Although she is the only one who can see or hear him (except when he takes over her body), getting him out will be quite the process, but Grace is determined to do so. In the meantime, she just has to deal with his snarky and (unfortunately) cute self taking up all her time, while also balancing her schoolwork, learning about her new powers, emotionally healing after the things her classmates put her through, and spending time with her friends and boyfriend.
To make things even better, the Circle has arrived with a vengeance, and Grace's future and life is hanging in the balance. You know, just another few months at Katmere, the school for the paranormal.
What I loved: One of the things I did not particularly enjoy about the first book was the instalove/mating bond elements of her quick relationship with Jaxon. I needed more oomph and substance in their relationship. Once the dust has proverbially settled in the first book, Grace begins evaluating their relationship on her own and figuring out what she wants and how Jaxon can fit into her life. This character growth was really rewarding to me, and I liked the way she developed in the romance field. I could totally see it coming, and I loved the slow path it took to get there. There was definitely a deeper and more mature Grace in this book.
Though the beginning of the book did take a bit to get underway as the scenes were set and roles were recast, the last half was a total nail-biter with all the action and intense plus emotional scenes you could ever want. I completely sped through them, and really loved it all. The ending scenes really blew me away, and I also really enjoyed the bonus scenes from another character's perspective as well. This book was even better than the first, and I am even more excited to see where this series will go. For readers who liked but did not fully love the first, they may love the second, so I would definitely recommend giving the second book a read- it is even better than anticipated.
This series still has space to grow as we continue to learn more about this world and the creatures who reside in it. I am definitely looking forward to continuing to learn more about it in future books.
Final verdict: Even better than the first, CRUSH is an intense and snarky YA fantasy read. Highly recommend for fans of Jennifer L. Armentrout's COVENANT and LUX series, TWILIGHT series, and THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS series.