4.3 126
by C. J. Redwine

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Defiance by C. J. Redwine is rich postapocalyptic YA fantasy perfect for fans of Graceling and Tamora Pierce.

While the other girls in the walled city-state of Baalboden learn to sew and dance, Rachel Adams learns to track and hunt. While they bend like reeds to the will of their male Protectors, she uses hers for sparring


Defiance by C. J. Redwine is rich postapocalyptic YA fantasy perfect for fans of Graceling and Tamora Pierce.

While the other girls in the walled city-state of Baalboden learn to sew and dance, Rachel Adams learns to track and hunt. While they bend like reeds to the will of their male Protectors, she uses hers for sparring practice.

When Rachel's father fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, the city's brutal Commander assigns Rachel a new Protector: her father's apprentice, Logan—the boy she declared her love to and who turned her down two years before. Left with nothing but fierce belief in her father's survival, Rachel decides to escape and find him herself.

As Rachel and Logan battle their way through the Wasteland, stalked by a monster that can't be killed and an army of assassins out for blood, they discover romance, heartbreak, and a truth that will incite a war decades in the making.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—Fifty years ago, the Cursed Ones escaped their underground prison and nearly destroyed all life on Earth. Survivors cluster within the walls of Baalboden, living in constant fear of attacks and relying on the protection of cruel Commander Jason Chase. Unlike the other women, who are helpless and submissive, Rachel Adams is a survivor and a fighter. When her father goes missing while on a secret mission to retrieve a device that would enable its holder to control the Cursed Ones, the Commander recruits Rachel to find him-and, more importantly, the device-at any cost. If she fails, Logan, her true love and Protector, will be killed. Rachel has everything to lose. And she has a plan. But will it work? Redwine's YA debut is an admirable attempt at following in the footsteps of such genre benchmarks as Suzanne Collins's Hunger Games (Scholastic, 2008) and Scott Westerfeld's Uglies (S & S, 2005). Unfortunately, it doesn't quite measure up. Pacing is slow, and stock characters are predictable and two-dimensional. With so many dystopian novels on the market, this title is not one of the better options.—Alissa J. Bach, Oxford Public Library, MI
Publishers Weekly
When 16-year-old Rachel’s father fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, she is made the ward of his 19-year-old apprentice, Logan, her unrequited first love. Rachel is certain her father is alive, but to leave the walled city-state of Baalboden and search for him she must agree to help Commander Chase, the violent despot who sent her father on his last journey. The commander desperately wants the package Rachel’s father was carrying, and he’s willing to exchange Logan’s life for it. Rachel swears to bring back the item, free Logan, and make the commander regret he ever knew her, but a rival power is also seeking the parcel, and the commander has some tricks up his sleeve. Alternating between Rachel and Logan’s perspectives, Redwine’s debut is a jumble of technology, fantasy, and post-apocalyptic adventure. Her characters are interesting, but so capable and polished that they lose realism and sympathy. The story offers solid writing, ample action, and a sweet romance, but also implausible science and an unexpectedly messy climax that leads into the next book. Ages 13–up. Agent: Holly Root, Waxman Literary Agency. (Sept.)
