It only took one moment of weakness for Laney Keating’s world to fall apart. One stupid gesture for a hopeless crush. Then the rumors began. Slut, they called her. Queer. Psycho. Mentally ill, messed up, so messed up even her own mother decided she wasn’t worth sticking around for.
If Laney could erase that whole year, she would. College is her chance to start with a clean slate.
She’s not looking for new friends, but they find her: charming, handsome Armin, the only guy patient enough to work through her thorny defenses—and fiery, filterless Blythe, the bad girl and partner in crime who has thorns of her own.
But Laney knows nothing good ever lasts. When a ghost from her past resurfaces—the bully who broke her down completely—she decides it’s time to live up to her own legend. And Armin and Blythe are going to help.
Which was the plan all along.
Because the rumors are true. Every single one. And Laney is going to show them just how true.
©2015 Leah Raeder (P)2015 Simon & Schuster, Inc
Black Iris caught my attention immediately, and I was drawn into the story and held captive.
“I am not the heroine of this story.
And I'm not trying to be cute. It's the truth. I'm diagnosed borderline and seriously fucked-up. I hold grudges. I bottle my hate until it ferments into poison, and then I get high off the fumes. I'm completely dysfunctional and that's the way I like it, so don't expect a character arc where I finally find Redemption, Growth, and Change, or learn How to Forgive Myself and Others.”
― Leah Raeder, Black Iris
Laney has had the year from hell. After a dramatic moment with a high school crush, Laney was rumored a queer, a slut, a mental case, and all around social outcast. So screwed up her mother decided she didn’t even want to stick around for her psycho daughter.
With high school ending, Laney has the chance to reinvent herself, the chance to make friends and live a normal life like everyone else. When Blythe and Armen find and befriend Laney things get interesting. Blythe is wild and the perfect companion for the screwed up Laney. Armen is a sweet guy and only wants to help Laney battle her inner demons. When the secrets of Laney’s past come to light, her new friends help her to live up to the very true and very dark rumors.
One of the best audiobooks I have listened to this year. Deep, dark, emotional, RAW, and all consuming. I found myself thinking about the story ALL the time. Wondering where the story was going to take me, thinking about Laney, Blythe, and Armen and the relationships they shared. I found myself stopping to think about what was happening, and reviewing every detail. With every word containing such emotion and meaning, I hung on each word.
Leah Raeder creates vivid imagery with her words. She paints a clear picture that sucks the reader in and holds them hostage. Her characters are developed in a way that makes them real, so real you can’t help but feel each emotion they feel right along with them. The emotion is behind each written word and can be felt throughout the story. Leah knows how to keep a reader interested, she bounces in time from past to present and just gives the reader a glimpse of what’s to come. I felt like I was going to go insane with impatience.
Grace Grant is the narrator of Black Iris. She did an astounding job of making the story come alive. Her gravelly, yet clear tone kept me interested throughout the book and left me wanting more. Grace did an especially remarkable job with Blythe and her Australian accent. I hope to hear more of Grace Grant in the future.
Black Iris is not your everyday love story. It addresses deep rooted issues like bulling, suicide and mental awareness, drugs, and sexuality. Looking for a change? Look no further. I HIGHLY recommend Black Iris!
Narrated by: Grace Grant
Length: 11 hours and 33 mins
Release date: 4/28/2015
Publisher: Simon and Shuster Audio