Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Trust by Kylie Scott Blog Tour

Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love… the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen-year-old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers.

While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight—getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first—losing her virginity—their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose—each other.

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“You were going to give it up to Duncan Dickerson?” he sneered. “Are you serious?”

I halted, staring at him. This was not good. “How do you know about that?”

“Anders overheard you and Hang talking.”


“Well?” he demanded, acting all authoritarian. Idiot.

“To be fair, I didn’t know his last name was Dickerson,” I said. “That’s unfortunate. Though, I wasn’t actually planning on marrying him, so...”

“Not funny.”

I shrugged.

“You barely know the guy.”

“Um, yeah. None of your concern. We’re not talking about this.” How mortifying! My face burned bright. People should just gather around and cook s’mores. “I appreciate that we’re friends. You mean a lot to me. But this is going to have to fall under definitely none of your damn business, so go away please.”

“We’re talking about it.” He advanced a step.

“No we are not.” And I retreated.

“You were going to let a complete stranger touch you.” Advance.

Retreat. “People do it all the time. You do it all the time.”

“But you don’t,” he said, taking the final step, backing me up against the side of his car and getting all in my face. “Edie, this is your first time we’re talking about. Isn’t it?”

“Yes, and it’s going to be messy and painful and probably horribly embarrassing and I just want it over and done with.” I tried to meet his eyes but failed, settling for a spot on his right shoulder. “You’re not a girl; you wouldn’t understand. Also, last time I checked, you’re not the gatekeeper of my hymen, John Cole. So back the fuck off.”

He said nothing.

Deep, calming breaths. “Look, someday I’ll meet someone I really like and we’ll have a deep and meaningful relationship and go at it like bunnies. But I don’t want to be the dumb virgin in that scenario.”

He slowly shook his head.

“Also, I do not want to die a virgin.”

“What? What the hell are you talking about?”

“Hey, you and I both know death can occur at any time.”

“This is crazy.”

“I’m seeing a therapist!” I told his shoulder. “I don’t know if you noticed, but I’m a little bit messed up these days. It’s hard for me to trust people. That’s not going to change anytime soon.”

He screwed up his face at me. “Wha—”

“I’m just trying to be practical.”

“Well, you’re being ridiculous. None of this makes sense.”

“It does to me.”

Again, he said nothing.

In fact, he said nothing for so long that I finally looked him in the eye. The anger had left him, replaced by an emotion I didn’t recognize. Worst of all, he still smelled like summer. A little sweat and the open night air, everything I loved. Liked. I meant liked.

“What?” I said, finally.

He let loose a breath. “I’ll do it.”

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Commentary on the cover (placed at the start of the review for a reason): While it's an awesome cover (it caught my interests), it's more befitting an older book in a different genre. I fear it will have readers one-clicking, then feeling as if it's not-as-advertised, as it looks like a musician/tattoo/biker/badass type read in the New Adult or Adult genres. I realize this cover represents John (not our narrator), but it gives off a sex-laden appeal, not representative of the content. Our narrator is a 17-year-old girl, and it takes place in a high school, with the usual content represented in a young adult novel. As example, no first kisses being had before the 58% mark, with a handful after. Not that that is a bad thing, just that the cover gives off a different vibe.

Kylie Scott is a new-to-me author. From word one, I was hooked. I couldn't put it down – I was being bombarded with chatter around me, a loud TV, and two dogs barking at each other, and I continued to read without any of those distractions pulling me from the story. I took a break around the 50% mark to go check out what else the author had penned and to go tell my fellow reviewers how great the book was. Then I finished the book in the privacy of my own bedroom, refusing to be interrupted.

Layers upon layers of emotion, this novel had one of the best developed characterizations I've come across. Edie is our 17-year-old narrator – a chubby teenage girl who loves to wear the color black, read books, and binge-watch TV. Edie represents a large population of girls who are always designated as the sidekick. Non-athletic, not a joiner, being chubby, going to an all-girls private school, she's bullied. Not meek, she keeps her mouth shut in order not to feed the bullies.

