Year of the Reaper by Makiia Lucier #bookreview #YA #fantasy

The past never forgets…

Before an ambush by enemy soldiers, Lord Cassia was an engineer’s apprentice on a mission entrusted by the king. But when plague sweeps over the land, leaving countless dead and devastating the kingdom, even Cas’ title cannot save him from a rotting prison cell and a merciless sickness.

Three years later, Cas wants only to return to his home in the mountains and forget past horrors. But home is not what he remembers. His castle has become a refuge for the royal court. And they have brought their enemies with them.

When an assassin targets those closest to the queen, Cas is drawn into a search for a killer… one that leads him to form an unexpected bond with a brilliant young historian named Lena. Cas and Lena soon realize that who is behind the attacks is far less important than why. They must look to the past, following the trail of a terrible secret—one that could threaten the kingdom’s newfound peace and plunge it back into war. 

With Cas returning home after being imprisoned and presumed dead for so many years, this description gave me The Count of Monte Cristo vibes. I also liked that it’s a standalone.

This book sneaked up and put a bear hug on me. With characters I loved, others I loved to hate, and the mystery of who was behind the attacks, I wanted to plow through it in one sitting. After three years of prison beatings and torture, surviving the plague, and witnessing so much death, Cas has a dark side to him. He’s not the person who disappeared three years ago, and his struggle to control that part of him is a challenge. I immediately liked Lena. She’s disguised as a royal messenger and steals Cas’s horse the first time they meet. She loves books and isn’t a fan of the rule requiring her to be in the company of male escorts/chaperones most of the time. I’m always a fond of rebellious characters.

The mystery of the assassin is full of red herrings and plot twists that lead Cas and Lena on a perplexing journey. It kept me guessing, but by the big reveal (and it’s a good one), I’d guessed the culprit. There’s a paranormal element I didn’t expect, but it adds a nice angle to the story. The supporting cast is also strong, but Bittor is a standout for me with his humorous lines and big heart.

Although the story is complete without it, I’d hoped for an epilogue set five years in the future, but I won’t go into detail about that date – no spoilers. With compelling characters, a gripping mystery, paranormal flair, and a sprinkling of humor, Year of the Reaper enthralled me from beginning to end.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

WWW Wednesday: What Am I Reading?

WWW Wednesday is a meme from Sam at Taking On A World Of Words

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

I’ve always been a sucker for a good time travel story, and with the Back to the Future twist in this novel, I couldn’t resist requesting it. I’m about 30% in, and the MC is full of snark and attitude, but also has a big heart. At this point, I’m not sure what might happen next.

From lauded writer David Valdes, a sharp and funny YA novel that’s Back to the Future with a twist, as a gay teen travels back to his parents’ era to save a closeted classmate’s life.

All Luis Gonzalez wants is to go to prom with his boyfriend, something his “progressive” school still doesn’t allow. Not after what happened with Chaz Wilson. But that was ages ago, when Luis’s parents were in high school; it would never happen today, right? He’s determined to find a way to give his LGBTQ friends the respect they deserve (while also not risking his chance to be prom king, just saying…).

When a hit on the head knocks him back in time to 1985 and he meets the doomed young Chaz himself, Luis concocts a new plan-he’s going to give this guy his first real kiss. Though it turns out a conservative school in the ’80s isn’t the safest place to be a gay kid. Especially with homophobes running the campus, including Gordo (aka Luis’s estranged father). Luis is in over his head, trying not to make things worse-and hoping he makes it back to present day at all.

In a story that’s fresh, intersectional, and wickedly funny, David Valdes introduces a big-mouthed, big-hearted queer character that readers won’t soon forget.

Aurora’s End was one of my most anticipated reads this year. I wasn’t certain I’d survive the cruel, but magnificent cliffhangers the authors ended book two with over a year ago. This series finale was fabulous, but I sure will miss these characters and their found family.

The squad you love is out of time. Prepare for the thrilling finale in the epic, best-selling Aurora Cycle series about a band of unlikely heroes who just might be the galaxy’s last hope for survival.

Is this the end?

