He’s got one shot to make it right…
He’s Landon Rhodes.
The Renegade they call Nova.
Sinfully gorgeous, broody, tatted-up, professional snowboarder.
They say a girl broke him once–
That’s why he’s so reckless, so driven, so careless with his conquests.
But I’m that girl.
They can call me his curse all they want.
He and I both know the truth–
He’s the one who destroyed me,
And I’m too smart to let that happen again.
4 stars — So I held out on reading this book when it was released, partly because I had a lot going on at the time, and partly because I kind of wanted to wait for Rebel and read it at once. And now of course I’m going to be late for my Rebel review date tomorrow, but alas…maybe we can pretend I live in another time zone?
All that to say that I kind of rushed through reading this book, and after just rereading my review for Wilder, I seemed to run into a few similar problems. I had a hard time concentrating on it. There were parts that obviously sucked me in and wouldn’t put me down, but there were other parts where I wanted to skim and get moving quickly. So I will say that I felt like this book had a few pacing problems at times. It was like this great book that could have been even more awesome if it was a bit more condensed. BUT! I will say that I’m not a huge fan of LOTS of angst, and quite of few of those moments I wanted to rush through involved feelings and…well…angst. I kind of hate that word. It’s NOT a bad thing, it’s just a lot of intense emotions and heartbreak and hurt and sometimes it’s more than this little reader can handle.
DESPITE all that, I really loved both Rachel and Landon. I wasn’t sure I would. The circumstances surrounding their original relationship were NOT what I would call ideal…in fact, they venture into the territory of cheating, which is usually a no-go for Lenore. But perhaps because I didn’t have to see it happening, or perhaps because of the explanations that surrounded it, and the GENUINE remorse and regret for cheating/lying that was felt by both Landon and Rachel, I was able to see past it and still fall for them as a couple. I’m not sure if it will work for everyone, but I think it will surprise many people who have similar hang-ups to me.
I LOVED Rachel’s sassy strong attitude, and I enjoyed that we got to feel her hurt appropriately. There were no easy solutions in how she continued to deal with her heartbreak. I both loved and hated how long it took. Loved it because it could be realistic. Hated it because it could get a bit tiring to read about the back and forth, I just wanted things to move forward. I’m kind of an impatient reader. But I ADORED that she was an extreme sports type girl herself and fit in with the adrenaline-fueled Renegades. And I really loved her side story about her adoption. It wasn’t a huge storyline, but it did have a pretty big impact at times. I appreciated that we got a diverse heroine as well, but I didn’t really feel like the fact she was Korean came into play at all in her experiences growing up or anything (so diversity-wise, it existed but wasn’t explored).
Landon surprised the crap out of me. Seriously. I expected to have a hard time with his man-whoring ways. Or with whatever happened between them. I mean, he betrayed his best friend. But maybe it’s because so much of that happened in the past, but I just ended up giving my heart to him. I 100% felt his vulnerability, and brokenness, and just how lost he was. He was so easy to love, even when it turned out he was still making mistakes right to the last quarter. I LOVED the way he fought for Rachel, and how once he was given that glimpse of her in his life again, he help on like a barnacle and wouldn’t let go. He just made me feel SO MUCH MORE than I was expecting.
And can I just say that the sports aspect of these stories is top notch? Well, the sports and the whole traveling the world on a ship thing. I ADORED being immersed in that experience, and I now want to research world cruises. I don’t want to try extreme sports, and my heart probably couldn’t take even watching it, but damn did Ms. Yarros just pull you right in and get your heart pumping. And I’m still loving all of the secondary characters, and my heart aches for Penna. I cannot wait to start her story next, I’m going upstairs to do that right now!!
So despite my problems with pacing here and there, this was still a very powerful love story with lots of emotions and characters that I loved. It will be hard to let go of them when this series ends.