ARC Review: Hushed by Kelley York

He’s saved her. He’s loved her. He’s killed for her.

Eighteen-year-old Archer couldn’t protect his best friend, Vivian, from what happened when they were kids, so he’s never stopped trying to protect her from everything else. It doesn’t matter that Vivian only uses him when hopping from one toxic relationship to another—Archer is always there, waiting to be noticed.

Then along comes Evan, the only person who’s ever cared about Archer without a single string attached. The harder he falls for Evan, the more Archer sees Vivian for the manipulative hot-mess she really is.

But Viv has her hooks in deep, and when she finds out about the murders Archer’s committed and his relationship with Evan, she threatens to turn him in if she doesn’t get what she wants… And what she wants is Evan’s death, and for Archer to forfeit his last chance at redemption.

HUSHED will be released on December 6th by Entangled Publishing

Okay. Wow. Um... I'm not quite sure how I'm supposed to write a review for this book. It was just so freaking GOOD. I could seriously just leave my review at that. Go read this. There. Done. 

Still, I'm going to keep this brief and very vague...because I don't want to give anything away!

One way I can tell if a book really had IT for me is if I wake up the morning after finishing it and am still thinking of it. That's how I felt up about HUSHED. I finished it before I went to bed last night, and this morning my mind was still flipping back to Archer and Evan and Vivian as I was getting ready for school. It's another third-person narrative that I absolutely adored, and I must get my hands on a hard copy once it comes out!

It's just the premise was so unique. Dark. Intense. It sucked me right in from the first page and held me their, flying through the pages just to see what would happen. It is definitely edgy and not your typical YA experience, in the best way possible.

What made this book was the characters and how incredibly complex York made them. Archer does horrible things, and yet I sympathized with him. Archer had so many likable qualities and the way it was balanced with the horrible things he's done was just brilliant in my opinion. Everything he did, there was a way to justify it, and nothing is random or feels forced. But then despite that monster within, he wants to heal and help Vivian heal. I found myself rooting for Archer and caring about him. There is so much complexity concerning his past and so much depth to him and it's just so well contrived.

Vivian. She was so over-the-top selfish that I'd say it was unrealistic, expect I know those people. The people who make everything about them, and don't consider for one moment your feelings. The person who's never at fault, but instead blames you for everything. Vivian takes it to an incredible extreme, but she's been through so much that it's let you get the way she is. She's seriously disturbed, even more so than Archer. Another instead where the complexity of the characters is just gah!

Evan and Archer's relationship developed wonderfully in my opinion. I thought Archer dealt with the natural emotions well, the initial confusion. The attraction was immediate, but the relationship was very slow going and I appreciated that. Also, I loved that while Evan cared about Archer and was always there for him, he made sure that he took care of himself and didn't get sucked into Archer's ways.

My name is in this! Okay, it's spelled wrong. Marissa. But still! Marissa is Vivian's mother, and while she isn't there much physically, she plays a huge role in the novel. She's the mother figure that Archer never had, and while I didn't getting to know Marissa too well, through Archer I was able to get to know her and feel the love that Archer had for her.

Overall, the the characters definitely made this novel for me. The well-contrived complexity was brilliantly done, in my opinion. HUSHED is a dark, thrilling, unique debut that's incredibly written with a beautiful meaning. I feel like I can't give it any less than five stars, and I cannot wait to see future projects from Kelley York. She is definitely one to watch out for!


Anonymous said...

I typically try not to comment on reviews, but I wanted to say THANK YOU! (Plus, I saw that you're a Beatles--and Queen--fan. ;) )

Thanks SO much again! I'm thrilled you enjoyed HUSHED!

Marisa said...

You're welcome, Kelley! And YES Beatles and Queen. Classic rock in general > today's music. :)