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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Crazy Deadly Beautiful Love is a young adult romantic paranormal fantasy novel written by Kelly Croasmun. Hailey Marshall was driven and determined. While she was only eighteen years old, she had been raising her asthmatic little sister since Wren was a baby. Hailey had one more year in high school to complete, and, if things worked out as she planned, she'd go off to University on a full scholarship. She would take Wren along with her, and they'd live off-campus. Until then, she'd continue making sure Wren got on her school bus and then proceed to her own school after missing first and second period study hall. She would have to make those arrangements with school again, and, at first, the guidance counselor balked at the idea. Mrs. Young didn't exactly approve of Hailey being Wren's unofficial guardian and wasn't ready to give her both free periods. Then Hailey heard a young man ask what the problem was and direct Mrs. Young to comply with Hailey's request. Stunned, Hailey found herself looking into the bluest eyes she had ever seen. Then she was confused when he stared into her eyes and commanded her to forget what had just happened -- which didn't work. Hailey was a bit creeped out by the episode, especially after seeing him repeat his commands to Mrs. Young, but then she remembered Wren was waiting for her. They would have to walk home with a stop by the grocery store on the way. It was a struggle to make ends meet, but they had each other.
Kelly Croasmun's young adult paranormal fantasy, Crazy Deadly Beautiful Love, is a compelling urban fantasy about a young woman who has had to grow up way too soon and the boy who made her decision to avoid romantic entanglements until after college an impossible thing. It's hard not to feel compassion and admiration for Hailey, whose love for her little sister has dominated and shaped her life. Watching as the two live quiet and contented lives, threatened only by the intermittent appearance of their alcoholic mother and Richard, Wren's father, is a joy even as one can't help but worry over too many scrounged or missed meals. Devin Black, the enigmatic and mysterious young man who suddenly appears in their lives, is a marvelous character, even as he confuses Hailey with his seeming aversion to her physical presence. Croasmun's story is taut and well-crafted, and the reader is all too aware of the looming peril that surrounds Hailey and Devin. Crazy Deadly Beautiful Love is thoroughly enjoyable and most highly recommended.