Posted in Rachel Van Dyken

Toxic (#2) – Rachel Van Dyken

18935386Synopsis

Everyone has a secret…

Gabe Hyde is on borrowed time. He’s been hiding his identity for over four years-hidden from the world that used to adore him–obsess over him–driven to the edge of insanity by one poor choice.
But that one choice, altered the course of his life forever.
Pretending isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, especially when pretending means hiding your real self from the people that care about you the most. But if anyone ever discovered the truth it wouldn’t just be his life at risk–but hers.

Saylor doesn’t hate men.
Just Gabe.
Only Gabe.
He’s a reckless, happy-go-lucky, silver spoon fed pain in her ass. Everything about him makes her more and more confused. Unfortunately they both donate time at the same Group Home. If she wasn’t afraid of flunking, she’d be long gone. She hates that she’s attracted to him almost as much as he hates that he’s attracted to her–and she can tell, especially since their first encounter ended up making her knees so weak she couldn’t form coherent sentences for weeks afterwards. But the closer she gets to him, the more confused she becomes. He isn’t who he says he is, and he’s hiding something big.

What happen when two worlds collide? Two worlds that never should have met in the first place? Some secrets are too big to be hidden forever–the only question? Will his destroy everyone he loves? Or finally bring about the redemption he’s been craving for the past four years?

Everyone has a secret…What’s yours?

My review of RUIN

5 out of 5 stars

36244-addtogoodreads

 

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My Review

When I read RUIN, I knew that Gabe would steal my heart, so TOXIC was not going to be left for months on time, hell no. It was going to be read the second I finished RUIN. I definitely gobbled this book down and it caused me numerous tears, heartache, different theories (one which I actually got right!) but I also got my laughs, my smiles, the banter and the amazing friendship from Kiersten, Weston, Gabe and Lisa too. God I love these characters.

Toxic is much more deeper (if it can be because Ruin ruined me) than Ruin. From the synopsis, we know that Gabe is hiding his identity, so in a way we know that probably isn’t his name. So what is? What is he hiding? Throughout the book, until it is revealed, you are sat trying to work out who Gabe is, what his secret is, why he is hiding. I unlocked one name, one secret and when that was revealed, it still came as a surprise because I hardly ever guess right.

Gabe, as we know, is the happy guy. The guy who sleeps around because he doesn’t drink anymore. The guy who can banter like hell, can be a sarcastic idiot but the guy who is protective of his friends, who will do anything to make sure they are okay, and would die for them – much like he told Wes in Ruin, but underneath he is broken, and depressed and feeling guilty for his past.

It’s hard not fall for Gabe (maybe more than Wes) because you feel for him, you go through the motions with him and dear god, his life is just one torment after the other. You have Gabe with the secret, Gabe with different identities, Gabe with his friends and Gabe with Saylor. But who is he truly?

You watch conflictions, you watch love and hurt and pain and it all rolls into one massive fuckball when the identity comes to life. You get frustrated with him but in the back of you mind you know why he is doing it and you understand it so much throughout the book. But despite the lies and secrets, Gabe is completely loyal to his friends and your heart will break for him but then be put back together in the form of Saylor and the gang.

Enter Saylor. She comes flying, literally, into Gabe’s life when his past is lying on his shoulders, when his past is moments away from unravelling. They don’t get off to the best of starts, but they seem to be integrating into each others lives more and its hard to keep their feelings from each other. I definitely thought Saylor was going to be weak, that she wouldn’t stand up to Gabe and his mean words in the beginning but I was wrong. She did and I love that about a heroine who doesnt shy away from biting back.

The more time Gabe and Saylor spend together, the more feelings are transpiring. They connect firstly through music and that is the one constant between them. The one constant that could express what they were both feeling, especially Gabe with his guilt and sorrow. Saylor was strong, she was there for Gabe when shit went down and she was completely selfless – which I admired from her. Not many people could do what she did, not many people would stay but she did and she helped him with everything, with the pain and the guilt, especially through the goodbyes.

She taught him to love again, to be okay with being your true self after so many years and to accept yourself for who you are. She really is inspirational.

Toxic is raw, its tear worthy, its heartbreaking but it also comes with pages full of love. Love for Gabe, love for Saylor, love for the gang and the little secret hiding. Rachel draws you completely in with her writing, you feel everything, you connect on a personal level and you just have to keep turning pages; turning pages to find out more about Gabe, about his secrets. Such a beautiful and emotional book and you all should get reading this series ASAP.

Delve into the lives of such amazing characters and get your heart broken and then fixed up once again. Rachel, I cannot wait to meet you at the Edinburgh signing. Be aware of The Book Lovers 😉

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