What happens when you ask a bunch of losers, discipline cases, and misfits to save the galaxy from an ancient evil? The ancient evil wins, of course.
Wait. . . . Not. So. Fast.
When we last saw Squad 312, they working together seamlessly (aka, freaking out) as an intergalactic battle raged and an ancient superweapon threatened to obliterate Earth. Everything went horribly wrong, naturally.
But as it turns out, not all endings are endings, and the te4am has one last chance to rewrite thirs. Maybe two. It’s complicated.
Cue Zila, Fin, and Scarlett (and MAGELLAN!): making friends, making enemies, and making history? Sure, no problem
Cue Tyler, Kal, and Auri: uniting with two of the galaxy’s most hated villains? Um, okay. That, too.
Actually saving the galaxy, though?
Now that will take a miracle.

My favorite part of the first book in The Ravens series was the strong friendships between these sorority witches, and I’m excited to see where their story goes next.

In this thrilling conclusion to New York Times best-selling authors Kass Morgan and Danielle Paige’s The Ravens, the sorority witches are tested when a rival threatens to usurp their place on campus and the forces of hell come knocking on their door.

The sorority girls at Kappa Rho Nu—the Ravens—are determined to restore balance to the world. After destroying an ancient talisman and barely saving their sorority in the process, they’ll go to any lengths to keep their secret as Westerly’s most powerful coven of witches.

Scarlett Winter, a legacy Raven, has finally gotten what she’s always wanted: the Kappa Rho Nu presidency. After the disaster that killed the sorority’s last president, Scarlett is determined that no sister will fall under the sway of wicked magic ever again. But the powers of the presidency have their own pitfalls—and Scarlett has big shoes to fill.

Vivi Devereaux, a freshman, finally knows what it feels like to belong. For the first time ever, she’s got it all: her Kappa Rho Nu sisters and a sweet (and hot) boyfriend. When Scarlett assigns Vivi the coveted role of social chair, Vivi is determined to live up to her Big’s expectations—even if that means dabbling in a new form of magic.

Unbeknownst to the Ravens, new rivals and ancient evils lurk on Westerly’s campus. With Kappa Rho Nu’s future on their shoulders and their pasts still haunting them, will Scarlett and Vivi be able to save their sisterhood once again? 

Skin of the Sea by Natasha Bowen #bookreview #YA #fantasy #AfricanMythology #TuesdayBookBlog

An unforgettable fantasy debut inspired by West African mythology, this is Children of Blood and Bone meets The Little Mermaid, in which a mermaid takes on the gods themselves.

A way to survive.
A way to serve.
A way to save.

Simi prayed to the gods, once. Now she serves them as Mami Wata–a mermaid–collecting the souls of those who die at sea and blessing their journeys back home.

But when a living boy is thrown overboard, Simi does the unthinkable–she saves his life, going against an ancient decree. And punishment awaits those who dare to defy it.

To protect the other Mami Wata, Simi must journey to the Supreme Creator to make amends. But something is amiss. There’s the boy she rescued, who knows more than he should. And something is shadowing Simi, something that would rather see her fail. . . .

Danger lurks at every turn, and as Simi draws closer, she must brave vengeful gods, treacherous lands, and legendary creatures. Because if she doesn’t, then she risks not only the fate of all Mami Wata, but also the world as she knows it.

The comp titles for this book intrigued me. Children of Blood and Bone has magnificent world-building, and who doesn’t like The Little Mermaid? Any mermaid who takes on the gods sounded like someone I wanted to meet.

Once a human, Simi is now a Mami Wata (mermaid) whose responsibility is to collect the souls of those claimed by the sea and bless their journeys back home. When the body of a teen boy is thrown overboard, she’s shocked to discover he’s still alive, and instead chooses to save him. Her act of mercy puts the lives of all Mami Wata in danger, and to save them she must find the Supreme Creator and seek forgiveness. Although Simi appreciates the importance and significance of her duties, she also misses aspects of her human life, which she can’t entirely remember. When her journey begins on land (her tail transforms into legs), memories and flashbacks from her human life become more prominent, and she’s reminded of what she lost.

Simi is feisty and courageous, two qualities desperately needed to take on Esu, messenger to their Creator. He’s power hungry and a threat to both the Mami Wata and Kola’s village. Esu is described as a trickster, which immediately made me think of Loki from Marvel Comics. They certainly share some similar qualities, and not the admirable ones.

