The Themes and Characters of All Closed Off (Rusk University 4) by Cora Carmack
All Closed Off (Rusk University 4) by Cora Carmack: A Review
If you are looking for a new adult romance that tackles serious issues with sensitivity and humor, you might want to check out All Closed Off by Cora Carmack. This is the fourth book in the Rusk University series, which follows a group of college students who are involved in sports, academics, and love. All Closed Off focuses on Stella Santos, a journalism major who has been struggling with the aftermath of a sexual assault that she can't remember. She meets Ryan Blake, a former football player who has his own secrets and scars, and they develop a connection that challenges them to heal and trust again.
All Closed Off (Rusk University 4) by Cora Carmack (Ebook)
What is All Closed Off about?
All Closed Off is a standalone novel that can be read without reading the previous books in the series. However, it does feature some characters from the earlier books, such as Dallas Cole, Carson McClain, Silas Moore, and Dylan Brenner. The story takes place at Rusk University, a fictional college in Texas that has a strong sports culture.
The main plot revolves around Stella Santos, who was introduced in the first book as Dallas' best friend. Stella is a smart, confident, and outgoing girl who loves journalism and photography. She was looking forward to her senior year, until she was raped at a party by someone she trusted. Since then, she has been suffering from panic attacks, nightmares, flashbacks, and depression. She has also isolated herself from her friends and family, who don't know how to help her.
One day, she meets Ryan Blake, a new transfer student who used to play football at another school. Ryan is handsome, charming, and mysterious. He seems to understand Stella's pain and fear, because he has his own demons to deal with. He was involved in a car accident that killed his best friend and left him with physical and emotional scars. He also has a complicated relationship with his father, who is a powerful politician.
Stella and Ryan start off as friends, but soon develop feelings for each other. They help each other cope with their trauma and find hope for the future. However, their relationship is not easy or smooth. They have to face their pasts, their insecurities, their enemies, and their choices. They also have to deal with the consequences of their actions and the expectations of others.
What are the themes of All Closed Off?
Trauma and recovery
One of the main themes of All Closed Off is how trauma affects people's lives and how they can recover from it. The book does not shy away from depicting the harsh reality of sexual assault and its aftermath. It shows how Stella's rape has changed her personality, her behavior, her relationships, and her dreams. It also shows how she struggles with guilt, shame, anger, denial, and self-blame. The book does not sugarcoat or romanticize her experience, but rather portrays it with honesty and respect.
The book also shows how Ryan's car accident has impacted his life and how he deals with the loss of his friend, the guilt of surviving, the pain of his injuries, and the pressure of his family. It shows how he tries to escape from his problems by drinking, fighting, and avoiding his emotions. It also shows how he learns to accept his situation, face his fears, and open up to others.
The book explores how trauma can be healed with the help of therapy, support groups, medication, and self-care. It also shows how trauma can be overcome with the help of love, friendship, trust, and courage. It shows how Stella and Ryan help each other heal by listening, understanding, comforting, and challenging each other. It shows how they grow as individuals and as a couple by overcoming their obstacles and finding their strength.
Friendship and support
Another theme of All Closed Off is how friendship and support can make a difference in people's lives. The book shows how Stella's friends from the Rusk University series are there for her, even when she pushes them away. It shows how they care for her, protect her, cheer her up, and encourage her. It also shows how they respect her wishes, give her space, and let her make her own decisions. The book shows how Stella's friends are not perfect, but they are loyal, honest, and fun.
The book also shows how Ryan's friends from his previous school are there for him, even when he distances himself from them. It shows how they worry about him, support him, forgive him, and challenge him. It also shows how they accept him for who he is, not for who his father is. The book shows how Ryan's friends are not flawless, but they are genuine, caring, and funny.
The book illustrates how friendship and support can help people cope with their trauma, find their purpose, and enjoy their life. It also shows how friendship and support can come from unexpected places, such as online communities, strangers, or enemies.
Romance and trust
A third theme of All Closed Off is how romance and trust can develop between two people who have been hurt before. The book shows how Stella and Ryan fall in love with each other gradually and naturally. It shows how they are attracted to each other physically and emotionally. It also shows how they are compatible with each other intellectually and creatively. The book shows how Stella and Ryan are not perfect lovers, but they are passionate, sweet, and playful.
