4 stars · Abuse · Dark

Interim by S. Walden

Interim Book Cover Interim
S. Walden
Fiction, Dark Romance
April 14th 2015

~A lot can change in the space between devising a plan and carrying it out. That space is called the INTERIM.~


High school seniors Jeremy Stahl and Regan Walters aren’t friends. Not even close. He’s a picked-on, picked-apart loser outcast. She’s a cool kid running with the popular crowd. It’s unlikely they’d ever speak to one another. Too bad he’s madly in love with her. But what does it matter anyway? He’s got no time for love. Only revenge.
Meticulously detailed in the pages of his battered red notebook is his master plan: April 14, 9:30 A.M., two guns, eighty rounds of ammo, backup knives, eleven victims. He’s finally ready to answer every single taunt, jeer, and flying fist—unwarranted abuse that’s spanned six years of his lonely life. He’s justified. He’s ready. But he never readied himself for her.
Regan finds his journal. She reads it, and when he discovers her intrusion, he has to switch tactics. She’s a liability now.
Better fix that.

Interim is a New Adult Standalone. It contains explicit language and disturbing images of violence, including gun violence. If school shootings are an especially sensitive subject for you, I encourage you to refrain from reading this book. - S. Walden

ARIANNA’s Review

3.75 STARS

“Who was he? What was his purpose? He knew it once. Once, a long time ago, he decided to be a hero. He decided to avenge himself and all the other kids who were helpless against abuse. Once, a long time ago, he learned the difference between justice and mercy. He learned when justice was required. He learned when mercy was allowed. Once, a long time ago, he faced himself in the mirror and saw a stranger—a better boy than he could ever be. A boy with a mission. A boy with convictions.”

This book was so interesting and so, so gripping. It sucked me in from the beginning. It’s dark and raw and even a little depressing at times. The premise of this story is unique and captivating and from the moment I’ve read the blurb I knew I had to read it. “Interim” is not only a romance, is an educational story as well – about life, high school, about those who are popular and those who are less popular and seen as ‘losers’, about bullying. It’s an eye-opening, intense, complex and REAL story that for sure will make you reflect. The subject matter, bullying is a sensitive subject, but is explored very well here. The author did a really great job portraying the victims, those who are witnessing thy bullying and the bully. But this book is not only about bullying, is also about parental neglect, abuse and school violence.

This was my first read by this author and I’m sure it won’t be my last, because I really enjoyed her writing. Here the writing in my opinion played an important role. It’s powerful and raw and the story is written is such a way that will you feel for these characters.

The plot is very well developed. It’s captivating and like the characters, complex. The characters in this book are flawed, relatable and most of all they are real. Jeremy is such a complex character and because of his complexity I didn’t know what to think about him the entire time reading this book. The abuse he endures at home and at school broke my heart and left me so angry. He is bitter and angry and so, so, lonely. There were so many times I wanted to hug him and give him comfort. Poor Jeremy! I like to think violence should never be the answer, so obviously I can’t say I fully understood him. Malcom x said – “If someone puts their hands on you make sure they never put their hands on anybody else again.” – and Jeremy wants the same thing. He wants revenge and he wants to help others like him who can’t defend themselves. I wish I could say I relate with Jeremy in some way but I can’t. I never was bullied, I never bullied someone and I never witnessed bullying. Needless to say I had mixed feelings for him and for what he plans to do and I can’t say I felt connected with him. I felt for him, but I hated him at the same time because we all can agree that no one has the right to take the life of another. That being said, I’m sure many readers will connect with his character more than I did.

Regan, our heroine was a girl who frustrated me big time and I’m still not sure how to feel about her character. She pissed me off with her attitude towards Jeremy’s situation. In my opinion she was bully as much as the ‘real’ bully, because even if she has a mouth, she chooses to remain silent. I hate weak heroines and in my eyes, Regan was exactly that. I didn’t like how easily she forgave her best friend, Casey and how easily she forgot about everything this girl did. I believe people can change. I really do, but Casey’s overnight ‘transformation’ wasn’t so credible to me. It was overnight for me because I didn’t get what exactly made her realize how evil she was. Maybe it’s just me, but I didn’t buy it. Also I really blamed Regan, Cassie and of course ‘the others’ for what happened with a certain side character in the end.

Jeremy and Regan’s love story is sweet and tender and I felt they are good for each other. I liked how Regan gave Jeremy what he desperately needed – love, care and most of all, hope. Their relationship progressed in a very natural way and I liked how they interacted with each other and their sweet moments together. I believe there are some things or events in life that can change who you are, so I understood why and how Jeremy’s…purpose changed. Regan and her love and the happiness she brings him changed him and changed the way he sees everything. I really liked this aspect of the story.

I have to mention a certain side character that made me feel so much – Hannah. Oh my Gawd! My heart ached for this girl. She’s so damn broken and real and I think she represents the ones who lost the battle…’that battle’. However, in my eyes she is and always will be a brave girl.

All in all, “Interim” was a captivating and complex story with a unique premise, great developed characters and evocative writing.