Review of Revenge and the Wild by Michelle Modesto

RevengeandtheWildRevenge and the Wild
By: Michelle Modesto
Release Date: February 2nd 2016
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Format: Print ARC
Source: Publisher

A copy of this book was sent to me in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:

The two-bit town of Rogue City is a lawless place, full of dark magic and saloon brawls, monsters and six-shooters. But it’s perfect for seventeen-year-old Westie, the notorious adopted daughter of local inventor Nigel Butler.

Westie was only a child when she lost her arm and her family to cannibals on the wagon trail. Nine years later, Westie may seem fearsome with her foul-mouthed tough exterior and the powerful mechanical arm built for her by Nigel, but the memory of her past still haunts her. She’s determined to make the killers pay for their crimes—and there’s nothing to stop her except her own reckless ways.

But Westie’s search ceases when a wealthy family comes to town looking to invest in Nigel’s latest invention, a machine that can harvest magic from gold—which Rogue City desperately needs as the magic wards that surround the city start to fail. There’s only one problem: the investors look exactly like the family who murdered Westie’s kin. With the help of Nigel’s handsome but scarred young assistant, Alistair, Westie sets out to prove their guilt. But if she’s not careful, her desire for revenge could cost her the family she has now.

My Thoughts:
I really had no clue what to expect from Revenge and the Wild. I assumed with “wild” in the title I’d get some wild west but I did not expect all the fantasy and paranormal elements. It was a really wonderful inclusion and so unique. Modesto was able to weave together a wild west setting with vampires, cannibals, magic with a dash of steam punk. How was this even possible?

Had I known that all these elements would collide in one story I think I’d have been pretty hesitant because wow….that’s just so much to throw into one setting and story. But Modesto somehow succeeded in having me believe that her world was plausible and that all these characters could all be inhabitants. Rogue City was actually pretty easy to visualize and imagine.

I really loved Westie, the main character. She was so incredibly flawed and yet so heartfelt. She struggled with addiction and insecurity and these elements made her more intriguing to me. I found it easy to love her and hurt for her past and the pain she dealt with presently. This poor girl really had it rough. As a child she lost her family to cannibals and barely made it out alive. Yes. Cannibals. And somehow it all works. I’m not entirely sure how!

The secondary characters were beautifully executed for the most part. I found the vampire, Costin, to be a particular favorite as well as Westie’s adopted family- Nigel and Alley. Each character had depth and I could easily understand their point of view and motivations. The interactions between the characters and dialog were great and each character had their own voice. And there was chemistry! I fully shipped Westie with two folks in this book. That might lead to the question- was there a love triangle? Hmm, I guess technically yes but it worked for me. I think Westie’s emotions were explained well and completely understandable.

Where the novel sort of dipped for me was in the development of the bad guys. I felt the majority of them (yes more than one bad guy) were flat and though a motivation was given I didn’t exactly feel it.

This book was fast paced and the writing easy to read and digest. I felt it was straight to the point and Westie’s voice, in particular, was beautifully done. I found the very ending of the book to be lacking some. With the crazy mixture of genres I expected an ending that would blow me away with how strange it was but instead it was rather cliché. It wasn’t overly predictable but at the same time it was a bit of a let down. I felt the novel was strong enough not to suffer too much with the lackluster ending though.

Final Thoughts:
I found Revenge and the Wild to be a riveting and incredibly unique book. I’ve yet to see all the elements Modesto threw together work in one book but somehow it did in this one. I loved the main character and felt that this was an immensely entertaining read.


  1. says

    I’m really happy you enjoyed this one, I’ve been excited for it but saw some bad reviews and I became hesitant. But thanks to your review, the excitement is back again, yayyy! It definitely sounds like a unique book, since it involves the Wild West, paranormal creatures, steampunk, cannibals and so on. I’m really curious to see how the author will manage all of that. Books set during the Golden Rush and everything around it has been a trend since last year, I’ve really enjoyed what I read of them so far and I think this one will be another gem. Thanks for sharing your thoughts 🙂

  2. says

    The fact that there is more to this than just being a Western makes me want to read it even more. Plus, your reviews are always so convincing Kristen! It is too bad about the ending though. Thanks for sharing your review!

  3. says

    I’m really so glad you enjoyed this one! While I adored Westie’s imperfect and impetuous character (as well as the sizzling romance!), I also had a bit of problems with the story that resulted in 4 stars. But omigosh, the delightful blend of all the paranormal and Wild West elements REALLY made it a fun ride. It’s definitely a book I’ll be recommending to friends who like a darker tale!

  4. says

    I started reading it this morning and I was going into it tentatively because I have not seen any good review before yours. Even the three star reviews I saw were meant to be verging on 2.5. Your review gives me more hope. 🙂

  5. says

    Awesome review Kristen 😀 I am a bit unsure about this one. Haven’t heard about it until this past week, lol. But oh, you make it sound pretty much amazing 😀 I’m so glad you loved this one sweetie. But aw, sorry the ending was a bit boring. But glad it didn’t ruin the book for you 🙂 I’m curious about it now. Thank you for sharing. <3

  6. says

    I was concerned that this one would be overwhelming, just because the author seems to be including so many different elements. But it’s great to hear that you felt like it worked well together! I might just have to check this one out 🙂

  7. says

    I think this one is slowly moving up on the list of books I eventually do want to read at some point! I love the looks of the cover and all, and it shames me that I actually turned this one down for review. My utter mistake! I especially appreciate when the secondary characters are given detail too, so that makes me even more prone to reading this one.

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