This is the review for book two in this series. IF you have not yet read Crave please stop reading now. There will be no spoilers for this book, but there will be a giant spoiler for book one. Sorry it just can’t be helped 🤷♀️ . If you want to learn more about the first book you can see me spoiler free review here.
Crush by Tracy Wolff
Publication Date: September 29, 2020
Summary from Goodreads:
Everything feels off—especially me. I’ve returned to Katmere Academy, but I’m haunted by fragments of days I have no recollection of living and struggling to understand who, or what, I really am.
Just when I start to feel safe again, Hudson is back with a vengeance. He insists there are secrets I don’t know about, threatening to drive a wedge between Jaxon and me forever. But far worse enemies are at our doorstep.
The Circle is caught in a power play and the Vampire Court is trying to drag me out of my world and into theirs. The only thing Hudson and Jaxon agree on is that leaving Katmere would mean my certain death.
And not only am I fighting for my life, but now everyone else’s is at stake—unless we can defeat an unspeakable evil. All I know is that saving the people I love is going to require sacrifice.
Maybe more than I’m able to give.
“Forget YA novel, I’m living in the middle of a paranormal telenovela, and what happens next is anyone’s guess…”
Hopefully you have heeded my words at the beginning of this post, and if you are reading this you have read, and hopefully loved, the first book and are prepared for anything I say about the ending of book one. If not, then please do not keep reading! I can’t emphasize that enough! Please stop here if you haven’t read book one. Thank you!
I have to start off with saying that I really enjoyed this book, even more than the first one. It was still as smart and sassy as I expected, but the story was just so much better! This one had a lot more action and excitement. We got to see a lot more of some of the other students and more of what school at Katmere Academy is like.
Grace remains our soul narrator for the story. She continues to amaze me with her sass and badassery even when she doesn’t feel like she’s got the same powers as everyone else. She accepts her new identity of being the only gargoyle in existence a bit too easily. She struggles more with her memory loss. She can not remember anything from her time in her stone gargoyle form. But with the help of her friends, she overcomes a lot of obstacles and learns her true strength and powers. (I would still like to know how she is a gargoyle though, someone just needs to explain how a witch and a human have a gargoyle. I just need that explained to me please.) But if you are just willing to go with the gargoyle bit, you are in for a really good story.
“Jaxon watches me with an intensity that shakes me to my very bones. ‘I’ve always been a monster, Grace. You’re the one who’s made me human.'”
Jaxon is still mated to Grace, and I am still okay with that. There was a lot less kissing and romance between the two of them than the first book, which was the one thing that annoyed me. I will say that Jaxon goes a little over the top on the protectiveness scale though. He forgets that Grace can manage and protect herself and is constantly wanting to get in her way to protect her. Of course Grace will have none of that and tells him so, but still his instinct always wins out.
Hudson is back, and I have to say I really liked him. He is hilarious with his snarky comments about Jaxon and Grace’s relationship. He and Grace go at it quite a bit too, but he actually ends up supporting her and helping her way more than Jaxon. He also maybe isn’t as evil as we are lead to believe, at least not yet. But we shall see.
The supporting cast from the first book is still there and more than willing to help Grace in her quest. Flint, my beloved dragon shifter, is here as well as Macy and a new favorite, Xavier, a werewolf. I just adored him! We also get to meet some parents and I have to say Jaxon and Hudson’s dad is just as horrible and evil as we are lead to believe and mom isn’t too nice either.
“Silence stretches between us, as fraught and frozen as the tundra in winter, untouched by even the smallest ray of light or warmth. It’s so cold that it’s painful, so empty that it echoes inside me, reverberating off every part of me until there’s nothing that doesn’t ache.
Nothing that doesn’t burn.”
The plot of this book is very different than the first. The group goes on several quests to get some magical items to help Grace with her troubles with Hudson. All of these were very exciting and unusual. We are also introduced to a magical game called Ludares which is described as a combination of keep away and hot potato. I just loved reading the game scenes, so exciting and with lots of twists in the game that keep the players and you on the edge of your seat. I also really enjoy the writing style. Even though this is a pretty long book, it flies by so quickly! And I just love the snarky chapter headings like:
Two Vampires, a Witch, and a Werewolf Walk into a Boneyard…
Family Feud has nothing on us.
Second star to the right and straight on till Siberia
Death by Ice Cube Is No Way to Start an Obituary
Raining Cats and Dragons
Gargoyles are the new black
Okay, I think I have gushed enough about this series so far. I am really happy that I only have to wait till March for the third book, because of course the ending of this one was another bombshell, even though it was sort of expected. It looks like book four will also be coming out this year, yeah! If you liked book one, you will probably love this one. Happy reading!