Book Review: Wicked Heart

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Author: Leisa Rayven
ISBN: 9781466873056
RRP: $6.99

Last year Leisa Rayven burst onto the romance scene with Bad Romeo and Broken Juliet, both of which I loved. Now we have the third in the Starcrossed series, written in the same past and present format but focussing on Ethan’s little sister Elissa.


Elissa is a stage manager who doesn’t date actors, and she doesn’t date anyone she works with. The not dating anyone she works with is pure professional work ethics, the not dating actors is being burned one time too many and learning her lesson.

If it was Ethan and Cassie you loved about the first two books you will be pleased to know that they do make an appearance in Wicked Heart, but it is only a relatively small one.

Wicked Heart is written with the same light-hearted sense of humour and palpable sexual tension that characterised the first two books in the series.

We join the story in the present day, Elissa has taken on the role of stage manager for a production of Taming of the Shrew in New York City and she is just bracing herself for the entrance of Liam Quinn and his fiance, the stars of the production. Liam also takes a starring role in all Elissa’s fantasies; the two have a history that goes all the way back to before Bad Romeo and there has been a lot happen in the years since they last saw one another.

I was only a couple of chapters in when I started making predictions about what I thought would happen and though I wasn’t far wrong there was also a lot that I was not expecting. The tension was palpable and it was steamy but it was all about the chemistry between Liam and Elissa. Theirs was a Starcrossed love story suffering from extremely bad timing.

Wicked Heart

Wicked Heart is Elissa’s story, told in the first person and giving us a front row seat to all that is going on in her mind. What it doesn’t give us is the other side of the story, we know only what Elissa knows and feels. We are right there with her as Liam makes his entrance with his fiance, we are by her side as he looks at her with longing leaving her confused and unsure of what is going on; and we are front row as she remembers the times they shared in the past and all that happened to bring them back to the same place and the same time, even though it is still very much the wrong place and the wrong time for them.

The way Rayven unfolds the story and allows us to piece together all the sides of the story to discover what really happened is captivating. We see Liam through Elissa’s eyes and she can be quite jaded at times so it takes us a long time to see the big picture.

I love Rayven’s characters and I love the spin she puts on Shakespeare. I have been trying to write this review for hours but I found some outtakes from the series on Wattpad and have been sidetracked by them.

If you love romance and you love damaged lead characters, and you want to see what happened to Ethan and Cassie after Broken Juliet, then you really need to read Starcrossed – you won’t be disappointed. I would love to see a Starcrossed 4 but I’m not sure there’s a character for it, unless we get the lowdown on the Joshua Kane story.

Wicked Heart is book #20 for the Australian Women Writer’s Challenge 2016.

You can find Leisa on Facebook, Twitter and her Website.

Wicked Heart is available where all good ebooks are sold and from Pan Macmillan.

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