Welcome to the 1st of a series of in-depth reviews about NYT Bestseller Tracy Wolff’s Crave series. Released in 2020 by Entangled Teen Publishing, this YA paranormal fantasy has swept the world and brought back the love we all had for paranormal romance in 2008 a la Stephanie Meyer.
Our MC is Grace: recent Alaska transplant who’s parents have just passed away…truly unfortunate start for our girl. She is taken in by her uncle Finn and his daughter Macy who also serve as the principal of the school Grace is to be enrolled in and Grace’s new bestie/tour guide, respectively. As with any good YA protagonist, New Girl Grace is the talk of the school. Well her, and resident mysterious bad boy Jaxon Vega. Tall, brooding, and handsome, Jaxon Vega is not to be messed with or even thought about. He’s all bad.
That’s fine with Grace, she just wants to survive junior year, get through senior year, and graduate so she can go back to California and be with her best friend, Heather, as they make up for lost time. But, of course, this is a book, and Grace is our MC, so there’s certain to be hijinks and hilarity between her and her goal of graduating.
Grace’s cousin, roommate, and guide to the new place that is Alaska. Always down for a good crying session ended by a splitting a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia ice cream. Honestly, 10/10 for the “best friend” / “constant anchor” character.
Ah yes, sweet Flint. The first person, aside from Macy, that takes a real liking to Grace. He is a goofy fun-loving kind of guy…but with something darker hidden too.
A witch, like Macy but M doesn’t like Lia, which should warn Grace that something hanky is going on but alas…
The man of the hour. Vampire prince. Seriously damaged, but is trying to work through his issues.
Unknown Big Bad
We later learn who this person is, but until then, they’ll be known as UBB.
Has the grand plan to take over the world and ruin all sorts of things.
The beginning of the book is full of a lot of day-to-day activity of Grace getting used to Katmere, and Katmere getting used to the presence of an (apparently) extremely attractive person. The middle is pretty filler-y too…UNTIL ITS NOT.
Okay, so turns out that Lia is actually working to bring the UBB back into power. This UBB is so bad and powerful that even Jaxon is afraid of them resurfacing. He now makes it his personal mission to keep Grace safe from Lia because….
…yes. You heard correctly. A mating bond. Destiny. An unknown but completely unavoidable something drawing these two together. As basic as breathing, and yet just as complex.
More filler, but, Grace & Jaxon are a couple now! She somehow still doesn’t know his biggest secret, and doesn’t think its weird that he never comes in her room when he drops her off after class, but oh well! Also, he seems to appear and vanish faster than HUMANLY possible, but that’s just because he’s in great shape, right?
After receiving the most telling book from Jaxon (a copy of Meyer’s Twilight), Grace finally puts things together. Everything is out in the open now, no more secrets. Despite all of Jaxon’s careful planning and surrounding her with his cronies [The Order, as they’re called], Lia still manages to get her hooks in Grace — via Flint. The big dragon has gained her trust, and eventually lures her to her death via sacrifice. Of course, Jaxon comes swooping in to save the day, but ends up getting himself knocked out by fighting with a GIANT FREAKING DRAGON. Anyway, Lia does some magic and things, and brings the UBB back to this side of the veil between life and death. The plan was for him to be placed into Jaxon’s body, but since he’s incapacitated, and Flint suddenly grew a conscience to stop Lia’s plans, the UBB attaches himself to the only other living thing in room.
Who is the UBB you may ask? Why does Jaxon hate the UBB so much? What makes the UBB so dangerous? Well….even paranormals have sibling rivalry.
Overall, Crave is an amazing opener to a new YA paranormal series. Tracy’s writing is fluid, lively, and full of spunk and witty humor. Grace is a likeable MC and Macy is her faithful sidekick. I have read the next 2 books in the series, and I am very much excited for the final installment!
New York Times Best Selling author Tracy Wolff is a lover of vampires, dragons, and all things that go bump in the night. A onetime English professor, she now devoted all her time to writing dark and romantic stories with tortured heroes and kick-butt heroines. She has written all of her sixty-plus novels from her home in Austin, Texas, which she shares with her family. For more about Tracy’s books and to see what she’s up to, visit tracywolffauthor.com or find her on Instagram at tracywolffbooks!