Bounty by Kristen Ashley
Series: Colorado Mountain #7
Also in this series: Colorado Mountain Series, The Gamble, Sweet Dreams, Lady Luck, Breathe, Jagged, Kaleidoscope
on April 18, 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Justice Lonesome has enjoyed a life of bounty.
Even so, she’s inherited the curse of the Lonesome. A poet’s soul. Which means she’s still searching for something. Searching for peace. Searching for the less…that’s more.
And when the foundation of her life is pulled out from under her, grieving, she goes to the mountains to find her oasis. She hits Carnal, Colorado and decides to stay.
Deke Hightower lost everything at the age of two. He lost it again at fifteen. His life has not been about bounty. It’s been about learning to live with less, because there’s no way to get more.
Deke’s also watched all his friends go down to the women who gave them what they needed. He wants that for himself. But he knows that search isn’t going to be easy because he’s a rider. His home is the road. That’s the only place he can breathe. And the woman who takes her place at his side has to do it sitting on the back of his bike.
When Deke meets Justice, he knows she’s not that woman. She’s cute. She’s sweet. And she’s into him, but she’s got it all and Deke knows he won’t fit into that. So he holds her at arm’s length. Establishes boundaries. And Justice will take it because she wants Deke any way he’ll let her have him.
But when Justice finds herself a pawn in a dangerous game, Deke makes a decision.
When he does, he has no idea he’s just opened himself up to bounty.
I have to say, Bounty sparked off one of the longest and most interesting book chats we have ever had here at EDGy. It’s not our favorite Colorado Mountain book, but underneath all the rambling dialogue was a powerful story with some strong emotions making it well worth the time taken to read.
We all were impressed by Deke and his laid back traveling man soul. We liked Jussy too, although her poetic ramblings drove Lily batty (well all three of us really, just Lily more so). She was down to earth, and that went a long way in helping get past her circular thought process.
Deke and Jussy’s relationship was fairly low angst, although a long time in the making. Definitely, a slow burn romance as these two found their way and figured out what would and wouldn’t work for them.
The emotions threaded into the background is what made this a good book. The action helped a bit too, although we would have all liked to see more of it. The cameos had us all cheering and Krystal and her condition throughout most of the book had us all cracking up.
We all agreed this book spun its wheels in places. Some of it was the slow pacing of the overall story, and some of it was the way things were worded. It’s almost like KA was trying too hard to showcase the “poet’s soul” resulting in circular sentences that didn’t quite make sense at times.
Spice and Sparkles both gave Bounty 4 stars. Lily gave it three. It wasn’t what we consider the best Kristen Ashley book, but even so, it’s still a good book.
What we loved:
- Deke: An alpha who made no apologies for who he was and what he needed to be happy.
- Jussy: Down to earth no matter what her name was.
- The low on the drama, easy relationship between Jussy and Deke, before during, and after they get together.
- Krystal: She was upfront and center for this book, and we all loved the time spent with her.
- The cameos that resulted in hot guy overload. The only thing that we would have added was maybe Chaos coming into Bubba’s for a beer or three.
- The old school KA type action.
- The remodeling project added to the book and didn’t take over. Having all the guys working on the house at once helped with this (excuse me while I fan myself while imagining this….again).
What didn’t work for us:
- The clunky dialogue, both inner and verbal. It was circular and all over the place at times making it difficult to read.
- The pacing. The beginning was slow, the middle went on forever and the ending was rushed. We felt like 20% of the middle could have been cut and added to the end.
- The scene at the end so reminiscent of a scene in Rock Chick Revolution.
- All three of us wrote separate reviews. Click on the spoiler by our name to see the full review.
Click here for Spice’s full review: View Spoiler »I went into this so very excited and I wasn’t disappointed. It wasn’t my favorite KA book, but I was entertained throughout. The playlist for this book was amazing. Once again I already have every single song mentioned, including the Linda Ronstadt ones since I grew up singing her music.
I freaking adored Deke. Yes, he was an ass, for about a second, then he realized he was being an ass and shut that down. Yes, he still held back and kept some boundaries up but I understood his reasoning. He needed a certain lifestyle to stay sane and he didn’t see her fitting in it. He was who he was and didn’t apologize for it. Once he was in, he was all in, caring for her, taking on her issues, and basically being a shield for her. I loved it.
I really liked Jussy too. Down to earth despite her pedigree, she lived life on her terms. I respected that. She wanted Deke but was willing to be what he needed her to be because she cared for him, even if that meant having him as just a friend. He didn’t treat her like crap so I didn’t see this as doormat behavior at all.
Once they got together, their chemistry was smoking hot as were some of the sex scenes. One complaint is that it took too long to get there, and once they finally did, it was sex scene after sex scene. There was so much sex, I started skimming the scenes.
I do think the book bogged down in the middle. I’m not sure if it was the slow progression of the relationship or how some of the dialogue seemed a bit all over the place. I loved a lot of Jussy’s inner thoughts, feeling like I was getting an in-depth look into Kristen Ashley’s heart, but at times I think the emotions were so big, maybe the translation to the written word didn’t quite mesh.
A complaint I had was that towards the end, one scene was so reminiscent of what happened to Ally and Darius in Rock Chick Revolution that I almost felt like I was betraying them while reading it– weird I know. It was so very powerful the first time I read it, it has stuck with me.
