NOW AVAILABLE!! Havoc by Debra Anastasia ~ Sarah A’s Review

I named myself. I took the word Animal out of their mouths, wore it like a badge of honor then shoved it down their throats. I’ve fought for what I have. I see you coming, before you even know you want a piece of me. In a city riddled with warring families, I’ll rise up between them. My people, the broken souls I gather will have power by the time I’m done with them.

I protect mine.

Him. My brother, Nix.

Her. The girl that is the only home I’ve ever had. She knows me.

I’m coming at you, Sweetness. Stay ready.

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After reading Mercy I was so excited to get Animal’s story, he was so intriguing in Nix’s story, and I knew his story would be just as powerful.  However, I found myself let down with his story.  A lot of the story seemed to be more about the shock value of his personal life than it was about him learning, growing, and becoming a well-formed human being.

Havoc is a standalone novel but is a spinoff of Mercy.  I, however, think reading Mercy is pretty important to the timeline of Havoc.  It was hard to follow even hang read the previous book, so I’d imagine not having that knowledge would not be good.  Havoc is primarily written in dual first-person perspective, narrated by Animal and T, with a few chapters from Nix thrown in.

I liked the recount of Animal and T’s history when they were kids.  It lent a good understanding to how deeply the roots of their connection ran.  However, the way that part of the story was written felt very disconnected.  There was no warning of the time jump backward, or any of the jumps forward until we were in the present.  I found myself constantly going back to try and figure out exactly where in time we were in relation to the present and past.

I’m still struggling with how I feel about Animal and T’s relationship.  The way he treated her before the big climax disgusted me.  I am loath to admit I understood that it was his way of protecting a part of himself he’d always kept locked away.  Even so, I had a hard time forgiving him for how cavalier he was with T’s heart, especially since he knew exactly how she felt.

I just wish Havoc would have been kinder to T.  She was so sad, so damaged, and my heart hurt for her when she was constantly trampled upon because of her loyalty.  She deserved so much better than she got, and, despite her homicidal tendencies, she was easily the best person in this book.

That being said, I did like the pacing of the novel once it moved into the present.  It was intriguing and kept me turning the pages to see how everything was going to play out.

Debra Anastasia won me over, as a reader, years ago with Poughkeepsie.  Some of her raunchier romcoms haven’t resonated with me, but I have appreciated most of her more serious, emotionally charged novels.

He taught me to kill. Murder is in my blood now. It runs through my veins and though I hide the monster I see in the mirror with ink, it doesn’t keep him from coming out.

My street name is Mercy, but I never show any. Except for her. I watch Becca, though she doesn’t know. She saved me a long time ago; the day my father killed my mother. Her bravery turned her into a target.

My father holds a grudge and knife with the same proficiency, and Becca is the focus of his hatred. And I’m the only monster who can save her.

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Debra Anastasia likes to write from her heart, her soul or her butt. The genres she dabbles in are examples of that. There are two paranormal romances in the Seraphim Series and now four contemporary romances in the Poughkeepsie Brotherhood Series and a stand-alone in the same genre, Mercy. Fire Down Below and Fire in the Hole, Booty Camp Dating Service and Beast complete her comedy repertoire. The Revenger, a dark paranormal romance, is finally in the light, and the last, a novella called Late Night with Andres, is special because 100% of the proceeds go to breast cancer research.

Debra lives in Maryland with her two kids, husband of twenty years and two dogs. The king of the house is clearly the tuxedo cat that is the size of a small donkey. Find about her latest adventures on DebraAnastasia.com

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