On one of my library adventures this summer I was lucky enough to pick up The Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia! This is a book I was looking forward to since it came out, but I totally missed its release! Then almost a year later when the new cover for the paperback was released my anticipation for it was renewed!
The Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia
I’ve become an expert at avoiding things that could hurt me—which means I will figure out how to stay away from Marco Leone.
Seventeen-year-old Frankie Devereux would do anything to forget the past. Haunted by the memory of her boyfriend’s death, she lives her life by one dangerous rule: Nothing matters. At least, that’s what Frankie tells herself after a reckless mistake forces her to leave her privileged life in the Heights to move in with her dad—an undercover cop. She transfers to a public high school in the Downs, where fistfights don’t faze anyone and illegal street racing is more popular than football.
Marco Leone is the fastest street racer in the Downs. Tough, sexy, and hypnotic, he makes it impossible for Frankie to ignore him—and how he makes her feel. But the risks Marco takes for his family could have devastating consequences for them both. When Frankie discovers his secret, she has to make a choice. Will she let the pain of the past determine her future? Or will she risk what little she has left to follow her heart?
Well, I don’t usually pick up contemporaries because I’m a sap and is rather not read books about saps like me (just kidding)! I usually stray away from it because I don’t like to deal with real life problems! (It’s not that contemps are that “real” anyways!) So reading a book about a girl losing her boyfriend and a whole bunch of other stuff would have been a big turn off, had there not been mention of car racing! That’s what hooked me!
What I Liked
Frankie: I had an on/off relationship with her. I mean she was going through some major trauma, so I did sympathize with her. She started living life as if it didn’t matter anymore, something I’m sure a lot of people experience. I enjoyed reading her journey about finding herself again and her struggle with family, friends and love.
Marco: I see why he would appeal to many. 1. He is 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥. Holy cannoli! I mean tattoos *faints* Muscles and abs *more fainting* Dangerous bad boy with a sweet/sensitive side *Rendz is a sucker for those* But because of all these things I feel like I fell a little out of love with him! He is too good to be true! Just toooooooo good and it got a little meh. Sorry.
Cruz: An actual queen! I loved her and her story was just so heart breaking! Can we get a spin off just about her???
Frankie’s parents were rats!!!!!!!!
Honestly, everyone’s parents in this book were rats and a**wholes! Such parental problems in this book!
Themes in PTSD: Frankie does suffer from ptsd in this book because she witnessed the horrors of her boyfriends death and she struggles with memory loss. I liked that the author didn’t just cure Frankie. She would falter and better, falter and better. Never truly “healed” (if one can be healed of that) but rather more knowledgeable about herself and her condition!
Romance: I shipped the ship. No question. Did I think this whole relationship started a tad too early and developed rather quickly? Yes. But I understand since it is a stand alone so things have to get moving. Would I have preferred the “I love yous” to be left for later. Also yes, but one can only wish for so many things!
What I Disliked
It’s Predictable: I saw the killer from a mile away! I felt so proud of myself when the revelation of the killer occurred. Gave myself a big pat on the back! But yeah, this book didn’t throw anything at me that was super exciting and twisty. My emotions were never ahhhhhhhh they were mostly “okay”.
Where was the Street Racing?: Ummm I was promised epic street racing, wasn’t I? I got two or three scenes. And a mention here and there! No. No. No. I wanted the real deal racing and I wanted moreeeeeeeeeeee!
And I just want to mention that this was super unrealistic! I’m not surprised, as this is a work of fiction and meant to be a look into what the life of someone in Frankie’s situation could be like. However, I just couldn’t handle it! If you street race and do illegal stuff your gonna get caught and punished. Severely. Like! Come on! Just saying!
Overall, I did enjoy the book! Was it everything I hoped for? Not exactly. The lack of street racing really made me sad! And the whole book was really mellow. I did like most of it though and thought it was a super cute romance!
Rating: 3.75 / 5 stars
Recommend: Yes! If you want a cute contemporary romance with some action! (But if you’re looking for adrenaline rushing street racing, I don’t think you’ll find it here!)
I’d love to hear your thoughts! Have you read this, what did you think? Who is your favourite fictional bad boy?