Yes, her insecurities infect a portion of her thought process, not in a redundant way. But, for anyone who has ever been overweight/other insecurities, you know it's at the forefront of your mind at all times, so this was also a realistic portrayal of a larger girl. In high school, you can be a bit chubby, and everyone treats you like you're morbidly obese, because most of the kids haven't filled out into their adult shapes yet, still small like children while you're shaped like a grown woman. In the real world, we all wish we were that size again, the size we were bullied over – laughing. Edie represents us big girls, and the author did an excellent job with the mindset.

Edie's grabbing some Oreos and Doritos from a convenience store, with her BFF in the car in her jammies, refueling for another binge-watch session, and life changes at an instant. Without going into detail, I will say the following events were beyond realistic, transporting me into the book with Edie and her fellow captives.

In the aftermath, Kylie Scott creates a gut-wrenching read filled with realistic human emotions. Instead of ignoring how the event would change who the characters are at their very cores, using it as a vehicle to drive straight into romance, it's fully fleshed out realism that isn't romanticized.

It's hammered home how Edie and John's lives will never be the same – this will forever be riding shotgun with them through life. Survivor’s guilt. Panic attacks. Nightmares. Wondering if there was something they should have done differently. Woulda/shoulda/coulda of the wrong place at the right time. The blame game.

Edie changes, sees everything through a different lens, and this filtered into every aspect of her life. Instead of focusing on the romance, the author spotlights her characters' evolution, which draws the two survivors together.

Nothing forced. Nothing instantaneous. Edie and John grow together, their personalities complementing one another in the perfect balance. A slow-burn romance, where true friendship is built and felt by the reader, with the angsty feel of a teenager's first venture into love.

I highly recommend to more mature young adults and older readers too. While it does have sexual situations and romance, they are not the focus of the novel itself – while on the page, it's quick and to the point. However, if you're a fan of the author's other works, expecting an angst-filled New Adult read, with sex and tension and lust and hot bad guys, don't judge a book by its cover. This truly is a young adult read, with young adult issues/mentality/maturity, set in a high school, with curfews and meddlesome mothers. It's a raw, dark, and gritty read, realistic, but not in the way the cover suggests.

Young Adult age-range: parental discretion advised – mature young adults+, due to realistic violent situations, drug-use, and age-appropriate sexual situations. I could have handled this book at age 12-14, but another peer may have had to wait until 16+. With the novel's content, it's dependent on the emotional maturity of the reader.

I was sucked in from the first chapter and couldn't put it down until I finished. I am not a huge Young Adult reader but I love throwing one in every once and a while, especially after a heavier, darker read. I thought Trust would be a perfect light read. I was so invested and had such a hangover. It may not have been the light choice I was hoping for, but it blew anything else out of the water. Edie was different and made for such an interesting character.

Trust is heart-pounding suspense. I loved every aspect of this read. Ms. Scott is such a word wizard that she can come out swinging in any genre she chooses and knock it out of the park.

Trust was my first introduction to the author Kylie Scott and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised how much I ended up liking this book. As a reader in my twenties who enjoys reading Young Adult books, it can sometimes be a challenge to find book that won't just make me feel like I'm too old to be reading it, but Trust can easily be enjoyed by young and old readers. Edie, the main character, was refreshing and easy to relate to. I loved seeing all the ways she grew over the course of the story. I think older YA readers will have no trouble getting sucked into Trust, but younger readers should be prepared for some mature themes, such as alcohol/drugs and violence. Although the main character, Edie, is a 17-year-old high school student, I felt like this book seemed to border a little between a YA read and drifting a bit into the New Adult genre. Nevertheless, I enjoyed reading Trust and I will be looking to see what other gems Kylie Scott has hidden away!

4 STARS for Trust

Edie gets caught up in a violent convenience store robbery while doing a midnight snack run. John, a high school student and local drug dealer, is also in the store at the time of the robbery and tries to talk the robber down.

