Series: Briarcrest Academy #2
Published by Independently Published
Publication Date: May 13th, 2014
Genres: New Adult
I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Born on the poor side of town…
Ballerina Dovey Beckham is a scholarship student at Briarcrest Academy, determined to prove she’s more than just a girl with the wrong pedigree. She does whatever it takes to succeed in her endgame, even if it means surrendering her body…but never her heart.
Until the day she meets him, and he rips apart all her well-laid plans. Suddenly, the girl everyone thought unbreakable might just shatter.
Born into wealth and privilege…
Cuba “Hollywood” Hudson is rich, spoiled, and a star football player. With his fast cars and superficial girlfriends, he lives the high-life, hiding his secrets from the world.
Until the day he meets her, and she offers him something he’s never tasted…love.
But once in a lifetime kind of love doesn’t come easy. When trust crumbles and doubts creep in, both will have to decide to either love or let go…forever.
Welcome to Briarcrest Academy, where sometimes, only the wicked survive.
When we met Cuba in Very Bad Things he was the stuff that mothers warned their daughters about. Player. Heartbreaker. Manwhore. It’s not that Cuba is a bad guy, actually that is far from it. He never offers anything more than a good time. But even knowing who he is, Cuba still manages to leave broken heart-ed girls in his wake. One of those girls happens to be Dovey.
Dovey is the girl from the wrong side of the tracks. Studying at the infamous Briarcrest Academy on a scholarship, Dovey is determined to become something more than what society and her fellow classmates think she is. With hopes that after graduation she can find a job doing her true life’s passion, dancing as a ballerina, Dovey won’t let anything stand in her way. That is until the circumstances of her past come back to haunt her. With all of this going on Dovey is still left reeling from the pain inflicted by Cuba. But he just might be the one help her.
Without giving too much away, Very Wicked Things is a book full of angst, heartache, love and redemption. Cuba and Dovey despite the roles they portray to protect their hearts, are truly two of the most heartbreaking characters I have read about. Human to a fault, the lengths they go to spare themselves and each other pain is maddening and yet I understood exactly why they did it. Very few people see Cuba behind his armor, and Dovey behind her pride. The feelings, connection and circumstance surrounding their past and their present create a story so full of emotion and hope that will keep you hooked to the pages and invested in Cuba and Dovey.
Very Wicked Things is everything that New Adult should be.
Also, be sure to check out Very Wicked Beginnings—the prequel to Very Wicked Things that really adds a level of depth and importance to Cuba and Dovey’s story.
Title: Very Wicked Beginnings (Briarcrest Academy #1.5)
Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills
Release: May 13th, 2014
**NOTE: Because Ilsa Madden-Mills fell in love with her beautifully flawed characters in Very Wicked Things, she penned Very Wicked Beginnings as a prequel novella to the book, featuring the story of football star Cuba Hudson and ballerina Dovey Beckham.
Since May is Mental Health Awareness Month, all May proceeds from the sale of the novella will be donated to The Keith Milano Memorial Fund which benefits the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). www.afsp.org
Girls say I’m a walking, talking sex god. Guys call me Hollywood because my life is golden.
But, ESPN did rank me as a four star recruit, calling me one of the best defensive players since Briarcrest Academy opened its esteemed doors. So yeah, with football and a stellar GPA, my future seemed good.
Then Dovey Beckham shows up in her short skirts and ballet shoes. Driving me insane. Making me want to beg for her attention.
But that wouldn’t happen, because Cuba Hudson didn’t beg for anything.
She walked around BA like she owned the place, and most days she looked right through me…the one girl I couldn’t have.
So, of course, I made it my mission to claim her, to put her notch on my bedpost.
Because no girl can resist the Heartbreaker of BA.
But I never planned on destroying her.
I never planned on wrecking the one thing that could save me.
Welcome to Briarcrest Academy, where wicked love begins…and ends.
Excerpt for Very Wicked Things
Book #2 of the Briarcrest Academy Series
by Ilsa Madden-Mills
I got out of the shower and dressed hurriedly, anxious to get back to Cuba.
The door opened, and like he did it every single day, he stepped inside the steamy bathroom.
“Think I need a shower, too,” he said, his fingers easing off his football practice shirt.
Trying to play it cool and failing miserably, I moved my eyes off his naked chest and checked out his track pants and the obvious bulge he sported.
Oh. Did his lower body match the rest of him? Was it all sinewy muscle and big?
Just, yeah. That thought got stuck in my head and went round and round.
“You staying?” he asked, a grin working his face. Pleased at my open admiration, probably.
“No,” I said, but made no move to go. ‘Cause I had no shame when it came to catching a glimpse of his muscular body.
“Good,” he said, his smile broadening.
He pivoted to turn on the shower, and my eyes betrayed me again, admiring the muscles in his back, checking out how they twitched and rippled when he moved. Football and rowing had been good to him. My fingers itched to know how they’d feel underneath my hands. Which was stupid because we had nothing in common. Not a rich Highland Park boy and a poor girl from Ratcliffe.
And most importantly, he was a player, not to be trusted.
He hooked his thumbs into his pants, paused a moment—maybe waiting to see if I’d run from the room?—but when I didn’t budge, he slid them and his underwear off. My mouth opened. Cuba Hudson, the most popular guy at Briarcrest was standing right in front of me, naked and beautiful. And like the cocky bastard he was, he posed for me, his big-ass biceps and chiseled abs making me vibrate all over. Need for him slammed into me.
Did I say he was hot?
Well, I was wrong.
He was off-the-charts, no-holds-barred, freaking going make-me-lose-my-mind-right-there delicious. The ultimate man-candy, the kind I knew to stay away from, yet here I was, ogling him.
“Still leaving?” he asked huskily.
“Any minute,” I said in a weak voice, backing up to the wall and propping myself up. “Just chillin’. Shower wore me out. I might need to hold this wall up for a sec.”
“I want you to stay,” he said, eyes at half-mast, glowing with heat.
“Why?” I said, aching to touch him. But that was crazy. I was a virgin, and I didn’t know jack about touching a guy’s you-know-what.
“Look at me, Dovey.”
I tore my eyes from his manhood, blushing.
His eyes burned. “There’s a sense of urgency in my head. Like our time is limited.”
I nodded. Yeah, same here.
“And, I’ll be honest, I don’t want to rush you, but I’m dying to sink into you. I want to set you on fire with need for me.” He ghosted his hands over the steel rod between his legs. Once, twice, and—holy shizzle, he didn’t stop.
My chest rose faster and faster, and I tried to chill-out, but I couldn’t.
He lowered his voice. “Kiss me again, Dovey.”
Oh. “That’s a terrible idea, Cuba. Cause you’re naked, and I’m turned on because you’re naked. And you’re touching yourself. And you’re naked.” I sucked in a sharp breath. “Not a good combo. Odds are we’ll end up in that shower together or back in your bed doing the double-backed monster.”
“Then join me in the shower. I’ll be good. For you.” He arched his back, his hands still doing that back and forth that was driving me insane.
Liar, liar, pants on fire, I thought. No way he would he be good.
Because he was the Heartbreaker of Briarcrest Academy. And one wicked boy.