Melanie's Reviews > The Wicker King

The Wicker King by K. Ancrum
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it was amazing
bookshelves: young-adult, lgbtqiap, dragons-and-tea, read-in-2019, dark, favorites, contemporary
Recommended to Melanie by: شيماء ✨



“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 entire life. This book will just always have a special place in my heart now.

It all starts with seeing two boys breaking into a toy factory, which lands them in an asylum in 2003, and we get to see a dark and intense unfolding of what lead them to this action. We get to see their love for each other and the devotion they both have for one another. This story is told with a lot of multimedia elements that really helps make it feel even more real, and when the story gets darker the pages also become darker, which completely takes the story to another level in my opinion.

But The Wicker King essentially is a story about two high school boys from Michigan, who are both being extremely neglected in very different ways, and they find what they are missing within each other. We get to see August, and his perspective, as Jack starts to get hallucinations and is able to see a dark fantasy world on top of and coexisting with our world. August does everything to try to help Jack and get him to only see our reality, but August is also struggling with his mental health and isn’t heeding the advice of those around him to get help. To August, only Jack makes things better, and to Jack, August is the only one who can ground him.

“The world was so big and they were very small and there was no one around to stop terrible things from happening.”

I’m not going to say Jack and August’s relationship is the healthiest, but it is so realistic and so what both of them needed so desperately in a world that made them feel alone. I ugly cried throughout most of this book partly because I wanted to help them both so badly and also because their intertwining spirals were so realistic and so heartbreaking.

“It was the debt. The river. It was his religion now.”

I also cried a lot because the side character, Rina, was so pure and helped ground these two lost boys so much. She gave them a safe place, she gave them solace, and she gave them unconditional love. She truly was the shining star of this book for me and my love grew for her right alongside these two boys.

I loved the mental health depictions in this book, and you can tell the care that the author took while writing this story. I also loved how queer this story is, and it makes me giggle that some people needed to be told that Jack and August had feelings for each other in the finished copy, because this entire book is a love letter to these two boys loving each other. Also, in terms of diversity besides sexuality and mental health, Rina is a person of color.

Overall, I just loved this book more than words. Being in August’s mind is an experience that I will never forget and that I will keep locked in my heart for all time. I cannot wait to start The Weight of the Stars next month, especially since K. Ancrum confirmed a glimpse at a polyamorous relationship that I guarantee is going to add five years onto my life. Lastly, this book has the best dedication and author’s note I’ve ever read in my entire life (and I’ve read a lot of books)!

“If you drop the weight you are carrying, it is okay. You can build yourself back up out of the pieces.”

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Content and trigger warnings for severe neglect, abandonment, panic attacks, depression depictions, underage drinking, and ableist speech.

This was the first pick in me and Amy's book club for 2019: Dragons and Tea Book Club! 🐉☕
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Reading Progress

July 11, 2018 – Shelved
July 11, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
July 11, 2018 – Shelved as: young-adult
July 11, 2018 – Shelved as: lgbtqiap
December 11, 2018 – Shelved as: dragons-and-tea
December 11, 2018 – Shelved as: read-in-2019
January 1, 2019 – Started Reading
January 4, 2019 – Finished Reading
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: dark
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: favorites
January 5, 2019 – Shelved as: contemporary

Comments Showing 1-31 of 31 (31 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

Georgia Meagher I loved this book ❤️


Angie Elle Woo hoo! My library has it.


message 3: by J.A. (new) - added it

J.A. Ironside I haven't had a chance to reply yet but I'm so excited about this 😊


message 4: by Ezinwanyi (new) - added it

Ezinwanyi Is this going to be on audio because I'd to join?


شيماء ✨ GOOD LUCK IT'S GOING TO HURT


message 6: by Stella (new)

Stella ✨❣️ I really want to join but my library doesn’t have it!


message 7: by Ash (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ash I LOVED THIS BOOK. A top 10 2018 read for me


Heather Parker I loved today’s read! I can’t wait to read tomorrow’s section!!!! I’m so excited.


Carole P. Roman Thanks for picking it. I finished today. Couldn't stop. Great read.


Melanie Georgia wrote: "I loved this book ❤️"

I'm loving it SO much, Georgia! 💛xx


Melanie Angie Elle wrote: "Woo hoo! My library has it."

Yessss! 💛xx


Melanie J.A. wrote: "I haven't had a chance to reply yet but I'm so excited about this 😊"

I can't wait to see your final thoughts, love! 💛xx


Melanie شيماء ✨ wrote: "GOOD LUCK IT'S GOING TO HURT"

I'M ALREADY CRYING AT 216 and 217 HELP PLEASE! 💛xx


Melanie Stella wrote: "I really want to join but my library doesn’t have it!"

Awh, I'm sorry, Stella love! I'm always here to talk about it if it becomes available! 💛xx


Melanie Ash wrote: "I LOVED THIS BOOK. A top 10 2018 read for me"

Oh wow! This... makes me so damn excited! I am 80% in... and so in love! 💛xx


Melanie Heather wrote: "I loved today’s read! I can’t wait to read tomorrow’s section!!!! I’m so excited."

Yesss, Heather love!! 💛xx


Melanie Carole wrote: "Thanks for picking it. I finished today. Couldn't stop. Great read."

MY HEAT! THOSE FIVE STARS, CAROLE! I am so excited to finish tomorrow! 💛xx


message 18: by Emma (new) - rated it 4 stars

Emma isn’t this book crazy?! I felt like I was losing my dang mind reading it lol


Mwinchester97 I can't put it down!


Elise (TheBookishActress) I KNEW YOU WOULD BUT I’M STILL SO GLAD YOU LOVED IT !!


megs_bookrack YES! The Author Note bumped it up a half star for me. I was going to give it 4.5 but after reading that, 5. No doubt.


Tiffany This book was tragic for me. As a parent it hurt to see these boys going through this.

But the author did an amazing job portraying teenager anguish and terrible decision making.

The Author's note was everything!!!


Melanie Emma wrote: "isn’t this book crazy?! I felt like I was losing my dang mind reading it lol"

It's truly on another level! 💗xx


Melanie Mwinchester97 wrote: "I can't put it down!"

Right? Ahhh! I loved it so much! 💗xx


Melanie Elise wrote: "I KNEW YOU WOULD BUT I’M STILL SO GLAD YOU LOVED IT !!"

MY HEART! Also - I need a buddy read with you soon, my queen! 💗xx


Melanie megs_bookrack wrote: "YES! The Author Note bumped it up a half star for me. I was going to give it 4.5 but after reading that, 5. No doubt."

Yeah, that author's note is on another level! I'm so happy you enjoyed, love! 💗xx


Melanie Tiffany wrote: "This book was tragic for me. As a parent it hurt to see these boys going through this.

But the author did an amazing job portraying teenager anguish and terrible decision making.

The Author's not..."


I love these thoughts, sweetheart! And I'm so honored you read it with me! And I hope whatever you're reading right now is five star worthy, love! 💗xx


message 28: by KAS (new)

KAS Awesome review, Melanie!! So glad you totally loved ;) 😊❤️


(Bern) Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas This sounds like an amazing reading experience. I have to see if my library has it.


Melanie KAS wrote: "Awesome review, Melanie!! So glad you totally loved ;) 😊❤️"

Awh, thank you so much, love! I hope you're having the happiest of reading! 💖xx


Melanie (Bern) Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas wrote: "This sounds like an amazing reading experience. I have to see if my library has it."

Awh! Yes! I hope you love it, Bern! And I hope 2019 is treating you kindly and has been full of amazing reading! 💖xx


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