Sometimes things change, and sometimes they don’t…Johanna always feels like she has to be perfect-the perfect student and the perfect obedient daughter, which leads her to being the perfect outcast among her high school peers.
They say opposites attract, and that could be the only explanation for her attraction to Paul. Always the life of the party, Paul won his seat on the student council by running on an apathy platform. Wherever Paul goes, laughter follows, and Johanna longs to be a part of his inner circle.
And whenever Johanna wants something, she plans and works hard to achieve her goal.
Getting Paul into her life turns out to be the easy part. Keeping Paul happy while juggling all her other responsibilities is tough even for an overachiever like Johanna. Soon Paul’s happiness becomes more important to Johanna than her own. More important than her relationship with her parents and friends. More important than her grades, her safety, and her future.
In Things Change, Johanna is living the perfect life to everyone else’s eyes and yet she has something she wants badly. Paul. He’s the typical bad boy who pretends to not really care about much at all. The book opens with her saying “I want you to kiss me.” He quickly turns her down.
Keeping along with the title, things slowly change. Paul changes his mind and Johanna is so thrilled she never really questions why. As the book progresses, Paul is the ideal boyfriend, abeit a bit overprotective. Things Change circles on their relationship.
Things Change makes it a bit clearer how a perfect relationship can turn into something dangerous and not so perfect. If you’ve never wondered how girls can stay with violent guys, how girls can be taken away and isolated from their friends and family – Things Change is your book. Jones captures the emotion and turmoil so well that it’s terrifying.
The story alternates between Paul and Johanna’s point of view, which is always a great thing when reading any book about abuse. It gives you a bit of insight into why the abuser is the way they are and why the victim doesn’t flee. At times I got a bit annoyed with Johanna’s POV, she’s so insecure.
Aside from cringing a bit at times, I really enjoyed reading Jones’ take on abusive relationships. Paul and Johanna both were believeable and while it was heartbreaking, it was so fascinating to read. I definitely plan on picking up Jones’ other books.
Because of the subject manner, Things Change may not be for all readers. Take that into consideration.
I received my copy of Things Change courtesy of the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.