It’s clear from nearly the moment they meet that Simi and Kola have feelings for each other, but I wasn’t feeling the chemistry between them. It comes across as very “insta-love”, and until somewhere around the middle of the book, very little is known about Kola. Revealing his backstory earlier would have distinguished him as more than just the guy Simi saved and a traveling companion.

This is an outstanding debut filled with lush descriptions, immersive world-building, and fascinating African mythology. It doesn’t shy away from the horrors of the slave trade during that time period, but also doesn’t go into extensive detail. The ending leaves a strong possibility for a sequel, but I haven’t seen anything on Goodreads to suggest one is coming. If that’s the case, I’d be disappointed with the way things wrapped up – keeping my fingers crossed!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Weekend, #AmWriting, and #AmWatching

I mentioned last Monday we’d have both sons home for Thanksgiving, and it was wonderful. Son #1 got hubby (a longtime Pittsburgh fan) an early Christmas present of tickets to the Steelers/Bengals slaughter game yesterday, so the four of us spent the weekend in Cincinnati.

Son #2 and I aren’t really sports fans (he refers to any type of sport as sportsball), so we took a food tour in the downtown area Sunday afternoon. He’s a big foodie and found us a fantastic food tour in NYC a few years ago – one of the best we’ve ever been on – and always looks for tours in cities we visit. This one was filled with fascinating historical facts about Cincinnati and some tantalizing ethnic foods (how have I made it this long without steamed buns?). If you’re ever in the area, we highly recommend it. Shoutout to our tour guide, Jackie – request her if you can.

Thanks to the authors who suggested free writing for my WIP last week to uncover the story hiding among all my ideas and notes taken over the past couple years. I’m taking your advice and giving it a shot later this week. I’ll post an update on the process next Monday.

Son #1 and I went to see Ghostbusters: Afterlife last week and it received a thumbs up from both of us. We liked that it focused more on the young actors (who did an outstanding job) than the adults, and the storyline was a logical extension of the original movies. It came with a few surprises and bittersweet moments, but no spoilers here. If you were a fan of the original movies, I think you’ll enjoy this one. Have a great week!

Unraveling Eleven (Eleven Trilogy #2) by Jerri Chisholm #bookreview #YA #dystopian

In Compound Eleven, freedom from tyranny is impossible.

My name is Eve Hamilton, and I’ve managed the impossible.

I am free.

Until just like that, it is wrenched from my grasp. And this time, the corridors of the dark underground city are even more dangerous than ever before. But my brief taste of freedom has left me with something useful, something powerful, something that terrifies the leaders of Compound Eleven.

And now I have a monster inside.

One I’ll need to learn to control, and fast, or I’ll lose everything and everyone I hold dear. Starting with Wren Edelman. The one boy who has taught me that anything is possible if we stick together.

But will that matter if I become the very thing he fears the most? 

After the cliffhanger ending in Escaping Eleven, I was ecstatic to see book two available so soon and jumped to request it from NetGalley.

This book picks up immediately where the first left off. Eve and Wren have escaped Compound Eleven without detection and are truly free for the first time in their lives. They’re breathing fresh air, have real dirt beneath their feet, and encounter plants and animals they’ve never seen. The above ground world is theirs for the taking – very briefly. They soon realize they’re not equipped to survive in this world. Half-starved, dehydrated, and recovering from food poisoning, they limp back to Compound Eleven and resume their lives. But many questions remain, the biggest being why the governing body hasn’t let the citizens know above ground is once again safe. Eve and Wren are determined to discover the answer.

There’s no doubt Eve is a strong protagonist, but I quickly grew annoyed with her drama queen act in the first half of the book. Everything is about her, and she lacks the ability to see the broader picture, something that’s more of a strength for Wren, and he challenges her to be better. Eve’s mouth and fists get her in trouble several times, and it becomes tiresome. Luckily, she comes to her senses in the second half of the book and makes significant strides. That’s where the story took off for me. Startling and unnerving discoveries come to light, especially for Wren, which lead them to a life-threatening point of no return. Seriously, book three can’t get here fast enough. Some new characters make a significant impact on the story, but I’m not so sure they’re trustworthy. They should figure prominently in the next book.

