Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Review: The Lovely Reckless

Kami Garcia
Contemporary Young Adult
384 pages
Available Now
Source: ARC from publisher for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
I’ve become an expert at avoiding things that could hurt me—which means I will figure out how to stay away from Marco Leone.

Seventeen-year-old Frankie Devereux would do anything to forget the past. Haunted by the memory of her boyfriend’s death, she lives her life by one dangerous rule: Nothing matters. At least, that’s what Frankie tells herself after a reckless mistake forces her to leave her privileged life in the Heights to move in with her dad—an undercover cop. She transfers to a public high school in the Downs, where fistfights don’t faze anyone and illegal street racing is more popular than football.

Marco Leone is the fastest street racer in the Downs. Tough, sexy, and hypnotic, he makes it impossible for Frankie to ignore him—and how he makes her feel. But the risks Marco takes for his family could have devastating consequences for them both. When Frankie discovers his secret, she has to make a choice. Will she let the pain of the past determine her future? Or will she risk what little she has left to follow her heart?

The Lovely Reckless is a fairly straightforward bad-boy-with-a-heart-of-gold meets good-girl-going-through-a-difficult-time tale, but though the romance between Frankie and Marco sings a familiar tune, their story is still compulsively readable, and we find ourselves turning the last page before it feels as though any time has passed.

Frankie is a young woman reeling from the brutal murder of her boyfriend, flashbacks sweeping her feet out from under her with increasing frequency as she starts at a new school, and we can't help but feel for her as she struggles to once again find her footing. Though she's unsteady emotionally, she doesn't wallow or despair of the poor choices she's made, and while she wants desperately to remember specifics from the night Noah died (as she was a witness), she doesn't berate herself for developing feelings for Marco or engage in a push/pull type of relationship when guilt for moving on kicks in. Instead she lets herself have moments of happiness, and when things go sideways on her, she speaks her mind and spares us as readers unnecessary drama.

The romance with Marco does happen fairly quickly, and though the fact that the best looking guy in school complete with womanizing reputation, ripped body and inked skin falls head over heels for the new girl does require us to suspend disbelief a bit, Ms. Garcia's fluid writing style and storytelling quickly squash our reservations, whispering in our ear to keep reading even when bed and sleep are calling our name. 

Overall, The Lovely Reckless is a super quick read, perfect for those who want to pick up a book and just be entertained, with a sweet romance highlighted by a young woman who doesn't play games and does her best to fight not just for those around her, but for herself as well.

Rating: 4/5

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This book was sent to me by the publisher  free of charge for the purpose of a review
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.


  1. It may not be very unique, but sometimes books like this are a comfort read. Especially if it has that addictive quality. I'll have to add it.

  2. the lead guy description alone is more than enough to pick up this one. Will definitely read this one.

  3. Great review! I love a good bad guy/good girl story. I have been curious about this one, especially after seeing your post regarding the cover. I'll definitely be adding it to my TBR pile. I'm glad you liked this one.

  4. I wasn't sure about this one, Jenny, but I put it on hold at the library the other day and I'm looking forward to reading it myself. It does seem like the romance occurs fast, but the rest of the story sounds great. Plus, I'm up for a bad-boy good-girl romance. It's been a while since I've read. I'm glad you enjoyed this, Jenny!
    Lovely review!

  5. This seriously sounds like a quick and comforting read and maybe the right kinda book for autumn evenings with a cup of cocoa!

  6. Glad that even though this wasn't original trope wise that it was still a really good read the flew by, I don't mind the familiar tropes as long as they are well done. ;)

  7. I have been wondering about this as I like this author. I wish the romance wasn't so unoriginal, but I do like the sound of the main character. I will have to keep this in mind.

  8. Sounds perfect for my romance-hungry teens. I'll be sure to pass the recommendation.

  9. Lovely review, Jenny! I’ll keep this book in mind, sounds like something I can enjoy after a tiresome day. Quick, addictive and familiar story.

  10. I like the sound of this Jenny! I don't often read YA Contemporary but I may try this as I really enjoyed her Legion books. Lovely review :)

  11. I really want to read this one, the more reviews I read for it, the more I want to read it. I need to see if the library has a copy!

    Nereyda│ Nick & Nereyda’s Infinite Booklist

  12. Great review, Jenny! Hope you are well.

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