Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books.
ebook, 352 pages.
Release date: June 10th 2014.
Rating: 3½ out of 5.
Source: Received from publisher for review.
Wicked Games is the first book in a sexy thriller series where passion, lies, and revenge collide-perfect for fans of Simone Elkeles and Sara Shepard.
To all the locals in the small beach town of Dream Point, Carter and Lilah seem like the perfect It Couple-but their relationship is about to brutally unravel before everyone's eyes.
Carter has always been a good guy, and while Lilah has a troubled past, she's been a loyal girlfriend for the last four years. When smart, sexy Jules enters the picture at a senior-year bash, Carter succumbs to temptation. And when Lilah catches wind of his betrayal, she decides that Jules needs to pay.
By the end of the summer, the line between right and wrong will be blurred beyond recognition. Blood will be shed. Nothing in Dream Point will ever be the same.
This juicy summer read will keep readers turning pages until the shocking, nail-biting finale.
Carter and Lilah started dating at fourteen with a promise of forever. Four years on the couple are still together, but theirs is no longer a match made in heaven. In fact, if you wanted to quote Lady Gaga, you could say that Carter and Lilah are caught in a bad romance. Lilah has issues; deep-rooted, destructive issues that manifest in relentless self-loathing and physical self-harm. And the truth is that while Carter does his best to placate Lilah, and to keep her happy on a day to day basis, her problems are more than he can deal with. In his heart, he knows their relationship can’t continue like this, but he also doesn’t know how to walk away. He feels bad for even thinking of walking away, because he knows Lilah is hurting. And he’s afraid of the consequences of leaving Lilah – he’s afraid she might hurt herself, or worse, if he leaves.
Lilah would do just about anything to keep Carter in her life, but there’s no doubt about it, she treats him terribly. Lilah’s insecurity and her own self-loathing lend her to jealousy and suspicion: she questions Carter at every turn, calls him incessantly when they’re apart and distrusts him where there’s no reason to distrust him – until there is. One night after a major bust up with Lilah, Carter meets Jules, an aspiring actress, and the two hook up. Jules has been into Carter for a while; he’s a lot different to the surfer dudes she usually dates, but there’s just something about smart, preppy, dependable Carter that Jules can’t resist. As for Carter, well, he falls for Jules, of course he does – she offers a release from the pressure-cooker that is his relationship with Lilah. Jules is laidback, carefree, fun and free-spirited –everything that Lilah is not. But still, Carter won’t end his relationship with his girlfriend. After all, he promised her forever, and he’s not one to just give up. He has to make this work.
Wicked Games by Sean Olin (Brother/Sister) is a sexy, summer thriller of relationship drama and revenge. Already unhinged, when Lilah figures out what is going on between Carter and Jules, she completely loses the plot and is determined to take down her love rival by any and all means possible. As for Carter, well, Lilah is still in love with him, so he’s safe from her plan of revenge. Jules, though, had better watch her back, because Carter and Lilah are forever, and Lilah is not letting go of her man without a fight. Wicked Games definitely veers towards completely crazy late-night-soap-opera plots at certain points, but it’s a wild ride, and it also, just like Brother/Sister, contains an unexpectedly dark twist that will leave you wanting more.
Thankfully, for those who want more, this is the first in a series (although it reads like a standalone.) Wicked Games is not a book that will be universally loved -- just take a look at all those one-starred Goodreads reviews for confirmation of this. This book deals with mental illness but it skims the surface of this issue; it’s not a book that takes itself too seriously, and it’s definitely not a book that deals in with Lilah’s issues in a subtle or thoughtful manner – so if you’re looking for that, of if you have issues with books that portray people with mental illness in a negative light, then this book is not for you. Me, I just enjoyed the book for the far-fetched crazy, wild ride that it is. Also, I love my late-night Soap Operas, and I always love a good revenge story, so this one suited me to a tee.
If you liked Beautiful Malice by Rebecca James or Choker by Elizabeth Woods, then I think Wicked Games by Sean Olin might just be the book for you.