Blog Tour + Review: DEAR AVA by Ilsa Madden-Mills

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"Dear Ava is heartwarming and angsty and don't get me started on Knox. Read this book! You will love Ava's fight and Knox's alpha."

--Tijan, New York Times bestselling author

Wall Street Journal bestselling author Ilsa Madden-Mills delivers a gripping enemies-to-lovers, secret admirer, high school romance with Dear Ava, available now!


Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills
Genre: Enemies-to-Lovers
High School Romance

The rich and popular Sharks rule at prestigious, ivy-covered Camden Prep. Once upon a time, I wanted to be part of their world--until they destroyed me.
The last thing I expected was an anonymous love letter from one of them.
Please. I hate every one of those rich jerks for what they did to me. The question is, which Shark is my secret admirer?
Knox, the scarred quarterback.
Dane, his twin brother.
Or Chance, the ex who dumped me. . .

Dear Ava,
Your eyes are the color of the Caribbean Sea.
Wait. That's stupid.
What I really mean is, you look at me and I feel something REAL.
It's been ten months since you were here, but I can't forget you.
I've missed seeing you walk down the hall.
I've missed you cheering at my football games.
I've missed the smell of your hair.
And then everything fell apart the night of the kegger.
Don't hate me because I'm a Shark.
I just want to make you mine.

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“What do you want?” Knox says with as sneer as I ease in the football locker
room. Cold eyes flick over my cheer skirt then move up and land on the hollow of my
throat. It’s not cool enough at night for our sweater uniform so tonight my top is the red
and white V-cut vest with CP embroidered on my chest.
“Where’s Chance?”
He whips off his sweat-covered jersey along with the pads underneath. “I don’t
keep tabs on my best friend for you. Get out—before I scare you.”
He’s scaring me already.
But I can’t stop looking at him.
His shoulders are broad and wide, his chest lightly dusted with sparse golden
hair, tan from the sun, rippling with powerful muscles, leading down to a tapered and

trim waist. He has a visible six-pack, and my gaze lingers briefly on a small tattoo on his
hip, but I can’t tell what it is. He isn’t brawny or beefy-looking like one might expect from
a guy blessed with his athletic prowess, but sculpted and molded and—
Dropping my gaze, I stare at the floor. I shouldn’t be ogling him. Chance is my
I hear male laughter from one of the rooms that branch off from the locker room,
maybe the showers, and I deflate, guessing that’s where Chance is.
Glancing up, I intend to ask him to tell Chance I came by to congratulate him on
his two touchdowns, but my voice is frozen. Knox has unlaced his grass-stained pants
and is shucking them off. His legs are heavily muscled and taut, unlike the leaner build
of Chance. His underwear are white and tight, cupping his hard ass, the outline of his
“Like what you see, charity case? You can look, but you can’t touch.”
Anger soars, replacing my embarrassment. I know I'm just the scholarship girl at
Camden, but why does he have to constantly remind me?
“Don't worry about me touching anything. I don’t like ugly.” The words tumble out
before I can stop them. I meant his superior attitude, not his face, but I see the moment
when he freezes and takes it the wrong way.
He touches his face, tracing his scar while his jaw pops. “Get the hell out. Only
players allowed in here.”
I pivot and go for the door, forcing myself not to run. “Asshole,” I mutter.
His laughter follows me.


What do you do when one of your favorite authors releases a new book?  You clear your entire schedule because you know she is going to rivet you right from the beginning and you will not be able to function in the outside world until you’ve devoured every last word. 

Without giving anything away, I will say that the character development this is novel is phenomenal. Ava is a strong, hardcore heroine who has endured so much.  As the author painstakingly weaves together her past and present, I admired her strength and resilience.  As for her love interest, their verbal sparring had me laughing and it was impossible to not feel their intense connection.

Several of the characters are complex and they each play an integral role in the plot line.  There is an underlying mystery thread throughout the book and you will definitely want to have some tissues ready as you embark on Ava’s journey.  Brilliantly written, Dear Ava is an emotionally charged, enemies-to-lovers high school romance that is sure to capture your heart.  You will find yourself crying and laughing, heartbroken and swooning, but most of all you will be left with perfect ending. 

I received an early complimentary version of this book.

About Ilsa:

Ilsa head shot-2
Wall Street Journal, New York Times and USA Today best-selling author Ilsa Madden-Mills is best known for her angsty new adult romances and romantic comedies. Eight of her eleven novels have placed in the Amazon Top 10 Best-seller List: Dirty English #1; Fake Fiancée and I Dare You #2; I Bet You, Filthy English, and Very Bad Things #6; Boyfriend Bargain #8; The Last Guy, her collaboration with Tia Louise, #4. A former high school English teacher, she adores all things Pride and Prejudice, and of course, Mr. Darcy is her ultimate hero. She's addicted to frothy coffee beverages, cheesy magnets, and any book featuring unicorns and sword-wielding females. Feel free to stalk her online.

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