Wicked Games by Jessica Clare

 

“Abby Lewis never pictured herself on the survival game show, Endurance Island. She’s just not the ‘survival’ type. But when her boss offers her a spot on the show and the opportunity of a lifetime, she packs her bags and heads to the tropics to be a contestant.

Once in the game, it’s clear that Abby’s in over her head. The game itself is full of competitive, aggressive people, and no one’s more aggressive than sexy, delicious – and arrogant – Dean Woodall. Sure he’s clever, strong, good at challenges, and has a body that makes her mouth water. He also hates Abby just as much as she hates him. That’s fine with Abby; she’ll just ignore the jerk.

But the rules of Endurance Island are working against them. Abby and Dean are teamed up – alone – on the beach. It’s either work together, or go home. Stuck with no one else’s company but their own, they learn they do make a good team after all.

And that with just a little bit of kindling, the flames of hate can quickly turn to flames of passion. This book features enemies, lovers, enemies who become lovers, and lots and lots of tropical heat…”

– Synopsis from Goodreads

Wicked Games written by Jessica Clare (sometimes goes by Jill Myles is the first book in the Games Series. Take a longer look on Goodreads!

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I have read this series already once before, and I have yet to find anything else like it. Trust me I have tried. I don’t normally re-read books. I think this will only be my second time re-reading something I’ve read before. And the other book that I did re-read was because there was a twist at the end, that I did not see coming and I wanted to see if there were any clues in the book that I did not catch on too originally. So just know that this book, is that great for me to want to re-read it.

| Psst… Check out my reviews for this series |

| #1 Wicked Games | #2 Playing Games | #3 Ice Games |

| #4 Bedroom Games | #4.5 Reindeer Games |

| #5 Body Games | #5.5 Pleasure Games | #6 Partner Games |

Abby Lewis finds herself on a beautiful island, with some beautiful people. Before reaching the island, she can feel the wind in her hair on what she assumes is a beautiful boat ride. She can only assume since she has a blindfold on and isn’t quite sure where the hell she is going. Welcome to Endurance Island, for 6 weeks her and 24 contestants will have to win challenges, survive the wilderness and start from scratch with a partner they just met. Of course Abby’s partner is low and behold the sexiest guy on the island, Dean Woodall. He also seems to be the cockiest one too. This is not what Abby signed up for, hell she didn’t even sign up in the first place. Abby works for an entertainment magazine where she does reviews on books and such. Just so happens that company is owned by the same one that produces the survival reality TV show Endurance Island. When last minute a girl can’t go, they decide to pull someone that works in media, so when the show is over they can have more exposes, more gossip and fame for the show. Abby only agreed because she would get a book deal in the end, and the chance to hopefully win 2 million dollars. Except the thought of even winning went downhill when her and her new partner Dean can’t even say two words to each other without fighting.

As days go on, they find themselves shocked that they’re still on the island and might even have a change at staying the 6 weeks and one of them becoming winners of the millions. Except while the game is being played, and they stop fighting and start getting to know each other, the attraction becomes high. They struggle to keep the banter up of hating each other, but struggle more keeping the attraction hidden from the others on the island. So when Chip tells them of a twist in the challenge, will it break Dean and Abby apart as teammates? Or is that something they both wanted all along anyways?

This book, is a favorite of mine. I watch Survivor and Real World. I’ve watch episodes here and there of Big Brother and The Amazing Race. So to read a book that has a mixture ofcompetition and being stranded on an island is good. But what makes it even better is also two people finding someone they hate so much that they just might fall in love. It makes it just wonderful.

If you like any of the shows I listed above and/or hunger games – well without people dying and killing each other – and a whole lot of cute romance. Read this book and I can promise the others are great as well 🙂

Check out my review on Goodreads or take a look at my longer review and summary below!

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Long review with all the spoilers so SPOILER ALERT!

