Review: After the Climb by Kristen Ashley

I had so many feelings reading this book. I loved everything about it. There was angst. There was emotions. There was romance. Perfect combination.

I love second chance romances and this was fun. Plus having an older couple made it even more real, and sexy. Cuz we know, 20/30-somethings aren’t the only people having super hot sex. Also, the family all around made for a very fun experience. They way they all care for each other, and bond together, will make this series a definite must read.

I read this when it first released, during the crazy world shutdown, and I really liked it. It was the break from reality that I needed. I just reread this new version and I think I fell in love even more.

I highly recommend this book if you’re looking to escape the world around you. Kristen Ashley is the queen of romance and you won’t be disappointed.

~Melpomene

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Preview: Dream Spinner by Kristen Ashley

Dream Spinner, an all new action packed standalone with heat and heart from New York Times bestselling author Kristen Ashley, is out now, and we have an excerpt just for you!

 

In this steamy and emotional contemporary romance from a New York Times bestselling author, two damaged souls must overcome the pain of their pasts to have the love they’ve always dreamed of.

 

After years with no one but herself to rely on, Hattie Yates has finally met the man of her dreams. But she was taught from a young age that it was hopeless to dream. There was only success, failure was not an option and it had terrible consequences. Now, the thought of another disappointment petrifies her. But when a suspicious phone call leads to more trouble than she can handle, there’s only one man Hattie trusts to help . . .

 

Axl Pantera knows Hattie is the only woman for him—and so does Hattie. Yet despite the attraction burning between them, Hattie refuses to let Axl in. The former soldier is determined to woo Hattie into letting down her walls, yet when danger comes calling, he finds himself battling for more than her heart. Axl will do anything to prove to Hattie that they’re meant to be, but first, he’ll need to keep her safe.

 

 

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Excerpt

 

“Yo, Axe,” Hawk greeted.

“You got a minute?”

In answer, Hawk tipped his head to the chair opposite his desk and tossed his phone on the top of it.

Since Hawk rarely sat, the men who visited him didn’t either.

But for this, Axl closed the door behind him after he entered, moved to a chair, and put his ass in it.

Hawk watched this, and he hesitated, but then he joined him, sitting behind his desk.

“Is everything cool?” Hawk asked.

“I got a sitch. Personal. And I was hoping you might talk it through with me. Maybe have some insight.”

“Hit me,” Hawk invited.

And there was one of the bennies of working for Cabe “Hawk” Delgado.

He was a good boss, generous with his knowledge, gave credit where it was due, didn’t get in your face if you fucked up and held up your hand that you did…

And he had time for you even when he didn’t.

“I met Hattie’s dad last night.”

Hawk’s lips thinned.

Right.

His boss might not be in on their chats, but not much happened with his crew that Hawk didn’t know about.

So he knew about Don Yates.

“I got blindsided,” Axl told him.

“How?” Hawk asked.

“He loves her, Hawk.”

Hawk held his gaze a beat before he sat back in his chair.

Yeah.

This was going to be a conversation.

Hawk’s voice was lower when he inquired, “He loves her, and he hits her?”

Axl shook his head. “I got no excuse for that. Or the verbal abuse he keeps doling out. What I know is, recently, he called her a whore.”

“Jesus,” Hawk clipped.

“She didn’t tell me that. She told Ryn, Ryn told Boone. And I got it from Boone. But before…” He paused, then got to it, “I can’t step in with her dad. She knows their relationship is dysfunctional. She feels beholden. I could only have her back. Until I heard that. Then I shared I was going to have to have words with her father.”

“Good,” Hawk murmured.

“Then I got there, and the man was practically beaming, he was so fuckin’ happy Hattie brought her boyfriend over to meet him.”

“Fuck,” Hawk grunted.

“So we sat down. He gave me the ‘What do you do for a living’ and ‘How’d you meet my daughter’ gig. I answered. All was good. Then I told him I couldn’t have him upsetting Hattie like he did by calling her a whore. He tried to explain it by saying he was in a bad mood. I told him, in future, if he was in a bad mood, he needed not to take that out on Hattie.”

