I read this one quickly because Laura Kaye is such a phenomenal writer but unlike her other novels, I wasn’t as interested with the plot. This book presented more traditional aspects of motorcycle clubs including how Prospects are chosen and inducted, how the club acts as a family and supports each other without question. We’re also shown how the club operates when challenged and attacked and this fits the more stereotypical motorcycle club image of sometimes working outside the law. However, the Raven Riders are still about family, honor, and protection so their illegal undertakings have good intentions at heart.
I struggled a bit with Alexa’s situation wth her fiancé and her feelings for Maverick and it’s ultimately what kept me from rating this book higher. In general, I don’t like to read books where a character is already in a relationship with someone else but because I love Laura Kaye and she handled a similar situation so well in Hard as You Can I stuck with this one. Alexa remained with her fiancé, Grant, up to about the 30% mark and she spends most of this time still determined to be with him and get married in 2 weeks time. Even when she begins to realize she’s still attracted to Maverick and she starts to have misgivings about Grant’s recent behavior, she plans to stick with Grant. There’s also a “sex” scene with Alexa and Grant and normally a hero or heroine sleeping with someone else after meeting the new love interest is a big no-no for me. However, this scene was used to show how Grant is becoming abusive so I somewhat tolerated it’s inclusion.
Once Alexa breaks things off with Grant, I felt like she and Maverick jump into things pretty quickly. This is supported by the fact that they grew up together and dated for 3 years so there is some foundation for this. But I expected Alexa to more some reservations over everything she experienced with Grant and that she would be a bit more cautious before diving in with a relationship with Maverick.
I liked getting some peeks at our previous couple, Dare and Haven. Seeing Haven fitting in and feeling comfortable with her new family was great and seeing Dare so mushy over Haven was really cute. Nothing like a tough guy being all soft and sweet with his love interest.
Content Note: other man, emotional abuse, rape (see bottom of page for spoiler).
••• Book Details •••
Raven Riders #2 • Romance, Suspense • Avon • April 25, 2017
Maverick Rylan won’t apologize for who he is—the Raven Riders Motorcycle Club Vice-President, a sought-after custom bike builder, and a man dedicated to protecting those he loves. So when he learns that the only woman who has ever held his heart is in trouble, he’ll move heaven and earth to save her.
Alexa Harmon thought she had it all—the security of a good job, a beautiful home, and a powerful, charming fiancé who offered the life she never had growing up. But when her dream quickly turns into a nightmare, Alexa realizes she’s fallen for a façade she can’t escape—until sexy, dangerous Maverick offers her a way out.
Forced together to keep Alexa safe, their powerful attraction reignites and Maverick determines to do whatever it takes to earn a second chance—one Alexa is tempted to give. But her ex-fiancé isn’t going to let her go without a fight, one that will threaten everything they both hold dear.
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The heroine starts the book out engaged to a man who is very controlling and has been subtly using emotional abuse to wear Alexa down. There is also a fairly graphic scene where the fiancé essentially rapes Alexa though she doesn’t initially see it that way. He instigates sex suddenly and is very rough about it and Alexa is floundering as to whether she wanted to have sex in that instant and the fact that that her fiancé is treating it more like a moment to control and dominant her instead of a mutually enjoyed experience.