Book Review – Tangled by Em Wolf

by Maryse on November 15, 2015 · 5 comments

in My Book Reviews

Well there ya go. Goes to show you that some books on an old TBR list… or that *should* have been on an old TBR list, from a year or so ago, can hold all the book-fog power. ‘Cause this one is almost two years old, my friends, and OMG I LOVED IT!!!!!! Are you looking of your next “bully” romance book? THIS. IS. IT!!!! Fabulous mature writing, and fabulous storytelling!! I believed it, I felt it, I LIVED it, and I LOVED it!

BBR: He is bully for sure and the heroine in this book is not spineless at all:)) I hate spineless heroines!

Tessa: Tangled involves a big bully? *sighs* Those are magic words right there.

LisaM: Sunday’s could not put down book of the day Tangled by Em Wolf. Started this morning n finished just in time to watch The Walking Dead!!! Loved loved loved it!! So conflicted & torn throughout the book on who’s side to be on!! Angst or what?? Anyone else read it yet?

Maryse: Okay I chose Tangled and I love it so far… he really is an a$$!!!! LOL!

Brenda: I loved this book! Read it 3 times so far. Perfect bully book!

Mollie: I loved this. Must’ve read it a few years ago.

Stacy: Great book!!

Agreed BBR!! She was not spineless at all, and yet not over the top in bad-assedness, either. I appreciated that. I loved that she felt nervous and even scared when she knew he was around, and yet did her best to keep him at bay, without tears and succumbing to his humiliation (despite wanting to).

He was as beautiful on the outside as he was ugly on the inside. Conceited, cruel, and misogynistic, she endured for years under the sharpened blade of his tongue. She likened his malevolence to a cancer, swift and far-reaching in its ruination.

She inwardly sneered.

Adonis Benoit.

What were his parents smoking when they named him? Talk about overly conceited. It was no wonder he had a penchant for megalomania.

But she wasn’t perfect… (future actions show this, too) and that made me love her even more!

During her introduction into polite society, Adonis had immediately taken a disliking to her and made no secret of it. All bottled anger and volatility, she spent the entirety of her prep school career as his verbal punching bag. Every word had cut, aimed to maim. The force of his animosity, of his presence in general, overwhelmed her. Asphyxiating and alchemic hot, he wore his enmity like a cloak. A weaker person would’ve buckled beneath the static cling of his toxic personality.

Tess learned early on that there was no point in putting on airs for him. He had a maddening habit of seeing through her. And so she dealt with him the only way she knew how.

Tess met him toe-to-toe, refusing to take his sh!t.

It had everything. The “socialite” society that a regular (maybe even “poor”) girl was thrust into and did her best to adapt to (when her single mom married into money). The bitchy, holier-than-thou crew (aka “mean girls”), and the few amongst them that were true, good, friends. Popular, part of the “it” crew, but with good hearts, and good intentions. And this is where lucky Tess finds herself.

Unlike her silver spoon fed schoolmates, she was not the product of upper class breeding— more like illegitimate backwash. Hard to believe a bony-limbed girl from East Flatbush, Brooklyn could make it this far up the food chain.

Sure, she’s had to change her rocker appearance and her tastes to “fit in” (at first, and stick with it ’cause who needs the hassle?)

As much as she couldn’t stand these people with their snobbish cruelty and fake airs, they were elemental in her climb to the top. After all, networking was everything, even if it did mean relinquishing her soul.

…but those that are her friends are really GREAT friends. I promise you that. Especially that hottie good guy, that becomes her best friend over the high school years, and even into college. They are practically inseparable. That said, no matter how badly she crushes on him, they remain platonic. He seems to love her, but not in the same way.

And if his best friend has anything to say about it, not only will he never love her, they will rid their “it crowd” of her, ASAP. He IS holier than thou and a total pr!ck. And he does everything in his power to let her know, privately and publicly, of his disdain for her. Constant humiliation bestowed upon her by this buttonhole! Yeah I said it! BUTTON hole. :P *snort* Wait… I said pr!ck earlier, didn’t I? That was worse, wasn’t it? LOL!!! :P

P.S. I’m kind of in love with him, you guys. Seriously. SERIOUSLY. neutral You’ll see why. YOU WILL SEE. *my heart* I just re-read those parts. I melted. I melt. I’m melting still. And you will be, too.

There would be no turning back now, for better or worse.

This is the fun of it, though, right?

I mean… nobody likes bullying. Nobody likes a bully. This is true.

That said, his form of bullying is more along the lines of intimidation, and ostracizing, “calling her out” for who he’s sure she’s NOT.

Adonis knew her type.

She was a cobra posing as a house kitten. There was only one thing she wanted out of that relationship and it began with Cameron and ended with money.

He longed to strip away that fake veneer and expose her true colors.

But since she is surrounded by a loving group of friends (that are the bully’s very own friends), it’s bad, but not as hard on us, if she had been completely alone, against him. No worries… that comes.

That said, he is still easily such a jerk, and I delighted in every single instance of him. EVERY SINGLE ONE. Him as the bad guy (oh he’s delightful!!) and him as… *sigh* I’ll let you experience those very personal moments.

In fact, every time she went somewhere and he was there too, and her hairs stood up on end, and her stomach plummeted, and she feels like she’s gonna throw up a little? I felt that, too.