The book also shows how Stella and Ryan learn to trust each other with their secrets and their hearts. It shows how they are honest with each other about their pasts, their feelings, their fears, and their hopes. It also shows how they are loyal to each other despite the temptations, the rumors, the threats, and the doubts. The book shows how Stella and Ryan are not flawless partners, but they are respectful, supportive, and faithful.
What are the strengths of All Closed Off?
All Closed Off has many strengths that make it a compelling and enjoyable read. Some of the strengths are:
Realistic and sensitive portrayal of sexual assault survivor
One of the main strengths of All Closed Off is how it portrays Stella's journey as a sexual assault survivor. The book does not trivialize or sensationalize her trauma, but rather shows it with realism and sensitivity. The book depicts how Stella's rape affects her in different ways, such as her mental health, her physical health, her academic performance, her social life, and her sexuality. The book also depicts how Stella copes with her trauma in different ways, such as therapy, medication, art, activism, and humor. The book does not present Stella as a victim or a hero, but rather as a human being who is trying to survive and thrive.
The book also shows how Stella's rape affects other people in her life, such as her friends, her family, her classmates, and her rapist. The book explores how different people react to Stella's rape differently, such as with sympathy, anger, disbelief, blame, or indifference. The book also explores how different people support or harm Stella differently, such as with help, advice, comfort, pressure, or harassment. The book does not present Stella's rape as an isolated or simple event, but rather as a complex and widespread issue.
Engaging and relatable writing style
Another strength of All Closed Off is how it engages and relates to the reader with its writing style. The book is written in the first-person point of view of both Stella and Ryan, alternating between their chapters. This allows the reader to get inside their heads and hearts, and to understand their thoughts and feelings. The book also uses a conversational and informal tone that makes the reader feel like they are talking to a friend. The book also uses humor and sarcasm that makes the reader laugh and smile. The book does not bore or alienate the reader with its writing style, but rather captivates and connects with them.
The book also uses various literary devices that enhance its writing style. The book uses metaphors and similes that create vivid images and comparisons. The book uses foreshadowing and suspense that create anticipation and curiosity. The book uses flashbacks and memories that create contrast and depth. The book uses dialogue and monologue that create personality and voice. The book does not confuse or distract the reader with its writing style, but rather enriches and impresses them.
Dynamic and diverse cast of characters
A third strength of All Closed Off is how it features a dynamic and diverse cast of characters. The book does not only focus on Stella and Ryan, but also on their friends, family, enemies, and acquaintances. The book shows how each character has their own backstory, personality, motivation, and development. The book also shows how each character interacts with each other in different ways, such as with friendship, romance, rivalry, or conflict. The book does not present the characters as stereotypes or clichés, but rather as realistic and complex individuals.
The book also features characters from different backgrounds, cultures, races, genders, sexualities, and abilities. The book shows how each character faces their own challenges and opportunities in their society. The book also shows how each character celebrates their own identity and diversity in their community. The book does not present the characters as tokens or props, but rather as authentic and respectful representations.
What are the weaknesses of All Closed Off?
All Closed Off is not a perfect book and it has some weaknesses that may affect its quality and appeal. Some of the weaknesses are:
Delayed and uncertain release date
publishing issues, and the COVID-19 pandemic, the book has been postponed several times and has no confirmed release date as of now. This has caused frustration and disappointment among the fans of the series, who have been waiting for years to read Stella's story. This has also caused confusion and uncertainty among the potential readers, who may not know when or if the book will be available. This may affect the book's popularity and sales, as well as the author's reputation and credibility.
Lack of closure for some subplots
Another weakness of All Closed Off is its lack of closure for some subplots that were introduced in the previous books. The book does not resolve or address some of the issues or questions that were raised in the earlier books, such as: - What happened to Levi, Stella's ex-boyfriend who cheated on her and was involved in her rape? - What happened to Tucker, Ryan's former teammate who was injured in the car accident and blamed Ryan for it? - What happened to Mateo, Stella's friend who had a crush on her and was supportive of her recovery? - What happened to Torres, Ryan's rival who had a history with Stella and was hostile to Ryan? - What happened to Dylan and Silas, Stella's friends who had their own romantic problems and secrets? The book does not provide satisfactory answers or explanations for these subplots, leaving them hanging or unresolved. This may cause dissatisfaction and confusion among the readers, who may feel that the book is incomplete or inconsistent.
