Book Review, Playlist, + Giveaway: Thrive by Krista & Becca Ritchie

Addicted, #2.5
This is NOT a novella. Thrive is a full-length New Adult Romance and vital to Lily & Lo's storyline. It's recommended to be read after the Calloway Sisters spin-off books: Kiss the Sky and Hothouse Flower. 
Two years will change them forever.

When rumors spread like wildfire—like having three-ways with her boyfriend’s rock climbing brother—Lily Calloway spirals into a dark place. Her bedroom. Loren Hale is more confident and determined to keep their sex life private, even from their friends, and he helps Lily in the only way he knows how. But how much love is too much?

Their lives are filmed, watched, and criticized. And through it all, Lily and Loren have to face enemies they never thought they’d see, demons they don’t know if they should bury, and setbacks they didn’t think they’d meet. Not this soon.

And one rumor could be too much for them to handle. It will test their greatest limitations, and if they don’t hold onto each other, someone is going to drown.

Recommended for readers 18+ for mature content. 

If there's an off chance that you haven't heard of the Addicted series, and haven't even read the first book yet, please give me a moment to beg you to start now. *gets on knees, hands clasped together* Krista and Becca Ritchie are two brilliant authors, whose books have been an absolute pleasure/thrill/experience/etc. to read. They're a rockstar writing duo in my eyes! The Addicted series (including its spin-off) is now six books in, and there are still three more to come. It may sound like a lot of books to commit to, but really...I'll gladly take another ten if Krista and Becca are willing to write them! They've introduced readers to striking, constantly evolving characters, an unforgettable group of close friends and siblings. Their dynamic--every detail of every moment--is riveting. And, no, this pun will never get old...I'm simply addicted. ;)
*For detailed posts, check out Fizz Life here and here.
| Addicted to You | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |
| Ricochet | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |
| Addicted For Now | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |
| Kiss the Sky | My ReviewAmazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |
| Hothouse Flower | My Review + PlaylistAmazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |

| Addicted After All | +Goodreads |

| Fuel the Fire | +Goodreads |

| Long Way Down | +Goodreads |

As for the latest novel, Thrive? *sea lion bark-clap* There are so many details that I could fawn over, but it would be impossible to fit all of them into a review and avoid spoilers. *squeals and covers mouth* But here's what I can tell you...I loved coming back to Lily and Loren. I loved returning to events from Kiss the Sky and Hothouse Flower, but seeing them through LiLo's eyes. I loved seeing new things that Rose, Connor, Daisy, and Ryke never knew about. And, speaking of the rest of the Addicted cast, I just loved spending time with all six characters again and watching this part of their journey unfold!
I'm going to love Lily how I want to love her. Overwhelmingly, uncompromisingly. Look away if you have to.
In Thrive, I adored quirky, best-kind-of-weird, fangirl Lily, with her animated expressions and reactions, but she could also be sweet, quiet, and observant. She also let out her loving and protective spirit more and more. Certain scenes with her sisters made me want to just hug my Kindle and never let go!