Expect a roller coaster of emotions with this one and extensive character development with our flawed MCs. Also expect satisfaction when some characters get what’s coming to them. I still have questions about aspects of Wren’s background that were hinted at in the first book, but it’s something that may come into play in the next. If you’re a dystopian fan, I recommend checking out this series.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Our Violent Ends (These Violent Delights #2) by Chloe Gong #bookreview #YA #historicalfantasy #TuesdayBookBlog

The year is 1927, and Shanghai teeters on the edge of revolution.

After sacrificing her relationship with Roma to protect him from the blood feud, Juliette has been a girl on the warpath. One wrong move, and her cousin will step in to usurp her place as the Scarlet Gang’s heir. The only way to save the boy she loves from the wrath of the Scarlets is to have him want her dead for murdering his best friend in cold blood. If Juliette were actually guilty of the crime Roma believes she committed, his rejection might sting less.

Roma is still reeling from Marshall’s death, and his cousin Benedikt will barely speak to him. Roma knows it’s his fault for letting the ruthless Juliette back into his life, and he’s determined to set things right—even if that means killing the girl he hates and loves with equal measure.

Then a new monstrous danger emerges in the city, and though secrets keep them apart, Juliette must secure Roma’s cooperation if they are to end this threat once and for all. Shanghai is already at a boiling point: The Nationalists are marching in, whispers of civil war brew louder every day, and gangster rule faces complete annihilation. Roma and Juliette must put aside their differences to combat monsters and politics, but they aren’t prepared for the biggest threat of all: protecting their hearts from each other.

It’s not often I can say this, but the second book in this series easily tops the first. I could barely pry my fingers away the Kindle.

In this Romeo and Juliet retelling, the struggle for power is alive and well and continues in Shanghai. With Roma’s White Flowers, Juliette’s Scarlets, the Communists, and Nationalists all battling for control, bloodshed, backstabbing (sometimes literally), and manipulation abound in the streets of the city. The terrorizing monster plot line in the first novel didn’t sit well with me and, although it’s still a part of the story, it’s not as prevalent.

Hot-headed and impulsive, Juliette didn’t win me over in book one, but she’s made progress toward becoming a more strategic player. I also didn’t feel the connection between her and Roma the first time around. Actually, I was more invested in the budding romance between Benedikt and Marshall (who have a beautiful story of their own), but Roma and Juliette’s relationship came across much stronger to me in this sequel. Taking into consideration what’s occuring around them, it’s messy, angry (with the occasional murder attempt), tense, and sometimes volatile, but more believable, and I was anxious to learn their outcome. As with many retellings, don’t assume it aligns with the original version.

With a bigger focus on politics and the men who pull the strings instead of a supernatural monster, more even pacing (it sure didn’t feel like five hundred pages), and phenomenal character development in both MCs and supporting characters, readers will be thrilled with this sequel. Although some may not agree, I thought the ending was perfect and closed the book with a smile on my face.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Travels, #AmWriting, and Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m writing this post on Sunday. We were out of town this weekend visiting family and are flying back to Nashville today. The youngest son is flying to Nashville from Austin, and if all flights are on time and the stars align, he should arrive at the airport an hour after we land. IF. With air transportion, that’s definitely a capitalized if. Keep your fingers crossed.

For my next book, I’ve been making notes for a couple years and taking pictures of things I come across that I know are included in the story. That’s all good, right? The problem is – I have no idea what the story is exactly. I’ve even had dreams about it, found a house that’s the primary setting, a creepy gate leading to the driveway, and came across an old, twisting tree in a cemetery that fits in somehow. To the writers out there – is this something you’ve dealt with before? You have a general idea, maybe even characters that are talking to you, but you’re still uncertain what the story is about? I’m anxious to hear your thoughts on this.

I’ll still be posting a couple of reviews this week, but with family in, I might be late replying to comments and visiting blogs. To all my American friends, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving! To my other friends not celebrating Thanksgiving, have a wonderful week!

All of Us Villains (All of Us Villains #1) by Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman #bookreview #fantasy #YA

The Blood Moon rises. The Blood Veil falls. The Tournament begins.