Romantic Times
“A well-paced, heart-wrenching tale of loyalty, courage, and love.”
Julie Kagawa
“Spellbinding, romantic, and impossible to put down.”
Rae Carson
“C.J. Redwine’s DEFIANCE is a gritty, thrilling adventure sprinkled with moments of breathtaking tenderness. I read it in one sitting.”
Lisa Mantchev
“DEFIANCE defies all reader expectations, giving us both a post-apocalyptic setting rife with history and a plot that’s as much about the discovery of one’s own humanity as it is about survival.”
VOYA - Lynne Farrell Stover
Sixteen-year-old Rachel Adams, a strong-willed female in a male-dominated society, finds herself without a protector upon the disappearance of her father, a valued courier for the ruthless Commander of the walled city of Baalboden. Unexpectedly, she is placed under the protection of nineteen-year-old Logan McEntire. She decides to rebel against this unacceptable situation and take matters into her own hands. Her plan is to escape the oppressive city and go to the wasteland with the hope of discovering what has happened to her beloved parent. In a society where the feudal system meets high-tech gadgetry, she must use all of her resources to achieve this difficult mission. Told in the voices of Rachel and Logan in alternating chapters, a story of survival, cunning, and compassion unfolds as the reader learns the thoughts and feelings of two young people struggling to find happiness in a hopelessly brutal situation. The tale ends with death and destruction as the young couple realizes the inevitability of a war and the responsibility they now must take to protect Baalboden's surviving citizens. Unevenly written, the constant restating of the characters' feelings often gets in the way of the progression of the story line. Science fiction readers will discover the familiar concepts of emerging technology, absolute evil, and mindless destruction interwoven into a story that centers more on social, political, and romantic themes. Despite its disconcerting setting, predicable plot, and tedious supporting characters, fans of romance may find the young protagonists' complicated love story compelling. Reviewer: Lynne Farrell Stover
Kirkus Reviews
Another pair of lovers in a post-apocalyptic dystopia fight the Man. When Rachel's father, Jared, the best tracker in Baalboden, doesn't return from a mission, he is declared dead, and his teenage apprentice, Logan, is unexpectedly named her Protector. This is a problem, because she hates his guts. But they both loved Jared, and they are both determined to defy the megalomaniacal Commander that rules their city-state to find him. Readers will be frustrated at the textbook way Rachel and Logan fail to communicate with each other, as each plots separately to escape into the Wasteland and find Jared. Predictably, they are found out, and just as predictably, they discover passionate love for each other. Redwine's worldbuilding is particularly weak. Vague reference is made to an energy shortage that led to drilling that woke up the Cursed One, a reptilian monster that lives underground, but there is no attempt to flesh out the catastrophe that destroyed civilization as we know it. How women came to be relegated to positions of extreme subservience is also left completely unexplained. That all of this seems to have happened within the lifetime of the Commander who founded Baalboden beggars credulity. Internal logic takes a backseat to overwrought, present-tense narration, which alternates between Logan's and Rachel's nearly identical voices. Only for those who can't get enough of this nearly played-out genre. (Dystopian romance. 13 & up)

