Review: Hold Me by Courtney Milan

holdmemilanSeries: Cyclone #2
Published by: Victory
ISBN 13: 9781937248499
Published: October 2016
Pages: 303
Format reviewed: eVersion from NetGalley
Site: Author Site
Goodreads: Book Page
Stars: Five out of Five

This is the second in the Cyclone series, however can be read as a standalone. The whole series however, starting with Trade Me and peppered with short stories here and there (listed in the back of the book) are all worth reading and impossible to put down.

In the first book, Tina and Blake are the main characters. We see snippets of Tina’s best friend and roommate, Maria. This book is all about Maria and Jay, who meet through Maria’s brother. Jay is driven and determined to not be distracted from his mountain of accomplishments and commitments, and Maria has enough problems of her own to deal with her brother’s grouchy and rude friend.

What makes this series spectacular is that, without making too much of a deal of it, (and what you’ll already know if you’ve started the series with Trade Me), is that Maria is trans, and together they are of different backgrounds. Milan also bucks social norms (having Jay’s mother be outspoken and sweary, etc) in the most excellent of ways.

Through Milan’s on point characterisation and ability to connect seemingly innocent things through background lie plot references, we have a book that can’t be put down as you can’t wait to see the dawning realisation on the characters at certain intervals. You realise certain things before the characters do, though not in an annoying way. It’s engaging and leaves you wanting more, as always, which is why Milan finishes off with links to short stories set in the same world, a suggestion of which series to read next, or a list of other authors and series she recommends if you’re already read through her own backlist.

I can’t wait for any new parts to come out in the series – I’m desperate. I can’t wait to see more of each character (which is such a rare thing!) and I’m slowly starting to trust anything Milan offers – time to get into one of her other series, I think!


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