong and with walls around her heart that seemed impossible to break, to being quite shallow. I didn’t like her much, because the way she reacted to some things was just… annoying. At times she seemed as if things didn’t hurt her at all despite her inner thoughts said so.
Ah, about the inner thoughts. There was so much describing of what was done, but not much talking. I’m not saying it’s totally bad, but sometimes things were resolved by describing what happened and that’s it, and I don’t find that way of moving the plot quite entertaining.
Another thing that annoyed me to no end is the insta-love/lust that took this story. I am not against insta-love, but it has to happen in a specific way for me to believe it, which, here did not. Shawn/Levi and Dakota went from disliking each other to basically be all over each other in a short amount of time, and after a couple of times they had sex, they were still so deep in love. I mean, it can happen, I’m not ruling it out, but I didn’t buy it in this book. I think that with a different build up, a slower build up, the insta-love aspect would have been OK for me. Maybe other people will be on a different page, and I don’t like giving comments like this, but it’s what I felt while reading the story.
I also didn’t buy the characters and their behavior. This is supposed to be a college new adult romance, so the characters aren’t that old. Dakota was 19 and I think Levi was 20. They are still teenagers so to speak, but they rarely acted like a teenager! I felt like they were 30 and not even of age, because they had a “mature” way of acting. Here again, I’m not saying that 20 year olds cannot act like they’re older than their age, but I don’t know, I felt detached from the characters and couldn’t connect with their issues. To be honest, I didn’t care about their issues much, because I couldn’t like the characters completely. I preferred secondary characters more than our protagonists.
Overall, I expected a different plot and characters. Had the characters been more like their age and less cheesy, maybe I would have liked it more. Well, maybe this wasn’t my cup of tea because perhaps I prefer raw and dramatic, but that’s ok. We all have different taste in books. This doesn’t mean I give up on this author, because I don’t let one book dictate my liking. But this book is a miss for me.
RATING: 3.5 stars