Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Review & Giveaway: Rival by Penelope Douglas

Rival (Fall Away #2) by Penelope Douglas
Publisher: Penguin Group
Publication date: August 26th 2014
My rating:  4.5 stars 
Amazon | Barnes & Noble| The Book Depository

 From the New Adult sensation and New York Times bestselling author of Until You

Madoc and Fallon. Two estranged teenagers playing games that push the boundaries between love and war…

She’s back.

For the two years she’s been away at boarding school, there was no word from her. Back when we lived in the same house, she used to cut me down during the day and then leave her door open for me at night.

I was stupid then, but now I’m ready to beat her at her own game…

I’m back.

Two years and I can tell he still wants me, even if he acts like he’s better than me.

But I won’t be scared away. Or pushed down. I’ll call his bluff and fight back. That’s what he wants, right? As long as I keep my guard up, he’ll never know how much he affects me….

My Thoughts:
Madoc and Fallon’s romance was full of a whole range of powerful emotions, both good and bad. Their passionate, young lover’s story was cut short two years earlier when Fallon left Madoc’s life abruptly, causing misunderstandings and intense hurt on both sides.

Madoc and Fallon were thrown together as stepbrother and sister when their parents got married, and suddenly they had to share a house.  They were complete opposites and their relationship was very antagonistic because of their situation. Madoc was outgoing and popular in school, and Fallon was introverted and quiet, especially starting out in a new school with no friends.  Madoc viewed Fallon in the same negative light as her gold-digging mother, so he didn’t exactly treat her very nicely at first. But time changed their relationship.  It wasn’t long before they were sharing nights holed up in her room, entwined hearts in the night while keeping up a façade of distance during the day. Each felt something big and special, although neither was willing to admit it out loud. 

Everything changes when Fallon’s mother discovers their relationship, and sends Fallon away.  Two years pass and during that time both Fallon and Madoc have built up hurt and pain over what each of them think is true. Now Fallon returns to divvy out some revenge on who she thinks are the guilty: Madoc, his father and her mother.  I could not stand the mother!!  She was conniving, lacked any natural maternal protective feelings and instead only thought of herself!  There were some shocking revelations that really showed the depth of her depravity. Blech!

I felt bad for what both Fallon and Madoc suffered, especially Fallon.  When you feel so passionately about someone is gives them the power to hurt you profoundly, so I can understand why they both hated each other so much. Granted this is because they both assumed things, thanks to their parents, but they didn’t know that. Both Madoc and Fallon are so scared to be hurt again so it takes a while to unravel what actually happened, but when they finally sort it out, they’re inseparable. 

Even before that though, Fallon and Madoc’s intense attraction leaks through the hate and leads to many heated interactions! I was happy that they had these combustible blow-outs instead freezing each other out, because it led to the truth. The ending is a little surprising for a couple so young, but I was totally onboard and for it! 

Penelope Douglas writes romances that are completely addictive, compelling, and super hot!   Like the previous book, I was completely glued to every page!  I can’t wait for the next, Falling Away which centers on Jaxon, Jared’s younger brother.  He’s turning out to be a very interesting character. I was blown away and disturbed by something he did in the end of this book.  

Favorite Quote:
God, I loved her. There was never anything or anyone I wanted more, and she was mine. When we were fourteen years old she came into my life on the heels of a cruel and self-serving woman, but I would do it all again. Every minute. Every ounce of pain. I would go through it all again to get to her.

Connect with Penelope Douglas:

Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

The publisher generously provided a Paperback copy of Rival to one Readers Den follower.  The giveaway is open to US and Canadian Residents only.  Entrants must be 18 years or older. Just fill out the rafflecopter for a chance to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Rival took me by complete surprise! I was not prepared to like this book, let alone love it. Fallon and Madoc were so intense and yes, I love that they had the big confrontations rather than freeze each other out. Great review, Rachel!

  2. I haven't seen this book or series before but it sounds intense. Plus I love seeing that high rating! Thanks for the recommendation, Rachel.

  3. Sounds like a great book! Hope I win a copy! Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

  4. Wtf? I thought this was a different POV for Bully or something. Um, ok. GLAD TO KNOW IT ISN'T? (Seeing as I didn't fancy the characters, but I'm willing to jump on board with this story!!!) I'd hate the mother too. UGH. So it's a slow burn, yeah? :) I'm so glad you enjoyed this no matter that the mom was a complete bitch. And I hope you love the following companion even more ;)

  5. I have read the first one a while ago and it's actually one of the rare NA books that worked for me. So I really want to read this one. I just need to find some time. I do like the sound of this and also captivating and hot sound amazing to me. Great review, Rachel :)

  6. Just reading the names of Fallon and Madoc, I wouldn't be able to tell who was the girl and who was the guy. BUT an amazing NA that sounds like it works so well...I can totally move past that. Great review!

  7. I haven't read one of these on-the-verge-of-forbidden-esque romances in awhile but this definitely has my curiosity piqued. Not sure how well I'd fare with the mother--she sounds like a piece of work!--but thanks for putting this on my radar, Rachel! It's the first time I've heard of it but it's going on my TBR for sure! :)

  8. this looks and sounds fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Whoa! I love addicting stories, though this one sounds like it might be a little too high drama for me. But I'm glad you loved it so much! I'll have to go back and look at the first one to see what it's about.

  10. This almost certainly sounds like an interesting read. The mother sounds incredibly dislikeable, I always hate when they portray parents to be so un-parentally as it seems to be a good way to create angst and unresolved issues for characters. However, I do like the sound of the romance and the will-they-won't-they aspect of them making up. Glad you enjoyed it so much.

  11. I read Bully and loved it! Cannot wait to read this one!!!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...