Title: A Want So Wicked
Author: Suzanne Young
Genre: YA Paranormal
Series: A Need So Beautiful Series (Book 2)
Publication Date: June 26, 2012
Format: Hardcover, 288 Pages
ISBN-10: 0062008269 (HarperTeen)
ISBN-13: 978-0062008268 (HarperTeen)
Reviewed by: Kayla
In the sequel to Suzanne Young’s A Need So Beautiful, seventeen-year-old Elise wakes up in a desert park with no idea who she is. After that episode, her life takes a bizarre turn. She’s experiencing unexpected flashes of insight into people’s lives—people she’s never met before. Strangers frighten her with warnings about the approaching Shadows.
And although Elise has never had a boyfriend, she suddenly finds herself torn between two handsome but very different young men: Abe, the charming bad boy whose effect on her both seduces and frightens her, and the mysterious Harlin, who’s new to town but with whom Elise feels an urgent, elemental connection—almost as if they are soul mates.
Quick & Dirty: A much better, less boring repeat of A Need So Beautiful. Young comes back with her heart-wrenching scenes and a determined female protagonist.
Opening Sentence: I hear an echo as sound hums its way into my ears.
Elise remembers everything from her childhood – from her mom’s death to her sister’s late night escapes – but none of it actually happened. As Elise and her sister settle into their new home, they both discover new things, but handle them in entirely different ways. Elise starts a new job at a Mexican restaurant where she meets the alluring Abe, who dares her to be a little wild. But there’s also the stranger on the motorcycle that keeps appearing randomly. Of course nothing is stranger than the random impulses to help people she experiences – a warming and yet disconcerting experience that precedes flashes of someone else’s life. Forced to reconcile with what she is and face whatever these Shadows people keep warning her about, Elise must choose once again whether to fight for the good or succumb to the evil.
This book is almost the exact arc of A Need So Beautiful. Only more enjoyable and entertaining. The Needs are so much more heart-breaking and the memories are nostalgic, adding to the depth of the conflict. Although there were a lot of abrupt developments – Harlin and Elise’s whole relationship is insta-love (literally) once they finally start talking – and this was even before she remembers who she is. Their whole relationship is confusing, but that just started in the first book. Abe on the other hand, was pretty well-developed, pretty basic, but he had more depth than Harlin. Where Harlin was just a broken mourning mess, Abe had motives (not just feelings/attraction) to become close to Elise. The love triangle’s conclusion was also very abrupt (can’t go into detail without spoilers).
I’ve always loved Young’s writing and themes in this series. The importance of family and responsibility are shown throughout the books. From her heart-wrenching, sob-story, to the development of the main character’s inner-war, Young’s writing has always be able to express the turbulent emotions the characters face.
Yet this ability to pull the reader’s heart-strings cannot overshadow the confusing character developments and the odd plot. Although most of the character development started in the first book, there were still new characters that seemed inconsistent and flat. As I said before, Harlin is such a confusing character from the beginning. His actions do not always coincide with his personality and in this book, he is a very wimpy and depressing all the time. Abe on the other hand is a deliciously complex character that has snark down to a T. Although he is also very confusing, Abe was still more developed than Harlin.
Despite its rocky journey, the Need series is pretty good. If you have patience with odd character arcs but love a good heart-tugging story, I suggest these to you.
“Wait,” Harlin whispers, reaching to take my hand. Startled, I turn to him. He studies me with what can only be described as absolute pain. I nearly reach for him, but he lets my hand drop.
Harlin leans to put his elbows on his knees, his face in his palms. Marceline slides the bowl of mints toward him, but he doesn’t lift his head.
The wrinkles in Marceline’s skin seems to deepen. When her eyes meet mine, she shrugs apologetically. “You’re the reincarnation of his girlfriend. A Forgotten.”
I stumble back a step. “I’m a what?”
“Your name was Charlotte Cassidy. Beautiful soul–very loving. In the end, you–”
Harlin jumps up then, rushing past us. He doesn’t say a word, and when the front door closes, I know he’s gone. Tears begin to gather in my eyes.
“He’s never learned to handle his grief,” Marceline explains. “He’ll find you when he’s ready. He always does.”
A Need So Beautiful Series:
2.5. A Desire So Deadly (November 5, 2013)
FTC Advisory: HarperCollins provided me with a copy of A Want So Wicked. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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