The Compulsive Reader: Wild Roses by Deb Caletti

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Wild Roses by Deb Caletti

To the outsider, Cassie Morgan appears lucky. She lives in a nice house, goes to a nice school, and her stepfather is Dino Cavalli, world-renowned composer and violinist. People at school are constantly reaching out to her, wanting to know what it's like to live with a genius. But Cassie can't tell them what it's like, because the truth is that Dino is narcissistic and mean, and he is going crazy. His erratic behavior is beginning to alarm Cassie, and she can't seem to get her mother to see or understand that. Then, Dino takes a student, the young and brilliant Ian Waters, who has his own demons. Cassie and Ian are drawn to each other, but keep their relationship a secret, afraid of Dino's reaction. But as they are about to find out, secrets have a way of getting out, no matter how hard you try to conceal them.

Wild Roses is yet another dynamic and emotional read from Deb Caletti with a strong voice and a distinctive setting. Cassie's situation is a unique one, and her narration is very engaging and authentic. She deals with her family situation with a lot of humor and sarcasm, but she refuses to be defined by her parents' divorce or her stepfather's behavior, and she tries to balance them all the best that she can. Dino is a bit scary, and he does put the reader on edge, which builds plenty of tension in the novel. There's also a bit of a mystery to the book in that Cassie doesn't understand why her mother fell for Dino in the first place, and her father is determined to prove that Dino isn't who he says he is...and if he isn't that person, what is Dino's true story? Ian Waters is a good character as well, and the romance between him and Cassie is sweet, yet complicated. However, he seems to be a minor character in that he isn't in very many scenes, and Cassie seems to build him up in her head quite a bit. Nonetheless, Wild Roses is a solid, beautiful book and a can’t-miss for Caletti fans.

Cover Comments: Pictured is the newest paperback edition cover. I like the blues and purples and the way the snowball is shaped in a heart--it's very sweet. This is a very pretty cover!


Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

I read this several years ago and remember enjoying it. Nice to know it's being reissued in paperback!

Sarah Lydia said...

never heard of it- but it looks good! I really like the cover, too. I'm glad you enjoyed it :)

Valia Lind said...

The cover is so pretty!

Jessica Lawlor said...

Just read my first Caletti book last week (and coincidentally reviewed it today too!) so I definitely want to check this book and her others out now. Her writing is so beautiful!

Anonymous said...

I think I have this one, I know I always meant to read it but somehow got misplaced somewhere in my house.

It sounds good so I'll look for it.
Thanks for your review