I previously described this story as "Reddit and 4chan had a baby" and after a few days of DNF'ing this book, I stand by that description. Novak showed she was out of her depth by having her heroine have a back story that included a gang rape. The hero and heroine were not up to the challenge of overcoming this (and other) obstacles; they were far too weak and the heroine needed a lot more therapy while she was back in her hometown. The additional storyline of the hero's best friend being gay and in love with the hero for years was already repetitive by the end of book two, and Baxter forcing a kiss from Noah came across as a sexual assault. I lost all respect for Baxter and the others in the friend gang were not anymore mature or level headed.
I might try Novak's suspense novels because I do (for the most part) really like her writing and voice. I just can't take her shoe-horning serious topics into a light contemporary romance storylines - the two aren't meshing well and it comes off as sloppy or damaging writing.