Review ~ If You Stay by Courtney Cole

Title: If You Stay
Author: Courtney Cole
Series: Beautifully Broken #1
Genre: NA Contemporary Romance
Published: February 5th 2013


24-year old Pax Tate is an asshole.

He’s a tattooed, rock-hard bad-boy with a bad attitude to match.

But he’s got his reasons.

His mother died when Pax was seven, leaving a hole in his heart filled with guilt although he doesn’t understand why. What he does know is that he and his dad are left alone and with more issues than they can count.

As Pax grew up, he tried to be the kid his father always wanted; the perfect golden boy, but it didn’t work. His dad couldn’t overcome his grief long enough to notice and Pax couldn’t keep up the impossible perfect fa├žade.
So he slipped far, far from it.

Now, he uses drugs and women to cope with the ugliness, the black void that he doesn’t want to deal with. If he pretends that the emptiness isn’t there, then it isn’t, right?

And it’s never more apparent than when he meets Mila.
Sweet, beautiful Mila Hill is the fresh air to his hardened frown, the beauty to his ugly heart. He doesn’t know how to not hurt her, but he quickly realizes that he’s got to figure it out because he needs her to breathe.

When memories of his mother’s death resurface from where he’s repressed them for so long, Mila is there to catch him when the guilt starts making sense. Mila is the one…the one who can save him from his broken troubled heart; from his issues, from the emptiness.

But only if he can stop being an asshole long enough to allow it.

He knows that. And he’s working on it.

But is that enough to make her stay?
If You Stay is the first book that I have read of Courtney Cole’s and I thought that it was a beautiful read. From the very first moment I was thrust into Pax’s crazy head and I knew it was going to be a fun and intense ride. Then I met the sweet girl Mila and saw the kind heart she had and knew she was going to be the one who may be able to bring some sunshine into Pax’s life.

Right from the start I found out that Pax had issues. He likes to drink, do drugs and doesn’t treat women very well. He has come from money and is happy to waste it away. But when something happens that changes the course of his life he decides to grasp onto it and move on for the better. The bad side of him is what he likes everyone to see as he doesn’t want people to get too close. He is arrogant and is very sure of himself, but I enjoyed that side of him. I have a bit of a thing for bad boys, so I was excited to see how this would go, and before long I found out what a great guy Pax could be. It has been simple to keep people away, but he soon realises how nice it is to let someone in and have someone to care for.

Mila has dealt with her fair share of tragedy and has learnt to move on with her life. She is happy with her lifestyle and pursuing her dreams of art. She didn’t realise how much she wanted a man in her life until she stumbled onto one. He opened her eyes up; even though she was afraid that he may rip out her heart and stomp all over it. I liked Mila; she is kind, sweet and will go out of her way for anyone, even strangers. Her life is pretty stable and she can certainly hold her own when someone baits her!

Both of the characters form a bond early in the book, and it isn’t long before they decide to explore their feelings and decide whether or not to begin a relationship. But like everything in life, it is not always simple. They both have issues that need to be resolved before they can move on. But when they are together they are a great couple. They work very hard to find that HEA, and at times I had tears in my eyes, knowing the issues that they had to work through. Courtney’s writing pulled me into the story, right from the beginning and I wanted to continue reading until the book was finished. There was also an irresistible deleted scene at the end of the book, that I absolutely loved!!

I received a copy of this book from the Publisher, Forever (GCP) via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


  1. They both sound like great characters. I love those bad boys too and getting to peek inside their heads. I have a foster kitty named Pax so already loving him. lol

  2. These two characters that I think I would really enjoy. Wonderful review.

  3. This is in my tbr pile and I am anxious to read about Pax, love your review Naomi, you make me want to stop reading my other books and dive in!

  4. I know what you mean.... bad boys bring awesome spice to books!! Give Pax a rub for me!! ;)

  5. They are fun characters... i'm looking forward to more in this series! And thanks Jenea!!

  6. Awww.... thanks Kimberly!! I appreciate your nice words! I hope you get to read it soon. It's an awesome read!

  7. Great review. I've been on the fence with If You Stay but you've convinced me :) .

  8. Fun and intense sounds right up my alley, I think I would love being in Pax's head.

  9. Aww.... I hope I did!! It really was a great read!

  10. Hmmmmm..... Pax is awesome!! Can be intense though... lookout!!


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