Knowing You by Rebecca Donovan ~ Sarah A’s Review

Under suspicion for a crime she watched him commit, Lana will pay for her silence. Her new lawyer strikes a deal, sending her to a boarding school in Vermont. It’s supposed to be a second chance. An escape from a dead-end life in Sherling. Except Lana doesn’t want to leave those who depend on her behind.

Lana is convinced she has nothing in common with the sons and daughters of celebrities and politicians who attend Blackwood School. But she soon finds out, that they’re all delinquents… just like her. Theirs is a world of contrived headlines and publicity facades, and Lana’s unabated honesty is a keen contrast to their lie-filled lives. She finds herself with new friends, just by telling the truth.

But not everyone is welcoming. Someone is out to destroy Lana, and she has no idea why. The longer she stays at Blackwood, the more dangerous it becomes for her and everyone she cares about. And it will only get worse when Lana discovers the truth.

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As soon as I finished reading If I’d Known, I needed to get my hands on this book. There were so many loose ends, so many things to decipher, so many connections that seemed to be more than they were on the surface. After reading Knowing You, I’m even more intrigued by this world. Honestly, I wish I had waited to start these books until they were all out because I know the time spent trying to figure out all the intricacies of this world is going to cut into my reading time.

It’s hard to say too much about Knowing You without giving anything away. This series has so many moving parts; there seems to be an entire history and web of connections we’re just beginning to get a glimpse of that I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to completely comprehend exactly how these characters have all began to connect. I’m sitting here contemplating what I believe, what I don’t, what I am sure I know, and what I may have missed the first go ‘round if there were breadcrumbs that gave me a hint as to what is to come.

As much as I love Lana, she’s smart, tough, and tenacious; I have a hard time believing or remembering she’s barely a junior in high school. She seems so much more mature than anyone I knew at that age, and her life experiences are so all-consuming, the way she deals with everything lends her a feeling of being at least ten years older than her purported age. She impressed me with both her honesty and her loyalty – even to those who didn’t deserve it – in If I’d Know and she continues to amaze me with her adherence to her ‘curse.’

While I’m not saying I didn’t love Lana’s friends in If I’d Known, I love her new friends in this book. Especially Ashton, from the moment she appeared she had a magnetism about her that consumed me. Brendan is equally fascinating, though I’m not sure if I should be terrified of him or in awe. His ability to find things out is astonishing, and I want to trust him, I’m just not sure if I’m supposed to. And honestly, that is one of the best things about this book; I’m not 100% sure who’s good, who’s bad, and what part they all have in the big picture of this series.

Every moment of Knowing You kept me riveted. From the mysterious reasons Lana was accepted to Blackwood, to Brendan’s knowledge of her and everyone else, to the messages Lana is receiving, to the revelations at the end of the book, I couldn’t put the book down. I have a list of questions a mile long, and I’m going crazy trying to figure out what is coming and what the implications of the information they just received are going to be. I just absolutely need book three now.

Knowing You is book two in Rebecca Donovan’s Cursed series. These books are not standalones and must be read in order. The book is written in first-person perspective, narrated by Lana.

“If I tell you, they won’t come true.”  I stuff a mound of cake into my mouth.

Lily releases a small tinkling laugh. “Do you believe that?”

“Do you believe they’ll come true at all, no matter if I say them out loud or not?”

“I think we always receive what we deserve, and belief has very little to do with it. It has more to do with our character, and how that balances out on the scales of good and evil. Can’t have one without the other, right?”

I look at her curiously.  “But isn’t good always supposed to win in the end?” I can barely function, forget about contemplate karmic balance. And we’re going down a strange and windy path right now. Because I know good doesn’t always win.

If I’d Known (Book #1)
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Optimism seeps from every pore of my body. I truly believe that what’s supposed to happen… will! In that regard, I don’t know how to give up; it’s not part of my biological make up.

I’m a passionate (and some would say, overly enthusiastic) person. I learn by doing (and have been burned more times that I’d like to admit), but I will always throw my entire self into whatever I do – fail or succeed. 

I think this is evident when I write, leaving nothing behind and spilling it all out on the pages. I give it all to my readers – love it or hate it. 

The path I’m on is very often my own, veering off the beaten path at the sight of something more interesting or captivating, getting caught in the vines and thorns in order to experience the beauty and intrigue others often pass by. And I always meet the most interesting people along the way…

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