Meet the New Gang that is Actually the Old Gang With New Names: Beautiful Oblivion Chapter 1

Because you just know this book is going to be full of them, I’m starting a Crossover Count. Every time there’s a mention of a character from one of the previous books (obvs that isn’t Trent or Cami), I’ll make a note of it and/or drink.

Crossover Count: 0

Chapter 1

Cami is on the phone with her boyfriend T.J. who is suddenly unable to go away with her for their weekend getaway because he was called into work. It’s very clear that T.J. is going to be an inexplicable barrier for the True Love of Trenton and Cami. Like the Blando that came before him. I’m sure T.J. is going to be completely unlikable, boring and long overstay his welcome in the book. [Matthew says: If he can ever be bothered to show up, that is. Way to oversell your blandness, Blando 2.]

We also meet Beautiful Oblivion’s version of America – Cami’s roommate Raegan. She’s the BFF who’s like, “Let’s get sexy and go get drinks because your man let you down.” [Matthew says: I’d like to invite you (the reader!) to pause for a moment and think about all of America’s defining characteristics, so as you read this post, you can fully appreciate just how many of them are exactly the same.]

Twenty minutes later, Raegan and I were on the opposite side of town, strutting across the gravel lot of the Red Door, slowly and in unison, as if we were being filmed while walking to a badass soundtrack.

A surefire way to make something seem as badass as an episode of Full House is to describe it like this. It’s also worth noting that it takes editing to slow those walks down to play along with a “badass soundtrack”, you don’t actually walk that way unless you want people to stop and stare for the wrong reasons.

Once at the door, one of their coworkers asks to see their IDs and there’s lots of sassy banter about this. Kody the bouncer also seems confused as to why Cami is there since she’s supposed to be away this weekend. This is an appropriate question as if you ask to have the weekend off and then show up to party at your place of work, it seems like kind of a dick move to the people who had to work your shifts for you. Also, seriously, when you have time off, why the fuck would you want to go to where you work!

Turns out, not only is Raegan the America of this book, but this Kody character is Shep! After their sassy banter about IDs, this happens.

“Kody opened the oversize red door, and Raegan smiled sweetly. “Thanks, baby.”
“Love you. Be good.”
“I’m always good,” she said, winking.
“See you when I get off work?”
“Yep.” She pulled me through the door.
“You are the weirdest couple,” I said over the bass. It was buzzing in my chest, and I was fairly certain every beat made my bones shake.

Really why did he need to see their IDs?? He works there and one of them is his girlfriend. Oh my god I hate this book so much already. But it’s a really comfortable, warm, familiar hatred. [Matthew says: What about this exchange makes them a weird couple? Not to mention The Weirdest, as in more weird than every other couple EVER? That they joked about not knowing each other, and then stopped acting like that when the joke was over? Yup. That’s definitely the weirdest behavior of all possible weird behavior.]

Once seated at a table, Cami takes the time to tell us how beautiful and sassy Raegan is while Cami herself is just the girl-next-door and is suuuch a tomboy because of her older brothers. Cami, I can’t wait till you meet Trenton Maddox and realize that actually every man in the entire world wants you so badly, but you just can’t see it yet! A real life One Direction song!

Also if Cami has a bunch of brothers…does that mean there are going to be a bunch of spinoff books about them?

Just to prove how sassy and tough Raegan is, some girls come over and start telling them to leave their table, but Raegan is having none of it and throws the girls beer on the floor and tells her to “fetch.” If only we could all have BFFs like that.

YOU GUYS IT’S TIME FOR OUR FIRST CROSSOVER!

“Oh, look. Megan’s here,” she said, pointing to the blue-eyed, crow-headed beauty on the dance floor. I shook my head. She was out there with Travis Maddox, basically getting screwed in front of everyone on the dance floor.

“Oh, those Maddox boys,” Raegan said. [Matthew says: First retconning of “Oh, that Travis Maddox!” into “Oh, those Maddox boys!” as the school’s resident notorious manwhore. We did it, guys. We’re there already.]

So this must put the timeline at…who fucking cares. Also, “Fuck off Philbert.” [Matthew says: I’m guessing from the one scene in Walking Disaster where Travis talked with Trenton about Cami not being interested in him that at some point in this book we’ll get to see Travis crying about Abby not being interested in him. Because fan service means writing the same story three times.]

Raegan goes to get some drinks, and Cami guards the table.

When I turned around, a boy was sitting in Raegan’s chair. At first I thought Travis had somehow made his way over, but when I realized my mistake, I smiled. Trenton Maddox was leaning toward me, his tattooed arms crossed, his elbows resting on the table across from me.

I love how the Maddox brothers blur together for even characters in the books. They could definitely pull some crazy switcheroos.

Trenton doesn’t remember Cami even though they apparently went to school together and she seems to know his life story. He flirts with her, but, you guessed it, she’s already sworn she won’t just be another girl he sleeps with.

In case you hadn’t had your fill of interchangeable brothers yet, for some reason 3/? of Cami’s brothers show up along with her cousin. What’s really strange is that Cami talks about how her brothers are younger than her, but in the summary of this book it definitely says she’s the baby of the family. Even the people who were tasked with summarising this book couldn’t make sense of this shit! [Matthew says: Dear Atria Books, Let me extend a standing offer from BBGT since you guys are apparently in need of an accurate summary-writing service.]

Just like the Maddox family, for some reason all of the kids also start with the same letter name, leading me to believe that Jamie McGuire believes that this is some sort of legal requirement.

It’s also made very clear to us that even though they’re all red-heads (except one of them or something) they’re very “tall and chiseled.” They’re definitely getting their own series. McGuire sspecialises in writing about interchangeable groups of sexy brothers. It’s a fucking weird niche.

Along with Cami there’s Chase, Clark, Colin (the cousin) and Coby. It’s like McGuire wants to make my and Matt’s life more difficult. How are we meant to even try to keep these people straight?

One of Cami’s brothers gets really mad that her boyfriend cancelled on her, and he wants to fight him. This is a great time for Cami to let us know that T.J. is “lethal.” So everyone get ready for a Trenton VS. T.J., and if we’re really lucky Travis will get in on that too.

Trenton returns with more drinks and one of the brothers inexplicably believes this is the guy who cancelled on Cami even though a few minutes ago they were talking about T.J. like they all knew him. But this is just a chance for Travis to show up and things to almost get out of hand so Cami can shut it all down:

“I stood. “Coby! Sit your ass down!” I said, pointing to his chair. He sat. “I said it wasn’t him, and I meant it! Now everybody calm the fuck down! I’ve had a bad day, I’m here to drink, and relax, and have a good goddamn time! Now if that’s a problem for you, back the fuck off my table!” I closed my eyes and screamed the last part, looking completely insane. People around us were staring.
Breathing hard, I glanced at Trenton, who handed me a drink.
One corner of his mouth turned up. “I think I’ll stay.”

What a crazy ride! I wish more authors used the strategy of just adding tons of male characters to a scene, like a crazy clown car. Then having these characters be brothers so they would fight to the death for each other about nothing. It adds so much drama with a lack of so much reason.

Crossover count: 3

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