Passing His Guard by Melynda Price
Series: Against the Cage #2
Also in this series: Fighting for Control
Published by Montlake Romance on August 25th 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Aiden “Disco Stick” Kruze walked away from it all—money, family, friends, and a successful career as a lawyer in Manhattan—to pursue his dream of being an MMA fighter. When a sexy private investigator shows up at Aiden’s gym, he mistakenly assumes she’s a cage-banging groupie.
Ryann is determined to haul Aiden back home. She’s desperate to claim the reward money that will pay off her father’s creditors before the man who killed her father comes to collect from her.
Aiden is done living his life under the microscope of being a senator’s son. He’s not going back to New York—ever—and there’s nothing this tenacious redhead can do about it. Or is there?
When the demons of Aiden’s past catch up with him, he realizes the lies, deception, and betrayal run deeper than he ever imagined. Aiden must put his career and his life on the line to save the woman who’s stolen his heart.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.
First of all, I need to get this off my chest. As it involves somewhat of a plot twist, I’m spoiler-tagging it, so if you haven’t read this book and you don’t want me to spoil the surprise for you skip this View Spoiler »What the fuck kind of MAN are you Aiden, you don’t have a problem with being a lawyer for the mob, knowingly letting organized crime get away with things. You accept being groomed to become head of that business by the Don, but when your daddy arranges a marriage that’s what you just can’t take and leave???!!!!!!????? « Hide Spoiler
Well, I feel better now. So let me start this review properly. I love me some MMA romance, the training, the muscles, the discipline, the overabundance of testosterone… yummy.
And this even had a kick ass h, as she is a PI! I instantly thought an Ally Nightingale style heroine getting it on with a hot MMA fighter… I couldn’t start this book soon enough.
Unfortunately Ryann, our female lead, did not comply with my expectations of a PI at all. You’d think working in a moderately risky occupation she’d have at least some kind of self-defense training, or at least be a complete kick ass woman. Well did she? Nope. Was she? Not even close. She didn’t even seem to have a self-preservation instinct. I mean, she could carry mace, a pepper-spray, a tazer, something! Did she not watch Veronica Mars?
Anyway, while Ryann had some impressive investigative skills, she’s great at finding missing people and getting information, as far as being safe on the job, she fails completely.
Aidan aka “Disco Stick” (still don’t get that name, must be a language barrier or something…) is a lawyer turned MMA fighter. After trying unsuccessfully to get his father’s approval by doing what was expected of him, he finally says “enough” and takes off leaving everything he was behind and at last can dedicate himself to his lifelong ambition of becoming a professional fighter.
Well, in some ways I felt Aiden was a teenager rebelling and acting out against mommy and daddy. As soon as he gets to Vegas he gets tats, and piercings to distance himself from the guy he used to be in New York.
So, Ryann is hired by Aiden’s mother to get him back to New York where he is needed. She had already tried other PIs who had failed in this endeavor and as Ryann is being hounded by a mob Don to repay a debt her recently departed father left her, she has no choice but to take the case. She really needs all the money that uptight lady is throwing at her.
Well, Ryann finds Aiden, and with just one look they know their attraction is something else.
But when Aiden finds out who sent Ryann to him he shuts her out, leaving her with no other choice but to… you know, take him back to New York by force.
The story goes on with them getting to know each other a little more, getting in one mess after another, and trying to fight their mutual attraction. As you may imagine, this doesn’t last a very long time, but both of them have pasts and a tendency to assume about the other’s actions and motivations that make their relationship building a very rocky road.
There’s plenty of suspense and intrigue going on, some action, fights and some steamy sex scenes.
Overall I liked the story, I felt it lacked consistency in some areas, mainly the characters and their supposed profession, Ryann being unable to defend herself in any way really pissed me off, then some of Aiden’s actions when he is forced to train to fight in unsanctioned fights is inconsistent with what a real fighter would have to go through.
Both characters had quite an immature feel to them, and considering they were well into their twenties this bugged me a lot.
I still enjoyed reading Passing his Guard, though I did find it dragged a bit as it had some lengthy inner monologues in between dialogues. Sometimes I’d even start to wonder –do I think that many things while talking to someone? Wouldn’t that make for a very stilted conversation when you take 10 seconds to ponder about nothing and everything before you answer?
Did I like the story? Yes. Is it making my favorite books of the year list? No.
But I wouldn’t mind reading the next installment in the series, Del Toro made for a very interesting supporting character and I’d like to see him get his girl.
Sparkles’ Rating: 3 still-don’t-getting-the-Disco-reference Stars
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