Release Date: April 8, 2015
When a good girl falls for a bad boyIn Dating Down, we follow Sam, who lives with her father, stepmom, and stepsister. Her mother died of sickness a while ago, so she feels like her father tried to replace her automatically by marrying Jane who already had a kid named Melanie. Her father is running for senator this year so he's trying to constantly make sure that the family upholds its reputation.
She thought she loved him. She thought she could change him. She thought if she just believed in him enough, his cheating and his drugs and his lying would stop, and she'd be his and he'd be hers and they'd love each other forever.
But for Samantha Henderson, X-the boy she will not name-is trouble. He's older, edgier, bohemian... and when he starts paying attention to Sam, she can't resist him. Samantha's family and friends try to warn her, but she still stays with him, risking her future and everything that really matters.
One day, Sam meets X at a coffee shop that he works at. They fall for each other and start doing everything together, even though Sam's two best friends, Gavin and April, begin to not really approve of him. The thing is, X does drugs though he always denies that he does. He's also always with other girls though he claims that it's just nothing. Is it really nothing though?
This book was darker than I thought it would be, especially with all the drugs. I felt so bad for Sam, because she deserved so much more than X was giving her. Their relationship was toxic at times and I think it was filled with many lies. Luckily, she had her friends to help her through. I loved the friendship between Sam, Gavin, and April, though April was a bit boy crazy over her on-again off-again boyfriend Ralph. Nonetheless, she was always there for Sam.
Sam's home life wasn't the best, because she felt that her father was hiding from his past and just trying to forget about it because he met Jane. He just focused so much on his career when he should've focused a bit more on his home life and maybe spent a bit more time with Sam. It was a bit sad at times, really.
Stefanie Lyons's writing style was so lyrical and beautiful. Sometimes I even went back and reread sections because of how great it was. It was just so smooth and melodic. This was also my first book that was written poetically, and I enjoyed it so much. This was definitely a very interesting read and I'd suggest picking it up if you're looking for a quick, darker contemporary.