Title: Lovely Wild
Author: Megan Hart
Genre: Mystery, Women’s Fiction, Suspense
Publisher: Harlequin MIRA
Source: Review copy from publisher
Brought up in the savage captivity of her unstable grandmother's rural Pennsylvania home, Mari Calder once yearned for rescue. Now she struggles every day to function as an adult in the confines of normal society. Left with only a foggy recollection of her childhood, she's consumed with being a dutiful wife to her husband, Ryan, and mother to their two children.
But an unexpected twist of events returns her to that long-forgotten house in the woods. Soon, Mari is greeted with reminders of a past life, the clarified memories only inviting a new level of strangeness into her fragile world. To protect her family, she must find the beautiful, powerful strength hidden in her inner chaos. Because someone is bent on exploiting Mari's trauma, and as normal and wild begin to blend, a string of devastating truths force Mari to question all she thought she knew.
For years I have heard wonders about Megan Hart’s books. I even have couple of them on my TBR, but they are all erotic romance and sadly, for a long while I have not enjoyed anything too smexy, so erotica is out of the game for me. When I saw Lovely Wild up for review I thought it was erotica, but after reading Pamela’s review I realized it wasn’t. So here was my chance to jump in the Megan Hart’s train. A chance I took and let me tell you, that train too me on an incredible ride. One that kept me glued to the pages from beginning to end and at the end left me days later still thinking about Lovely Wild.
Mari has very little to no recollection of her childhood. Her memories start when she’s almost a teenager and living with her adoptive father, the doctor who rescued from her past.
Years later, Mari married her adoptive father’s son, Ryan. They been together for years and have two children. A fifteen year-old daughter, Kendra and eight year-old son, Ethan.
They live the idyllic suburban life. Ryan is a psychologist with a practice in the city and Mari is the perfect housewife. Their children go to a good school and everything seems perfect from the outside, but everything is far from perfect. Ryan made a huge mistake and his practice license is in peril. Looking for an option in case he loses his license he decides to write a book, he knows his father has a lot of research and he’s planning to use that research to write a book and make money out of it. To save costs, he moves his family to a house in the woods; the house where Mari grew up.
Mari only wants to help Ryan and agrees to the move. Kendra doesn’t like the idea, but has to do what her parents say. The only one happy with the new location is Ethan, who finds the quiet and simple life fascinating. But living in the new house is not easy for Mari, her memories are slowly coming back. Ryan is so focus on writing his new book that he’s not seeing what is going on with his family. Day by day Mari’s past begins to unfold and makes her question what she thought to be true.
I loved this book, I loved it so much I just want to tell you buy it, read it and thank me later, but I know that doesn’t work with you. So, let me try to convince you.
Lovely Wild is told in third person. We get Mari, Ryan and Kendra’s points of view. This made easier to get into the story and to know everything that what’s going on.
Mari is a stupendous heroine. She knows she is not like any other women, she doesn’t understand many behaviors, but she’s aware of this and does her best to look “normal” for the sake of her kids and her husband. She loves her family fiercely and she would rather be in the kitchen cooking a delicious meal for her family than out for lunch with other mothers or getting her nails done. For her, those things are not enjoyable; she simply can’t understand them.
Kendra is old enough to know her mother is different. She sees her friends’ moms and knows Mari is not like them. Still she loves her mother dearly and will do anything to protect her from anyone who wishes her harm.
Ethan is a cute boy, who behaves like an eight year-old. He’s smart and sweet. I loved seeing his interactions with Mari.
Now we come to Ryan. I didn’t like Ryan; I think that year after year he took advantage of Mari and her innocence. He knew about her past and he exploited it for his own convenience. He is selfish, self-centered and very difficult to like. He’s not all bad, but the good things are not enough to make him redeemable in my eyes. And that is my only problem with this book. I think he had it too easy at the end. Maybe I am a little bloodthirsty, but I wish Mari had been a bit harsher with him.
I really don’t know in which genre to categorize Lovely Wild, I would say it is a combination of suspense, mystery and women fiction. What I can say is that Megan Hart left me awed with her talent. She knows how to write, how to get the reader into the story and keep her/him there even after finishing the book.
Lovely Wild was my first book by Megan Hart but I can guarantee you it won’t be my last. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to read a fascinating story that will stay with you.
My Verdict: 4 ½ Paws
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