New Release and Review: BAD BOYS by Max Henry


Author: Max Henry
Genre: Mature YA Romance

Series: Arcadia High Anachrists #2

Lacey Williams: Good Girl.

At Riverbourne Preparatory, that title made me desirable. All a rich boy wants is a pretty and obedient woman on his arm. And I was most definitely both of those things.

But at Arcadia High? Being a good girl made me a target. I became a trophy for the spoilt, an end-of-year reward for those willing to play the game: bad boys.

Each side wants me so the other can’t have me. Schoolyard bullies who fight over the same damn toy. 
The city kids have arrived to reclaim what’s theirs, and the country? Well. 

Those boys sure don’t give in without a fight.

*This book is not a standalone.  Good Girls must be read prior to diving into this book.*

“I got framed for something that happened here,” Lacey confesses. “But Mum doesn’t believe me. She thinks I did it to get back at everyone for what they've done at school.”

“What have they been doing?” I rest an elbow either side of the phone and lean over the screen, hands knitted together above it.

“It’s nothing.” She walks away from the screen, her voice growing distant. “Just petty shit, Tuck. Don’t worry about it. I’m sorry I can’t make it today.”

I’d give anything to be able to reach through the phone to hers and lift it so I can see her. “Come back here.”

“I can’t leave. Mum won’t let—”

“I mean to the phone, Lacey. Come back so I can see you.”

She sighs, the soft exhale barely audible from wherever she is. A fucking poster of vintage Mickey Mouse stares back at me instead.

“I want to see you, baby.”

Another tense minute passes. My heart feels too large for my chest.

“Okay.” She moves back into view, the rims of her eyes noticeably pinker and a tissue clutched in her hand.

Still, she won’t look at me.


“Yeah?” Her throat bobs.

“I wish I could hold you right now.”

“I wish you could too,” she whispers. “I need to feel like somebody still wants me.”

4.5 stars Max Henry takes the high school bully romance trope to a whole new level in the second book of her Arcadia High Anarchists series. I thought Good Girls (book 1) was a great read, but Bad Boys surpassed my expectations.  Not even halfway in and I found myself gasping at some of the cruel pranks and pretty much told my husband that I couldn’t go on date night because I needed to see what happens.  This book is told from both Lacey’s and Tuck’s POV.  It is city vs country.  Freedom vs. money and privilege.  Where does Lacey belong?  Where does she want to belong?

Teaser Credit: Heather Packard

Lacey remains a strong character and she continues to grow on me. I really liked her in the pervious book, but I absolutely loved her in Bad Boys. She finds herself on a journey of self discovery as she tries to navigate getting thrown back in with the vane and privileged sharks at Riverbourne all while leaving pieces of herself behind in Arcadia.  The bullying that she endures and the family upheaval pulled at my heart stings.  I just wanted to reach into the book and give her a big hug all while telling her that things will eventually get better.  Tuck plays a much larger role in this book, which I loved.  I enjoyed watching his feelings towards Lacey grow and how he continued to stick by her.  At times, my heart broke for him as well as the author further develops his character. 

Teaser Credit: Heather Packard

Many of the secondary characters from book 1 are also present in Bad Boys and it was interesting to see what role they each served.  There were a few that I really wanted to smack, but then you have others like Beau and Maggie who are the types of friends that I’d love to have in my corner.  This is a story about looking inward and finding oneself, friendship, trust, and mind games.  There are interesting family dynamics amongst the characters, secrets, betrayals, and shocking revelations that are sure to keep you entertained until the very end and leaving you wanting to immediately dive into the next book.  As this is book 2, it is not a standalone so be sure to read Good Girls first. 

Start the Series with Good Girls

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