Monday, April 6, 2020

Books: "Crave" By Tracy Wolff

By Tracy Wolff
Entangled Teen, an imprint of Entangled Publishing LLC; hardcover, $18.99; available Tuesday, April 7

Tracy Wolff is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 64 novels that vary from young adult action adventures to new adult romance, and from women's fiction to erotica. A long-time devotee of vampires, dragons and all things that go bump in the night, Tracy loves nothing more than combining her affection for paranormal creatures with her love of writing tortured heroes and kick-butt heroines.

Crave is Wolff's new YA (young adult) supernatural thriller, which is witty, intense, and surprising. There are vampires - sexy, brooding, deadly vampires, and this is a fresh new feminist take on the mythology of how they interact with humans.

After the sudden death of her parents, Grace leaves sunny San Diego behind for the remote town of Healy, Alaska, to live with her Uncle Finn, who's headmaster of Katmere Academy, an elite and mysterious boarding school. As he cousin Macy attempts to help her fit in, Grace finds herself amidst students who seem to be unusual. They are mpervious to cold, lightning-fast, and inhumanely strong.

Grace meets Jaxon Vega, who's aloof, angsty, and contrary, but he is also charming and devastatingly handsome. Although she is determined to take care of herself on her own terms, Grace becomes captivated by this young man whom she insists is not the hero of her story.

What Grace discovers is that the object of her affection is a vampire, a stone-cold, mythical creature who is incapable of feeling emotions - until now. She also discovers that she is the only mortal at a school for supernatural beings, including witches, dragons, and wold shifters. 

Jaxon and Grace have an intrinsic connection, but can true love protect them from a hidden enemy consumed by long-festering vengeance? A shocking, unexpected climax will leave readers eager for more, and - spoiler alert - Tracy is already working on the sequel.

Think of Twilight for today's teen readers, and for plenty of grown-ups who were captivated by Stephenie Meyer's Bella and Edward when they first read the story of the complicated and compulsive love affair between human and immortal fifteen years ago.

Wolff writes of what one of Grace's first days at Katmere is like, in the aftermath of an earthquake and when she starts really noticing Jaxon, "Back home, I was always outside - in the pool, at the beach, running through the park. I even did my homework on the front porch swing, watching the sun set over the water.
Going from that to being stuck inside almost all the time is more than a little rough.
I think about heading to my room and changing into all those outdoor clothes so I can go for a walk. But nothing about me is particularly thrilled at the idea of putting on half my closet just to brave the subfreezing temperatures, either, so in the end, I decide on a compromise. I'll wander around the castle, getting to know it better, since there are huge portions I haven't set foot in yet, even with my classes taking me all over the place today.
For a second, Jaxon's warning from the first night flits through my head, but that was for late at night. Just because the sun outside the castle has been down for a couple of hours already doesn't mean the halls aren't safe now, while everyone is awake and going from one activity to another. Also, I'm not going to spend the next year and a half afraid of the people I go to school with. Those guys the other night were assholes, no doubt about it, but they caught me unprepared. No way am I going to let that happen again. And no way a I going to become a prisoner in my own school.
Thoughts of Jaxon have me pulling out my phone and opening my message app. There are six text messages waiting for me from Jaxon - all sent during the earthquake. I haven't opened them yet because at first I was too mad to want to know what he had to say. Then I didn't want to be around anyone when I opened them. I tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve, and the last thing I want is for someone watching me to see how I feel about Jaxon - especially when I currently have no idea what, if anything, is going to happen between us...
I remember the messages coming in during the earthquake and not paying any attention to them. But now that I've read them, I feel like a total jerk. Not for not answering them right away, because - earthquake!
And yeah, I definitely don't have to answer him because he wants me to. But I feel guilty for laying into him the way I did in the art studio when he was obviously just worried about me. And for not answering him for so long when he actually apologized in his texts - something - like please - I'm pretty sure the great Jaxon Vega almost never does.
All I was thinking about in that art closet was how embarrassed I was that he was there, arguing with Flint and making a spectacle of me. I didn't think about the fact that he was there because he was concerned about me and that the fight with Flint happened because he was so on edge.
In my old school, it would be absurd, and probably even a little freaky, to have a guy get so worried about me. But I can't really blame Jaxon for being legitimately concerned, not when he's already had to rescue me twice. And not when his last texts came in the middle of a freaking earthquake, which got people so worked up that every teacher I had for the rest of the day took ten minutes out of class time to go over earthquake safety.
If everyone else is freaked out by the quake, it's hard to be upset at Jaxon for feeling the same way."

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