Sugar Skulls - Glenn Dallas, Lisa Mantchev

Book Title:  Sugar Skulls

Author:  Lisa Mantchev and Glenn Dallas

Series:  Stand Alone

Genre:  New Adult, Science Fiction, Romance

Publisher:  Skyscape

Source:  Netgalley Arc


☆My Pick for Book Theme Song:  With Me Now by Blacklight District ( It captures the gritty intensity of this world)


Vee and Micah's song.  Pretty but Intense…perfectly describes Vee and her lyrics.



  • Plot: 4/5 --Drugs, sex and rock n roll, I can’t help it, it gets me…I am an 80's child, after all.  With a Monsters Inc., energy collecting plotline, it peeked my interest and hung onto it with its intense storyline.
  • Characters: 4/5 --Messed up, but redeemable…
  • The Feels: 4/5 --The tension is ratcheted up so tight.   You feel like you better run before it swallows you up.
  • Flow: 4/5 --Written with a unique prose that can be hard to grasp…but once I did, I hardly noticed anymore.
  • Backdrop (World Building): 4/5 --Very futuristic and techy, sometimes the tech lost me, though.
  • Originality: 5/5 --I've never read anything quite like it.
  • Book Cover: 5/5 --It's what initially caught my eye.
  • Sex Factor: Yes, but not overly explicit.
  • Ending: 4.8/5 --A fulfilling ending.  Cliffhanger:  Nope…Stand Alone


Will I read more from this Author?  For the right book…yes


Welcome to Cyrene, a city where energy is currency and music is the lifeblood of its young citizens. Everyone lives on the grid, and the residents of the world’s largest playground are encouraged to pursue every physical and emotional pleasure imaginable.

Vee is the lead singer of the Sugar Skulls, an all-girl band that is Corporate’s newest pet project. Micah haunts the city like a ghost after an overdose of a deadly illegal street drug knocks him off the grid. When Micah and Vee forge an immediate, undeniable connection, their troubled worlds collide.

Trading concert stages for Cyrene’s rooftops and back alleys, they have to evade vicious thugs and Vee’s possessive manager as they unravel the mysteries connected to their dark pasts. And before the curtain falls, Micah and Vee will bring the city to its knees in their desperate bid for love, home, and a future together.

With words like odeaglow, glim, thrum, moondust, demisemiquaver, and arkcell, this can be difficult to take it all in.  I'll admit, in the beginning, I was wondering if I was going to like this.  I did, though.  Overall, it was an intense, gritty, and sweet story, all rolled into one.  I just hung on and enjoyed the ride.  This futuristic world is full of drugs, swearing, and teens went bad, so if this is not your cup of tea, you probably shouldn't read this.  Ultimately, it's about two people who don't want to have their life defined by this, though.


ARC of Sugar Skulls graciously provided via NETGALLEY in exchange for an honest review!