“On your first meeting,” Hawk noted.

“On our first meeting,” Axl confirmed.

“Which happened…what? How long have you been seeing her? A few days?”

“Yep.”

“You laid down the law with your woman’s father the first time you met him after you’ve been with her a few days,” Hawk laid it out.

“Yep.”

“Christ, Axe, you don’t fuck around,” Hawk muttered.

 

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About Kristen Ashley

Kristen Ashley is the New York Times bestselling author of over sixty romance novels including the Rock ChickColorado MountainDream ManChaosUnfinished HeroThe ’BurgMagdaleneFantasylandThe ThreeGhost and ReincarnationMoonlight and Motor Oil and Honey series along with several standalone novels. She’s a hybrid author, publishing titles both independently and traditionally, her books have been translated in fourteen languages and she’s sold over three million books.

Kristen’s novel, Law Man, won the RT Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Award for best Romantic Suspense. Her independently published title Hold On was nominated for RT Book Reviews best Independent Contemporary Romance and her traditionally published title Breathe was nominated for best Contemporary Romance. Kristen’s titles Motorcycle ManThe WillRide Steady (which won the Reader’s Choice award from Romance Reviews) and The Hookup all made the final rounds for Goodreads Choice Awards in the Romance category.

Connect with Kristen

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Review: Wild Wind by Kristen Ashley

A romance that took over a decade to come to fruition. Oh my word, am I one overly excited book nerd! I feel like I’ve been waiting so long for this book but I just never realized it.

I know this book is a romance but yet this was so much for me. Jagger’s story was emotional and I felt everything he did. He has never known his dad and yet he feels the loss, but at the same time time he doesn’t. He’s grown up feeling the love of his mom but there was always something missing. But then this girl across the way shows up in his life and everything gets flipped. He falls in love but struggles with what that is. This girl sets out to show him.

There’s just something about a KA book that feels like coming home. No matter what’s happening in the world, I know when I sit down to read one of her books the world looks better when I’m done.

These Chaos books are about family. And not just the blood kind. These books show that no matter who, or where, you came from you can make a new family stronger than you ever imagined. Brothers or sisters that will be there to help or hold you up when needed. It’s all rather overwhelming and emotional at times, but so is life.

~Melpomene

Grab your copy here: https://amzn.to/2OGRJUx

Quick review:Dream Bites Cookbook by Kristen Ashley

Dream Bites was a such a unique reading experience! For those who’ve never read a Kristen Ashley book they don’t realize how many recipes are scattered throughout them. She has some in her website but it’s nice to have some in book form. I also like the super short stories that accompanied each set of recipes. I plan on making a few of them myself as soon as I go grocery shopping for the ingredients.

I love that half of the proceeds of this cookbook go to the Rock Chick Nation Charities. What a great idea!!

It was nice to visit with each Dream Team, even those couples that aren’t officially a couple yet. And one surprise guest made super smiley. I see fun things happening in the future. AND I AM HERE FOR IT.

~Melpomene

Grab a copy here: https://amzn.to/393Gv4W

Review: Wild Fire(Chaos #6.5) by Kristen Ashley

It felt so good to be back in the Chaos world.

For being a short book this one sure did pack a lot in. We met Dutch and Jagger a while back so it was nice to be able to see how they turned out.

Dutch made quite an impression on me. He didn’t go off the deep end or anything like that. He seemed even keeled, with a good head on his shoulders. Best part, he’s a reader! Heck, first time we see him he’s at Fortnums then at King’s Shelter. That’s when I knew this was gonna be fun. He’s determined to help a young man out before life grabs hold and pulls him down. What he never planned on was meeting Georgie in the middle of that.

Georgie and Dutch got off on the wrong foot but sometimes that bit of spice it what you need to get things moving in the direction they were meant to.

I loved watching these two together. They were good for each other. When she kept calling this rough and tough biker dude “cute” I giggled. They helped each other out quite a bit and it was nice to see a strong woman doing her thing, and at the same time, letting this alpha dude so his.

