Friday, 13 January 2017

ARC Review: Run The Risk by Allison van Diepen.

Thank you, Harper Collins Intl, for sending me a review copy.

SYNOPSIS:


Grace has done her best to move on since her ex-boyfriend, Mateo, chose gang life over her. But even though years have passed, she hasn’t forgotten him—especially since she’s seen her younger brother, Alex, drawn to a life on the streets. She can’t bear to think of Alex making the same mistakes as Mateo, but she feels him slipping away.

So when Mateo suddenly resurfaces, insisting he’s left gang life behind him, Grace sees an opportunity. Maybe he could be the one to reach Alex and pull him away from the edge. She tells herself she’s only talking to Mateo again because of Alex, but her feelings quickly return. Can she ever trust Mateo again? And is saving her brother worth risking a broken heart? With everyone she loves in danger, Grace must decide how much to sacrifice before it’s too late.

SPOILER-FREE REVIEW:


The year has barely begun and I have already found a book that will most likely make it to my favourite books of the year list. In this novel, Allison van Diepen tells the story of Grace, a girl whose brother is joining a gang after their mother's death. Moreover, Grace is still trying to get over her ex-boyfriend, Mateo, who left her for gang life as well. With a Dad on the road visiting his new girlfriend, bills to pay, a job and a reckless younger brother to keep up with, plus Mateo's return, Grace will have to find a way to save the ones she loves, and herself too.

Now, with a premise like that I was expecting a romance surrounded by family and friends drama. What I was not expecting at all was a story worthy of a movie adaptation. Yes, I think this story would do amazing on the big screen, and it could actually prevent some of the violence witnessed within the pages. And let's not forget about the intense and heart-warming love bond between our two main characters, Grace and Mateo, which would drive hopeless romantic people, like me, over the edge.


We are thrown into the world of a girl with a broken heart. We see Grace grow out of her shell as she tries to get her life straight. Mateo returning means nothing but pain, nostalgia... and love. Pure, tender, strong and true love which she so hard tried to hide undercover after he had left.

The reationship we follow is so well done and built up that I could not help the happy -and sad- tears from time to time. It is a believeable one because the characters already have a past together, and in this book we witness their attempts to stay as friends and to keep their relationship professional. With Grace's brother needing help to get out of the gang he is blindly walking into, both sister and ex-gang member, get together to save him. We slowly see them grow together, the obvious connection undeniable.

However, not everything in this book is beautiful and cute. Definitely not. As the storyline goes on and on, terrible truths are discovered, awful situations take place, and Grace feels hopeless. I was shocked when a big plot twist happened, so much that a tear actually slipped from my eye. Such a great plot building! The intensity and reckless tension at some scenes were insane. My heart was racing the whole time, basically.

I also wanted to include a short opinion on one of the most beautiful and artsy aspects of the novel: the slam poetry. I am a big fan of poetry, but I love it even more if it is a part of a YA contemporary novel. We get to see a few poems which, as I see it, define the characters in a unique way only poetry can. A really well-thought and used method to get the reader even closer to the characters.

Run The Risk is a novel for all those bookworms who love living and feeling an intense romance with dark topics standing in its way. A complicated, slightly forbidden love leads this gripping and well-written novel by Allison van Diepen, third book in the companion trilogy On The Edge.

RATING:

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