SOME TRUTHS ARE BETTER KEPT SECRET. SOME SECRETS ARE BETTER OFF DEAD.
Along the banks of the Bogue Falaya River, sits the abandoned St. Francis Seminary. Beneath a canopy of oaks, blocked from prying eyes, the teens of St. Benedict High gather here on Fridays. The rest of the week belongs to school and family—but weekends belong to the river.
And the river belongs to Beau Devereaux.
The only child of a powerful family, Beau can do no wrong. Star quarterback. Handsome. Charming. The “prince” of St. Benedict is the ultimate catch.
He is also a psychopath.
A dirty family secret buried for years, Beau’s evil grows unchecked. In the shadows of the haunted abbey, he commits unspeakable acts on his victims and ensures their silence with threats and intimidation. Senior year, Beau sets his sights on his girlfriend’s headstrong twin sister, Leslie, who hates him. Everything he wants but cannot have, she will be his ultimate prize.
As the victim toll mounts, it becomes clear that someone must stop Beau Devereaux.
And that someone will pay with their life.
This one is so good, I’m not even sure where to start. I was expecting dark romance but this is something else entirely: obsession, sick and twisted that will never be anything else, can never be reciprocated. Beau Devereaux is a sick, sick boy. He puts up a great front as the star quarterback, excellent student and most popular guy in town but he’s hiding an evil so deep and depraved that nobody would ever suspect. Except for Leslie. She sees right through his façade and knows exactly what he is, even if nobody else believes it.
He’s biding his time until he can have Leslie and will do whatever it takes to get close to her. He’s been dating her twin for months, hoping to quell some of his urges with her lookalike, but Dawn isn’t what he wants, not at all. His twisted plan has worked well, driving a wedge between the sisters that both keeps them apart while giving him access to stalk Leslie’s life from nearby.
She knows he’s no good and Leslie’s determined to unmask him for all to see, but even she underestimates the monster inside of him. As Dawn becomes disillusioned with her boyfriend’s wandering eye and gaslighting to hide his cheating, the girls grow closer once again but only Dawn realizes how Beau orchestrated their estrangement. But why does he want to keep her from her own twin?
This story is amazing in every way. The twists at the end (yes, twists plural) made my week. There was one I expected but two I never saw coming and the last few chapters had my mind reeling. This is book one of a duet and for once, I have absolutely no idea what to expect from the next book. The story could have ended right here so I don’t know where we go from this point but I can’t wait to find out. The heartfelt note at the end from one of the authors gives it an additional dimension that’s both painful and hopeful. We need more writers like Weis and Astor. I received an ARC from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
2 thoughts on “ARC Review: River of Ashes by Alexandrea Weis + Lucas Astor”
Thank you so much for the wonderful review!