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
C. J. Redwine's Defiance Series , #1
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File size:
828 KB
Age Range:
13 - 17 Years

What People are saying about this

Lisa Mantchev

“DEFIANCE defies all reader expectations, giving us both a post-apocalyptic setting rife with history and a plot that’s as much about the discovery of one’s own humanity as it is about survival.”

Julie Kagawa

“Spellbinding, romantic, and impossible to put down.”

Rae Carson

“C.J. Redwine’s DEFIANCE is a gritty, thrilling adventure sprinkled with moments of breathtaking tenderness. I read it in one sitting.”

Meet the Author

C. J. Redwine loves fairy tales, Harry Potter, and any movie starring Johnny Depp. She is also the author of Defiance and Deception. If the novel-writing gig ever falls through, she'll join the Avengers and wear a cape to work every day. C.J. lives in Nashville with her husband and children.

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Defiance 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 126 reviews.
Cupcakegirly More than 1 year ago
This book had me laughing, crying, and chain chewing (gum) because it was so intense at times. It's a thrilling adventure of love, loyalty and hope that will suck you in from the first page. While most girls within the walled city of Baalboden were learning the importance of how to cook, sew and behave properly in public, sixteen year old Rachel Adams was also learning how to take care of herself with sharp objects. (She can gut you like a fish!) Her father Jared, Baalboden's top courier made sure she knew how to wield a sword and what to do in order to survive the Wastelands. He taught her well, so well in fact, that when he fails to return home after his most recent courier mission and is declared dead, Rachel decides to go looking for him. (I would volunteer to go with her and offer to carry her Switch.) Danger lies beyond the wall but it could be more dangerous for Rachel to stay. In order to escape, she'll have to defy not only The Commander, Baalboden's tyrant leader but her newly appointed Protector as well; a man with the potential to do her more harm than The Commander and the evil creature that lurks beyond the wall combined. Enter Logan... Nineteen year old Logan McEntire is the orphaned outcast who Jared took on as his apprentice and he's also the boy who broke Rachel's heart two years prior. To make things even more awkward, he's just been appointed Rachel's new Protector. Logan is good looking, uber intelligent, and his inventions are nothing short of uh-mazing! He also has a knack for weighing all the options in every situation which Rachel finds a strange mix of annoyance and comfort. Basically, Logan is a hot nerd who can kick some serious butt! If he were a Super Hero, his name would be something like, "Captain Scenario". ;) Logan if also not afraid to stand up for what's right even if it means risking his own life. Rachel is a hardcore heroine! Smart, beautiful, courageous and incredibly loyal, her impulsiveness is what gets her into trouble and also happens to drive Logan insane. She too is selfless and her journey through the Wastelands will test her in ways she never imagined and threatens to destroy all that it is important to her. She'll have to fight with everything she has in order to save those she loves and try to not lose herself in the process. Then there's Quinn... *sighs* I was Team Quinn long before I *met* him but I just knew I would *hearts* him and do.I.ever. He's tall, dark and every bit as awesome as Logan. He's kind, compassionate and possesses a wisdom beyond his years but he's not without his tortured past. Quinn is also able to empathize with Rachel in ways that even Logan can't which doesn't sit too well with Capt. Scenario but he's just being helpful. You know, I have a huge fear of heights but I'm confident Quinn could help me overcome that. ;) As Rachel and Logan make their way through the Wastelands, they'll have to fight an army, a creepy monster who refuses to die and uncover a secret so powerful, it has the potential to start a war. They'll experience love, heartbreak and hopefully learn that even in the worst situations, all you can do is your best. The main thing I took away from this story was the importance of holding onto hope especially when it seems like all hope is lost. We all go through difficult times and it can be very easy to lose ourselves to grief or pain but regardless, we can always cling to hope...hope for change, for love, for redemptio
AbbieLeeAE More than 1 year ago
First off, I will say that I haven't much cared to read dystopian/ post-apocalyptic type novels. This book was explosive, fast paced and packed full of emotion. We are thrown right into the story, that is set in a world that has been ravaged by wingless dragons. They crawled out of the ground and destroyed the world as we know it. Eventually what people were left formed there own walled cities. Rachel is one of the main characters, and the story opens up with her waiting for her dad to return from a courier mission to one of the other cities. He travels into the "wastelands" to do so. He has been gone for a certain amount of time and has yet to return, and now has been deemed dead. Rachel refused to believe this is true and will stop at nothing to locate her father. In this world, woman have protectors (guardians). Rachel's father names her protector as Logan, whom she has 2 years previously declared her love for. However, he did not reciprocate. Woman are supposed to be submissive and are claimed by a man her protector sees fit at age 17. This is not the case for Rachel, she's been trained to use weapons since she was a child. She ends up on a dangerous journey through the wastelands in search of her father and a package that the Commander (an evil man) has commissioned/ blackmailed her to return. I was sucked into every bit of her journey. I finished this book with in 24 hours of starting it. I couldn't put it down and felt a sense of loss when it was over. There is so much emotion in this book and a love story thrown in there as well. And not much hint of a love triangle at all. Her determination to find her father and protect the ones she loves is amazing. This is a must read! Definitely Epic!