4.5 screaming from the rooftops Stars
Holy shit. I’m sorry. That’s not an appropriate way to start a review, but there’s nothing else to say except holy fucking shit. If Tragic started the journey, then Manic just pushed me right over the cliff.
This book starts off a little slow. Ronin is distracted by Clare and her attempted recovery from heroine addiction. Rook is jealous and trying to figure out how to manage a nude modeling contract that heaped a whole bunch more on her plate than she thought she was bargaining for. It’s wholly overwhelming for Rook and she flounders without an anchor.
But then it kicks into gear and my head started to spin.
Ford is an extremely interesting character. There’s a darkness to him that is fairly well hidden behind perfectly tailored suits and a glossy professionalism, but it’s there and it’s extremely attractive. He’s crazy smart and intuitive and I imagine being on the receiving end of one of his stares would be akin to being simultaneously brought to orgasm and and asked to voluntarily sit on spikes.
Spencer has so many layers I don’t even know where to start with him. He’s an affable, tattoo covered, motorcycle riding bad boy on the surface but underneath it all is a brimming intellect, an artist’s soul and a man who takes great joy from simple and deserved acts of violence.
And Rook learns something vital from each of the men in this book. It took one warped man to wreck her and it’s taking three to put her on the road to becoming whole once more. She continues to be heartbreakingly brave throughout it all and I found myself absolutely astounded by her innate coping mechanisms that activate when she needs them most to protect her base ability to trust and love.
The cast of characters in this book defies definition. Hell, they often defy gravity. They are every color of the rainbow, wrapped in a racecar, hurtling down the highway at breakneck speeds reveling in the joy of an impending catastrophe. It’s the kind of beauty that physically hurts to look at, but I just cannot stop looking.
If JA Huss danced with the fringe of genius in Tragic, she makes it her bitch in Manic. The pacing of this book is perfect. The setup for all of the action is perfect. There are numerous, achingly intimate scenes and they are perfectly told. To say this book is masterfully crafted doesn’t even begin to do it justice.
I will gleefully shout from any rooftop available the hedonistic joy I took from reading this book. And I will just as gleefully jump into Panic.