I’m a huge fan of Kristen Ashley’s books. I can’t get enough of them. Chaos and Rock Chicks were my favorite series. So when she blessed us with more from those worlds, I am all over that. And I’m excited to see that we’ll be coming for Jagger’s story later. Can’t wait!

~Melpomene


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Review: Fast Lane by Kristen Ashley

For those who don’t know me, I love Kristen Ashley. HARD. When I hear she has a book coming out, I clear my schedule and get ready. And when the book arrives, whether ARC or release day, everything gets dropped and my family can eat cereal for all I care. Luckily my hubby loves her almost as much as I do, so he totally understands.

Fast Lane was written in a way I don’t think I’ve ever read before. She said she was inspired by Daisy Jones & The Six. While I’ve not read that, I was unsure for what I getting myself into. I’ll admit it took a little bit to find my groove but once I did, I couldn’t put it down.

Lyla and Preacher’s romance spanned decades and I loved every heartbreaking moment. In typical rock ‘n roll fashion, there was a lot going on, but in the midst was their love. It was all encompassing. Preacher’s world revolved around Lyla’s and vice versa. Theirs was a love that hit you in the gut. Listening to her tell their story, I could feel how much she loved him. They made bad decisions, but they made them together. What’s life without a little drama, right?

This book was a true roller coaster of emotions. I had faith that Kristen wouldn’t do me wrong, but I’ll admit it got a little tense a few times. And I can remember the moment. You know what I’m talking about? The moment just when you think all is lost, something happens, and you lose your freaking mind. Let’s just say I’m glad no one was home when I read that part.

In true Kristen Ashley form she brings you up, down, and all around, till you’re a puddle of goo on the floor. I really hope this gets put in audible form. I do believe hearing the voices and all the pain will hit ever harder than just reading. Thank you, Kristen, for going with your gut and giving us a story that is different than what we’re used to, and yet still the same emotional romance.

~Melpomene

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Review: Quiet Man by Kristen Ashley


Novellas are always hard to rate. They’re usually too short to be too emotionally awesome. Now a KA novella, those are in a league of their own. Definitely worth the five stars.

Mo and Lottie’s sorry was short and sexy and just the right length. I am so happy she got her dream man. She deserved happiness just like the rest of the Rock Chicks. It was so fun to see Lottie take center stage and not get swallowed up by the craziness of those girls. She gets lost in the shuffle sometimes. She was due to have her own HEA.

Mo was the perfect man for her. It’s like he was made for her. I love everything about him. He was strong and yet insecure at times. I like that in a hero, his realness. I liked being in his head. He was definitely a riot at times.

And can we talk about his buds? They are gonna be so fun to watch! The way they all responded to her and accepted her made my heart squeeze. They all have their quirks and she knows exactly how to work with them. She now has more “brothers” than she knows what to do with. I am happy for her.

And of course the epilogue was amazing as ever. Kristen Ashley is the queen of the epilogue so there was never any doubt.

So I didn’t get a Hot Bunch Guy.
I got my Dream Man.
And the best of all that…
My Dream Man got his Dream Girl.

This is the start of a new spin off of sorts and I can’t WAIT to get more!! I love these new guys!

~Melpomene

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Review and giveaway: The Slow Burn by Kristen Ashley

True to KA form this book had all the feels and I loved every moment of it! I cried, I laughed, I swooned. The perfect story.

There’s something about a duology that just works. You don’t have to commit to years of rereads to try and remember what happened. These rank right up there after the standalone. And the Gamble brothers definitely deserved more than a standalone.

“You got soft leather and smooth whiskey and I got goose down and kitten fur. But under what we got, it’s granite and steel. Daphne made that. That’s her legacy. That’s what she gave us, what our kids will get…”

We met Toby in the first book, The Hookup, so we get a glimpse on his personality but we don’t fully get to know him til this one. I love everything about him. His actions scream perfection. From the first time he meets Adeline I just knew he was gonna make an impression. And all throughout this book he wanted nothing more than to take care of her, even if she wanted to do everything on her own.