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't put it down. Great from begining to end!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I usually dont like books written from more than one viewpoint but this story was so captivating that most of the time I didnt even notice or at times actually craved the other perspective! I cant wait for the next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There are 327 pages in this book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I seriously couldn't put this book down! Every moment had me on the edge of my seat and wanting more! It is a definate must read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
LOVED THIS BOOK!!! Fast paced and kept me wanting to read, I couldn't put it down!   An amazing story!
BlkosinerBookBlog More than 1 year ago
I immediately liked the fire that I saw in Rachel. She was fiesty but she knew when not to cross the line. I admire her fierce devotion to her dad, and her confidence in what she has been taught. I admired how she didn't sit back and let things happen to her, she knew when she could and could not do something and make a difference and even when it was hard, if she could do something, she did. Rachel is all that my inner spirit wants to be with her fiestiness and determination. I wasn't so sure about Logan, but he won me over in a few pages because his heart was in the right place. I don't know what will happen romantically if anything but it was good to hear his side of what happened and his motivations for hurting her. It's sad that he knows he caused that wall, and I can only imagine what it would be like to grow up with a girl and then all of the sudden be charged with protecting her. (that is the way the society is set up. He was an apprentice to her father and since her dad didn't return and was declared dead, they both thought that an older friend of the family would be appointed.) As the chapters went on we find even more insight into his feelings and thoughts and I grow to like him more and more. He becomes this perfect blend of techie and fighter. I really enjoyed the dual perspective in this story and I think that moves the plot along, and there are also scenes where it gave more suspense because we knew something the main character did not. Another plus for the book is that it explored the many forms of grief and how people process it differently and how it effects them. A choice is made in a split second, but it has repercussions and that is dealt with well in Defiance. Sometimes books skim over the negative consequence of actions, but I appreciate how C.J. faces it head on. I can't wait for the next one, I want to find out more. C.J. Redwine wrapped up the threads of this story while leaving room for questions and definitely a need for the next pages to be in my hands.
Jennzahling More than 1 year ago
I LOVED THIS BOOK. there aren’t enough stars in the spectrum to express how much I loved it. It’s engrossing from the very beginning and the pages just kept turning as I progressed deeper into the story. I didn’t want to put the book down and was upset when I had to; the story kept me up at night thinking about what was going to happen next.  I loved how the book was told from both Rachel and Logan’s points of view — it really helped intensify the story for me. You experienced what both of them were feeling as the events in the book unfolded — meaning you FELT IT. I felt the hatred that both of them had for the Commander, when they experienced loss, I felt it, and so on. This book is a wonderful, turbulent, engrossing thrill-ride of epic proportions that left me hungry for more. Thankfully, DECEPTION, the next book in the series, is out in August. Well done, CJ Redwine. WELL DONE.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed watching Rachel and Logan's feelings for each other develop it wasn't to quickly and it happened beautifully. My heart felt heavy many times through this book. I never knew what to expect and the action was perfectly spaced and descriptive enough to make me feel like i was watching a movie not reading!! Well done, C.J. Redwine, I will be waiting impatiently for books 2 and 3!!
chapterxchapter More than 1 year ago
This book stirred up so many emotions in me. I would pause between chapters and stop any member of my family (who would listen) and say “You know, this book is stirring up so many emotions in my!”. I bet you that I made that declaration a good 5-6 times. I guess it lost its effect to my family after…oh I don’t know, declaration number 3. The story follows a strong, hard headed young girl named Rachel. In her city of Baalboden,, which is ruled with iron fist by a brutal Commander, an individual is declared dead after not returning to the city by the six month mark. Such is the case for Rachel’s father, Jared Adams. On his latest courier mission, Rachel’s father fails to return home leaving Rachel no choice accept her fate and go with whomever the Commander chooses as her Protector. As luck would have it, Rachel ends up being assigned to a boy she had declared her love to a few years back…the apprentice to her father, Logan. *swoon* Both are neither thrilled about this turn of events, but find a common reason to work with each other. A plot to scale the city walls and venture out into the Wasteland and search for her missing father. Life