Lo was as snarky and sassy as ever, and I'm convinced that I could spend all day worshipping Lo's bromantic banter with Connor. I actually shrieked at my Kindle, "BOYFRIENDS! YOU LOVE EACH OTHER!" (Let's be honest, that Connor Cobalt is a scene stealer.) They were like Clooney and Pitt, Affleck and Damon, Fassbender and McAvoy, Cas and Dean, Damon and Alaric...Name any pair, real life or fiction, and the LoCo ship can sail right alongside any of them. I could throw a thesaurus at you, and every synonym for funny, amusing, or witty wouldn't be able to justify just how outstanding these characters are together.
Six-foot-four with those obnoxiously confident blue eyes. Connor Cobalt is catnip for pussy and cock. He knows it, and he almost just doesn't care.
It was one of many things that I loved about Thrive! These characters. Together. There were developments and twists in every relationship. Some were complete surprises, but others we saw coming, thanks to Kiss the Sky and Hothouse Flower. For instance, I definitely loved revisiting the evolution of Ryke and Daisy's relationship and experiencing the tension and buildup all over again! *squeee*
She's smiling wide, her blonde hair tangled and hanging half in her face. "Hey there," she says, looking up at Ryke. 
That's the beauty and genius of Krista and Becca's writing style. Whether they're giving you something new or something you've seen before in another book, they wrap you up in their words and squeeze every emotion out of you. Krista and Becca took our hearts in KtS and HF already, rolled them around in feels. So we thought we'd be immune to it the second time around, right? Wrong. Instead, K+B said, "Wait! Not done yet!" They took our hearts back, applied a fresh coat of feels, handed 'em back raw and heavy, and said, "Here, try this." The arguments, confrontations, and confessions...They were all emotional wrecking balls. WARNING: CAN NOT CONTAIN UGLY CRIES. (And for the record..."Go fuck someone who actually likes you, Julius!" Will. Never. Get. Old.)
We've grown closer to them through every struggle...We're all united together by these events, a team that I don't want to disband. Not now.
The bonds between sisters, brothers, best as the story continued. They were so protective of each other, and they grew with each other. It was so palpable, and it wasn't just in the highs, but during the lows as well. When they were most human and vulnerable...It's in the way Connor shows his intelligence, but also his emotion. Not only when Rose shows her leadership, but also affection. Or when Ryke can be hard and compassionate. Daisy, with her beauty and sadness. Last, but not least...There's Lily and Lo. It all comes back to them. The most mortal of the group. The most humanly flawed.
"Will you let me know when you get your superpower?"
He nods, and his fingers slide across the base of my neck. I love that he touches me so much more. "I have to warn you though, I may not have one." 
"That's okay," I say. "Sometimes I like the idea of just being mortal with you."
This moment sums up Lily and Lo so well, for me. It's significant to the current state of their lives. Lily and Lo are waiting on the day when everyone will have faith in them, trust them...They're hoping to live up to expectations, but...Nobody's perfect. And that's okay, too. Rose and Connor are the power-house couple. Ryke and Daisy are the adventurers. Lily and Lo are the addicts, just trying to live in their own way, flaws and all.
...we're both exhausted from all the voices in our lives. For once, we just want to do this together. Alone. Lily and Lo.
They deal with their greatest fears and insecurities. Fear of failure, of making mistakes, of weakness. At times, it felt like they were suffocating, smothered by everyone else's concerns. Lo, in particular, had so much pent up anger and frustration throughout this book.
"Don't go down that road again, Lo. You need to bury those demons."  
I shake my head and look to my brother. "The things we bury," I say under my breath, "have a way of coming back to haunt us."
I could feel their desperation for control and privacy. I felt the unfairness of, not only society's standards, but also expectations from their own friends and family. The weight. The pressure. Then, it became a vicious cycle of questioning their self-worth.

Lily and Lo put up brave faces as best as they could, but there was a world of pain and suffering underneath. A lot of those bare-your-soul scenes were so raw and stripped down. They were simple words or actions, but they spoke so loudly and evoked infinitely complex emotions.
He laughs into a weak, pained smile, and then he shakes his head, his features just shattering. "I don't want to be the weak one."
I hurt and cried, right along with every character in this book. But for all the heartache and agony, there was just as much unconditional love and support. For every stumble, there was ultimately someone to hold onto and to help find a way back up. It was all so truly beautifully written that it made me fall deeper in love with this series when I didn't even think that was possible.

The ending gave me hope for Lily and Lo's future. I could feel their hope and their motivation for a new start. They were finally standing up for themselves, and it was that undeniable strength of standing together. It was pure and utter devotion.
The perseverance to do anything, to be anything. To thrive. Someday, that word will belong to us too. After years of coming up short, it's all I've ever wanted.
While I was reading this book, my mind never stopped racing. My chest would feel heavy, then soothed, then back again, all in a matter of a few page turns. There were moments that felt like a gut punch and moments that felt like a hug from your soulmate. This unique, gritty ensemble of characters are the roots, soul, and bones of this extraordinary New Adult series. I've never read anything like it! Refreshing, mind-blowing brilliance fills the pages of each book, and I can't wait for the next one!

| Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo |

| Thrive Promo Tour - Pinterest/Character Interview Mash-Up |
| Track 01. "Golden Cup" - |
*Loren Hale feels!
"People always get me wrong / I'm not angry-just bitter bitter bitter
The seasons will change but not my temperament /
Steady Rollin' like the wind, like the wind, like the wind /
Can I have your shoulder to cry on? /
Can I have your back to load up all my problems?"
| Track 02. "Strings" - MS MR |
*This song makes me think of Lily and how devoted she really is to Lo. At the 70%-ish mark in Thrive, this was my soundtrack for Lily!
"Anger and sadness get the best of you / Your words choked by a weak tongue
Too sad to be so young / Dependence on despair will get you nowhere
This time, this time where did you go / You're not alone, where did you go
This time, this time you're not alone
Wish I could erase the pain / To better help you survive another day
Spend everyday by your side / Till I know that you're alright"
| Track 03. "Look At Me" - David O'Dowda |
*Then, this song reminds me of how calming and soothing Lo can be for Lily. There are a lot of scenes when he just reassures and comforts her.
"I see you have color in your smile / Only when you smile at me
I will be there all through your life
I see you're steady on your own / Only when you think of me"
| Track 04. "Blush" - Wolf Alice |
*Blush is about trying to convince yourself that you're okay and that you deserve to be happy. I think it goes well with LiLo's frustrations in Thrive.
"Curse the things that made me sad for so long / Yeah it hurts to think that they can still go on
I’m happy now /  Are you happy now?"
| Track 05. "My Audacity" - Claire |
*I get a "I want to be a better person" vibe from this song and how that's not an easy thing to do. Fitting for Loren Hale? I think so!
"I wish I wouldn't be this cynical / But I know I need more than a miracle
Hold on and let me be misunderstood / I try to be calm when the demons are calling
But it never does me any good"
| Track 06. "Strong" - London Grammar |
*Lo just has a lot of pent up anger and frustration! Gahhh!
"Excuse me for a while / While I'm wide eyed and I'm so damn caught in the middle
Yeah, I might seem so strong / Yeah, I might speak so loud
I've never been so wrong"
| Track 07. "The Addict" - Bo Saris |
*This song brings out a big mix of emotions...for Lo...Lo and Ryke...Lo, Ryke, and Jonathan Hale...
"Tell me your reasons why you're in doubt / I'll help you out
Watch out for the addict / He's always trying to break you down
Watch out for his madness / Cause it's hard to turn back around
Even with a love so strong
I slowly watched you moving closer /  To a world without a home
So many times I thought I'd saved you / But you just slipped right trough my hands
Stuck in the game of hazard / Where no one is winning, man
But I will never leave you stranded / I'll stand the fight and do what I can"

| Track 08. "Find a Way" - Robots Don't Sleep |
*I can NOT find this on YouTube (sad face), but if you have Spotify, it's there!

"Will you walk out if I don't make it easy on you / Stay together, make it through
If you see me go down, will you stop and help me out
Keep me close to you / Stay together, no one else will do
I will find a way / If you will find a way"
| Track 09. "Kings of Troy" - Priory |
*Moments when Lily and Lo are alone, how happy they are together...
"I keep my love right here with you /  There's not a thing that they can do
'cause I'm the one who's always been here by your side
We took all our broken pieces / And like a puzzle they somehow fit
I know this world can be so vicious / We won't let them win"
| Track 10. "Bros" - Wolf Alice |
*I'm pretty sure this is a song about two girl BFF's (lol), but it makes me think of how far back LiLo goes and their whole lives together! Their best friendship!
"Forget our mothers and past lovers / Forget everyone
 I'm so lucky / You are my best friend
There's no one, there's no one that knows me like you do / Just me and you
Stuck it out together like we always do
Me and you / We can do anything, I'm quite sure" 
| Track 11. "Revolution" - Catey Shaw |
*This song is how I feel about LiLo by the end of Thrive. They fought through so much pain and pressure, but I felt so hopeful for them and their future! PS. Again, I couldn't find a studio version on YouTube, but if you have Spotify, it's on there!
"We all live for someone to die for / Someone to take off the weight of the world for
Someone to stand beside when nothing but bullets fly
And when the day's done, everything I've done / Anything I've lost is worth whatever cost
'Cause now that you're around / Nothing can hurt me now
No one's gonna tell us what to do now
You and me are gonna start a revolution / You and me against the world"

*Bonus songs: #RAISY IS ALIVE ;)
I couldn't help it! They are my faaave!!!

| Track 12. "XO" - Beyoncé |

"Your love is bright as ever /  Even in the shadows
Baby, kiss me / Before they turn the lights out
In the darkest night hour / I'll search through the crowd
Your face is all that I see"

| Track 13. "Boom Clap" - Charli XCX |

"You are the light and I will follow / You let me lose my shadow
You are the sun the glowing halo / And you keep burning me up with all of your love"

| Track 14. "The Great Escape" - Claire |

"This is a place, this is a place, this a place we're on our own
Nobody's gonna find us here"


Krista & Becca Ritchie are identical twins. They write New Adult books that make you cringe, gasp, and go ooh-la-la. (If you do that sort of thing.) They are currently working on the spin-offs and final books in the Addicted series.