I have a confession, I actually wrote this post last May as part of the Addicted series Love Fest hosted by the Fizzle Force admins, but I chickened out. I had no intention of publishing it, but after I finished my Addicted series reread last week, I have this mighty itch to get even more emotional. And, I supposed this will serve as my “farewell” note.
The majority of the content of this post are originally from my Addicted reviews. I never managed to post a review for Long Way Down so I thought this would be a perfect time. This is a sentimental reflection of a die hard fan with a heavy emphasis on my love for RAISY. *waves my family banner.*
You’ve been warned, this is not a review. There would be tears, and unnecessary long profession of love. Please, proceed with caution.
Addicted Series altered a huge part of my life, and rereading the series left a significant impact on me. It’s possible, I will never be the same.
I realized, after reviewing all of the books in Addicted series, I have finally exhausted the points I’ve been doing for the past ten books. I would sound as if I’m an annoying broken record if I continue to sing the same old tune. You can read some of my posts here. So maybe, I will just humor myself and the people who would read this why I terribly love Addicted Series.
(The evolution of Addicted to You cover from the first edition, July 2013 edition to the final edition, May 2014)
Addicted series is one of my first foray into New Adult. These books changed my perception of this genre. I remember reading Addicted to You for the first time, the tension was high peaked. I remember cringing in second embarrassment, writhing in pain and begging for Lily and Loren to seek professional help. I devoured it, I love it. Then Ricochet came around. I was more in love than I was before. This time around, I was unabashedly fixated with Ryke and Daisy’s budding friendship. This feels different. Next, Addicted For Now came along and I simply know I’m lost. It was this book that solidifies my love for this series. I could strongly recall one of the passages that left a mark on me.
“You’re human. You can still have problems. The difference is that you have the ability to fix them. You just have to want to. Not everyone can receive the same help you can or afford the rehab facility you went to.” My stomach curdles at the truth. “But that doesn’t mean your recovery can’t be difficult. It doesn’t mean that what people say on TV or in the tabloids doesn’t hurt as much. You still bleed like the rest of us. You can cry. You can be upset. That right has not been taken from you.”
(The initial cover for Kiss the Sky and the final cover)
Thereafter, Thrive was conceived a roller coaster ride of emotion, highlighting everything that transpired from Kiss the Sky to Hothouse Flower. Followed by Addicted After All, this is the happiest conclusion book out of the three main pairings. I have nothing, but blissful memory for it. Fuel the Fire on the other hand, emits wistful spirits. Maybe it’s because the stakes were higher, or because it was one of the final thread for these characters. Then, there’s Long Way Down, Ryke and Daisy brings the mother hen, selfish monster in me. It’s only natural, reading it feels like everything I’ve ever owned is truly lost. I’ll never forgive it for making me yearn more. Lastly, there’s Some Kind of Perfect. It seems their stories lasted a lifetime of heartache and laughter. How. Do. You. Move. Forward.
Maybe roping myself into this series wasn’t an accident, but surely the rest was history.
(The initial cover for Hothouse Flower and the final cover)
Growing up with two sisters who are a little bit older than me, I often feel left out. Sometimes it was unintentional, and sometimes it was on purpose. It’s not something I hold against them. They simply thought I wouldn’t get it because I’m younger than them. It’s completely unavoidable, but the exclusion isn’t lost on me. My life isn’t as lonely as I make it out to be, I promise. I have friends, but I never feel we connected. It was partly my fault. I’m not completely the excellent friend to rely on.
Then, I discovered this magical world filled with words. Soon after, I turned to books. They have been my constant companion ever since. My sanctuary. They were there for me when I didn’t know how to make it through. I understood their language, and they understood mine.
This is what Addicted Series mean to me.
For most people it might just be another book, but for me it is different. They are beyond a collection of words, they are swiftly a lifeline.
[backstory] me trying not to show how much i approve of ryke and daisy pic.twitter.com/pdZnyJzxaY
— fly jessica (@rykemeadows) February 19, 2014
I’ll always thank Krista and Becca for making Ryke and Daisy canon. I didn’t know a harmless shipping would create something pure. A beautiful relationship that doesn’t require any words, where silence is filled with familiarity and warmth. I remember when shipping them was frowned upon, I felt highly discouraged. As my friends used to say as I moaned, “You ship Ryke and Daisy enough for everyone, don’t mind people who don’t like them.” But, I’m so glad I stayed because this is everything.
They are worth every tear, laughter, and late night howling to the moon. They would always be my number one. Thank you.
Similar to Ryke and Daisy, I’m not very good at expressing my feelings. I don’t always know how to strike a conversation that is humanely proper and acceptable. I sometimes cross the boundaries. I suck at making friends and I have five kinds of wrong and no kinds of right. I have an askew point of view.
They tether themselves both to the ground.
That is what drew me to them. This is why I resonate with them more than I could ever convey. They weren’t just wild and courageous in my eyes. They are selfless without no expectation of compensation. The lengths they would go for someone they value dearly is completely admirable. Their reluctance to open up about their struggles, refusing to divulge the darkest moment of their lives as if it’s a violation of their privacy, because they’ve been strong — alone for so long. Somehow, they both represent the deepest core of my being. I admire them for who they are and what they stand for.
