Review: BELIEVE (TRUE BELIEVERS #3) by Erin McCarthy

Robin used to be a party girl… until she got black out drunk and woke up in bed with her best friend's boyfriend. Now she's faced with being THAT girl, and couldn't be more disgusted with herself. She can't even tell her friends the reason for her sudden sobriety and she avoids everyone until she meets Phoenix—quiet, tattooed, and different in every way that's good and oh, so bad…

Phoenix is two days out of jail when he meets Robin at his cousin's house, and he knows that he has no business talking to her, but he's drawn to her quiet demeanor, sweet smile, and artistic talent. She doesn't care that he's done time, or that he only has five bucks to his name, and she supports his goal to be a tattoo artist.

But Phoenix knows Robin has a secret, and that it's a naïve dream to believe that his record won't catch up with them at some point. Though neither is prepared for the explosive result when the past collides with the present…


Oh I really enjoyed this book! When I picked this one up on NetGalley, I had no idea it was book 3 in a series. I thought it was a standalone and the synopsis grabbed my attention. After finishing it, I have added the first two books to my TBR because I want more of these characters. I immediately connected with Robin and Phoenix. Having grown up in Cincinnati myself and attended the University of Cincinnati, I felt like I was reminiscing my college years. I loved that I was familiar with the places they went and actual lived in Clifton while I was in college. I think those are just a few of the reasons I connected with the characters so fast and enjoyed this book. Also the reason I’m excited to start the first two.

Robin, like so many college students, has become a party girl. That is until one night she overdoes it and wakes up in the bed of her best friend’s boyfriend. The poor girl is heartbroken and doesn’t know what to do. She is disgusted with herself and determined to be sober. Although her friends know that something has happened, she vows to keep it a secret so her best friend never finds out. She meets Phoenix while she is at her lowest. He is the cousin of her friend and fresh out of jail. But what girl isn’t attracted to a bad boy, I know at that age I was! I loved how the two develop a friendship and she slowly lets him in. Like most college students, she isn’t sure who she is and what she wants out of life. Being sober helps her realize what she wants and slowly she turns her life around. Phoenix is there with her along the way. 

I loved Phoenix! He is quiet, tattooed and had a very difficult life. After spending time in jail, he is starting over with nothing but the clothes he is wearing. He knows that he has nothing to offer Robin but he can’t help himself. These two seem to understand one another. He knows she has secrets and he is interested in getting to know her. He is also determined to turn his life around. My heart broke for her when he reveals his past and all he has endeared in his short life. The poor guy is such a good guy and has been given a shit life but he makes the best of it. 

When their past meet the present, the relationship these two have formed is threatened. While I didn’t think it was as climatic as the synopsis describes, I still enjoyed the book. I do wish that there would have been more added to the story regarding Phoenix’s past and how it catches up with him. I think that part of the book was lacking and could have been more dramatic, but I love the angst so maybe it is just me. Robin’s past I’m sure you can guess just by reading the synopsis but the way it goes down is heartbreaking. We all do stupid things and have to live with our consequences and at that age everything seems like the end of the world.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. Like I said I think for me personally it was because of the setting. I would characterize this one as a good, quick read. Nothing too emotional but instead a cute story with some steamy scenes. I look forward to reading the other books in the series. 

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