March 10, 2015
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Bad girls burn hot…
Red is the color of Kia Alcott's hair.
It's her temper, which blazes hot and always gets Kia into way too much trouble.
And it's the color of fire. Fires that Kia can start…just by thinking about them.
When her latest “episode” gets her kicked out of school, Kia is shipped off to her grandmother, who works for the wealthy Blackwoods. It's an estate shrouded in secrets, surrounded by rules, and presided over by a family that is far from normal…including the gorgeous and insolent Ethan Blackwood.
Ethan knows far more about the dangers of the forest surrounding the estate than Kia can ever imagine. For this forest has teeth, and Ethan is charged with protecting the outside world from its vicious mysteries.
But inside, even the most vibrant shade of red doesn't stand a chance against the dark secrets of the Blackwood family…
Red is a creative and fun read. The tale begins as we're introduced to Kia who is being sent (by her father who lives in the city) to live with her grandmother (very much in the country). Kia can start fires with her mind and it was one of those fires that got her expelled from school and exiled to her grandmother's.
Abby, her grandmother, isn't what Kia thinks of as the typical grandmother (she's younger, for one) and where she lives is certainly not our typical anything. She works for the very wealthy Blackwoods and its in their home (or castle, really) that Kia will also be living.
The house is intimidating and Kia doesn't quite like being 'the help.' Especially when it comes to serving the teenaged Ethan Blackwood and his friends. But is Ethan, with his off putting attitude, really all Kia thinks?
There's clearly more Kia's new home than first meets the eye . . and maybe more to Ethan, as well.
I really loved the combination of Kia, this girl who can start fires with her mind, and Ethan the rich boy who seems to have his own secrets. It got even better once we (and Kia) being to discover some of those secrets.
We get sections from Ethan's point-of-view and ones from Kia's and it helps the story develop at a very nice pace. We see what Kia thinks of Ethan, him home, his friends and his family. We being to see what Ethan thinks of Kia, of Abby and of his home, family and friends.
The more the characters' secrets and pasts and how they could best interact - and even why they had such adversarial interactions - was revealed, the better and better the story became.
In the beginning, it didn't flow quite as well as I would have liked. It seemed there would be the hyped up lead up to some big event, only to have the next time we saw those characters be after whatever had happened, with no indication given of how or what had happened exactly.
With things more out in the open and the characters able to include each other on what was happening, on their lives and activities, it became a really fantastic story.
While it was a smaller part of Red, my favorite part of the novel was Kia's friendship with another character. Girls' friendships have been some of my favorite parts of the authors other novels (Lucy and Solange in Drake Chronicles and the cousins in Lovegrove Legacy). If my life ever becomes some multi-writer version of Ruby Sparks, Alyxandra Harvey is definitely, absolutely in charge of penning all of my friendships.
I don't know if Red is a standalone or if there will be any follow-up(s), but after the ending, knowing all of these characters and being introduced to their world, I sincerely (and fervently) hope there's more to come.
Check out the author's Red Pinterest board - I love this idea of Kia!
digital review copy received, via NetGalley, thanks to publisher