Series: Addicted #1
Published by K.B. Ritchie on July 1st 2013
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult
No one would suspect shy Lily Calloway’s biggest secret. While everyone is dancing at college bars, Lily stays in the bathroom. To get laid. Her compulsion leads her to one-night stands, steamy hookups and events she shamefully regrets. The only person who knows her secret happens to have one of his own.
Loren Hale’s best friend is his bottle of bourbon. Lily comes at a close second. For three years, they’ve pretended to be in a real relationship, hiding their addictions from their families. They’ve mastered the art of concealing flasks and random guys that filter in and out of their apartment.
But when they go on a family boat trip, surrounded by open seas and limited male bodies in sight, Lily’s confronted with a big fear. Only one guy onboard can fill her addiction, and she’s sworn off going there with Loren Hale ever again.
Now the only person who can truly help her can barely help himself.
**This is a New Adult book recommended for readers 18 and up**
Here’s the thing about this book: Under normal circumstances, I’m not sure if I would have finished it. But then, under normal circumstances I wouldn’t even have picked it up. I read this book because university has been swallowing my soul whole and reading has been feeling like more of a chore. So I needed a book that would just absorb my attention without me having to do much thinking, a book that I wouldn’t want to put down. Addicted to You is that book. It is indeed, addicting.
This was definitely a “the right book at the right time” scenario and I can honestly say that I really enjoyed the reading experience, which is impressive because of how many problems I had with this book.
Let’s start with the most obvious thing about Addicted to You: the characters. You know those characters you just want to slap in the face, take away their toys (pun intended), throw them against the wall and stomp on them screaming? That was Lily for me. She was SO FRUSTRATING. However, I fully appreciate that to a certain extent, this was understandable and it would have been WRONG for her not to be that way.
➢ Weak ☛ understandable
➢ Constantly ashamed of herself ☛ understandable
➢ Does not have anything even closely related to a backbone ☛ not understandable
➢ Lets people walk all over her all the time ☛ not understandable
➢ Thinks she’s completely worthless and has the confidence of a pubescent 14-year-old ☛ kind of understandable
Though I am by no means an expert, I know how the addiction cycle works. Which is why I can forgive Lily for many things. The way she pushes away her family and doesn’t want them to help? Frustrating but I get it. When you’re dealing with the sort of mental disorder that requires you to keep secrets, that’s what you do. You push people away, you don’t want to admit you have a problem, you want to stay away from anyone who might come in the way of what you want to do with your life in that moment. You’ll do whatever it takes to remove pressure.
And yet, Lily just wasn’t a character I could root for, because there is nothing she wants in life except have sex. She has no ambition, no drive, no intelligence, no strength. And that made it impossible for me to connect with her. Also
“My elbows blushed”
“I turned red”
“My cheeks heated”
“I felt myself go red in the face”
“My entire body turned a shade of crimson”
*Throws book against the wall* EVERY FREAKING PAGE. Lily stop, JUST STOP. How many times do I need to know that you blush easily and that your elbows turn red when you’re embarrassed (is that actually a thing?) and that you are constantly ashamed of yourself? I couldn’t, I just couldn’t. Ugh
Loren was a bit better, but he also wasn’t the kind of guy I was swooning over. Far from it actually. However, I liked the fact that he was kind to Lily and that you could tell that he really did love her and wanted the best for her. I could muster more respect for him than I could for Lily, even if he wasn’t as fleshed-out a character as I would have liked.
Another issue I had was that this book to be too long for the story it was telling. Yes, it was entertaining. No, it wasn’t ever boring. But for goodness sake’s there is only so much angst I can take before my head starts to spin. This story shouldn’t have been dragged out so much, it got repetitive after a while (which I get was sort of the point but still).
But enough complaining, because even if it seems like it from what I just wrote, I really didn’t hate this book. In fact, I suspect it’s quite a lot better than other NA books (I haven’t read many so I can’t be sure). So here are the (many) things this book did RIGHT:
✔︎ It’s a NA book that tackles mental illness and does it in a way that I found to be respectful and therapy positive. The authors did a good job of not stigmatising Lily’s and Loren’s disorders but instead showing how they were wrongfully perceived by others as being selfish and social pariahs.
✔︎ It is devoid of slut-shaming (beyond what Lily thinks of herself) and girl-hate.
✔︎ Lo’s and Lily’s relationship is incredibly toxic and the book acknowledges that. Addiction is never romanticised.
✔︎ Family plays a big role in this book and I loved seeing the dynamics between the different sisters.
✔︎ The book is a very realistic portrayal of addiction.
✔︎ I loved Rose and Connor. Great job on the side characters
✔︎ The last 15% were really strong. Well-handled and a positive message.
Even if I found this book a bit infuriating at times, I definitely recommend it if you’re looking for a new NA book to read or just need something to get you out of the reading slump. It will definitely do the trick.
As for me, I don’t plan on continuing on with this series, however, I am very interested in Kiss the Sky because I think that one will be way more up my alley. So my question is, is it possible to read that one without continuing with the Addicted series? Let me know in the comments!