Jesse has a curious attraction to Charlene, a hostess at the restaurant where he works. Outwardly he's rude, awkward and unapproachable. But his sudden burst of charm are inescapable. A devastating childhood filled with physical and emotional abuse have left him complex and frigid.
Charlene, an innocent, is quickly mystified. Her craving for him generates an infatuation and a purpose. Losing weight and gaining confidence, she begins taking more risk. She defies her past, damaged and tender, in order to move ahead.
"Progress" is a realistic tale of two friends who both have similar issues that make them hesitant to get close to anyone. Jesse's demons have manifested into an emotional detachment, and Charlene's a physical one.
If nobody makes the first mover then nobody gets hurt.
Is love just an obsession when there's nowhere left to run? Their journeys take them down parallel paths which leave them just as emotionally unmatched and conflicted as the day they met.
As the story progresses the viewpoints change, giving the reader an insight to the character's thoughts and feelings. "Progress" falls within the parameters of Women's Commercial Fiction, Chick Lit, and Psychological Fiction.
My emotions were all over the place while reading this book, Progress is very well written and the characters were very well developed, while reading this book I started thinking of my time in school and how it effected me in the future but also made the person I am today.
I loved Charlie right off the bat, she was someone I could have been friends with in school. I could completely relate to her. Jesse was a straight up douchebag but once you started to read more of his point of view and the struggle with his emotions and thoughts, you can't help look pass that and want to help him.
There's no rush when it comes to this book, it's very well paced. What I loved most of all was every feeling and outcome was very realistic and that's what drew me into the story. I honestly didn't like Jesse until I started reading his point of view and it floored me, between Charlie discovering herself and blossoming has a woman and then with Jesse's mental illness with needing her but pushing Charlie away by mocking her had my feelings all over the place. Progress gave me a better understanding on this illness, and it's apparent the author did her homework to write a book like this.
I can't wait to continue on to the second book to see where Jesse and Charlie end up.
Amy Queau did an amazing job on this book! This story line is one I'll never forget.
I Give Amy Queau
***** 5 *****