“It wasn’t perfect, none of it. But it was a fairytale. And people needed to believe in fairytales. Even flawed ones. Maybe especially flawed ones.”
There are no possible words to describe the feeling of pure, exhilarated joy I felt starting this book. It was like every single Christmas, birthday and snow day rolled into one moment… but better!
Kristen Ashley is a go-to author for me. I will read anything she writes. In fact, she’s one of the only authors who I don’t even need to read a blurb from. If she wrote it, I’ll read it. End of story.
Speaking of ends of stories, this book is the end of the Rock Chick series. I don’t know whether to happy dance that the series has come full circle or sob hysterically because I know there won’t be any more. This series is so dear to my heart – truly one of the best I’ve read. Each book manages to both perfectly capture the ‘completed book’ feeling you get when reading a standalone but while also giving you those deeply satisfying ‘close’ connections to the characters that you can only get from reading a series with a large ensemble cast.
I feel like I *know* these characters personally. I know their quirks, their habits, their speaking patterns. I’ve cried with them, laughed with them and been with them through all manner of badass craziness. So the truth is that I’m sad to let them go but at the same time just so incredibly happy to see them so settled and content.
Kristen Ashley has one of my most favorite writing styles. It’s completely unique to her. I swear, if you showed me a random pieces of text, I promise you I could immediately point out which one was hers. It’s totally brilliant. It’s like she has her own language and writes by her own rules in a way that exactly reflects the Rock Chick world. I love it!
There are parts of my book which aren’t just excessively highlighted, they’re honestly just all yellow for pages on end and there are some scenes where just EVERY. SINGLE. LINE. IS. BRILLIANT!! Seriously. Just gold. Sometimes I’d just stop, backtrack a few pages and re-read a scene because it was that good.
I’m not going to say much about the plot here because honestly, if you haven’t read the first books, you shouldn’t be reading this one and if you have read the first books then you already know the set up (and probably are willing to read this book even if the whole thing was everyone just sitting in a room staring at each other). But suffice it to say that we get both current day events and Rock Chick Rewinds that go back and fill in the blanks with what was up in Ally-world during the time of the previous books because while Ally had been an integral part of the Rock Chick gang, she’d always been in the background so we never fully knew what was going on in her life.
I loved Ren! In Ally’s words he was like “a rock star without the guitar and in a suit”… so in other words, HOT! But he was different from the Hot Bunch and has his own way of being – it was still Alpha and it was still badass but in a way that was uniquely his.
“[Ren] might not be a member of the Hot Bunch, but he was a full-blooded Italian hot guy member of a crime family. So I was thinking his rabid alpha behavior either equaled or rivaled any member of the Hot Bunch, including Luke, who, in my opinion, was totally OTT.”
Now, he and Ally didn’t have the smoothest of starts. Ally had her reasons for holding back, keeping them at “fuck buddy” status and Ren had his reasons for believing they were more.
“How many times do I have to tell you? We’re fuck buddies, Zano.”He shook his head again, his thumb sweeping across my cheek and his face getting so close to mine, his lips nearly brushing my own.“No baby, we’re not. I’ve had fuck buddies, Ally. And not one of them looked like you look when I slide inside you, every fucking time I slide inside you. Like a piece of you has been lost and now it’s found.”
“No way was that shit happening with me. Some over-the-top macho guy forcing his way into my life, taking it over and bossing me around?Unh-unh.I didn’t care if it came with regular orgasms. That shit was not for me.”
“That body’s mine and I don’t want it filled with bullets and tossed in the Platte. So, for the hundredth fuckin’ time, babe, it IS my business.”
This book had a little of everything we’ve come to love in this series… lines that made me fist pump, squee, literally do a happy dance, snort with laughter in a very un-graceful way, and also moments that made me teary and had me clutching my heart… plus it wouldn’t be a true RC book without at least one explosion and kidnapping 😉
I won’t lie though – there were some slower parts to the book too… nothing bad at all though and I have absolutely no specific complaints but I found that it coasted at a very happy 4+ stars in between scenes of pure 5+++ star WIN! And during those scenes, it was absolutely fan-fuckin’-tastically righteous!!
One of the area where KA excels – and by excels, I mean few authors can even touch on the brilliance she dishes out – are interactions. They. are. GOLD.
“For God’s sake, yes!” I yelled. “We’re making it official!”Hank looked to the ceiling.Lee looked to his boots.“Explains why apartments are exploding,” Luke commented. “A Rock Chick has set her sights on a hapless male.”
I did love that the book focused not only on Ally and Ren but also on the sibling relationship between her and Hank and Lee. They were so protective of her that despite it being maddening at times, it was downright heartwarming as well.
“We leave her in your care, you better take that seriously.”“Are you kidding me?” I yelled before Ren could say a word, and Lee looked at me.“Ally, I’m your brother. Do you think I wouldn’t say anything?”“I’m thirty-two, not sixteen,” I retorted.“You’ll always be sixteen to me.”
I loved Ally’s badassesness – she loved her man and she loved that he loved her but no way was she going to stand for anything more than what she allowed for.
“It’s both cool and hot, this gig of your wanting to protect me and stick up for me. But I just want yo make it clear right now, honey, that you don’t get to make and carry through decisions about my life without discussing them with me. And just to be crystal clear, discussing is a courtesy I extend to you. My life is my life, and in the end I made the decisions.”
And Ren understood that… he just had his reasons for being protective too…
“Okay, why’d you do this?”
“Because you got your ass on radar for that guy and… since your ass is my ass, I protect that ass, both proactively and retrospectively. I do that by gathering any and all information on anyone who might be involved, even unintentionally, in threatening that ass.”
I love the bonds that these people had for each other. They’d do anything for each other and you could feel it. Their loyalty ran deep and that comes across loud and clear. It was a badass, dangerous world out there but these guys (and girls) always had each other’s backs. Always.
“[These] romances are the best kind ever… Real… But they’re about more. They’re about love of all kinds. They’re about family. Family of all kinds…”
The ending was awesome. Everyone coming together for a purpose. It gave me shivers and a deep feeling in my heart not to mention tears in my eyes. It was heart warming yet sad saying good bye to these characters but we’re left with an absolutely fantastic series full of pure badass win that I know I’ll be re-reading in the future.
We also get a huge nudge in the direction of the next book. Darius played a major part in this book and his story is strongly set up so I can’t wait to see what KA has in story for him!!
** SERIES READING ORDER **