I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review for SMI Bookclub.
So I did a re-read of The Wild ones before diving into this. Trick and Cami’s story is that good! Even though I loved Rusty and Jenna in the supporting roles they played, I didn’t see much depth. I am here to tell you that I was WRONG! I have never seen so much angst, lust, heartache, and love packed into so few pages. Forewarned, this is a novella, not a full length novel. Trust me when I tell you, you won’t even notice! “You’re evil. Did you know that? You’ll probably go to hell for doing this to me.” I run my fingers up his bare chest, to his chin then I trace his bottom lip with my bright red fingernail. “Come burn with me.” “You lead the way.”
We pick up about a year after the Wild Ones ended. We are preparing for Trick and Cami’s wedding and Cami has had the bright idea that not only will she and Trick not have sex again until they are married, but that Jenna and Rusty should hold out in support as well. To say this doesn’t go over well with ANY of them is putting it lightly. They boys, as well as Jenna, are NOT happy. Lucky for us readers though, it makes for some steamy pages as Rusty and Jenna tease each other relentlessly. Look out for the steamy dressing room scene!The kiss is sweet. Profound. Enigmatic. It says something. I’m just not sure what.
Rusty is always waiting for the other shoe to drop. His father abandoned him and his mother at a young age for bigger and brighter things. He expects Jenna to leave, and even though he loves her, won’t admit it for that reason. He is used to everyone leaving, so why put yourself out there just to get your heart trampled on. Rusty and Jenna have been together for about a year at this point, so for neither of them to express their feelings, you can feel the tension bubbling on the surface, just waiting to erupt.“Then how long do you wait, honey? How long is too long? Have you ever thought of that? What is the cut-off for him choosing you first? Because you deserve to be first.”
Jenna, in typical woman fashion, doesn’t think Rusty is serious about her. The funny thing is that they both have the same insecurities when it comes to love, yet they won’t admit nor talk to each other about it until it is too late. Enter the angst…… Tragedy occurs, will knock you on your ass, and kick you when you are writhing in the dirt. Not even embellishing here. My heart was ripped from my chest. Other people crying always makes me cry, and even reading about it affects me the same. M Leighton has a way of making her words come to life, as they grab hold of your heart. You are pulled in, filled with despair, left wondering where to go from there. As I stand, chest to chest, with Rusty, listening to his hoarse voice, letting the sincerity in it wash over me like a cleansing tide, I realize that it is entirely possible to experience the most agonizing pain and the most wondrous happiness at the exact same time in life. And that maybe it’s the presence of on that so magnifies the other.
To avoid going into detail how the story unfolds, because you NEED to experience this journey with them , I will stop here. I will end with saying though my heart was in tatters, not knowing how I would continue, how the characters would survive this heartache, I held out hope. And when you hold out hope, sometimes you are rewarded greatly. This was an astounding , scream from the rooftops 5 star read for me! One that I will definitely be reading again in the future. Cannot wait for more in this series!“I’ve loved you from the moment I met you, Jenna. And I’ll love you long after I’m gone from this world.” I reach up and wind my arms around his neck, giving him a mischievous wink. “What took you so long?” He grins down at me. “Traffic was hell.”