I had heard of Ugly Love for a while now, but never really know what it was about – just that it was one of Colleen Hoover’s most popular books. Since the other things I was currently reading were physical books, I decided to buy the Kindle version of Ugly Love to read on the plane to/from California last month. I read the whole book that weekend between the flights and little bits of downtime I had at the hotel before getting ready for the wedding/going to sleep etc.
Side note, you can’t really tell because the background isn’t in focus, but that’s the Golden Gate Bridge in the background of the above photo. Fitting since the book takes place in San Francisco, which was a happy coincidence!
Ugly Love follows two main characters – Tate Collins and Miles Archer. Tate is a nurse and starting grad school for nursing in San Francisco. She moves in with her brother since she is new to town. He is away for periods of time because he is a pilot as are a number of other people in the apartment building as the airline has a contract with the building. Living across the hall is Miles Archer. Miles is one of her brother’s closest friends and he is also a pilot for the airline. There is an instant attraction between the two, but they decide to just be friends with benefits. Tate is busy with work and school and Miles has no desire for a relationship. Miles famously says, ““Don’t ask about my past. And never expect a future.”
The problem is, they both quickly develop real feelings for each other. Tate would love more and for his own reasons even if Miles wants more he feels unable to give it.
Chapters told from Miles’ point of view are included in the book, but for the most part his chapters are from the past and serve as a way for the readers to understand what happened to him to make him so anti-relationships and anti-love. Once you get through his past you understand why he is the way he is and if you’re like me you are rooting for them the whole time hoping they are able to work through it all together and find happiness.
This novel destroyed me and put me back together as Colleen Hoover’s novels are famous for doing. I had to try to not cry on the plane! I love Miles and Tate’s story so much and I love the characters too. They’re not perfect, but I think that’s what makes them realistic and relatable.
Not really a spoiler, but I’ve seen some people say they didn’t give the book five stars because they wanted Tate to stand up for herself more and not allow herself to be treated like that (i.e. Miles never wanting a relationship), but for me personally – I think that’s what made it realistic. How many of us have been in a position where we took less than what we wanted because we felt like something was better than nothing? I think that’s so relatable.
I’ve seen some criticism of Colleen Hoover’s novels in general as well saying that they’re not really “romance” because they feature “toxic” relationships. To that I say that you have to go into these novels knowing they aren’t the typical romance novels, meaning they aren’t rom coms or romance novels with popular tropes. Yes, there is love in her books, but in the few books I’ve read of hers so far I think they are more gut wrenching, complex, complicated relationship type romance books and not the typical steamy or funny love stories. But there is spice in her books in case you were wondering!
Anyway, back to the novel. I absolutely am obsessed with this book and Miles and Tate. So much so that I thought about it every day for a week after finishing it. I couldn’t stop thinking about it and rereading parts of it. I just could not let the characters and their love story go. I also found the bonus chapter that Colleen Hoover wrote a few years ago and posted on her fb. If you google it you can read it too. It’s so good.
At some point I need to read November 9 because Miles and Tate make appearance(s) in the novel apparently since the male protagonist is the younger brother of one of the side characters in Ugly Love.
We’ll see if Ugly Love stays my favorite for the year, but I know it will be one of my all-time favs.
A few more quotes that I love from this novel:
“Ugly love becomes you. Consumes you. Makes you hate it all. Makes you realize that all the beautiful parts aren’t even worth it. Without the beautiful, you’ll never risk feeling the ugly. So you give it all up. You give it all up. You never want love again, no matter what kind it is, because no type of love will ever be worth living through the ugly love again.”
“Love isn’t always pretty, Tate. Sometimes you spend all your time hoping it’ll eventually be something different. Something better. Then, before you know it, you’re back to square one, and you lost you heart somewhere along the way”
“There were moments I didn’t care if I ever hurt again, because being with you almost felt worth the potential pain.”
Have you read Ugly Love yet? Ugh, I just can’t get over how much I love this book!
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