4.5 Red Flag Stars

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Monday, September 19, 2016

Wilder

Renegades #1

by

Rebecca Yarros




Leah has been accepted as a tutor for Paxton Wilder in the study abroad program. The location? A cruising ship that will take the students to fascinating destinations like Madagascar, Morrocco and, the one Leah is looking forward to most, Mykonos in Greece. The catch? She has to tutor an X Games gold medalist, Wilder. And nomen est omen, right? He does the wildest and most dangerous stunts on bikes, parachutes, jumps from cliffs. You name it, he does it. 

"Are you ready for an adventure???"

Leah doesn't do heights. A traumatic experience has cured her from everything that sounds remotely like danger. Unfortunately Wilder promises exactly that. On top of it, her success at school is tied to his and he doesn't seem to take it seriously. Too bad he is deliciously hot and almost makes her forget about studying. But with Wilder come a lot of groupies and he is not known to say no to them. 

The setting of this story is as unusual as it is intriguing. I have never heard of a sports romance taking place on a cruising ship. Rebecca Yarros takes us to places we dream about seeing and describes them with wonderful colors. The attraction between the two main characters is instant but it takes a while for them to find common ground. 

Then there is the not so minor secret Wilder is holding back from the girl he is falling in love with. The author hints at it pretty much from the beginning and towards the middle of the story I got a pretty clear picture what it exactly was that Paxton wanted to keep hidden away. It's like everytime Rebecca Yarros dropped a hint that a layer of the secret was peeled away. And of course it is supposed to blow up in his face. 

"Tell her. Kiss her. Pray to God you can make it through the storm you're headed for, then marry her and make pretty little Wilder babies."

Yet, the angst is pretty low, which I enjoyed immensely. Woven in between is a mystery that is not as obvious and I loved how the solution totally took me by surprise. 

The main and secondary cast are extremely likeable characters. The camarderie between the members of the Renegades is fabulous and you just want to be part of their group.
Leah is very responsible, she isn't a spoil sport though, she has her own streak of wildness in her and she is far away from being a push over. I was happy to see that she had a backbone. With somebody like Paxton Wilder you really have to be strong. 

"Everything about you scares the shit out of me."
"When are you going to understand that's where life begins? Right at the edge of that fear."

Pax is super sweet. I know! I thought he'd be a jerk with all the money, success and women he had in his life. But that was another surprise, he is a friendly, even thoughtful guy with the best intentions at heart. And he is utterly delicious and swoonworthy. One thing I was wondering about and whether it would inflluence my rating was how Pax kept pushing Leah to do things she wasn't ready for, repeatedly, even after he knew why she was scared of heights. But I got it, I understood that he would do everything to keep her safe. 

One quibble I wanted to mention: The beach on Zakynthos where the shipwreck is located and Pax and his Renegaded base-jump doesn't have a sandy beach. It's all rocks, small and white, and those hurt like a bitch. I know because I was there ;)

In a nutshell this was an enjoyable fast read and I loved every second of it. It was thrilling, exciting, breathtaking at times and incredibly sexy. The writing was flawless and I loved the almost poetic description this author used to adorn the prose. 

His weight was exquisite, holding my body to the earth while he gave my soul the freedom to fly. 

I can't wait to get my hands on Landon's book. I am wondering how many stories we will get. Either way, I'll be making sure to read all of them!

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