Series: Chaos #3
Also in this series: Walk Through Fire, Rough Ride
Published by Forever, Grand Central Publishing on June 30, 2015
Genres: Erotic, Romance
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 . . .
I was provided a review copy by Forever, Grand Central Publishing; this did not influence my opinion of the book.
Can you give a book 5 1/2 Stars? I say yes, because when you go to bed at 3:30 in the morning knowing you have to be up at 6am, because you simply can’t put it down, I think you reserve that right and this is my review, so I am going to! Ride Steady is one of, if not my FAVORITE KA books ever (#32 read)! I absolutely adored it, so be prepared for me to gush! And, yes, that means this is going to be a long review, you have been warned!
Her fans know, KA is an amazing story-teller. She builds a romance from the foundation up, setting the stage for such swoon worthiness that your heart bursts the seems with happiness. She can describe a wilderness, a room, a junk yard with such detail that you picture yourself standing within that scene with complete clarity of all around you. It is almost Technicolor.
But while this book had the same KA writing, for me, it had a different feel. Thankfully we still get our strong heroine, humor and strong family themes. The focus was not so much on the badassary – although, that was there. The focus wasn’t so much on the Alpha-hero – although, thank goodness they were there.
Instead, to me, the focus was on the theme which was healing.
I did not read the blurb before I began this book, which is unusual for me. I usually like to know what I am getting in to. Unless I know the author well, then I don’t care because I know I will usually love the book regardless. Having said that, I had no idea who this book was about. So as I was reading and the name JOKER came up, I squealed and “ran” to Goodreads to read the blurb. Then, I did a search on my Kindle for JOKER on Own The Wind, so I could get a refresher. Because I remembered him from that book and I had a bit of a crush and was more than intrigued by him. So ya, I was excited to find out about this man with secrets and mysteries hidden behind his gray steel eyes.
Until those secrets and mysteries revealed a lifetime of abuse and neglect. Carson Joker Steele was a product of a mother who left him as an infant and a drunken father who physically, verbally and mentally abused him since before he was old enough to understand what was happening to him. Kristen Ashley tore my heart out with this story. Reading about his pain as a child and teenager and what he was going through broke my heart.
I loved Carissa Teodoro, she wanted nothing more than to have a family. She wanted to be a wife and a mom. She didn’t care about having a career, she wanted to take care of her husband and children. It was this loving, care-taking instinct that was exactly what Joker needed.
“I am going to heal you, Carson Steele, It’s gonna happen. That’s it. No response necessary.”
And while he pushed her away because of his insecurities, and issues that occurred between them in the beginning, he couldn’t help the fact that he still loved her and wanted to take care of her. The fact that her ex-husband was wealthy and was jerking her around didn’t sit well with him. She was a single mom trying hard to make ends meet.
“I’m in love with your ex-wife,” “I’ve loved her since high school, man. She means everything to me. You gotta drag her down, that’ll suck, but I’ll pick her back up. You gotta rip her apart, I’ll f*ckin’ hate watchin’ it, but I’ll put her back together. Do what you gotta do to make you feel like you got the bigger dick. But know this, in the end, it’s gonna be her and me. So take your shot. Spend your money. Score those marks on your soul. Scar your son. Push her to the point she can’t stand the sight of you. But do it known’ that’s all on you. Just like everything that went before, it’s all on you.”
Once again the amazing appearance of secondary characters was off.the.charts! What made it even more special was the appearance of past characters who come together in this book. KA’s ability to write in so many additional characters and have them all be supporting and with purpose and not just filler, is stellar!
“She’s Chaos!” Tabby shouted. “Don’t you see the tube top?”
Elvira muttered, “Biker bitches. Someone kill me.”
And yes, this is a long book, but each page was written so well, I did not skim, or skip a sentence. Each was worthy and important.
Ride Steady is a story of a broken young man, healed by those who loved him, as well by his helping the woman he had loved his entire life, in effect healing each other. We are reminded that while we think we live in this world by ourselves, while we may want to navigate through life’s bumps and turns independently, that we have “people” out there who will help us.
This was a beautiful love story.
“You good?” he asked.
I swallowed. Then I nodded.
“Wanna be better?”
I pressed a hand to his chest and breathed, “Yes.”
“What you want, Butterfly?”
He was making me ask. Why was this so arousing? “I want you to kiss me.”