Date of publication: June 10th, 2019
Genre: Young Adult, Romance
Series: Rydeville High Elite
Cruel Intentions—Book 1
Twisted Betrayal—Book 2 (expected publication date: August 15th, 2019)
Sweet Retribution—Book 3 (expected publication date: October 1st, 2019)
In the power struggle between two elite groups, one feisty girl will bring them to their knees…
Life is a cruel game where only the most ruthless survive. It’s a truth my mother rebelled against, and she paid for it with her life. Now, I play their game. Publicly accepting the destiny that lies in wait for me when I turn eighteen.
But, behind closed doors, I plot my escape.
Trent, Charlie, and my twin, Drew, rule the hallways of Rydeville High with arrogance and an iron fist. I execute my role perfectly, hating every second, but they never let me forget my place in this world.
Everyone obeys the rules. They have for generations. Because our families have always been in control.
Until Cam, Sawyer, and Jackson show up. Throwing their new money around. Challenging the status quo. Setting hearts racing with their gorgeous faces, hot bodies, and bad boy attitudes.
Battle lines are drawn. Sides are taken. And I’m trapped in the middle, because I made a mistake one fateful night when I gave my V-card to a stranger in a blatant F you to my fiancé.
I thought it was the one thing I owned. A precious memory to carry me through each dark day.
I couldn’t have been more wrong.
Because the stranger was Camden Marshall, leader of the new elite and my perpetual tormenter. He hates me with a passion unrivaled, and he won’t be the only one. Fire will rain down if the truth is revealed, threatening alliances, and the power struggle will turn vicious.
My life will hang in the balance.
But I’ll be ready, and I’m not going down without a fight.
I had to take a minute to reflect on this book before I sat down and wrote the review. With everything that happened in the book, I needed to make sure my head was on straight enough to review Cruel Intentions. Now that it is, I was blown away by this book. I wasn’t expecting to devour it within a couple of hours. The book is that good!!
The plotline of Cruel Intentions was fantastic. Abigail is part of the “elite” squad that runs the school with an iron fist. While people think she has everything, she doesn’t. Abby wants to escape her life, which has become unbearable. Which is why she gave away her virginity to a stranger who helped her in a time of need. She is shocked when the stranger turns out to be none other than Camden Marshall, and he hates her. Cam thinks he can use Abby to get secrets on her father. What Cam doesn’t know is that Abby would do anything to escape her father and bring him down. But, Cam is hiding secrets. What happens when those secrets are revealed? Can Abby survive the backlash?
I loved Abby. If I didn’t know that she was 17, I would have thought she was older. She was loyal to her friends (except Trent). She knew what buttons to push on Cam to get a reaction out of him. She was tough and ruthless. What she did to Rochelle and the other kids cemented that. She handled Cam’s meanness (for lack of a better word) with grace and attitude. I do think that she should have confronted all 3 of the boys (Cam, Sawyer, and Jackson) sooner.
I thought Cam was a colossal jerk until the middle of the book. He was so mean to Abby. The things he did to her made me cringe. Seriously, making her kneel like that and then egging Rochelle on? Uggh. He was also secretive. There is secretive, and then there is secretive. He kept things so under wraps, it wasn’t funny. I don’t know if I believe what he said at the end of the book. If he knew what was being set up. He seemed genuinely shocked about what was revealed.
The secondary characters made the books. Charlie, Drew, Sawyer, Jackson, and Xavier added to the plot. They fleshed out the plotline and added some much needed comic relief at times. Charlie and Sawyer were the hardest to read. Charlie remained an enigma until the end of the book, as did Sawyer. I also had my suspicions about Xavier too. I can’t wait to see what these characters will do in book 2!!
I couldn’t stand Abby’s father or Trent’s father. They both left a bad taste in my mouth. The things that Trent’s father did to her at the beginning of the book. Holy crap!! I did feel bad for Trent, though. I don’t think that he was inherently a bad person. Abby’s memories of him from when he was younger showed that. I do believe that he was molded into what he was in the book. I know, feeling bad for a bad guy, right. But when someone is over the top (sexually, behaviorally, etc.), they are trying to compensate or hide something. So, we’ll see what happens to him in book 2.
I did like the main plotline of Cruel Intentions. I thought that Cam and Abby’s relationship (or lack of one) was perfectly showcased. As was his hatred of her. I did wish that the reason why Cam hated Abby came out soon in the book.
I am going to include a trigger warning in my review. Abby goes through a lot of abuse at the hands of Cam and his friends. She is kidnapped and blackmailed into doing what they wanted. Cam humiliates her every chance he gets. He verbally abuses her and there was one instance of physical abuse. The one scene that got me was when Cam and Jackson groped her after being kidnapped by them. This all happens at the beginning of the book, and it was tough to read. But, after they all talk (which should have happened earlier), everything stops. So, I suggest not to read this book if any of what I wrote triggers you.
From the middle of the book on was wild. There were times that I had to stop reading and say, “Is this happening?” It was also lightning fast. I had to reread passages because I missed stuff. Not because I had to. Because the book was so dang fast.
The end of Cruel Intentions was cruel, and it ended on a cliffhanger. I do not like cliffhangers. But, this one did its job, and I need to read book 2!!! I need to find out what happens to Abby.
I would give Cruel Intentions an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.
I would reread Cruel Intentions I would recommend it to family and friends.
**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**