Abby Lewis does book reviews for an entertainment magazine. Which just so happens to be owned by the same company that produces a newer reality tv show, Endurance Island. One of the female contestants dropped out of the 2nd season, and they need a replacement. They also want more publicity after the first season didn’t get as much as they thought. With Abby being the only real female in the journalism office that could compete her boss Jeannie really leaves her no choice. Do the show or else she will give her shitty assignments for however long Abby decides to stay there.

“Here’s the deal, Abigail,” Jeannie said in a blunt voice. “You go out there and join their little game show and don’t tell anyone about the deal. You’ll meet up with production assistants—that will allow you to record a video diary every day, exclusive for MediaWeek’s usage. You stay until you’re voted out, and when you come back, you do the press tour like a good girl, write your articles that give us an exclusive inside look, and then you write your book. It gives MediaWeek a nice bit of leverage and free advertising, and Matlock’s show gets a boost as well. That’s how the parent company wants it. Do you understand?”

Almost as soon as she agreed, things got started. Doctor visits, forms filled out, taking care of things at home. By the time she knew it she was being blind folded on a boat with many other contestants. The host starts talking telling them to take the blindfold off then grab an item before they swim off to their island, that hopefully will be their home for 6 weeks… unless they get voted off.

When Abby jumps off the boat, she is stepped on by another contestant. Then when she tries to go swimming, another female grabs onto her, yelping for help that she can’t swim. Abby helps her, but when they get close enough to wear they can walk the shoreline, the girl shoves Abby with disgust like she was the one helping her swim. Abby is chocking on salt water after being stepped on and helping a girl not drown. So when she is coughing and slightly can’t breathe, the contestants are joking that she needs to call a medic and go home. Even calling her fat.

The Host Chip tells everyone this year will be a team challenge. Boy and Girl. School yard pick. The guys drew numbers and picked who they wanted as a female companion for the team. At first he “hot” girls went. Which Abby thought was weird, wouldn’t the guys want the stunt double, ex marine or the gymnast? Instead they picked actress, model and playboy bunny. It came down to the final 2 picks. Abby and the girl that Abby helped to the island – The aspiring actress. Dean the guy that Abby seems to dislike, but also find very attractive, actually picks Abby over the other girl, Heidi. Sending shocks to her, Heidi and the host Chip.

After getting to their campsite things just got worse. They decided that they didn’t want to share anything after Dean went looking for some water and came back yelling that she had nothing done, even though she was trying to build a shelter after seeing rain clouds. They slept separately . Abby cold with nothing to stop her from shivering and Dean warm with a blanket he won but up all night with bugs and stuff in the sand getting him. When they woke up, they found a box telling them today was challenge day.

At the challenge, it was a team effort. One was blindfolded and had to paint (Abby) whatever the caller (Dean) could describe on the card. It was not going well, the brush was on the ground and he barley helped her find it. Then she had to find the right color, but he was hardly helping her find which color is which. He just kept yelling at her, causing her to pick up all the paint and blindly throw it at Dean. Screaming at him to never yell at her ever again. They were in the bottom two teams, and time for judgement day of eliminations. Today’s the decision of who got voted off was by the other teams. When asked how everything was going both Dean and Abby said something along the lines of horrible and they were not getting along, like the other bottom team. When it came to seeing who went home, they were shocked that Dean and Abby were not voted off. They were good for at least another round. Seems that the other teams want to keep the weaker team instead of a team that gets along.

When they get back to their camp, Dean instantly walks away. Abby works on her shelter, and goes to sleep. When Dean comes back he gives her his blanket, saying that she should have it, since he won’t be getting any sleep anyways. The next morning, he helps her open her coconut, and she helps him make a fire. The decide to have a small agreement that they need to get along. That they can be a team and win challenges. Share her shelter because he is itching too much from the sand bugs. Before the challenge, which they hope is a reward one, they decide to have one small scoop of peanut butter each. The peanut butter is what Abby grabbed off the boat before they had to jump off. They had no silverware so Abby stuck her finger in the peanut butter and offered it to Dean, thinking he would scoop it off and eat it. Nope this fine specialism of a man put her peanut butter finger in his mouth and sucked it clean. Causing her to be very turned on. In an interview later for Dean, he told the camera’s that it turned him on as well, and now he can’t help but keep looking at her butt.

