Book Review: Love’s Prey

Book Review: Love’s PreyLove's Prey by Meg Xuemei X
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 255
Published by Silver Wheel Publishing on June 8, 2014
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Deemed a thief, a brute, and a slut by one's own family and schoolmates might take its toll on your average fifteen-year-old, but Xirena makes no apologies. Kai, the smoking hot seventeen-year-old boy next door, has heard what they say too, but can't stop thinking about the girl everyone in town says is no good. As his obsession for this Chinese ice-queen turns to fiery love, Kai sets out to unlock her heart and free them both from what their society demands.
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Ramblings on Readings

 

[Kai] treats every girl with the same politeness and apathy. I’ve been able to hear the boys’ conversations by reading their lips. Kai placed a bet with them that he’d never fall for any girl. It makes the girls want to catch him with their long, sexy claws all the more. I’m mildly interested in watching this battle of the sexes. Something tingles in my head. My sixth sense flares. I know that he’s standing by his window now, his eyes trained on me. My mind orders me not to move, reminding me, Haven’t you said you don’t want complications? But my feet run to my window. I need to confirm the accuracy of my sixth sense. Indeed! He leans against the windowsill. Spotting me, his eyes light up, and a broad smile breaks out across his face.

-Kingle Loc 208

Love’s Prey is the story of Xirena, a horribly abused fourteen year old with dreams of being an astronaut, and her love for the boy painter next door. Kai is the summer sun to her winter snow, and she doesn’t know how to let him in enough to thaw her icy heart. As a social outcast, Xirena trusts no one, and for good reason; not only is she abused at home, but her entire town is against her.

This book is all about Xirena growing from a scared, beaten child into a strong woman. Through flashbacks, we see her terrible past, filled with miserable memories. But Kai promises a wonderful future, though they have to hide their relationship in the present. That doesn’t make their romance any less sweet; her moments with Kai are like a breath of fresh air compared to her normal life.

“You were known as the ice girl who never smiles, but when you smiled at me for the first time, you branded me. I felt like I was burned by a solar flare, only it was a good burn, and I was a goner. You’re both ice and fire, and I can’t get past that.”

-Kindle Loc 2159

Because of her inability to trust people, Xirena really jerks Kai around. She’s always thinking that he’s cheating on her, and he continually has to convince her that there’s no one else. This was exhausting, but very understandable. He’s extremely patient with her, which is very sweet. You just feel so bad for her the entire book because literally everyone is out to get her. It’s Mean Girls times 100.

“Nothing is easy with you, Xirena. I have to constantly fight to bring you back to our mutual ground of trust.” He steps closer. “I did recall we agreed to trust each other.”

-Kindle Loc 2482

The writing itself felt almost poetic at times. Meg Xuemei X, whether English is her first language or not, has a solid command of the writing style. Because it’s set in China, there are interesting cultural differences as well, though it is set in modern day, so it’s not a completely foreign landscape. But there were moments when Xirena would say “because of {a} we have to {b}” and whatever a and b were, they were so foreign to me, and she simply accepted them because it was how life was in her village. So these differences were very interesting to me.

Ultimately a triumphant, heartwarming story, Love’s Prey is a great book for fan’s of Katie McGarry’s angsty teen romances.

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