Because I have my Review Policy posted, I almost never explicitly state where I obtained my copy of the book for review. But in this case, I need to let you all know I threw myself on the mercy of the author and begged. I was facing an entire morning getting my car serviced, I had this review due, and all the other ARCs I had to read aren’t going to be published for at least 6 weeks or so. I was desperate.

Luckily, Carrie Ann Ryan likes me and immediately sent me this ARC. Let me clearly state, however, that in no way did Ms. Ryan influence this review. This is a completely honest review which is 100% my own.

Oh, Lordy. Let me start off by saying the decision to read this in a public waiting room was clearly not the best choice. It was hot and sexy and emotional and tragic and just all around wonderful.

In the second book of the Montgomery Ink series, Decker has been in love with Miranda for years, but he refuses to admit it to himself and he refuses to do anything about it. Miranda has been in love with Decker for years and has decided she’s going to take matters into her own hands and make a move. This does not go well for them. This book starts out slow, in that the relationship doesn’t really get going until the middle of the book, but you don’t feel like it’s dragging. There’s lots going on, both with the Montgomery family and all the drama that entails, as well as a subplot with Miranda and…well, you’ll just have to read for yourself.

Decker is my favorite kind of hero. He’s not only in love with his best friend’s little sister, but he’s absolutely broken. He believes he needs to stay away from Miranda for her own sake because he’s no good for her. He has family issues that loom so large in his head that he doesn’t see how to get past them. Miranda, for her part, doesn’t completely recognize his demons so she doesn’t know how to help. I’m not even sure she realizes he NEEDS help, but also, she’s dealing with her own more current trauma.

My biggest (and really only) complaint in this book is one you’ve heard me say before. There wasn’t enough grovel. I know. I’m a total grovel whore, but in this he REALLY needed to do more, IMNSVHO, and she let him off pretty lightly. I understand why, but he emotionally abandoned her when she needed him most, and that’s a pretty huge betrayal to get past, and I don’t think he did the work needed to heal that wound. We’ll have to see how it plays out in future books.

In the meantime, I’m off to pick up the rest of the Montgomery Ink books so I can catch up. I’m looking forward to Luc and Meghan’s book.

I loved Razed. I loved Zane and how he was with Keelie. And Keelie was absolutely NOT what I was expecting based on her behavior in Wrecked.

We met Zane and Keelie in Wrecked. Zane has always been interested in Keelie who thought she was in love with Zach who has always loved Abbie who was totally oblivious to it all. Confused? Don’t be. Zach is both Zane’s brother and Keelie’s business partner. Unfortunately things are strained between Keelie and Zach right now because she kissed ¬†caused a lot of upset between him and Abbie in Wrecked.

So now Abbie and Zach are finally married and she has realized she was using Zach as a way to keep men away, so now she’s looking and she finally sees Zane.

One of my favorite tropes is friends to lovers, and this series is so far 2 for 2. Zane and Keelie have known each other for several years already, but they’re still finding their way as a couple. Zane is in the process of moving his life to Tuscon so he can be closer to Keelie (and Zach and Abbie). Keelie, in the meantime, is picking up more responsibility at the tattoo shop to help lighten Zach’s load.¬†How do they turn the friendship they have into a relationship? Does Keelie even WANT a relationship? How can Zane get her into one without her noticing?

He does, and quite well. I loved seeing how settled Zane was and how patient. He knew what Keelie needed and did his best to give it to her in ways that supported her without the reader feeling like he was sacrificing everything for her. Keelie for her part was always honest with him, with her fears and her needs as far as their relationship went. Even when she didn’t want to tell him something, she would say it straight out instead of trying to lie or prevaricate. And it doesn’t hurt that Ms. Walker knows how to write some smoking hot sex.

I’m looking forward to the next book which is Trey’s. Looks like a tortured hero AND a small child. Shiloh Walker just gets me.

Rating: 4 Stars

Lynda the Guppy
Gimme Those Tortured Heroes Guppy
aka The Fish With Sticks

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