Review: Credence by Penelope Douglas

Title: Credence

Author: Penelope Douglas

My Rating: 3/4

Standalone: Yes

Genre: Contemporary Romance, Fiction

Narration: Mostly Single POV. Few chapters with Jake and Noha’s POV

Primary Characters: Jake, Noha, Kaleb, Tiernan

Source: Free in KU


This a standalone adult romance novel. I had heavy expectations on this book, but some how it was very disappointing. Tiernan gets a call from her father’s step brother, after her parents’ suicide, that if she chooses to stay with them she can stay with Jake (father’s step brother) and his 2 sons in Colorado mountain till she becomes adult. She has couple of months left to become adult. She seems to be quiet in the beginning and develops a lot over the story. Jake thinks of her initially as below

“She is Quiet, boring and a little Pathetic”

She is not related to any of them and she develops a relationship with them all. Initially, book was good. From being lonely to having abonnement issues and never bought up with people her reaction seemed natural, some how post that it kept on dragging.

Jake —“You are a brat, A self -absorbed, snobby, little brat”.

Tiernan– I’m not! I’m just not used to people. They don’t talk to me at home. No one talks to me.

Jake Van der Berg is an older guy who struggles with helping his teenage ‘niece’ find a balance from the life she has become used to, which was mostly loneliness, and he also wants to give her a happier life, but give parental guidance as well, but feelings happen…

She needs a lot, and all of them are things you can’t buy. She needs to laugh and get drunk. She needs to be ticked and cuddled and carried and teased. I don’t want to see her cry, but if she does, I want her to know there’s comfort.

All 3 of them become very protective of her. Noah being calm and pleasant and Kaleb being silent and brooding. All of them will be secluded in their cabin with no connection to outside world when winter hits. They are protective of her and keep warning her of local guys.

“Everything on their property is their property”

The character development of Jake and Noha suddenly became NIL in the second half. Kaleb part was very little till almost till 60% of the book. Kaleb has been mute since he is four years old and has abonnement and trust issues resulting in no control over emotions and lashing out, which was acceptable, if he was in early teens. It’s hard to connect with a character that basically only smirks, glares, or pushes around the heroine. It’s really hard to understand the heroine’s attraction.

The lack of substance in Tiernan’s connection with Kaleb was made more obvious in contrast to her relationships with both Noah and Jake. Tiernan’s connection with Noha was natural. Calm, pleasant and happy Noha could have been the most obvious choice, somehow, he is not. The story was at extremely slow paced and layered at the beginning with typical teen romance and it became repetitive, frustrating, boring and predictable at the end.

After she abruptly ends her relationship with Noha and Jake, it was good to see Jake with Mirai. But certain question always remains like” How did Tiernan so easily turn off her attachment and connection with Jake?” Just because he mom told her to try 3L, did she really have to go through with that? Initially when it was tough to choose between 3, was it so easy for her to choose at the end? How did other 2 give up without fight? Somehow it was an ok read for me. DON’T let my review deter you from trying this one. Read and rate it yourself. You may love it.

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