Sublime Wreckage by Charlene Zapata
Published by Self-published on July 7, 2014
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After suffering a tragic accident as a child, Maggie Wilson has tried her whole life to regain the happiness she lost. She has been in survival mode ever since, dealing with a mentally unstable parent, having no one to turn to for help. Her desire to escape to a better future fuels her motivation and keeps her focused on what really matters, breaking free of the hell she lives in.
Things at home are complicated and it’s easier to push people away than allow them to get too close. She doesn't let anyone into her life except her best friend Amanda. Maggie has perfected keeping secrets, maintaining her GPA and staying out of relationships. All her energy is put into her school work so that when she graduates she can leave for college and forget her past.
All of that changes when she meets Vincent Moreno. His reputation precedes him but she quickly discovers there is so much more to him than what you see on the surface. He manages to wiggle his way into her life despite her efforts to keep him at a distance. As Maggie starts to open up she realizes how much she needs someone like Vince in her life. They form a connection like no other and it has her reconsidering everything.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.
Maggie has definitely drawn the short straw in life. Early on, her life is thrown into absolute turmoil and tragically that’s the catalyst for what’s in store for her. Be warned, Sublime Wreckage (and take heed of that title) is a heartfelt, emotional story but it also includes a crazy, unbelievably messed up and abusive family life. Maggie is a survivor. She flourishes where many would crumble. A promise of how good life can be is present in a few beautiful people that make her life bearable.
After trying the ‘emotional’ escape tactic, she decides that an education will be her best option to get out of this hell hole. Adamant to remain focussed on her studies, she is determined to get the marks that will allow her to get into a college that is as far away as possible. Sheltering herself by hiding the true depth of what she is escaping from, Maggie eradicates anything that will cause a distraction. This includes making it clear to all at school that a relationship at any level is not on her radar. Not looking. Not interested.
Hello Vincent Moreno! Well, she is not going there. He represents everything she is determined to avoid, he’s the antipathy to her well-crafted plans. She catches his eye. She avoids his glance. He is not what she needs at the moment. The say like attracts like and it appears that they have more in common than Maggie cares to acknowledge.
Unconditional love is a tricky creature. When you are young and don’t know any better you do love your parents without conditions. Just as you parents should love you the same way. The older I get the more and more I learn that love does have conditions.
The disparity between mother and daughter is mind boggling. Her dysfunctional home life has Maggie taking on responsibilities way beyond what a senior high school student should ever have to. Why she persevered and soldered on was hard to accept. The shield she utilises to hide her reality is more transparent than she realises. It also places the two main characters in situations where they’re stepping up beyond the level expected from a YA storyline. Reading, I was torn between the darkness and the sweetly paced friendship. This juxtaposition kept me invested but at the same time struggling to accept. I found the dialog didn’t resonate with how I imagined Vincent, who came across initially with the whole bad-boy persona. I totally get that coming from the wrong side of the tracks doesn’t equate to an impolite, ill-mannered, inconsiderate guy but I expected a little more grit from someone that had spent time in the system and would throw a lot more street cred than he did. Going from the Vincent that is basked in mystery, a dangerous tempting older bad guy to a tender caring wholesome speaking guy with an unbelievable amount of self-control threw the credibility of his character for me.
In essence, Sublime Wreckage is a sweet story, with many wholesome moments, despite the tragedy of the cruel abuse interwoven throughout. It is told through alternating POV with a lot of narration. The dialogue, especially when the POV was from Vincent, at times felt rigid. I have read and loved YA previously, so I don’t put it down to their situation or age. Not sure if this series is one I would continue with more out of personal taste rather than the calibre of the story and this is not keeping with many other reviews posted for this book! So maybe the non-cheating, wholesome, tempting YA storyline could be just what you’re looking for. I read Sublime Wreckage over a couple of days and although the style of story wasn’t what I would normally choose, I was drawn to keep reading.
What I liked:
- Maggie’s grandfather
- Vincent’s mother
- The silver lining that tragedy provided…eventually
What I struggled with:
- Vincent’s perfectly phrased dialog
- Maggie’s struggles going under the radar
- Not feeling the chemistry that was implied in some of the scene
- Alternating POVs that covered the same moment in time
Rating: 3 Sweet, Wholesome Stars
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