Friday, 19 April 2013

ARC Review + Giveaway: Undeclared (Woodlands #1) by Jen Frederick

Undeclared (Woodlands, #1)UNDECLARED

Author: Jen Frederick
Series: Woodlands
Pages: eBook
Genre: New Adult
Publisher: Self
Release date: 1st May 2013

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Synopsis. (Goodreads)

For four years, Grace Sullivan wrote to a Marine she never met, and fell in love. But when his deployment ended, so did the letters. Ever since that day, Grace has been coasting, academically and emotionally. The one thing she’s decided? No way is Noah Jackson — or any man — ever going to break her heart again.

Noah has always known exactly what he wants out of life. Success. Stability. Control. That’s why he joined the Marines and that’s why he’s fighting his way — literally — through college. Now that he’s got the rest of his life on track, he has one last conquest: Grace Sullivan. But since he was the one who stopped writing, he knows that winning her back will be his biggest battle yet.

Review: 4 ½ out of 5 stars

Undeclared Is Jen Frederick’s debut novel and a wonderful addition to the New Adult genre with an amazing cast of characters, an intriguing storyline and just enough drama to keep me completely entertained and needing more; it was a book I read in one sitting and left me wanting the next book in the Woodlands series now.

19 year-old Grace Sullivan spent four years in high school writing to a marine as part of a school assignment and in that time came to fall in love with this stranger but when his deployment ends the communication stops and she is left bewildered and heart-broken.

23 year-old Noah Jackson has hopes and aspirations, he knows what he wants out of life and after what he did to Grace he is determined to make things right. I loved his reasons for not contacting her straight out of the marines, yes he took an easy way out and I initially thought it was due to an injury etc. but it was nothing like that. He had a purpose but his thoughts and his heart had always belonged to Grace.

I absolutely loved these characters; Grace was a sweetheart and with a broken heart and the surprise reappearance of Noah came a little snark and attitude which she was entitled to but I adored Noah’s persistence and the way he wore her down; she was so stubborn and reminded me so much of myself in many ways which is why I felt such a connection to her and who doesn’t love a man who opens car doors, encourages you and pretty much worships the ground you walk on! He was possessive and bossy but he can boss me around anytime!

I loved that the friendship/relationship was initially built up over 4 years, reading Noah’s letters to Grace gave us great insight about the person he was, after a difficult childhood his determination and sheer will with his career as a marine, his studies and his fighting - sometimes illegally all showed how unwavering his dedication was, all to build his dream of a secure future. I came to actually enjoy the training and methodical fight scenes which is really not the norm for me, it gave the overall story a bit of angst and they were written really well.

The secondary characters are each perfect; I loved cousin Lana, I’m intrigued by brother Josh and Noah’s woodlands friends were each fun to read about, especially Bo also a former marine who I really want to get to know, his wit, sarcasm and support has me gushing and I think he is going to give Noah great competition in the swoon department – his negativity about Grace and Noah’s relationship did make me mad but he had his reasoning, his bond with Noah was amazing, I loved the dialogue between them.

I have my fingers crossed the next book in the series will be Bo and Lana’s story – I would love to see these two together.

You would not know Undeclared is Jen Frederick’s debut novel, her writing flows beautifully; the fun times and banter is written extremely well as are the smexy moments between Noah and Grace. Admittedly, there were a few small cliches but nothing at all which annoyed me or was overdone. I really liked how the miscommunications and bits of drama were handled.

Overall, a thoroughly engrossing read! I loved this book and can’t wait to read the next installment in the Woodlands series, the characters, storyline and gushing romance were all wonderfully written and Jen Frederick’s writing is extremely engaging - she is definitely an author to remember and this is a book I'm more than happy to add to my favourites list!

Thank-you kindly to Jen Frederick for providing me with a copy of Undeclared in exchange for my honest review.

Author bio: Jen Frederick lives with her husband, child, and one rambunctious dog.  She's been reading stories all her life but never imagined writing one of her own. Jen loves to hear from readers so drop her a line at

Jen Frederick website : Twitter Facebook


The wonderful, generous Jen Frederick has kindly offered an early copy of UNDECLARED.

To enter, complete the rafflecopter form below. Not all options are mandatory.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I've never heard of this book before but your raving review makes me want to read it right away. It sounds right up my alley. I love that the relationship actually grows from a friendship over a period of 4 years. That makes it seem so much more realistic. You have to love a book that also has strong secondary characters.
    Thank for sharing your wonderful review, Sharon. Definitely adding this to my to-read list. :)

    1. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did Nick! all of the characters were wonderful, Noah especially <3

  2. I don't think I've heard of this one and it sounds great! I like bossy men (in books only!) and fine them very entertaining! I'll have to consider reading this one in the future!

    1. Me too! Noah's bossiness worked well in this book & Grace was no pushover which made it all the more enjoyable :-)

  3. This sounds really good! I love that the books in the series will follow other couples (if I'm reading correctly) and not drag the same relationship out over book after book. This has gone straight to my list of must-haves, my NA Challenge goal is coasting along thanks to you! Great review, Sharon. :)

    1. I agree Barbara! When a relationship drags over a series I find it tiresome. The secondary characters in this book were fantastic so I'm really eager to get their stories as well.

      I'm loving your NA challenge! I've learnt about some amazing books from it ;)

  4. Ooh, I really like the idea of them getting to know each other via letters first, that is so sweet and completely different to most YA! Thanks for hosting the giveaway :)

    1. We get snippets of the letters which was wonderful, it was nice to see how their friendship started & progressed.

  5. Ohmygosh! Undeclared sounds absolutely perfect for me. Definitely going on my tbr. I'm so glad you loved this, Sharon. Great review!

  6. Oh, this sounds like a sweet romance. This is definitely something I would enjoy reading. Great review.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever


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