As the challenge goes on, one has to swim (Dean) and the other puts together puzzle pieces that the swimmer brought over to them. They were doing great, probably would win first place, but they didn’t want people to know that. Considering all the looks and comments they were getting from other people. So Abby started to slow down and she mumbled under her breathe to have Dean yell at her, fake fight. They got 5th place out of the qualifying to win a prize 6. It worked. Winning bug replant and anti-itch stuff.

Back at camp they applied the bug itch stuff. Even started helping each other,  up until another team showed up at their campsite. They wanted to form an alliance. Show them where they found banana’s and mango’s, if they give them some of their fire. They agree and help them set up shelter and then the guys fish with the hooks they won. They now have an alliance with Lana and Will.

You know, on day one, I wanted to be here with any woman but Abby. Now, I can’t see anyone but her.—Dean Woodall, Day Six

They’ve been on the island for 2 weeks now. Squeaking by at barely the bottom each time, not to put a radar on them. Yelling at each other all the time as well. Yet at the end of each day they would go to bed and share the small like shelter she made. Each night it made Abby hornier and hornier, but Dean never made a move. Never showed that he wanted her no matter how closely they slept each night. Another challenge was coming up, but this time it involved bringing all their belongings. They think they might be split up, which scares Abby. Yet Dean shows that he’s only here for the money. All 2 millions dollars.

Dean was right, they were trying to split up teams. Since guys picked the first time, it was now time for the girls. The girls had to see who could get fire the fastest, and the order that they won is the order they got to pick their new partners. Abby being the expert in firing making, was first to win. Chip the host gave her an option. She can get an advantage to the game and get a new partner or stick with her old partner and go to a spa with food for an overnight stay in a real bed. Hesitant at first, she picked Dean, telling everyone it was because of the food and shower not because of Dean.

When they got there, they showered. Talking over the doors Dean asked why she picked him again , he thought she hated him. She told him it was because of the food and spa. He asked if it was anything else. She confessed to him, that it was because he wasn’t a bad partner. She asked him to wash her back for her, and he turned her around and they started making out. He told her that he’s had eyes on her since day one. He found a condom in one of the bathroom drawers and they had sex in the shower stall.

When they returned back to camp Lana was there with her new partner Leon. Abby snuck back pancakes and sausages and they gave them to the new team, to from another alliance but with Leon. Lana thinks that Dean might be only sleeping with her for the votes and money. Abby thinks different, but doesn’t know for sure. Especially since she is not there for Dean’s interviews.

When we first got stranded, I kept thinking about my next meal. Now all I keep thinking about is when I get to touch Abby again. I’m starting to hate when the others come over to our campsite.—Dean Woodall, Day 18

Another challenge came, but this was the last before the merge of no teammates and each player for their own. Abby and dean were in the lead up until Abby sprained her ankle. Causing them to be in the final two for the judgment elimination. Somehow with some help of their alliance, they were not kicked off. When they got back to camp, there was a letter stating that it was time to merge, go to a new camp where they all would be together. There goes their alone time, since they’re still supposed to hate each other.

First challenge went well for Dean, Abby had to sit out the second half because of her sprained ankle. When eliminations came, she was voting for one of the guys Riley since he was strong and that’s who their alliance was voting for. Yet when the votes were pulled and announced, Abby was the one to go Exile Camp. When she looked over at Dean as she was leaving, he wasn’t even looking at her – he was whispering to Lana. All by herself there other than production crew, she realized that she had fallen hard for Dean, but she had a strong feeling he betrayed her and didn’t feel the same.

