Nineteen-year-old Cheyenne tries to portray the perfect life to mask the memories of her past. Walking in on her boyfriend with another woman her freshman year in college threatens that picture of perfection.
Twenty-one-year-old Colt never wanted college and never expected to amount to anything, but when his mom's dying wish is for him to get his degree, he has no choice but to pretend it's what he wants too.
Cheyenne needs a fake boyfriend to get back at her ex and Colt needs cash to take care of his mom, so they strike a deal that helps them both. But what if Cheyenne’s past isn’t what she thought? Soon they’re trading one charade for another—losing themselves in each other to forget about their pain. The more they play their game, the more it becomes the only thing they have that feels real.
Both Cheyenne and Colt know life is never easy, but neither of them expect the tragedy that threatens to end their charade and rip them apart forever.
Two different people and a charade of all sorts. Cheyenne plays the perfect card to hide her panic attacks and her haunting past. Colt acts like he’s happy and okay when all he wants is to break down on his knees whenever he sees his mom withering away. After Cheyenne discovers her boyfriend cheating on her, she and Colt start a charade that starts out from absolute pretense to something right and true. Are Cheyenne and Colt ready to let go of their game of charades and face reality?
Most reviews gush about how much they like the cover and say that it’s what brought them to read the book. I, however, was intrigued by the title and the plot itself. I liked the concept of the Games series. So I decided to give it a try. Having never read Nyrae Dawn before, I didn’t really know what to expect. I’m happy to say though, that this book was a pleasant surprise and I enjoyed reading it.
I was easily intrigued by Cheyenne at the start of the book. The way she thinks and the way she speaks are two very different things. On the outside, Cheyenne can seem cool and collected. Internally, Cheyenne’s mind is almost usually about to burst. Cheyenne is irrationally scared of being left alone, of ending up hurt by someone she trusted. I had a hard time relating to this (thus my disinterest sometimes) because it’s not something I usually feel. Sometimes I disliked Chey for letting her demons rule her life, making her push away people who loved her, but it only made me want to root for Colt to help her get past them.
I liked Colt instantly. I connected with him and his angst over his mother. I felt his pain like it was mine. I guess it’s because I’ve experienced seeing someone slowly diminish. Reading Colt definitely tugged some heart strings. Aside from that, I thought Colt was a really interesting character. I liked how he cursed a lot. I found it almost funnily cute. Like Cheyenne, Colt has two sides of him we get to see. Colt shifts suddenly from hot to cold. One minute he’s being a total a-hole, the next he’s sweet, sensitive and supportive.
The author did a great job distinguishing which is and which isn’t an act. Colt and Cheyenne both were really good in pretending, but with each other, the two seemed bare and raw. I liked how their charade changed, at first it was exchanging a charade for another and then suddenly, what Colt and Chey have becomes something authentic and concrete. Guaranteed that about two-thirds of the book consisted of the two being stubborn and difficult (there was a lot of bickering), but despite that, they were always there for each other. It was hard not to imagine that they’d eventually fall in love. I definitely rooted for both of them especially when I saw how much they cared for one another. What started out as a distraction, Colt and Chey’s dysfunctional relationship becomes exactly what they need; it helps them heal.
I did not expect to cry because of this book. But I could not stop my tears from flowing. Those last chapters turned me into an emotional wreck. My heart totally went to Colt and Chey and all the hardships they’ve been through. Charade is definitely worth reading!