Toxic (Ruin #2) by Rachel Van Dyken

Toxic (The Ruin Series Book 2) - Rachel Van Dyken

Book – Toxic (Ruin #2)

Author – Rachel Van Dyken

Publication Date – March 4, 2014

Type – No Cliffhanger Series

Genre – Romance, New Adult

Rating – 6 out of 5 Stars


Book provided by Author (Release Blitz) in exchange for an honest review.


Reading Order

Ruin (Ruin #1) – Aug 2013 – Wes and Kiersten’s Story

Toxic (Ruin #2) – March 2014 – Gabe and Saylor’s Story

Fearless (Ruin #2.5) – March 2014 – Continuation of Wes and Kiersten’s Story

Ruin #3??? – Maybe we will get a story about Lisa? 




Everyone has a secret...

Gabe Hyde is on borrowed time. He's been hiding his identity for over four years-hidden from the world that used to adore him--obsess over him--driven to the edge of insanity by one poor choice. 
But that one choice, altered the course of his life forever. 
Pretending isn't all it's cracked up to be, especially when pretending means hiding your real self from the people that care about you the most. But if anyone ever discovered the truth it wouldn't just be his life at risk--but hers. 

Saylor doesn't hate men. 
Just Gabe. 
Only Gabe. 

He's a reckless, happy-go-lucky, silver spoon fed pain in her ass. Everything about him makes her more and more confused. Unfortunately they both donate time at the same Group Home. If she wasn't afraid of flunking, she'd be long gone. She hates that she's attracted to him almost as much as he hates that he's attracted to her--and she can tell, especially since their first encounter ended up making her knees so weak she couldn't form coherent sentences for weeks afterwards. But the closer she gets to him, the more confused she becomes. He isn't who he says he is, and he's hiding something big. 

What happen when two worlds collide? Two worlds that never should have met in the first place? Some secrets are too big to be hidden forever--the only question? Will his destroy everyone he loves? Or finally bring about the redemption he's been craving for the past four years?

Everyone has a secret...What's yours?



Damn….this book had me captivated from the moment I picked it up…the writing style, the story line and the characters had me engrossed from the beginning to the end.




Let’s start with the writing style – Ms. Van Dyken – your writing is poetic, your thoughts are philosophical and the love you show through your characters is never ending!  I felt I was reading a story in prose along with an Old English tragedy – this book was poetic to the extreme.  Your philosophical thoughts were enough for me to go back and re-read each one over and over again till I felt that chill go up my spine.  You gave me so much ammunition for future ponderings about life.  This was incredible; this was extreme and this, my dear Ms. Van Dyken was a MASTERPIECE!



The beginning had me both loving and hating our tortured hero simultaneously – while trying to come to terms about his obnoxious actions and words.  Saylor, what can I say about her?  She was the epitome of the perfect college student/daughter – perfecting herself in order to make her family’s life better.  Opposites attract while creating electricity – and this was the complete definition of Saylor and Gabe.  This is one of the top love stories for 2014 in my opinion.



Oh, and on top of that our old friends Wes, Kiersten and Lisa are back for more!!


I can’t say enough about this book especially since it is still fresh in my mind and my heart is trying to digest the many emotions I had to deal with while reading.  This isn’t just angst and tragedy – this is BEAUTIFUL DRAMA! This is taking that drama and making the best of it – this is about loyalty and love.  This is about FOREVER!




Gabe is hiding his identity – his past – his feelings and to do this he wears the mask of 3 different people.  This isn’t real – his actions are phony and his life is a lie.  For 4 years Gabe has hidden behind the walls of nonchalance and faked humor.


Everything starts to come to a boil and he goes to the music room to release some anger, unbeknownst to him that there is a certain music student listening to his music.  She gets caught – he hides behind a mask of arrogance to scare her off.  The sparks fly and an instant hate/lust relationship forms.



Is it fate that continues to put Saylor in Gabe’s presence or is it a punishment to antagonize her?  She is partnered with Lisa (Gabe’s BF and cousin) and again Saylor has to deal with his hurtful personality.  The project Lisa and Saylor choose puts her in sight of Gabe once again at the Group Home.  Saylor is confused as to why Gabe pays so much loving attention to a girl named “Princess” who is paralyzed.  As Gabe spends more and more time with Saylor, he realizes that his past is only going to end up hurting his future.


He must do what is necessary to protect the ones he loves!




I can’t encourage you enough to give this book a chance – this is a winner!  Don’t forget your box of Kleenex before you sit down to read!