Adeline is a single mom trying to make ends meet, and doing it alone. She is deeply independent, like her mom was, and it’s starting to take it’s toll on her. Toby made an impression on her, but he’s off limits. Or is he?

While there was an instant connection between these two, they tried to fight it, hence The Slow Burn. I love books like this. You could see from both of their POVs how they felt. When they finally connected, it was explosive and romantic. He was made to care for a woman and the woman he wants to care for is Addie.

“I’ll agree, Gamble Men are the best. But Forrester Women are better.”

Kristen Ashley knows how to write an alpha man. Which is probably why I reread her books quite often. There’s something about a guy who takes charge and protects his woman’s body and heart. While Toby was an alpha, he was sensitive to her heart and didn’t attach from all ends. He cared for her in a way that gave her the independence she needed while still taking care of her needs.

And don’t get me started on that epilogue. Those always kill me.

~Melpomene

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Review: Free by Kristen Ashley


It’s done. It’s over. There’s no more Chaos books. I don’t know how I feel about that. Heck, yeah I do. I feel sad. I love these characters.

We’ve watched Rush grow up these past years and it’s been great. After watching his dad finally find the perfect woman, I knew he was destined to be the same. While the Chaos was attempting to finally move on from the evil that seems to have hounded them from the beginning, he was finding himself falling in love.

He learned a lot from his dad.
One of those things was, you find a redhead who did it for you, even if it was early in the relationship, if you knew in your gut that it was right, you didn’t let go.
So yeah.
He’d made his decision.
He was keeping her.

I loved Rebel. Even her name shows how awesome she is! I loved the fact that she would do anything to solve the murder of her dearest friend, even if it was stupid. And believe me, it was. But, Rush knew how to help her and she knew how to let him. That’s how strong she was. She knew when to back down and let her man take care of her. That’s what I love about KA heroines.

“I’m keeping you,” he said against my lips.
He was keeping me.
I was going to belong to somebody.
And that someone was Rush Allen.

Chaos is one of my most favorite KA series. These books are about family, and not just the blood kind. The brothers will do whatever it takes to take care of their women and protect each other’s backs. They support and encourage each other. I wish more families were this way. This final battle has been years in the making. We see past allies and enemies come together to for a strong front line. I’ll admit, every time a known and beloved character from another series popped up, I got a little dreamy. KA has a way of intertwining her series and story lines to make each book more enjoyable than the last. It’s rather bittersweet to come to the end. Tack is my favorite KA hero so I’m quite sad that this will be the end of an era. But I’m so happy they’re free now…

~Melpomene

Release date: January 29, 2019

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Start from the beginning:
Own the Wind https://amzn.to/2CFCQtk
Fire Inside https://amzn.to/2QZF3J1
Ride Steady https://amzn.to/2RqtOsc
Walk Through Fire https://amzn.to/2AkxCSk
Rough Ride (4.5) https://amzn.to/2VhXIhF
Wild like the Wind https://amzn.to/2Vkm1f0

Quick Review: Rough Ride by Kristen Ashley


Loved this novella. It had all the action and emotions as a full length book. I was completely sucked in and never wanted it to end.

This book started out INTENSE. I mean gut twisting, deep breathing kind of intense. Horrific. But there’s always a light at the end of every tunnel, if you can just hold on and keep moving forward. That’s exactly what Rosie did. She made a bad call, but for the best reason, and it about cost her everything. I’m so glad Snapper took it upon himself to keep an eye out and help her.

This was a quick romance that was brewing for a while. I liked that. She wasn’t quick to accept it and I think that was the right thing for her. She had a lot of healing to get through before she could move on to find her happiness.

And of course Chaos isn’t always the calmest of people, so there’s always drama and excitement happening. Which is probably why I’m gonna need the next book pretty darn fast.

This novella is a continuation of the Chaos books and if you like MC books as much as I do, then you’ll definitely want to start from the beginning. Kristen Ashley knows how to write series that you don’t mind getting sucked into. They’re addicting and very exciting.

~Melpomene
Grab Rough Ride http://amzn.to/2F9SJry