It’s you. It’s always been you.
It’ll always be you. Fuckin’ always.
This is easily one of the best books Kristen Ashley has written! I loved every single word in every single scene. From the gorgeously heartfelt romance that made me swoon over and over again, to the thrilling cameos that will have any true KA fan jumping for joy, and the intensely badass showdowns, this was pure Alpha male romance perfection!! 5 STARS!
This is Joker’s book. He was in love from afar with a girl named Carissa in high school, but unfortunately their lives took them in different directions for many years. Carissa married a pretentious and powerful guy who cheated on her and left her alone and pregnant with their son, while Joker escaped his abusive home and joined the brotherhood of the Chaos Motorcycle Club to create a new life for himself.
They met again by chance one day. Carissa was stranded alone on the side of the road with a flat tire and her baby in the back seat when Joker rode up to them and offered to help, effectively entwining their lives once again…
I honestly have to say, KA truly writes all kinds of relationships — be they romantic, of brotherhoods, or just regular friendships — in such a way that you feel the depth of their connection in your heart and soul. The Chaos characters have each others’ backs in a way where you believe they’ll stand by each other come what may. You mess with one of these badass Alphas, you’ve messed with all of them.
And let me tell you, Joker was about as badass and Alpha as you could imagine. This guy was a survivor, a bad boy, a biker, and a fighter, who not only knew how to protect those he cared about, but proved that through his actions he would do so no matter what. He’ll have you swooning in no time — just be a little forgiving of him at the start. He’s swoon-worthy, but like so many of the best heroes, he’s also just a little rough around the edges as well. But in an interesting KA twist, we actually had a scenario here where the girl went after the guy (initially, at least). Don’t get me wrong, he was as badass as they come, but he had a very intense, all consuming case of I’m-not-good-enough-for-her. It wasn’t that he didn’t think of himself as a good guy, it was more that he didn’t think his mannerisms and lifestyle were right for her.
Tack put his forearms on the bar… “Joke, your story to tell when you wanna tell it. Your story to keep if you don’t ever wanna tell. Thought you had secrets. Way you’re holdin’ back with this girl, think I’m wrong. You don’t have secrets. You got demons.” …
“It’s me protecting her, Tack.”
They were opposites. He was the rough bad boy, she was the delicate prom queen. But don’t you worry. This girl was strong and badass in her own right and she had no problem showing them just how good they could be together. Gah. It was just so heart-warming seeing them slowly become them.
Once they official got together, their romance was just beyond heart-melting. It was hot and sexy, the banter had me laughing, the way they supported each other in their respective lives made me want to cheer out loud. They were such polar opposites, but I totally loved them as a couple!
“What the fuck are you doin’?” he asked…
“That’s twenty cents,” I returned.
“Hunh?” he grunted.
“Regular curse words are a nickel,” I told him. “Bad curse words are a dime. Everyone knows the f-word is a bad one and since, starting now, you’re paying me every time you curse, that’s twenty cents you owe me… I’ll give it to charity or something. The way you cuss, we’ll probably be able to build a homeless shelter in a week.”
There’s a lot of drama (naturally) with Carissa’s douchebag ex-husband who seemed to make it his life’s mission to make her miserable. But I absolutely loved seeing the way she didn’t let anything get her down and the way she was willing to go to the ends of the earth to make a good, safe life for her son.
“You created this situation, Aaron… You’re no longer dealing with a girl who lost half her world by the time she was eighteen… You’re dealing with a mother. That’s an entirely different breed. So I’d advise you to change your tactics and your goals. Because your current fight is a fight there is no way in hell you can win.”
Gah. There was just so much heart and soul behind each one of the conversations in this book. Didn’t matter who it was between. It just hit so deep each time. Quite literally delivering all the feels!!!!
“I’m in love with your ex-wife,” he returned, no amusement in his voice… “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 fuckin’ hate watchin’ it, but I’ll put her back together… But know this, in the end, it’s gonna be me and her.”
Among the many heart-melting things in this book was little baby Travis’ gleeful obsession with Joker (and Joker’s beard). Let me tell you: big Alpha biker + baby (that isn’t even his but that he loves openly and completely and accepts as his own without question) = PURE SWOON!!!!
Joker sauntered right past me.
And he did this to go straight to Big Petey.
And he did this so he could firmly pull Travis from Pete’s arms, lift him so they were face to fact, and ask, “How goes it, kid?”
Taking that in, I suddenly had trouble breathing.
Travis screamed with glee and latched on with both hands to Joker’s beard.
And HOLY KA REUNION TIME!!! If you’re a long-time KA fan, you’ll be thrilled to know that this book is chock-full of the most badass cameos you can imagine. Here’s an idea… there is a scene with Joker, Tack, Hawk Delgado, Mitch Lawson, Brock Lucas, Lee Nightingale, Luke Stark, Hank Nightingale, Hector Chaves, Shy, Hop, and a special appearance from Knight all together! Holyyyyyy badass!!!!! This was badass upon badass. I mean each one of these guys is an epic badass in their own right, but all of them coming together like that was just………. *fans self* almost more epic than I could handle! Plus, other amazing characters we’ve come to love like Elvira, Tyra, Indy, and more are present in the book as well.
At one look, I saw Elvira wasn’t feeling upset about a mother done wrong.
She was just flat furious.
“Your man’s got T-minus a month to sort that jackass, then I’m settin’ Hawk on him,” she warned.
Ohhh and guys, make a note of this. There’s a very specific line right near the very end of Chapter 20 that literally represents everything a KA Alpha really is. Seriously. I read it and just got chills and immediately tears sprang to my eyes. It’s a line from Knight and I’m not quoting it here because just trust me, it’ll have more impact if you read it in the context he says it in but yeah… make note. I read it over and over again — just this one little line — and each time I read it, I got shivers. That one simply line to me is the very reason why Kristen Ashley is the unparalleled queen of Alpha male romance.
This book was such a smooth read. Each scene just flowed right into the next. There were no good stopping points. It was just the kind of book where I started reading but then suddenly looked up four hours later barely noticing how much time had gone by. And luckily, KA is not known for her short novels so there is enough goodness to last you a long time! Honestly though, I read this book as slowly as I could because I didn’t want it to end and I tried to make the awesomeness last as long as humanly possible.
As I’m sure you can tell by the 37 other reviews (holy shit!!!) I’ve written of Kristen Ashley’s books, I’m a huge fan of her writing. Something about the way she writes, the characters she creates, and the stories she tells is just magical to me. If you’re new to her writing just click here for a full and very detailed list of all her books (separated into series) and my personal suggestions as to the order they should be read in.
From start to finish, this book kept my heart racing. I couldn’t stop smiling and swooning and just feeling everything that happened with all my heart and soul. It was a super-charged badass, romantic thrill ride and I loved every single word. KA rocks my world!!!
Rating: 5 stars!! Contemporary Adult romance.
*** FULL “CHAOS” SERIES ***
This series is a spin-off of the Dream Man series (specifically, the last book in that series) so while you can read this series, or any of these books, alone it is still recommended to read everything in order for the full emotional impact.