Following the incident, Edie changes schools and discovers John sitting in the seat behind her in class. A friendship develops between John and Edie and we see that while the near-death experience has scared John straight, it has done the opposite to Edie. She realises that life can end in an instant and things that once seemed scary or important, are less so now.

Trust is told entirely from Edie's point of view, but it is John's story as much as it is hers. Their shared experience leads to friendship as they help each other get through life after the trauma.

Trust is a gripping story. At no time did my mind wander or did I get distracted. The story had my complete attention, so much so that walking home from work I pulled out my e-reader while waiting for traffic lights to change, just so I could read an extra paragraph or two. I didn't want to put this book down, and would recommend it to older teens and adults. Trust is brilliant and gets 5 stars from me.

Age recommendation: 16+

I've been a Kylie Scott fan for a bit now after devouring her Stage Dive series and was happy to have a new book from her that wasn't part of another series. But, I was sure not expecting Trust to be so darn amazing and yet remain young adult. I was blown away!!!

Starting at the Drop Stop convenience store for some pre-movie binge snacks, 17-year-old Edie finds herself in the middle of a hold up and hostage situation by a crazed meth head. After the clerk was shot and killed, only Edie, John, and his friend are left to fight for their lives from drug crazed Chris, the robber. John and Chris sort of know each other from certain drug circles and John tries to talk Chris down and help Edie and Malcom get out alive. All hell breaks loose right from the first few chapters and I was sucked into the story so hard I think I might have hickeys. This was an amazing emotional journey dealing with life changing events in a young adult's early maturity.

After being bullied and overweight in her old private girls’ school, Edie refuses to be this person any longer. Changing schools and trying to put the attack that ended two young lives but spared hers behind her, Edie is on the cusp of realizing what's real and what's really important. Having a gun shoved in your mouth will do that to a girl. Forging a bond with John, the boy who saved her life that fateful night, is the only thing that's keeping Edie sorta sane. They are the only people who know how it felt to be there and go through that experience.

John has a tainted past, he was a low-key pot dealer and not the best student in school. Just drifting through life. But after the attack at the store, he's decided his life is worth way more than he's been giving it. Trying to change and become worthy of the life he was spared, John finds himself facing bad press and old grudges that die hard by teachers and parents. Trying to prove himself to them and stay out of trouble is harder than it seems. Edie is the only solace in his new life, someone he can talk with about what happened and how it's left him unable to sleep.

Edie and John were one of the best romances I've read in a while and we're still talking young adult here! John is experienced, Edie is not. John is gorgeous and Edie is just another chunky girl in the mix of so many others. But she and John have a bond that no one can break. The relationship has the classic stalls and starts, miscues, and missed opportunities, but it's done so perfectly (along with several sneaky parallel plot issues happening in the book Edie happens to be reading!!) I was groaning in agony, shaking my head in sympathy, but all with my nose pressed to my Kindle.

One of the best slow-burn relationships I've read in a while. Lots of spark for Young Adult, but not too much detail on the steamy scenes. I'd still say a more mature YA audience recommended due to the violence and a little due to the sexual contact.

There is amazing poignant emotion being played out by these two characters. I FELT for them! I cheered for Edie finding her spine against the mean girls at school, I was angered by the teacher's dismissal of John's hard work, I empathized with Edie's poor mom trying to keep it together after what her child went through. These young adults lived through a horrific, life changing event and came out alive, they are forever changed and this is the story of how they live through it. This book pulled it all out of me and left me longing for more. Hats off to Kylie Scott here, this book is a 10!

Kylie is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author. She was voted Australian Romance Writer of the year, 2013 & 2014, by the Australian Romance Writer’s Association and her books have been translated into eleven different languages. She is a long time fan of romance, rock music, and B-grade horror films. Based in Queensland, Australia with her two children and husband, she reads, writes and never dithers around on the internet. You can learn more about Kylie from her website.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Trust by Kylie Scott to read and review for this tour.

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