Ever since I changed jobs — and tried to venture into actual fiction/novel writing — I haven’t had as much time to keep my ear close to the ground to keep track of what’s going on in the publishing world. I mean sure, big thing’s like Harper Lee’s new novel I get to hear about because that’s hard to ignore, but the smaller stuff mostly pass me by now.
Which is why it’s a good thing that the good people from Scholastic have been nice enough to still keep me in the loop. They sent me an email some time ago about Vendetta, the debut YA novel of 24-year-old Irishwoman Catherine Doyle. And you know what? It seems like they really knew what I was into just basing from the book’s synopsis:
“When five brothers move into the abandoned mansion in her neighbourhood, Sophie Gracewell’s life changes forever. Irresistibly drawn to bad boy Nicoli, Sophie finds herself falling into a criminal underworld governed by powerful families.”
C’mon. A hot Italian bad boy? If you gave me that along with a lifetime supply of French fries I’d willingly give you my firstborn. My second-born, even. And while I tempered my expectations – it’s still a YA novel, even if it did come from the same publisher that brought us Numbers – I thought I would be getting into some hot Italian bad boy action. So did I?
Those who know me in real life know that I have a particular weakness for “bad” boys with tattoos. If you tell me that a halfway nice looking guy has tattoos, they become immensely more attractive to me.
As such, Travis Maddox from “Beautiful Disaster” should be a guy that’s right up my alley. A tattooed, lean-muscled underground fighter with an aptitude for academics? It’s like Jamie McGuire read my high school diary or something.
But online opinion on “Beautiful Disaster” is divided, to say the least. There’s a fierce, pro-Travis Maddox club that think he’s just the bee’s knees, while there are those who think he’s disturbing and probably abusive.
The schism interested me enough that I picked up a copy of “Beautiful Disaster” just to see which camp I would find myself in.