Pretty Reckless, an all-new standalone high school, bully romance from USA Today bestselling author L.J. Shen, is available now!
We were supposed to be best friends
But turned out to be worst enemies…
They say revenge is a dish best served cold.
I’d had four years to stew on what Daria Followhill did to me, and now my heart is completely iced.
I took her first kiss.
She took the only thing I loved.
I was poor.
She was rich.
The good thing about circumstances? They can change. Fast.
Now, I’m her parents’ latest shiny project.
Her housemate. Her tormentor. The captain of the rival football team she hates so much.
Yeah, baby girl, say it—I’m your foster brother.
There’s a price to pay for ruining the only good thing in my life, and she’s about to shell out some serious tears.
Daria Followhill thinks she is THE queen. I’m about to prove to her that she’s nothing but a spoiled princess.
Everyone loves a good-old, unapologetic punk.
But being a bitch? Oh, you get slammed for every snarky comment, cynical eye roll, and foot you put in your adversaries’ way.
The thing about stiletto heels is that they make a hell of a dent when you walk all over the people who try to hurt you.
In Penn Scully’s case, I pierced his heart until he bled out, then left it in a trash can on a bright summer day.
Four years ago, he asked me to save all of my firsts for him.
Now he lives across the hall, and there’s nothing I want more than to be his last everything.
His parting words when he gave me his heart were that nothing in this world is free.
Now? Now he is making me pay.
L.J. Shen proved once again that she’s an incredibly talented author and the depth of her imagination has no bottom. Pretty Reckless is an epic young adult story that’s filled with angst and emotions to the brim! If you think that you know in the least what to expect from this book… you will be surprised! As soon as I learned that the author is planning a spin-off for the Sinners of Saint series, which is in the forefront of my forever favorites, I was aware that it would be a hit. Hell- we’re talking about Leigh Shen! But what I received in Pretty Reckless surpassed my wildest expectations.
I won’t describe the plot of this story because every reader must get to know it by herself. Discovering it layer by layer was a real experience and it can’t be described in a few sentences. L.J. has put in this book a lot of life plots that blend into a coherent whole. Pretty Reckless is NOT an ordinary contemporary romance. It’s overcoming your own demons, family problems, friendship, love, sweat, pain and tears. It’s a story that will leave you breathless and make you beg for more.
Daria Followhill is the biggest surprise I’ve come across since I’ve been reading Shen’s books. Her character is extremely complicated and beneath the façade of mean spoiled girl she hides a girl who wants not only to be noticed – she wants to be seen. She reacts very emotionally and here I have often identified with her, because as much as Daria I give it twice as much. The sharp tongue and nasty ripostes are like a shield to her, what protects her from being vulnerable. The lack of understanding that she comes across is something that awakens sympathy and presents her in a completely new light. As a reader, I felt her. Her insecurities, her desire to be better, her jealousy, disappointment and pain.
Penn Scully is a personification of eternal fight for me. For others, for himself, on the outside and internally. His pride and stubbornness have no limits and this is what made him and Daria equally matched opponents. For most of the book I was holding a grudge against Penn because of one unexplained situation, but when I got the answer to the question that was bothering me, I melted like ice-cream in the heat and fell madly in love with him.
The old saying goes: there is a thin line between hatred and love.
Daria and Penn are the best example of this.
I’m completely enchanted with every word in this book. L.J. Shen is an amazing storyteller and her writing style is flawless and captivating. I’m waiting impatiently for the next books in All Saints High series- a small insight in the characters of Luna, Knight and Vaughn has awakened in me an insatiable beast that needs their stories to make a life complete.
Bravo, Mrs. Shen. You’ve created another masterpiece!
*ARC received in exchange for an honest review.
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“I don’t want you transferring into my school,” I hiss out. Melody would gladly file a transfer request, and Principal Prichard would salivate over the chance to snatch him up for our football team.
“That won’t be a problem. You guys suck so much ass, you have shit-breath.”
“Still smells better than poverty. You’re poor, right? Your sister was just bullshitting about being rich.”
When someone hits me with a stick, I run over them with a tank. I’m so mean to him I want to throw up. I hate this part of being me. The striking harder at all costs part.
“Just to make things clear.” I put the brush down, batting my lashes. “You’re not my step-sibling, foster brother, or a part of the family. You’re a stray dog. Last of the litter, most unlikely to be adopted, and a charity case.”
Penn takes a step toward me, and my heart is fighting its way out of my ribcage. The closer he gets, the more I realize that my heart might succeed. Penn’s eyes remind me of a snake’s. Mesmerizing, but inhuman altogether. They weren’t like that before.
His scent messes with my head. I want to reach out and caress his face. Kiss his wounds better. Beg for forgiveness. Curse him. Push him away. Cry on his shoulder for what we’ve done. For how it ended. For what we became afterwards, because I’m full of crap and he is totally empty.
We ruined ourselves the day of our first kiss.
Penn looks down at me. Time stops. It feels like the world is losing gravity, falling into a bottomless depth in space when he clasps my chin with his thumb and finger, lifting my head up. I can’t breathe. I’m not sure I want to, either. My towel drops to the floor with a thud, even though I secured it over my chest. I realize that he tugged at it intentionally. I’m naked. My body, my soul, my heart. All my walls are down. Somewhere in my head, a red alarm blasts and my inhibitions are getting armed, ready to fight back. I’m trying to decode his expression. He is amused, irritated, and…playful? The mixture of emotions doesn’t make any sense.
“Mess with me, Followhill, and I will ruin you.”
“Not if I ruin you first.”
About LJ Shen:
L.J. Shen is an International #1 best-selling author of Contemporary Romance and New Adult novels. She lives in Northern California with her husband, young son and chubby cat.
Before she’d settled down, L.J. (who thinks referring to herself in the third person is really silly, by the way) traveled the world, and collected friends from all across the globe. Friends who’d be happy to report that she is a rubbish companion, always forgets people’s’ birthdays and never sends Christmas cards.
She enjoys the simple things in life, like spending time with her family and friends, reading, HBO, Netflix and internet-stalking Stephen James. She reads between three to five books a week and firmly believes Crocs shoes and mullets should be outlawed.
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