Author: Kristen Ashley
Publisher: Forever, Grand Central Publishing
Rating: 4.5 stars
Type: Novel in Series
Received from Publisher
Blurb: The ride of her life . . .
Once upon a time, Carissa Teodoro believed in happy endings. Money, marriage, motherhood: everything came easy—until she woke up to the ugly truth about her Prince Charming. Now a struggling, single mom and stranded by a flat tire, Carissa’s pondering her mistakes when a vaguely familiar knight rides to her rescue on a ton of horsepower.
Climb on and hold tight . . .
In high school, Carson Steele was a bad boy loner who put Carissa on a pedestal where she stayed far beyond his reach. Today, he’s the hard-bodied biker known only as Joker, and from the way Carissa’s acting, it’s clear she’s falling fast. While catching her is irresistible, knowing what to do with her is a different story. A good girl like Carissa is the least likely fit with the Chaos Motorcycle Club. Too bad holding back is so damned hard. Now, as Joker’s secrets are revealed and an outside threat endangers the club, Joker must decide whether to ride steady with Carissa—or ride away forever . . .
Review: Whatever Kristen Ashley’s got, she’s got in SPADES, because while this book has her signature style, it’s been smoothed up and polished so that it’s not only hers, it’s hers on DEATH STAR speed, mega wattage. KA at her finest, and that’s a hard thing to handle. I know I stayed up until very very late to finish this sweet story of second chance love and I know several friends who will too.
In high school, Carissa and Carson were drawn to each other, and though their circles and circumstances kept them apart, they secretly yearned for one another. Now it’s seven years later and fate has thrown them together again. But is Joker going to let the fact that she doesn’t remember him mar what could be a second chance for love? Let’s hope not.
Carissa had lost her younger sister tragically at an early age, and then her mother had died when she was a teenager. Left alone with only her father, she’d married young to an abusive, charming a$$hole who’d mistreated her and taken her for granted. With eight-month old baby Travis, she was doing the best she could with very little support. Getting help from the imposing biker on the side of the road at first frightened her until she saw the kindness in his eyes. Funny how this stranger was more willing to help her than her ex-husband.
Carson Steele had a bad start in life, and things didn’t get better until he left home and made them so. He’d grown up and become a man–a man he could be proud of being. But was he always going to believe that because of his father’s violent behavior, he was destined to be that way too? He’d shut himself off from relationships, fearing what he could become. When he stopped to help Carissa and her baby and realized it was her, it opened up all kinds of wants in his head and heart. Was it possible for him to want more and actually get it?
How to get Carissa out of the clutches of a jerk ex-husband and to convince Carson/Joker that he could have the love of a family he’d always wanted?
I really liked the way that Ms Ashley handled Joker’s character coming to terms with his past and how he could take back his future. It was done fast, well, and with little angst–a perfect combo for me. And while the hurt was explored between the characters for Carissa not recognizing him–it was over quickly, not dwelled on. More realistic. There was no grudge holding, no angsty feelz, just dealing with it and moving on. Oh there was hurt…there was anger. But it wasn’t allowed to hijack the story line. And I LOVED it. Appreciate you for your excellent handling of that, KA!
Left in the talented hands of Kristen Ashley, the story comes alive with all of our friends from Chaos taking part. Mix in the usual cast of characters from the Rock Chick, Unfinished Heroes, and Dream Man series, the continuing battle of a MC struggling to become legit with a power-hungry player trying to encroach on their turf, a murder, some fine designs, and you’ve got the crazy ups and downs of KA’s world at its best. Her sizzling smoky hot sex scenes bring down the house as well as the wonderful way the characters connect so powerfully with their emotions–too good to miss. Great character development leads the engrossing story line with a one-two punch at the end that made me laugh and made my day. Thanks KA for all the great work you do! Mwah!