Every generation, at the coming of the Blood Moon, seven families in the remote city of Ilvernath each name a champion to compete in a tournament to the death.

The prize? Exclusive control over a secret wellspring of high magick, the most powerful resource in the world–one thought long depleted.

This year, thanks to a salacious tell-all book, the seven champions are thrust into worldwide spotlight, granting each of them new information, new means to win, and most importantly: a choice – accept their fate or rewrite their story.

But this is a story that must be penned in blood. 

Having read books by both of these authors, I was ecstatic when I heard they were teaming up to write a series together. That the main characters are villains? I could barely contain my excitement – morally gray characters are my favorites.

Monsters couldn’t harm you if you were a monster, too.

This quote represents the philosophy of some of these families when it comes to bestowing beliefs upon their children. Talk about your twisted parenting styles. From a young age, a few of these seven characters knew they were the chosen champions of their family. If that title was up for grabs, some of them even campaigned for it. They were extensively trained in spells and magic, knowing that they may eventually face their friends, boyfriends, or girlfriends from the other families in the tournament and have to kill them.

Control of high magick is what they’re fighting for, and I liked that no one completely understands how it works or the consequences of every spell. Throughout the story the characters learn maybe everything isn’t as they were taught, and there’s a complex puzzle to be solved. A way they don’t all have to die.

Seven participants in the tournament and four POVs are a lot to keep up with, but each of these characters is distinct and well-crafted. I have to say Alistair, the predicted champion, and Gavin, the underdog, are my favorites. Alistair’s story is especially tragic, and I just wanted to hug him. Gavin wants to show his family and the rest of the town he’s not a loser and makes some bold choices to prove it. Just when I thought I knew these characters, game-changing twists had my head spinning. Considering they’re all villains, I should have known better than to make assumptions.

Wicked, dark, and full of surprises, this is an addictive series, and I won’t rest easily until I get my hands on the next book. Highly recommend!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

WWW Wednesday: What Am I Reading? #amreading

WWW Wednesday is a meme from Sam at Taking On A World Of Words

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Because of Bad Moon Rising and a backlog of reviews, it’s been more than a minute since I participated in WWW Wednesday, but I finally made it! Let’s get started.

I’m reading You’ll Be the Death of Me for a blog tour. This starts off like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off with three friends skipping school. Then things take a turn for the worse, and the teens make one bad decision after another. I’m ready to rip their heads off – especially one of them, but the mystery is just starting to unravel.

Ivy, Mateo, and Cal used to be close. Now all they have in common is Carlton High and the beginning of a very bad day.

Type A Ivy lost a student council election to the class clown, and now she has to face the school, humiliated. Heartthrob Mateo is burned out–he’s been working two jobs since his family’s business failed. And outsider Cal just got stood up…. again.

So when Cal pulls into campus late for class and runs into Ivy and Mateo, it seems like the perfect opportunity to turn a bad day around. They’ll ditch and go into the city. Just the three of them, like old times. Except they’ve barely left the parking lot before they run out of things to say…

Until they spot another Carlton High student skipping school–and follow him to the scene of his own murder. In one chance move, their day turns from dull to deadly. And it’s about to get worse.

It turns out Ivy, Mateo, and Cal still have some things in common. They all have a connection to the dead kid. And they’re all hiding something.

Now they’re all wondering–could it be that their chance reconnection wasn’t by chance after all?

Over the weekend, I finished If This Gets Out. Don’t think I read this because of my love of boybands – I was never a fan. This just came up at a time when I’d finished several heavy fantasies and needed something light. It surprised me – it was nowhere near a sugar-coated love story. It deals with some pretty heavy issues involving the exploitation of young artists in the entertainment industry, as well as drug and alcohol addiction and mental health issues. I couldn’t put it down.

Eighteen-year-olds Ruben Montez and Zach Knight are two members of the boy-band Saturday, one of the biggest acts in America. Along with their bandmates, Angel Phan and Jon Braxton, the four are teen heartbreakers in front of the cameras and best friends backstage. But privately, cracks are starting to form: their once-easy rapport is straining under the pressures of fame, and Ruben confides in Zach that he’s feeling smothered by management’s pressure to stay in the closet.

