The Wicker King
The Wicker King is a psychological young adult thriller that follows two friends struggling as one spirals into madness.
Jack once saved August's life … now can August save him?
August is a misfit with a pyro streak and Jack is a golden boy on the varsity rugby team—but their intense friendship goes way back. Jack begins to see increasingly vivid hallucinations that take...more
The accusations of queerbaiting honestly filled me with dismay. Maybe because this is a journey where someone slowly comes to terms with his attraction for the whole book, rather than being "out" the whole book some people assumed that this was queerbaiting. <spoiler>But the words "I love you" were definitely explicitly used. August has sex with another character while thinking of Jack (and then panics). In addition, every single character in the book besides the MC tries to point out to the MC that his feelings for his friend may not be platonic. The book is mixed media and one of the art pieces is a note where Jack asks August out-- which he writes in the beginning of the book and doesn't give to August until the end of the book--and August says yes (Which was available in the ARC).
In the final version, not only is the confession more fleshed out, but they also kiss. And more, in the book to be released after this, they are in a Poly family with another character (R) and are raising a child together, who is a major character.
This book was never intended to be anything but queer. It just takes these kids a while to get there, that's all. :)</spoiler>(less)
If August and Jack had normal lives, with normal parents and Jack never got sick, the story of them wouldn't cease to exist, it would be a standard, softer friends-to-love story where they maybe had a cute homecoming love confession. Or maybe they'd still wait until the last minute and only become brave enough to kiss at graduation. They'd probably spend the whole 4 years flirting terribly and having fun with their friends. Or maybe Jack would have the energy and confidence to be bolder, maybe seduce August and treat him to the whole stereotypical nerd/jock dynamic of a love story while reminding him that technically he's both the nerd and the jock because he gets better grades than August.
They would laugh more. And hang out for fun instead of necessity. And they would touch each other with less desperation.
The love would always be there. It would just have been easier. (less)
See, there are books you like and then there are books you end up thinking about in the middle of the night with a cosmic ache in your chest, feeling like what still existed of you has been wrung out with all ...more
because I just needed to feel my heart absolutely melt in my chest before this year ends. I teared up in the author letter AGAIN and I seriously am just over here feeling thoughtful and sad, but in a good way. This book so deeply means a lot to me. I think the thing that stood out to me in this read is: how you can do your best and still fail, but it's not your fault. Please don't beat yourself up or hate yourself for failing when you tried so so hard.
also they all deserves mo ...more
Let's talk atmosphere. The Wicker King is told with gradually darkening pages, beginning white and slowly getting darker and darker, and with incredibly short chapters. I found it very hard to put down a ...more
#1 The Wicker King ★★★★★
#1.5 The Legend of the Golden Raven ★★★★☆
I originally read this book as an ARC, and was really bothered by a few things in it. I was so disappointed that I gave it 2.5 stars, but as the finished copy released, I started receiving messages from friends, saying it was different from what I had reviewed. I was confused, but didn’t look too deeply into it until the author contacted me and explained. She told me she had changed a lot of what bothered me in the ARC, and asked w ...more
“Would you do something bad if you knew it would have more good in it, in the end, than bad?”
Okay, I just want to start this review off that this book will forever be sentimental to me, not only because it was the first book I read this year and that I absolutely loved it, but also because it was the very first pick for the Dragons & Tea Book Club and the author came into the group and answered so many questions that made this one of the best reading experiences I’ve ever had in my e ...more
(Regularly editing this review so people see it on their feed and pay attention to this book!!!)
(But please be aware y'all that the relationship that's portrayed in this book is not healthy by any means ok that's it thank you for your attention goodbye) ...more
and as if this books dedication was an inevitable premonition, my body is now working overtime to hold the immense weight of this story.
this story is a dark and heavy scrapbook of feelings, thoughts, fantasies and hallucinations. as jacks mental state grows gloomier and more frantic, the reader encounters darker and more unorganised pages. what a phenomenal representa ...more
This novel left me breathless. It was like being sucker punched in the gut, but in a good way. I felt it in my heart, my bones and my head.
August and Jack.
This is the story of their relationship, but at its heart, it is so much more than that.
Oddly enough, as touching as this story is, the overwhelming emotion I had while reading was anger.
I wasn't angry at August and Jack though, I was angry at the characters we didn't really kn ...more
There’re so many thoughts going through my mind and want to say so much but think I need a little bit of time to process it all.
I loved their connection and their intense friendship (SO MUCH) which enables both to survive parental neglect and absence however while you’re reading, you get a sense of an impending doom kind of feeling because you know their incredibly unhealthy, toxic codependent r ...more
Upon closing The Wicker King, I opened my eyes and I just... blinked, in that forlorn way we do when we're so affected that the real world around us has stopped making sense. It's the kind of novel that fails to be contained in any kind of genre, but honestly, it delivers just the kind of weird, dark atmosphere that never fails to enrapture me. Think Charm & Strange. Teeth.
