On this Wednesday in July, we are one of today's stops on the Addicted To You Blog Tour. If New Adult is a favorite genre, this book is definitely worth checking out. This tour is hosted by YA Bound Book Tours. We have our review and there is a tour-wide giveaway to enter.
Addicted to You (Addicted #1) by Krista Ritchie, Becca Ritchie
New Adult contemporary romance
Paperback/eBook, 324 pages
Self-published July 1st 2013 by K.B. Ritchie (first published June 13th 2013)
No one would suspect shy Lily Calloway’s biggest secret. While everyone is dancing at college bars, Lily stays in the bathroom. To get laid. Her compulsion leads her to one-night stands, steamy hookups and events she shamefully regrets. The only person who knows her secret happens to have one of his own.
Loren Hale’s best friend is his bottle of bourbon. Lily comes at a close second. For three years, they’ve pretended to be in a real relationship, hiding their addictions from their families. They’ve mastered the art of concealing flasks and random guys that filter in and out of their apartment.
But when they go on a family boat trip, surrounded by open seas and limited male bodies in sight, Lily’s confronted with a big fear. Only one guy onboard can fill her addiction, and she’s sworn off going there with Loren Hale ever again.
Now the only person who can truly help her can barely help himself.
**This is a New Adult book recommended for readers 18 and up**
About the Authors:
Becca Ritchie is a carnivore of pop culture, television, film and of course YA and NA books. While in college, she worked at The CW television network and put her vampiric knowledge to good use, blogging about hit series and swooning over actors’ abs. When she’s not blogging, she writes novels and has teamed up with her twin sister for their New Adult novel ADDICTED TO YOU. Available July of 2013.
Krista Ritchie is the mind behind popular trading website YA Book Exchange and created Nawanda Files, a book blog that also features books into movies news. When not pouring over entertainment news and the newest releases, she spends her time conducting research in a genetics lab. She’s happy to join forces with her sister, harnessing their twin powers to produce the first in a New Adult series.
"I shouldn't care. I'm twenty. Free to have sex. Free to party. You know, all the things expected of college-aged adults. But my laundry list of dirty (like really dirty) secrets could create a scandal within my family's circle of friends."
Lily Calloway and Loren Hale have my vote for Most Messed Up of 2013. I'm not joking. In Addicted To You we see just how screwed up these college students and best friends are. Lily has a sex addiction and Loren ("Lo") is an alcoholic. Both come from wealthy families, share an apartment in the historic Drake building, and have everyone thinking they're an item for three years. Their so-called status is great for their fathers since a union between these two powerful companies is viewed as being an advantageous business move. But Lily and Loren are lying: they only have eyes for feeding their individual addictions and nothing else. Or maybe not.
"The water washes away the smell and grime, but my sins are here to stay. The memories don't vanish, and I desperately try not to imagine this morning. Waking up. I love the sex. It's the after part that I haven't quite figured out yet."
I didn't care for Lily in the beginning but I loved and appreciated her snark. I wanted to throttle her and tell her she was wasting her life away on quick trysts. Even though Lo was a drunk, when he was sober he was likable. He was also full of snark and more deprecating than Lily. As I became engrossed and emotionally invested (boy was I ever) in their stories, I began to understand both, as much as they angered me that was a good sign. I became, in a strange way, addicted to reading Addicted To You.
"No," I say quickly. "It was great. I'm just..." lost. "...thank you."
He saw through me. Not many people do."
Told in first person and narrated by Lily, the above quote demonstrates how much she really knows about herself. When a gigolo calls her out on her behavior of being wild and then reserved, she stops to think. If he can see the real Lily, who else can? She has way too much freedom and is not held accountable for her lifestyle. Her sisters, particularly Rose, constantly try to reach out to Lily by calling and stopping by. The family dynamics only added another layer to this complex drama. Rose comes off as stiff and over time becomes more of a rock for Lily. Lo has a complicated relationship with his father which comes to a head near the end. The boat ride was INTENSE (yep, all in caps). I'm surprised my highlighting function on my Kindle didn't burn the machine up.
"He stares deeply into my eyes, his body melding perfectly into mine. "I'm not one of your conquests," he says in a throaty voice. "I know what you want, and you don't need to take it. I can give it to you."
I realized as I was writing my review why this particular book about two badly damaged individuals resonated so deeply with me. Addicted To You has heart. Some of the New Adult stories are lacking that powerful aspect of effective storytelling. One may hate what Lily and Lo do but they have tremendous heart. At the core of this is their relationship. At times tedious/tremulous/distant/incredibly close, these two fight everything good in their lives until finally seeing the other for what they stand for--an intense attraction, a real love, and a true soul mate. But getting there will be a struggle because this is a story about addiction in all its ugly, horrible, stripped bare for all to see. At times disturbing and uncomfortable to read, Lily and Lo realistically come across as rich, spoiled, immature brats. But there is more and the authors don't hesitate to show how damaged they both are. If their love is truly worth it, even a promise of something great, all they need to do is get clean and find their way back to each other. Healthy. That testament will probably take up another book.
The pacing started off fast and tense. There were some sections when the story slowed down and then with the introduction of two new characters, Connor and Ryke, the story changed focus as Lily and Lo begin to spend more time in the company of others for the first time. They begrudgingly make friends. One thing which bothered me while reading was the amount of times Lo clenched his jaw. He needed another way to release his frustration and tension. I also questioned the amount of drinking Lo did. If his partying ways went on for years and he graduated to harder stuff, his liver would already have to be in a bad way. Also, the rich family with no time for their kids has become a stereotype I'm tired of. Otherwise, I found the book intriguing. That ending, though, has me desperately wanting the next book. Gritty and gripping, Addicted To You is an unforgettable story of friendship, growing up and comprehending real love. I loved it.
I know this is Lily's story but I would have loved to catch a glimpse of Lo somewhere.
I received a promotional copy in return for my honest review during a book tour.
$25 Amazon Gift Card and Signed Paperback of Addicted to You. Open Internationally!