Headcanon look of Ryke and Daisy's wedding originally from daisycalloway
Thank you to Daisy Calloway, who has the brightest smile of them all, my kindred spirit. When she made her first appearance, she was perceived to be the epitome of fun with no emotional baggage. But little did we know, she’s been suffering behind the scenes. Thank you for showing that mentally ill girls deserve to smile. She’s been using her smile as an armor in combating her struggles for years when she had no one. How can people reduce that subtle, authentic portrayal of coping mechanism as something childish? She deserves her happy ending. Thank you for showing that standing up for your stance is tough. You can’t attain it overnight; there’s a long way to go, but you’ll get there. For giving her an unconventional dream that is very Daisy, that would bring home a sense of belonging to a lot of kids that feel alienated. For giving her a spotlight and an arc that is hers; for prioritizing her as someone’s first choice, never an option; for not magically concluding her PTSD, because it doesn’t work like that.
For Ryke Meadows. I want to say he has been stagnant and steady as his first appearance when this series started, but, like Daisy he has grown so much. He’s still that asshole who’ll gladly offer his shirt to a stranger just because. He’s still that man who has an immeasurable rage quietly burning inside him, who has a heart filled with so much guilt and loneliness, but has nothing to offer but love and support in his own ways. As the series progresses, his character development has been notable. He became softer in his Ryke-Meadows way. He learns how to break down his walls. He learns to forgive himself, he learns how to love without any restrictions, and he learns how to share his burdens, to not solely carry the world on his shoulders. I will love him forever.
I guess there is always a joy and pain in seeing your children grow up. At some point, you have to let them go. Maybe this is what being a parent feels like? I’ve grown with them, I laugh when they laugh, I cry, when they cry, and when they scream, the echo pierced through my soul. Their happiness coincides with mine, maybe, this is why saying goodbye feels like breaking my heart in two.
Long Way Down is a fast forward to the future where the stakes were higher.
To never slow down.
To never compromise who they are.
To never abandon their love for each other.
As the premise promises, Daisy and Ryke finally open themselves up, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are compromising their beliefs. This specific scene is a statement to that. I love that they chose to have something private between them. This makes me cry a lot. It seems insignificant, but it carries a wave of meaning.
He’s a breath away from my lips as the song fades. And very softly, he says, “I’m so fucking in love with you.”
I prop my body on my elbows, nearing his lips. People say you can’t describe love, but I have this theory that you can. It’s just subjective. Do you want to know what love feels like for me? It’s breathing and suffocating. Sobbing and smiling. Yearning and fading. To ache that much harder. To live that much larger.
It’s every moment. Every single, tiny one.
I’ve felt it all with Ryke.
And it’s not solely the wild, crazed events that keep my heart pumping. It’s these small, most inconceivable seconds of time spent together. Our smiles. Our tears.
Our limbs shifting or standing still. The instant our lonely souls are filled.
I’ve never lived or loved wilder and freer than with him.
I open my mouth to say the words too, but he nods like I see it, Dais. He sees it in my eyes. I’m so in love with him. He kisses me gently, and I think, this is it.
Our first dance.
I whisper against his lips, “This moment is ours, isn’t it?” I don’t want to share this with anyone else. We ended up on the floor. Just like animals. I break into a smile, and his thumb strokes the long scar on my cheek.
He looks like he could spend the rest of his life on the floor, right here, tangled up with me. He nods and says against my lips, “This is fucking ours.”
I run my fingers through his hair again. “I’m so happy I could scream.”
His lips curve upward. “Then scream, Calloway.” I howl instead. When he joins in, when he howls with me, my world is absolutely, totally and entirely complete.
Thank you for crafting a romance where genuine love exists, where consent matters, where every pair have their own defining quirk that makes them their own. To Lily and Lo, their childhood romance that would last a lifetime. A love that is completely adorable filled with comic and pop culture references. To Rose and Connor, a romance that started from teenage rivalry where everything gravitates towards oozing intelligent literary banter. To Ryke and Daisy, a romance built on years of akin loneliness and familiarity. Thank you for Lily, Loren, Connor, Rose. Daisy and Rye. Thank you.
Alas, thank you for being the bridge on uniting a bunch of people. I’d always be thankful because Addicted series brought me closer to my friends, and I met a lot of wonderful allies.
To Mich for being there with me during the dark days of Raisy. To my Fizzle Reads girls: Almera, Eri, Jae, Jessi, Katie, Laura, Lisa, Nazeefa, Siiri, and Sil. All our late night rampant chats. To Diep & Liv, our Sapphic Meadows family gc that will always be at its peak. To Jenn for creating a safe place for Fizzle Force. To Mana, Maf, Chrissy, Aisha, Scha, Reign, Edna, Laura, Saskia, Nini, Jen, Emma, Lanie, Rebecca. And to every person I met because of these characters, you are all amazing.
Do you want to start reading Addicted Series? See the recommended reading order here. You can also buy the rest of the series here.
Some Kind of Perfect is not the end, but the beginning of a new era. I can’t wait enough for Like Us series. I already made peace with the roll of thunder inside me. This book offered a brief outline on what Like Us series could be. It would be different, but I know the fruit would still be the same. Similar to Addicted series, the heart of the story would circle around conquering your fears, and following your dreams. There would be a familial solidarity, new found friendship, and the wide spectrum of love. My only hope is a conclusive saga that differentiates from the norm the Addicted series tackled.
I’m still raw and reeling with the emotional impact of my reread. Maybe there will come a day where I could review these books without correlating myself to its characters, but today is not that time.
As Daisy and Ryke would say to each other, “Wherever you go, I’ll go.” I’m keeping the same vow to this world, and characters. Till then, I’ll see you next time. Fizzle out!