Abby was set up in the production filming room to start writing her articles for the magazine. She started with the interview tapes, where she saw Deans. She found out he was a gold and silver medalist in Olympics for swimming. In his interview he said he would do whatever he needs to do to win the money. Even if that means romancing the ladies as much as he needed too. Of course Abby was pissed, she wanted to punch him in his pretty face.

When the second person is voted off, she tells Abby that Lana is running the show now. That Dean even voted Abby off. Him and Lana are tight now always by each other whispering all the time.

As time went on for the final weeks it finally came down to the final two. No surprise Dean and Lana. Abby did her best, to look her best and walked in holding her head high. Chip told them that each person voted off can go and ask the final two questions. Leon was first and asked Lana and Dean if they lied about the alliance, and they both agreed that they did. When it was Abby’s turn she asked Dean if he fucked her to get her vote, he said of course not. So she asked Lana, and Lana said that he did, he was just stringing her along the whole time. That he specifically told Lana that. When it was time to vote, Abby voted for Lana. Because she never lied to her or tried to get in anyone’s pants to win the money.

Once the game was officially over after the votes, everyone was finally sent home. While Abby was getting into her van, Dean calls after her. She is beyond pissed, especially when he tries to explain himself but she wants nothing of it. Then Lana tells Dean that Abby is writing a book about this experience. Dean steps back, asking her to not do this, but Abby heads into the van.

A few months later, the show was finally airing on TV. At first Abby didn’t want to watch it, but then as weeks go on she couldn’t help but be impatient and then re-watch them over and over again until the next episode aired. She was finding out new facts, and new thoughts about not only the show but Dean and the other people on the island. Dean never once said anything in his private interviews about stabbing Abby in the back or wanting to sleep with her to get an advantage. When the merge episode aired and Abby was voted off, she realized that Dean did not vote for her. Even though Lana told another cast member that he did. When was leaving after judgement was determined and she looked at Dean, she thought he was too busy whispering to Lana. But when watching the episode, she realized that Dean had no idea and while she was walking away he had shock, then anger in his expressions and seemed to be pissed and was questioning Lana.

Throughout the rest of the challenge, Dean said in the interviews, that he was only always around Lana because he didn’t trust her. That if he left her alone for a second that she would scheme against him. When one of the bimbo’s won a hotel reward, she took Dean. Even though she was high flirting and touching, he always pushed her off and even went to bed early alone. Spoke in his interviews that he missed Abby and wants to be with her, even if that means staying on this island longer.

Abby watched the finale with everyone else on stage in front of a live audience. She watched Dean talk about his want for her, how excited he is to see her after the show is done. Then it cuts to when Abby voted for Lana instead of Dean. It showed her glimpse of being so angry and saying hurtful things. When the votes are being read LIVE in front of an audience, she finally takes a moment to look into Dean’s eyes for the first time since the show. Just as the winner is being called. Lana. The deciding factor was Abby’s vote too. She caused Dean to not win 2 million dollars. The shame and embarrassment plus the realization of what she did and how he felt came crashing down on Abby. Causing her to rip off the microphones and run off backstage. Feeling like she might vomit, but instead crying so hard she can barely breathe.

After sometime, she felt warm hands on her. It was Dean. Instead of hating her, he is trying to help her calm down. Trying to make her laugh. When she questions why he is being so nice to her, since she caused him to lose millions of dollars. He said that he has money, he has endorsements, but he understands why she was so upset. He found out that the girls were telling her lies, that they were trying to break them apart. That he wants to have another shot with her. That he wants to be with her. They start kissing, and the live audience goes wild. Not realizing that the camera crew followed them, to show their cute moment live on TV.

Some cute things were said, which I don’t want to ruin for you because it was adorable. Men like Dean don’t exist. So while the after party is still in swing, Dean and Abby rush off to the hotel suite. We’re they talk about spending time with each other now, and that’s just what happened.

So when they got marries 6 months later on the same island that the show was on, they didn’t have media or networks involved. Just the two of them in the same type of robes they wore when they first slept together while one of the locals married them.

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