Disclaimer: I received this ebook for free from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. However, this fact does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and that’s great . . . as long as you don’t die.
Sixteen-year-old Haley Tremaine had it all: top-notch school, fantastic family, and a bright future, but all of that changed when an accident tore her family apart. Now, an alcoholic father, a bitter younger sister, and a cold headstone bearing her mother’s name are all she has left.
Chris Charming has it all: a powerful CEO for a father, a prestigious school, and a fortune at his fingertips, but none of that matters when he lands a reputation as a troublemaker. Struggling to follow in his father’s footsteps, he reaches out to the one person he believes truly sees him, the one person he wants: Haley.
Little do they know someone’s determined to bring the two together, even if it means murder.
I discovered this book on Instagram and then watched a book review of it on Youtube and since I liked the sound of it, I requested it via Netgalley.
I didn’t have any expectations though, but Charming definitely surprised me in a positive way. It was a really good book that dealt with some serious issues, but it was more than just a contemporary read because it had mystery/thriller elements in it. And of course I liked it even more because of that.
At the beginning of the book Haley is a weak character who doesn’t fight back, who just tolerates her abusive and alcoholic father in order to protect her younger sister. Haley keeps her sister in the dark regarding their monster of a father and I really respected her for that, but I just couldn’t stand her sister because she was always so mean to Haley. Granted, her sister didn’t seem to know the truth, but I just wished Haley would tell her everything and maybe they could have asked for help together.
But in a way, I did understand that Haley couldn’t tell anyone the truth except for her best friend and that she didn’t want to go to the police. Still, I was glad that due to some awful circumstances, Haley finally had to come clean and tell her friends and family the truth.
The romance in Charming was sweet but wasn’t too prominent because the book dealt with much more important things. Still, Haley and Chris do fall in love with each other and I am glad that Haley finally found someone to treat her the way she deserved. Chris was perfect for Haley – he was kind, helpful and patient. And he stood by her side when things got ugly.
The mystery aspect of the novel was great because I kept suspecting everyone until I finally figured things out. There’s someone who starts to threaten and harm Haley’s friends and family and Haley needs to find out who it is because otherwise, her own life and the lives of her loved ones will be at stake.
Thus, Haley grows so much as a character and she finally begins to fight back because she understands that she can’t let others treat her the way they did anymore. In order to save herself and the ones she loves, she needs to be strong and to confide in Chris.
Charming was a great mystery/thriller that kept me turning the pages late into the night because I finally wanted to find out if everything would turn out alright for Haley and her friends. The novel was very suspenseful, serious and full of interesting characters and since it dealt with such important issues, I really liked it and recommend it to everyone who loves thrillers and great character development.
4 out of 5 stars
Note: I would like to thank Curiosity Quills Press for sending me this great review copy!