Shattered, An Extreme Risk Novel, Tracy Wolff
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
I loved the first in this series, Shredded. Its based around characters who are Olympic standard snowboarders, and though I know nothing of this sport it didn’t affect my enjoyment of the story.
At the end of the last book Ash has just been told his parents and younger brother had been in an accident. His parents died and Logan, who’s just fourteen, is paralysed from the waist down. Ash has given up boarding to look after him, vowing not to do a sport that Logan can no longer enjoy. Logan is a great character and I felt for him. As a wheelchair user myself I know only too well how over protective family can be, and Logan’s feeling a bit trapped by it all, but can’t get that through to Ash. Ash feels its all his fault as they were on the way to watch him, so its a spiral of guilt and problems the two are stuck in. Ash’s friends have been trying to get him to board again in the months since the accident but to no avail. Then along comes Tansy, a tiny slip of a girl who moves something in Ash. She’s from the make-a-wish foundation, and has a request from a dying child who wants to meet Ash. They don’t get off well, but by some odd circumstances they end up together on a boarding trip to Chile, with the sick child and his parents and health carer.
Ash is really attracted to Tansy and she to him, but what she doesn’t tell him is she’s a cancer survivor currently in remission. At nineteen she’s been in and out of treatment for ten years, so add to her overprotective parents the fact she has none of the usual teen experiences of boyfriends, parties and clubbing. Her sister is great, younger in years but older in experience, she sends Tansy some porn sites to educate her about sex – that was really funny…I felt for Ash too – she’s kept quiet because she didn’t want to be thought of as Cancer Girl – where people treat you differently though they don’t mean to. You lose your sense of self and become someone unreal. Been there, done that, and understood perfectly where Tansy was coming from! I don’t know if Tracey has experience of herself or someone close with cancer or wheelchair use, but as someone who’s in both categories ( 19 years past the time I should have died) I feel she’s done both those parts incredibly well.
Of course one moment everything’s going swimmingly and Ash is snowboarding for Timmy, the dying child, who is having a great time, and Tansy is enjoying her first romance and sexual encounters, when the bomb drops and it all goes wrong. Again its handled really well, I can imagine and empathise with all of the characters in how they react. Its a great read, hot sex, adventure and a great romance too.
Stars: five, one to keep.
ARC supplied via Netgalley