I swear I'm going to do my best ...more
“If you drop the weight you are carrying, it is okay. You can build yourself back up out of the pieces.”
🌟 I have been thinking how to review and rate this since I have finished it and I decided that writing my thoughts might help me in the final say about this book.
🌟 I also should say that I added this as a recommendation and then kind of lost interest in it but then was in the mood to read it again which I did!
🌟 I a ...more
Holy F. What a heart wrenching, beautiful queer love story. One of my favorite books ever, hands down! I just want more more more more Jack & August ...I’m begging for more here. Oh and did I say more?
1. More because I loved the book,
2. More because I loved August,
3. More because I loved Jack,
4. More because I loved Jack & August,
5. Also more because the ending?!?! How could she do us like that, man?!?! So short! Way too short!
I feel as if the end of this book is like one ...more
Review also on my blog.
Things I loved about this:
» the characters. August & Jack are utterly lovable (and spoiler alert: in love), but also “problematique”, by which I mean they both struggle with their mental health, while not getting any help from adults around them. Their relationship was one of the most intense ones I have ever read about & there are no clean lines there, but t ...more
This was just. Oh mY god. I am, no words, I. FUCK. I relate so much to this story like I never expected.
I started disliking this book for at least 60%. then I start relating so bad. then my heart broke into tiny pieces. and finally, I was shedding tears by the Author's note.
I now that if I were to rate this right now by the last 20% I would give it 5 stars. But then what about the first 80%. I really wanna re-read this, knowing how the story will unfold and what to expect. I wo ...more
So many amazing reviews have been written about this book. I have got nothing more to add.
-I freaking Loved it.
-This is so fresh.
-Codependency. I love that shit, i know it is unhealthy but i freaking love it.
That's all!! highly recommended
My only problem is that it is short. ...more
As for the story itself, I was pretty ...more
I don't know how to put into words how I feel about this book, all I know is that it spoke to me, connected with the darkest and most painful parts of me, and made me feel so damn much. It's not secret that I deal with depression and anxiety, that mental illness is a part of my reality. It's also not a secret that I have a degree in psychology and love anything that explores mental il ...more
"How long have you been waiting for me?"
You know the prospect of starting a new book that you have absolutely no real clue what to expect?
This is one of those.Late last night I thought I'd just take a quick look .....and that was it.This book has never left my side all day.I just devoured it.
-the way it's written,
-the characters....August especially.Beautiful August who completely stole my heart.
I simply adored it. ...more
Your best is not good enough sometimes…
Sometimes… you have to stop trying and just let someone else try their best. In order to survive.
Told in single POV, 3 rd person, it’s the first installment in "The Wicker King" series. It’s not really cliffy but it’s not HEA either! Maybe HFN?! That was one of my issues because, in the end, I wanted so so much more. That ending wasn’t enough for me. My other problem was I wanted Jack’s POV! I wanted to experience what he went through, I wanted to se ...more
How the page colors slowly changed from white to gray to black along with the incorporation of the playlists and little trinkets from their story added to the tension. I don't know if that really comes through in the kindle edition but it has an impact and adds a layer of foreboding that I reveled in.
This is a coming of age story told from August's perspective of him and his best friend Jack who, because of the deficiencies of their parents ...more
Dragons & Tea Book Club book of the month
Warning: This review contains spoilers, so if you haven't read the book but want to, you're better of not reading this review but I really think it's important to read the trigger warning just to know what you're getting yourself into
Trigger warning : (view spoiler)[Hallucinations, Arson, drowning, Arson, Unhealthy and co-dependent relationship, Toxic behaviors (hide spoiler)]
This book hurt me and I’m not saying that because it was so good and I loved it, ...more
this was so beautiful in such a messed up way
i will say that this book heavily romanticized mental illness but in a very respectful and deliberate way. what i mean by this is that our main characters, jack and august, are explicitly described as codependent and are both canonically diagnosed, jack more importantly. this is not a case of “wah wah, the writer didn’t do enough research and she’s portraying mental illness in a very unhealthy way”, but rather a case of “this writer did h ...more
wow. wow. wow. please for the love of all things get on this stat. it’s a crime that only 24 of my 600+ gr friends have discovered this incredible hidden gem. i urge you all to consider reading this book. i first read the wicker king in 2018 and i think about this story just about every single day. it's unlike anything you have read before.
the wicker king is a ya tale of friendship to love slow burn from the perspective of an unreliable narrator (august). it's one of codepende ...more