within the confines of Baalboden may seem like a miserable life, but to venture out into the Wastelands is sheer insanity. Not only are there predatory animals who would enjoy nothing more than to make a meal out of you, or assassins/trackers from a neighbouring territory looking to rob you of all you have and leave you dead, but the constant paranoia that the most fearsome beast of them all, The Cursed One, will pop up at your feet at any moment and leave you to face a hot, fiery death. Not fun… But things don’t always work out the way they intend to (such is life in a good book), and now a multitude of obstacles get in between Rachel and her father…and perhaps between Rachel and Logan? Dun dun dunnnnnn… I absolutely loved this book. Everything about it was exactly what I wanted in a book, not to mention that it’s a Dystopian type read with a Fantasy flavor. You will find no insta love in these pages, my friends. The that may or may not develop is one that is put to the test, and where I was hoping against hope that something good would finally happen for Rachel. I mean, the horrible things that this poor girl is put through is just incredible. And yet she emerges strong and headstrong. GAH! I loved this character! Yes, yes there were points in the book where I wanted to smack her silly and yell “Wake up!” The way in which author, C.J. Redwine described these events was gut wrenching, gasp inducing, and completely filled my head with so many different visions of this Commander. It’s like when you drive by a car accident and you just can’t look away…I couldn’t stop reading even though it was hurting my heart. The characters in this book were ones that I absolutely fell in love with, especially when it came to Logan. Sweet, dreamy, nerdy, sexy Logan. He is everything I hoped he would be. The chivalrous knight in shining armour. The interactions between Logan and Rachel were truly unforgettable, and the chemistry between them was so wonderful to watch unfold. The description of the undying love that Rachel has for her father melted my heart, along with her relationship with her “grandfather” Simon. The heartstrings were being pulled all over the place, and then ripped right out of my chest. Argh! This book stirred up so much emotion in me! (Sound familiar?)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wow Wow Wow. I loved this book its going straight to my faves list. Murder, mayhem, betrayal, heart-ache, grief, romanace, friendship, the list of emotions just goes on and on. Rachel it smart, stubborn, loyal, and my favorite kind a heroine. Logan is a tech head with a sword. Could he be made more sworn worthy, I think not. This book is a mix of technology meets medieval. Buy it and Buy now!
Deea_Ro More than 1 year ago
4 1/2 stars: Defiance is one of the most complex books I've read in a long time. It sucks you in from the first page and it's got something from everyone: rich world, original plot, lots of action and suspense, strong, well developed characters, heart-melting romance, compelling writing and a beautiful story told in two alternate POVs. In one word - it's a remarkable debut! Rachel's world threatens to fall apart when her father doesn't come home from his latest trip. Everyone else assumes he is dead, so she's forced to face the consequences of remaining without the only family she had left. And like that wasn't bad and painful enough, she's forced to live with Logan, her father's apprentice. He doesn't seem to be particularly happy when the Commander names him her Protector either, but what choice is there anyway? They all have to answer to him and to do what he says, no question asked, or they will be punished. But Rachel is her father's daughter; she's strong, independent, stubborn and driven; she doesn't sit around wallowing like other girls her age might do in this situation; she's hopeful and determined and she decides to do anything to find her father. Running away, going over the Wall into the Wasteland is extremely risky and dangerous (and, OK, maybe a bit reckless), but her father spent years training her how to handle herself in the Wasteland and how to defend herself against any threat. So when no one else seems to believe her father is still alive out there somewhere and no one goes looking for him, she decides to take matters in her own hands: armed with cool weapons, the skills her father thought her, incredible boldness, strong will and determination, she goes out into the wild. But she doesn't make it very far when things get complicated and she must work with Logan not only to survive, but to find her father, save her friend and take care of the Commander's latest task - or they will all be killed. So Rachel and Logan set out on a journey that test all their survival skills and abilities, as well as their strength, courage, trust and feelings. I won't get into details, but wow, there are sooo many things going on in this novel! There's no such thing as putting the book aside to take a break - it's very suspenseful, action packed and fast paced, so it keeps you glued to the pages because you must keep reading to find out what's going to happen next. Lots of adventures, lots of action, lots of near-death situations and intense, emotional moments - it really keeps you on the edge of your seat. Plus, it has this otherworldly, imaginative, surreal feeling that sucks you in and transports you into another world and another time and makes you oblivious to the real world (and suddenly it's 3 AM and you have to go to bed so you won't be a zombie the next day at work - but you can't. Stop. Reading. Well, that's what happened to me, anyway. LOL). And the characters - both Logan and Rachel - wow, they are so well developed! Flawed, realistic, and yet, so badass and amazing! (They are going to kick serious ass in the next year YA Crush