When My Heart Was Wicked by Tricia Stirling

published on February 24th 2015 by Scholastic Press
young adult | fantasy | contamporary

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I used to be one of those girls. The kind who loved to deliver bad news. When I colored my hair, I imagined it seeping into my scalp, black dye pooling into my veins.But that was the old Lacy. Now, when I cast spells, they are always for good.

16-year-old Lacy believes that magic and science can work side by side. She’s a botanist who knows how to harness the healing power of plants. So when her father dies, Lacy tries to stay with her step-mother in Chico, where her magic is good and healing. She fears the darkness that her real mother, Cheyenne, brings out, stripping away everything that is light and kind.

Yet Cheyenne never stays away for long. Beautiful, bewitching, unstable Cheyenne who will stop at nothing, not even black magic, to keep control of her daughter’s heart. She forces Lacy to accompany her to Sacramento, and before long, the “old” Lacy starts to resurface.

But when Lacy survives a traumatic encounter, she finds herself faced with a choice. Will she use her powers to exact revenge and spiral into the darkness forever? Or will she find the strength to embrace the light?


Before getting into my review, let me tell you now that this book isn’t for everyone. If you’re easily offended by harsh main characters, or if you’re put off by characters who have really dark thoughts, then best stay away.

Now that I’ve said that, I want to say that I personally really enjoyed reading When My Heart Was Wicked. I’m a big fan of dark and crazy stories, so this one was right up my alley.

This book was a psychologically engaging one more than anything else. You’re going to be kept wondering what’s real and what isn’t, like I found myself doing. Until now, I’m honestly not sure if I’d pitch this as fantasy or realistic fiction.

Another aspect I absolutely adored was the writing. Every page was full of quotable quotes. Hell, I didn’t even bother using sticky notes anymore because I’ll find a quote I like no matter what page I opened to. It wasn’t the lyrical sort of writing, but it was the kind that was elegant and could cut through your bones at the same time.

There were also a ton of scenes that were really surprising. The twists were ones that I promise you you won’t see coming, and that will possibly leave your mouth hanging open.

When My Heart Was Wicked was a devious story, perfect for fans of books like like The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer with a less causal writing style.


Skulls 4.5

4.5 skulls


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About Aimee
Aimee loves being a little bookworm (okay–she doesn’t like being little). She also loves chocolates and sweets but is freaked out by the thought of possibly getting diabetes.
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16 thoughts on “Review: When My Heart Was Wicked by Tricia Stirling

  1. Oooh, now I’m curious. I recently finished the Mara Dyer series (which I loved — that series just kept getting better and better for me) so I’ll have to check this one out. Sounds like it has everything I look for in a good book. ^_^ Great review!


  2. I have this say: THAT COVER. That cover is so gorgeous I created a whole new Goodreads shelf for gorgeous covers. And your warning was pretty much incentive for me to read on. Dark and crazy and psychologically engaging? GIVE IT TO ME. I’ve not yet read Mara Dyer (although I’ve heard amazing things), but this sounds right up my alley. Thanks for the review!


  3. I am drooling over the cover ugh. Its so damn pretty ugh <3 but other than that, I am also very intrigued when you said dark characters. I'm not sure if I will like the darkness side of these characters, but I love morbid reads and dark ones so… I'll probably try this out :D


  4. I’m in love with this cover! It’s sooo pretty! I think I have a copy of this so I’m definitely reading it!


  5. Well. Now I need this book! I love psychological stuff, and so yeah, I am going to need this one. From the synopsis, I felt pretty apathetic about it, but your review has me thinking it is much different than I assumed. In a good way. I love twists, and the writing sounds amazing! And I don’t have any problem with an off putting character or two ;) Great review, this one is getting added to the TBR!


  6. I really want to read this book! I love the idea and I keep reading really good reviews. Not sure how I will feel about the dark thoughts though, I tend to like lighter books :/ but nice review! I think I will still give this one a shot.


  7. Okay, this cover is gorgeous and the title is gorgeous, and you said that it’s dark and like Mara Dyer, and WHY HAVE I NOT HEARD OF IT???

    Seriously, I LOVE LOVE LOVE dark novels, and beautiful writing, and it seriously sounds like this book is right up my alley because of everything I said in the above sentence *heart eyes*


  8. Hmm, I’m not a big fan of dark stories, so I don’t know if I would like this one, but boy is that cover gorgeous! I’m so conflicted! It’s great that this was such a wonderful read for you! I love that the writing was so memorable and quotable!


  9. Ohhh, that cover is everything – It is quite catchy! I haven’t read a dark and intense read in a while, I hope this is as amazing as it sounds – great review!


  10. I usually love characters who are sarcastic and tough, and I generally don’t mind dark (though I just stopped reading a book that was so dark that it was depressing me.) I guess I like dark books with a touch of snark or humor to them.
    PS Love that you said “devious.” To me devious implies a bit of humor amidst the darkness…
    Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen at YA Romantics


  11. Well, I like dark characters, even if their thoughts are dark and they’re harsh so I’m instantly curious about this one! I loved stories that keep you guessing and surprise you, so thank you for putting this one on my radar^^ I’m glad you enjoyed it so much :D Awesome review and thanks for stopping by ♥

    Micheline @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews


  12. Gosh, I loved your review! I do enjoy darker books, they’re weird in a positive way, interesting and most of the times unpredictable. Also, I’m glad about what you said on the writing style!
    I’ve added it to my WL and I’ll try to read it ASAP, cuz you definitely had my interest going way up!


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