Reckless Rebel's is Jace's story in GN Wright's Black Hallows series. This is our first preview of another couple after Marcus and Elle's trilogy, and the story arc for Jace is so intense. We've already unpacked a lot of baggage with this group, and the deep dive into Jace was just truly gut-wrenching.
Jace has suffered greatly in his life with abandonment and tragic losses. He's always been one to use humor, drugs, and partying to keep himself at a distance from others. After the events in the starting trilogy, and yet another loss of a developing relationship, Jace starts this book having completely gone off the rocker. We have a time lapse of five months from where we left off, and Jace has increasingly shown his coping skills are taking control of his life.
Jace comes to find out that he has a younger biological sibling, and a lot of his character development comes from the growing relationships he begins to build with Sofia, his newfound seven year old sister, and her adoptive family. Jace especially is intrigued by Riley, Sofia's older sister, after a absolutely hilarious first meeting at a party. Well, hilarious for Jace, and mortifying for Riley. As the book progresses, Jace finds himself wanting to be better for the Decker family, but struggling with how to actually deal with the trauma he has faced and his own self-worth.
Riley is a strong-willed heroine, has a good head on her shoulders, and is very family oriented. Unfortunately, she's a bit naïve too. At the start of the book, she's in a relationship with a longtime friend, Rick, and is frankly blinded by the fact that their relationship isn't the sunshine and rainbows she thinks it should be. Overall, the idea of various kinds of relationships and the idea of what makes a family is a strong theme through the duration of this book.
I enjoyed Marcus and Elle's trilogy immensely, but the vulnerability and intensity of Jace's story really struck a cord with me. While my life has been fairly charmed, I can related to Jace's perception of himself to some level, and the idea of using various tricks to distance oneself from getting too close to others to avoid hurt is just so raw and real.
Character development: 5/5
Dark elements: 4/5
Steamy scenes: 5/5
Overall storyline: 4.5/5
Triggers: Yes, indeed - copious drug and alcohol abuse, addiction, mental health struggles, PTSD, and attempted suicide