Tourney and YA Heroine Tournament, because they are some of the best characters out there! And when that happens, remember that I'm calling dibs on Logan now. Just saying.:P). Having his POV was one of the best things about this book - he has such a great voice! When Rachel's father disappears, he drops everything to help her find him, because, yes, he cares about his mentor and believes he is still alive too, but he also cares about Rachel and he's very protective of her - he won't just let her go into the Wasteland alone. He's attracted to her, of course, but he also admires her courage and passion when she fights for the people she loves. He believes in her; he doesn't underestimate her or treat her like some damsel in distress - all on the contrary. Logan is clever, creative and very meticulous; he invents all sorts of devices that help them in the most dire situations. He's a fierce fighter, calculated and he has a sharp, analytical mind: he doesn't take action before considering best case scenarios and worst case scenarios; if he doesn't already have a plan, he's working on one while in action. He can be sweet and charming, but he doesn't have the best way with words, though his thoughts and feelings are always genuine - which leads to all sorts of awkward, yet cute and heart-melting situations: "You're telling me you're going to give me a compliment even though I shouldn't logically need one?" Her voice doesn't sound pleased. (...) "Why shouldn't I need a few compliments?" I have no idea how this conversation went awry so quickly. I just want to tell her something nice. Does it have to be a ten-minute discussion about motives and semantics? (...) "Because of the kind of woman you are." Speaking slowly solved absolutely nothing. She looks like she might pick up one of the weapons and throw it at my head. I feel more than a little irritated myself. She speaks around gritted teeth. "And what kind of woman do you think I am, Logan McEntire?" I snap right back at her. "Confident. Strong. Capable. Stunning. An equal partner in this endeavor in every sense of the word." And she IS very strong and capable. Sometimes she can be foolish too stubborn and reckless and get herself in serious trouble, but that only helps her grow as a character. Rachel is not like the other girls her age: when they shop, the other girls look at pretty dresses; Rachel looks at scissors "because pointy things make excellent weapons". She's smart and resourceful and finds the most unexpected ways out of scary situations. That's why she and Logan work very well together as a team; they get a purpose, set a course of action and proceed in perfect harmony. They complete each other in everything they do and they support each other when the grief or the severity of their current position almost breaks them. Their story is intense and at times heartbreaking, but very beautiful: "I want Rachel. Not because she's beautiful. Not because she's my responsibility. I want her because she makes me laugh. Makes me think. Inspires me to be the kind of man I always hoped I'd be. I want Rachel because the thought of a life without her is more than I can bear." Like I said, this book is perfect for everyone: if you like Historical Romance, you'll love the time setting, the customs and the way the romantic relationship between Rachel and Logan develops; if you like Paranormal or Fantasy, you'll love the dark, gritty world, kickbutt characters, fierce fights and awesome weapons (swords play = WIN!); if you like Steampunk, you'll love Logan's cool inventions and his passion for all sorts of devices; if you like Dystopia, you'll love the prospect of a desolate, broken society where a brave hero/heroine rebels against an abusive, flawed regimen; if you like coming-of-age stories, you'll love following Rachel on her journey, to see how she evolves; what she learns, how she copes with emotional turmoil and, eventually, how she develops and changes as a character... Add to that a captivating, raw, haunting, beautiful writing and you're set for a wonderful ride! I would have liked to have more information about the world and characters at the beginning, because I was a bit confused and disoriented (with no sense of time and space - I didn't know what year it was, where was the action taking place, who was this Commander, what was the Wasteland and what happened to the rest of the world etc). Anyway, in the grand scheme of things, those details didn't really matter. "It takes facing imminent death to realize I love her. I love her. A fierce light consumes me from the inside out. It blazes through my body until I think there's no way I can contain it. I don't want to contain it. I want it to overtake me completely. It's illogical. Wonderful. Almost painful." Review copy provided by the publisher and Edelweiss.
Anonymous 10 months ago
It kept me interested the entire time
StephieLB 12 months ago
Wow! I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book! It was fast-paced, action-packed, heart-breaking, first-love-butterflies feeling. It was a tough one to put down!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Powerful heroine. Love. Loss. Couldn't put it down. Excited for the second book in the series.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I didn't think I'd enjoy this book nearly as much as I did it was definitely a page turner and great read
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I quite enjoyed this YA novel. I like the characters pretty well and I enjoyed the plotline. It's not a piece of fine literature or anything, but it was a perfect summer beach read. I'll need to pick up the second book in the series soon, to see where it's all headed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
looking for a helping hand. is anyone willing to lend this book/series? thank you