When her heart raced? Mine did, too.

Maryse: I’m loving, and I’m feeling, and it’s right up our alley (story-wise, writing-wise, “new adult” character-wise). She’s in love with her best friend, but HIS best friend is a bully. He hates her. But us getting to know him? WOW. It’s intense. I haven’t skimmed a thing. Not even the “steamy scenes”. It’s gonna hurt, I just know it. It already hurts, and I’m halfway through.

Maryse: Really… Tangled is just pure old-school “new adult” awesomeness. The writing is great, the character development is great, the inner-dialogue, the actual dialogue, the reactions… how she feels, how he is… the best friends… and then the reveal (or at least one of ‘em… so far anyway), and OMG my HEART. It’s like Z, and Travis and a true PAIN IN THE A$$ bully… all wrapped into one. I am SO INTO THIS.  I just wanna snuggle with our stuffed manatee right now. *sniff sniff*

fabi: “pure old-school “new adult”” Magic words Maryse. Magic words.

bev: Maryse, you are making me so anxious to read it!!

Maryse: bev… this may be the first “book-guy” I’ve fallen for in a year or 2. I FEEL him. Like… I can actually feel my heart speed up when he’s in the scene. I’m infatuated. And he’s such a jerk! LOL!

bev: Happy claps. I remember when you were into Wild Reckless and I grabbed it. It turned into a great weekend (?) Read. Lol. One of those days had off and read in one setting.

And it’s a lot of that. Enough to make us feel it. Enough to make us hate him. Enough to make us wonder what his problem is, and anticipate just how bad (or good!!) this is gonna get. Oh and it gets goooooooood.

Maryse: Gah!!! He’s SOOOOO broken… my heart hurts. I love him.

Like… what happens if one night, she has a little too much to drink, and the two of them find themselves face to face? Alone. Furious… and of course, fighting. And the tensions rise, and other things rise. :P You know. The heat. ;) The HEAT rises. ‘Cause tempers are flaring and all that. And that thin line between lust and hate is crossed… even for just a night?

She hated her body’s reaction to him, hated how his touch could reduce her to some wanton hussy, justifying years’ worth of misogynistic insults.

Had history taught her nothing?

That’s when the whole dynamic between them… changes. That’s when the whole dynamic between ALL of them, changes. Doesn’t mean he’s any less of a bully though. And that’s when the true story of this book plays out… beautifully. I was SO hooked. In love. HE (even as a bully) IS SO perfectly “perfect” but so privately imperfect…

She hated his cruel perfection. No matter how badly he sullied himself and his name, he always seemed untouchable. An indomitable force of nature. Nothing ever got to him. He was too far removed from the plights of ordinary people.

She vacantly wondered what it would be like to see his beauty blemished and hauteur broken.

And most of all…. so desperate, and lost. I was wanting so badly, to fix him. Fix them. All of them, because what a tangled web they weave. Ahhhhh!!! TANGLED!!!! How freaking clever!

It’s got that slight “Gossip Girl” edge, but is plenty realistic in the grand scheme of things.

And that’s where I’ll let you off, to get on this roller-coaster ride and see where it takes you. There is no “open-ending” here, I can assure you, although throughout, I was sure I was gonna be left on a killer cliffhanger. But I promise. I wasn’t.

Maryse: Loved it!!! It wraps up in quite the bow, I will admit (and that’s not a spoiler ’cause you don’t know “which” bow and how that bow even gets tied up so neatly. LOL!!!)… but still SO worth the emotions and intensity and conflict.

The whole darn thing is highlighted!! I wanna tell you ALL of it! I can’t stop… I just wanna tell you these few parts… *gah!!!* BUT I CAN’T. ‘Cause you’ll get there. And you’ll feel like I did, and love it too. So my lips are sealed. ;)

4.5 stars!

Gah!!! I don’t want to say this for those that LOVE reading a book, going in blind, (so skip this next part if that’s you)…

but I feel this is “obvious” so I’m gonna tell you. This is the ultimate bully/love-triangle/broken bad-guy, super-awesome good-guy “new adult” love story and it is SO MUCH FUN!!!!


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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Jen C November 15, 2015 at 11:51 PM

Aaah great review Maryse – I’m definitely bumping this one up on my TBR list!!

Lisa November 16, 2015 at 3:42 AM

Ok. You’ve won me with that review. How can I NOT read it. :)

Amy November 16, 2015 at 10:47 PM

Well, dang…looks like my next read was just bumped over to make room for this. You just had to use the magic words and phrases, didn’t ya?

Okay, so I have to ask…what kept it from being a five star?

bev November 17, 2015 at 1:49 AM

80%. Can I say I think Tess & one are being kinda uncool about the other one? Just not very understanding and self absorbed.
And the whole Jade thing.

Amy, for me it is the sort of fun/angst old indie na. With all the cracky good and bad that implies to me. Needs editing on a few issues. But its fun.

Maryse November 17, 2015 at 2:22 AM

Amy… the ending kept it from being that. I found a somewhat strange *character switch* that had me going whaaaaaa? And then the shiny bow.


It was well paced throughout and believable, but the ending-ish was for me… a bit far-fetched and rushed. That said, there were some intense, emotional, private scenes that were so true-to-life, and made me melt, or want to cry that I loved it overall.

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