Review: Jake Understood (Jake, #2) by Penelope Ward

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4 Jake-lovin’ stars

This book follows on from Jake Undone, and is part-sequel, part-alternate POV book. It is set 8 years into the future where Jake and Nina are together and living the life they wanted together, but a bad night leads to Nina taking off for the day to get some space, leaving Jake at home. And when friends arrive (Alison & Cedric, Skylar & Mitch), he begins to reminisce about their beginning and how it all started for them.

There is a combination of seeing the same pivotal moments from Jake’s perspective, and some new scenes which add additional context to the beginning of their relationship, as well as some fun and sweet moment that I enjoyed just because the dynamic between these two is so gorgeous and I love to see them in that fun, flirty, deeply-attracted-yet-still-holding-back stage. Ward manages to recapture the angst and anticipation that I felt while reading Jake Undone, and I loved getting to see this new side to things as we experienced Jake’s surprise, fear and open acceptance of his feelings for Nina.

“I hadn’t held anyone like that in years. But never had it felt like this – like home.”

I was completely happy with the way the story was told in Jake Undone. Even though the story was mainly written from Nina’s POV, I could empathise with both characters and I felt what they were going through, but this book gives us some further insight into just how intense Jake’s torment was at his situation – the struggle between his all-consuming feelings for Nina, and his pain about his past and his fear about her reaction. But it also shows us just what a big heart he has and the way he truly cares for the people in his life, and his soul-deep love for Nina just melted me.

“I didn’t just love her. To me, she was love, was life. My life started the day she entered it. It would end the day she left it. There was no gap between where I began and she ended. We were one.”

The scenes in the present show us that that love has only grown, and my heart ached for the pain that he was in over the fact that he hurt the woman he loved so badly. Oh Jake… I just want to hug him so badly!

“This day was a long time coming. In fact, I’d been bracing for it from the moment I first met her.”

Jake and Nina may have moved on from the conflicts of the past, but those issues still haven’t been fully overcome and they continue to add pressure, and this book shows us that. It was inevitable, really, and I’m really glad that Ward took us back to this complicated storyline to show us the impact of their situation on them in the future, and how they deal with it.

“Sometimes, you need to step away to realize you can’t really walk away from something that’s a part of you.”

But more than anything, this book shows us just how truly special Jake and Nina are as a couple. Their unquestionable love for each other is gorgeous to see, and I loved the glimpses we got of them in the future living out the HEA that they so deserve.

“From the day you first walked into my life, you’ve been saving me.”

I loved this book. Not a must-read in terms of storyline, but fans of Jake will love getting more of him, and of this beautiful love story.

4 stars.


Gemini (Interconnected Standalones)

Each book is a standalone (except for the Jake books), but the characters crossover.  Books are listed below in order of publication date.

Gemini  Jake Undone  My Skylar  Jake Understood  

Gemini (Allison & Cedric)
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Jake Undone (Jake, #1) (Jake & Nina)
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My Skylar (Skylar & Mitch)
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Jake Understood (Jake, #2) (Jake & Nina)
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Check out our Penelope Ward Author Spotlight for more great reads!


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