Title: BLACK RAINBOW by J.J. McAvoy
Genre: New Adult romance/semi-mystery
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½
Trigger warnings: child sexual assault, child abuse
After an erotic one-week fling with a musician she meets in a bar, Thea Cunning never expects to see Levi Black again. Then Monday morning comes around, and she discovers that her former lover is not only her professor, but he’s also one of the top criminal lawyers in the state of Massachusetts.
With everyone in class vying to be one of the twelve disciples—a group of twelve students that Professor Black takes under his wing—tensions run high. Thea considers dropping his class, given their passionate week together and their undeniable chemistry. After all, there are other (less infuriatingly sexy) law professors on campus.
But to accomplish her goal and get her father out of prison, Thea knows she needs to learn under the best of the best—and that’s Levi Black.
But can she learn under the best, without being under the best?
This was one of the best New Adult books I’ve ever read. It has a fresh romance, a fresh plot and it kept me on the edge of my seat from the very beginning. I’m really impressed with this one because most New Adult romances I’ve read have been very mediocre. This just proves I just need to expand my reading to read more diverse New Adult romances.
I was such a huge fan of Thea whilst reading this! She was strong, sassy, smart, funny & had an all-round great personality. She was so determined and level-headed and I rarely found myself frustrated with her decisions. I loved her relationship with her sister, but I do kind of wish we’d seen more of that develop! I’m excited to see where it goes in the novella. Levi was brooding and a little mysterious and sort of your typical NA hero but I really liked him! He respected Thea and he admitted when he fucked up. I think he’d be an awesome law professor to have and, much like Thea, he was also strong-willed, determined and very loyal. I really liked his relationship with his sister & with Tristan and I thought all of the relationships were developed really well! I also really enjoyed Thea’s friendship with Atticus and Vivian. At first, I wasn’t really sure how it was going to turn out but I liked their development and thought their competitiveness was a nice addition to the plot.
This was certainly the most unique New Adult plot I’ve ever read. Most of the time I pick up an NA book, all I expect is fluff. This definitely delivered on the fluff, but it exceeded by expectations by a lot. I’ve seen other people say this & I must agree, this gives me a bit of a How To Get Away With Murder vibe. Not that the plot or anything is similar, but the whole concept of the ’12 disciples’ helping Levi in his criminal law cases reminds me of a similar thing in HTGAWM. I loved the cases Thea helped Levi with and I liked the extra layer of the mystery/plot about finding the real culprit of the crime Thea’s father is on death row for. I do feel that the ending was a little rushed, but all in all, the plot certainly kept me engaged and it was one of the most unique New Adult books I’ve ever read.
My tiny, minor issue with this book, and the reason I didn’t give it 5 stars, was because of the writing/grammar/editing. For the most part I really liked McAvoy’s writing- it kept me intrigued and hooked from very early on, plus McAvoy definitely knows how to write sex scenes. But there were so many easily fixable spelling or grammar mistakes that it started getting on my nerves around halfway through.
Overall, I really really liked this one. Such a unique New Adult book with a great cast of characters- I very highly recommend this one for people looking for fresh, diverse, great NA.