Even with the issues, when I closed the book I had a huge smile on my face. KA books are full of emotion and make me feel things and Bounty was no exception. I loved it, I will re-read it, and I can’t wait for the next one in the Colorado Mountain Series, even though it’s the last.
What I Loved:
The playlist! How strong both Deke and Jussy were as main characters, putting each other first. The cameos!!! I was in drywall hanging hot guy heaven. The emotions What Didn’t Work For Me:
Some of the dialogue That one scene….. The slow middle The rushed ending Spice’s Rating: 4 Stars « Hide Spoiler
Click here for Lily’s full review: View Spoiler »The Colorado Mountain Series is one of my favourite KA series, so I was quick to jump on board & read Bounty. We battled time zones and other life commitments to read this book together, having the air of a virtual KA party! My excitement soon waned as I struggled, (despite the plot being based on a good platform) but with encouragement from the other girls, I powered on and was rewarded with a typical KA ending that had me smiling.
Justice ‘Jussy’ Lonesome, is a famous musician born into a music royalty family. After the death of her famous father, she decides to step out of the limelight and settle down in the Colorado Mountains. Finding the potential home that fitted in with her dreams, she organises to have the home renovated. The renovations encompassed a lot of the story but in a relatively quick fashion with the help of a lot of familiar KA characters that will make you smile!
Deke Hightower is a traveling man who Justice met 10 years ago. When they meet again, it’s only Justice who remembered meeting Deke all those years ago. He’s a man who wants an uncomplicated life and has a clear disdain for wealthy people. He pegs Justice as being a wealthy woman, out of his reach and is determined to keep her at bay.
Justice and Deke have a lot going for them as a couple but they spent the majority of the book trying to determine every aspect of their being, including their feelings for each other. Their dialog traveled in circles. Phrases were echoed and/or were self-questioning and although it added emphasis to the angst within their relationship, I found it frustrating to read.
For a musician, Justice rarely seemed to play an instrument, sing or even hum a tune during her day. What she does do is wax lyrical about her poetic soul, which had it not been stated, I wouldn’t have described it as such. She’s thoughtful and sweet but it wasn’t until she performed that she resonated being a talented musician.
The first 80 % of the story was a struggle for me with sections I had to read twice to grasp the meaning. It was as if I was party to a painting’s intricate strokes being placed on a canvas in real-time, depicting the minute details of daily life.
I was delighted when the final 20% finally became the page turner I had anticipated…except how the major drama is wrapped up in the chapter featuring the couple the next book in the series will feature. The beauty in the bounty was the focus on being accepted for who you are, which was delivered succinctly in the end.
What I loved:
Mr. T…he was a breath of fresh air, beautifully spoken and a character who was always a pleasure to encounter when he appeared Tony…he intrigued me and I wanted more of his story How KA entwines previous characters into her stories The caring community be it the sisterhood or the brotherhood, they always come through for those in need Lily’s Rating: 3 Stars « Hide Spoiler
Click here for Sparkle’s full review: View Spoiler »I can’t lie and say that the newer KA books have all been wow-I-wanna-reread-this-book-into-infinity 5 stars reads for me. There is even that one book that shall not be named. Bounty did fairly well on the KA scale, I think that what plays most against Ms. Ashley is the pure awesomeness of her earlier work or the fact that now that she is a full-time writer her process seems to be a bit more rushed than what it used to be…
Anyway, Bounty had some great things about it, others not so much. Still the overall feel to it was good. I really liked the relationship between Justice and Deke, and I enjoyed very much that both were laid back with no drama between them… well, not that much drama.
There was action enough to soothe this KA old school fan, though it wasn’t as good as I was expecting it, or more like I was hoping for this highly complicated conspiracy behind everything going on, but that didn’t happen.
I completely adored all the cameos we had, if only we’d have some of Chaos guys driving through Carnal or stopping for a beer at Bubba’s then that would have been Heaven. As it was, I greatly enjoyed all the other characters appearances, some like Krystal were absolutely phenomenal while others I wish we’d been able to see a bit more of.
The pace of the overall story was not what I was used to from KA either, a big chunk in the middle, after they kind of get together and things start to happen again was seriously slow for my liking. In contrast the ending felt a little bit rushed. I wish a lot of the slow 20% in the middle would have been used to expand on all the things at and near the ending.
Still, the feel good and emotional connection to the characters was there, much more than in others of her latest books, and even if I can’t say this was my favorite book, I know that it is a very difficult act to follow after the first 4 books of this series, which are abso-freaking-lutely amazeballs.
Kristen Ashley is still an auto-buy author for me, I just wish she’d take her time with all her stories as she used to do.
What I loved:
Justice and Deke’s relationship and how it progressed. All the cameos from characters I adore. Krys and Bubba. But mainly Krys (and Breanna). Carnal as a whole, I so wanna move there (or Gnaw Bone it’s close enough). What I struggled with:
The overall pace of the story. The poet soul and its writing style, that was a bit of a bitch to read at times. And even Deke at times had some weird ass backwards thought process that was a bit hard to keep up with. The lyrics. There is no wedding or babies (of their own) on the epilogue *pouty-3-year-old-face* Sparkles Rating: 4 “you were made for me” Stars « Hide Spoiler
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