On a whirlwind tour through Europe, with both an unrelenting schedule and minimal supervision, Ruben and Zach come to rely on each other more and more, and their already close friendship evolves into a romance. But when they decide they’re ready to tell their fans and live freely, Zach and Ruben start to truly realize that they will never have the support of their management. How can they hold tight to each other when the whole world seems to want to come between them?

Next up is The Ivory Key, which I may get to tomorrow. It doesn’t release until January, but already has some stellar reviews, and I like the idea of the sibings having to work together.

Magic, a prized resource, is the only thing between peace and war. When magic runs out, four estranged royal siblings must find a new source before their country is swallowed by invading forces. The first in an Indian-inspired duology.

Vira is desperate to get out of her mother’s shadow and establish her legacy as a revered queen of Ashoka. But with the country’s only quarry running out of magic–a precious resource that has kept Ashoka safe from conflict–she can barely protect her citizens from the looming threat of war. And if her enemies discover this, they’ll stop at nothing to seize the last of the magic.

Vira’s only hope is to find a mysterious object of legend: the Ivory Key, rumored to unlock a new source of magic. But in order to infiltrate enemy territory and retrieve it, she must reunite with her siblings, torn apart by the different paths their lives have taken. Each of them has something to gain from finding the Ivory Key–and even more to lose if they fail. Ronak plans to sell it to the highest bidder in exchange for escape from his impending political marriage. Kaleb, falsely accused of assassinating the former maharani needs it to clear his name. And Riya, a runaway who cut all family ties, wants the Key to prove her loyalty to the rebels who want to strip the nobility of its power.

They must work together to survive the treacherous journey. But with each sibling harboring secrets and their own agendas, the very thing that brought them together could tear apart their family–and their world–for good.

Roxy by Neal Shusterman and Jarrod Shusterman #bookreview #YA #contemporary #TuesdayBookBlog

From the team that brought you the New York Times bestselling Dry comes a riveting new thriller that proves when gods play games, even love is a lie.

The freeway is coming.

It will cut the neighborhood in two. Construction has already started, pushing toward this corridor of condemned houses and cracked concrete with the momentum of the inevitable. Yet there you are, in the fifth house on the left, fighting for your life.

Ramey, I.

The victim of the bet between two manufactured gods: the seductive and lethal Roxy (Oxycontin), who is at the top of her game, and the smart, high-achieving Addison (Adderall), who is tired of being the helpful one, and longs for a more dangerous, less wholesome image. The wager—a contest to see who can bring their mark to “the Party” first—is a race to the bottom of a rave that has raged since the beginning of time. And you are only human, dazzled by the lights and music. Drawn by what the drugs offer—tempted to take that step past helpful to harmful…and the troubled places that lie beyond.

But there are two I. Rameys—Isaac, a soccer player thrown into Roxy’s orbit by a bad fall and a bad doctor and Ivy, his older sister, whose increasing frustration with her untreated ADHD leads her to renew her acquaintance with Addy.

Which one are you? 

Every book I’ve read by Neal Shusterman has held me spellbound, and this one was no exception. It’s unlike anything I’ve come across. Just be prepared to have your heart ripped from your chest and put through a meat grinder.

You know from the first few pages one of these two main characters isn’t going to live. During the course of the story I changed my mind countless times about which one it would be. The second chapter flashes back to two months earlier, and that’s where the story begins. Isaac seems to have his life together – good grades, plans for college and a career. His sister Ivy isn’t quite as organized. Because of untreated ADHD, she’s at risk of failing her senior year of high school and also has a history of trouble with drugs and alcohol. Both of these characters are extremely well-crafted and easy to connect with, and their paths to addiction are very plausible and relatable.

The conversations between Roxy (Oxycontin) and Addison (Adderall), as well as others (Al, Lucy, Molly, Crys, and Phineas to name a few – all types of drugs) are wildly imaginative, thought-provoking, and profound at times. But also sad. Bringing these two teens to “the Party” is only a game to them, and seeing Isaac’s and Ivy’s downward spirals makes for a gut-wrenching, difficult read.

Roxy is an incredibly dark, gritty novel that focuses on the devastating effects of addiction and how anyone can be susceptible to dependency. It will gut you, but is so well-worth the read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.