Predictable and clichéd moments
A third weakness of All Closed Off is its predictable and clichéd moments that may reduce its originality and impact. The book follows some of the common tropes and formulas of the new adult romance genre, such as: - The damaged hero and heroine who have tragic pasts and find solace in each other - The instant attraction and chemistry that leads to steamy scenes and declarations of love - The external conflicts and obstacles that threaten to tear them apart but ultimately bring them closer - The happy ending that wraps up everything neatly and gives them a bright future The book does not offer many surprises or twists that may challenge or intrigue the reader. The book also relies on some clichéd scenarios and dialogues that may sound familiar or cheesy to the reader. This may affect the book's freshness and appeal, as well as the reader's enjoyment and engagement.
All Closed Off by Cora Carmack is a new adult romance that tells the story of Stella Santos and Ryan Blake, two college students who have been traumatized by sexual assault and car accident respectively. They meet at Rusk University and fall in love with each other, while helping each other heal from their wounds. The book explores themes such as trauma and recovery, friendship and support, romance and trust. The book has strengths such as realistic and sensitive portrayal of sexual assault survivor, engaging and relatable writing style, dynamic and diverse cast of characters. The book also has weaknesses such as delayed and uncertain release date, lack of closure for some subplots, predictable and clichéd moments.
All Closed Off is a book that may appeal to fans of new adult romance, especially those who enjoy stories that deal with serious issues with sensitivity and humor. It is also a book that may interest readers who are looking for a standalone novel that can be read without reading the previous books in the series. However, it is also a book that may frustrate readers who are expecting a timely and definite release date, a complete and consistent resolution for all subplots, a surprising and original plotline.
All Closed Off is a book that has its pros and cons, but it is ultimately a book that aims to entertain and inspire its readers with its message of hope and love.
Here are some frequently asked questions about All Closed Off:
When will All Closed Off be released?
and was supposed to be released in 2017. However, due to various reasons such as personal issues of the author, publishing issues, and the COVID-19 pandemic, the book has been postponed several times and has no confirmed release date as of now. The author has stated that she is still working on the book and hopes to release it soon.
Do I need to read the previous books in the series before reading All Closed Off?
No, you do not need to read the previous books in the series before reading All Closed Off. The book is a standalone novel that can be read without reading the previous books. However, it does feature some characters from the earlier books, such as Dallas Cole, Carson McClain, Silas Moore, and Dylan Brenner. If you want to know more about their stories and backgrounds, you may want to read the previous books in the series.
What are the previous books in the series?
The previous books in the series are: - All Lined Up (Rusk University #1): This book tells the story of Dallas Cole and Carson McClain, who are both involved in football at Rusk University. Dallas is the daughter of the football coach and Carson is a new quarterback. They fall in love despite their conflicting interests and goals. - All Broke Down (Rusk University #2): This book tells the story of Silas Moore and Dylan Brenner, who are both involved in activism at Rusk University. Silas is a troubled football player and Dylan is a passionate student leader. They fall in love despite their different backgrounds and personalities. - All Played Out (Rusk University #3): This book tells the story of Mateo Torres and Nell De Luca, who are both involved in academics at Rusk University. Mateo is a fun-loving football player and Nell is a nerdy math major. They fall in love despite their opposite lifestyles and preferences.
Is All Closed Off based on a true story?
No, All Closed Off is not based on a true story. The book is a fictional work that was inspired by the author's own experience as a sexual assault survivor. The author has stated that she wanted to write a story that would reflect her own journey of healing and recovery, as well as raise awareness and empathy for other survivors.
Where can I buy or read All Closed Off?
You can buy or read All Closed Off online or offline when it is released. You can pre-order or order the book from various platforms such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple Books, Google Play, etc. You can also read the book from various sources such as libraries, bookstores, e-readers, etc.