Cut & Run: Ball & Chain

Ball & Chain

Ball & Chain

Home from their unexpected deployment, the former members of Marine Force Recon team Sidewinder rejoin their loved ones and try to pick up the pieces of the lives they were forced to leave behind. Ty Grady comes home to Zane Garrett, only to find that everything around him has changed–even the man he went to war with. He barely has time to adjust before his brother, Deuce, asks Ty to be his best man. But that isn’t all Deuce asks Ty to do, and Ty must call for backup to deal with the business issues of Deuce’s future father-in-law.

Nick O’Flaherty and Kelly Abbot join Ty and Zane at the wedding on an island in Scotland, thinking they’re there to assuage Deuce’s paranoia. But when bodies start dropping and boats start sinking, the four men get more involved with the festivities than they’d ever planned to.

With the clock ticking and the killer just as stuck on the isolated island as they are, Ty and Zane must navigate a veritable minefield of family, friends, and foes to stop the whole island from being destroyed.

I just want to start this review, or possibly rant, with the following: this is entirely my opinion. And if you haven’t read Ball & Chain yet, you should steer clear. There will be spoilers.

Right, so we basically start off six months or so after the heart wrenching end of Touch & Geaux. Zane and Kelly are waiting for their boys to get home. We have an emotional reunion between Ty and Zane, and the rest of the Sidewinder guys. It’s great. Everyone skips home and everything is dandy. Life goes on, until one day Deuce phones Ty asking him to be the best man at Deuce’s wedding, which is going to be held in Scotland. Also, would Ty mind bringing one of his Recon buddies to double up as security, too? This person can even bring a date. Enter Nick and Kelly. They head on over to Scotland, and there things start to go pear shaped as they inevitably tend to when the boys embark on the dreaded V-word.

I’m not going to go into a whole lot of detail, but that’s the gist of it. When I finished this book, I was confused. I didn’t really know how to feel about it. But the more I think about it, the more let down I feel. This book, for me, was indisputably the weakest book in the series. I don’t know what the effing hell happened. I really need to vent here, so I’m just going to go ahead and spill my guts. First thing that pissed me off? The reunion sex, or rather the glaring lack thereof. I know that sounds terribly superficial, but I felt cheated. Ty and Zane haven’t seen each other for months, and there’s no reunion sex??? And then, when we did get some sexy time, it was intruded upon by Nick and Kelly shouting through the walls. I’ll talk about those two in a minute. Secondly, when the shit started to fly, it did so in such a way that I just found myself shaking my head. I know that in most of the Cut & Run books, the guys run into situations that are a little out there. And that’s totally fine. But this time went a step too far. It was just so far-fetched. And chaotic. People were running around all over the place, but it didn’t really feel like anything was really happening. Now, on to Nick and Kelly. I just want it to be known that I like Nick and Kelly. I’m really looking forward to more of their story. In their books. Honest to God, it felt like I was reading a Sidewinder novel. I mean, this is Ty and Zane’s second last book. I needed them to have more page time than they did. As someone I was talking to on Twitter pointed out, it felt like they were supporting characters in their own bloody book. The huge issues that caused so much friggin’ angst in the last book were barely touched on. I mean, Ty asked Zane to marry him, for Pete’s sake. Surely before you take that much anticipated leap, you should talk some stuff out? And get to know each other again? You haven’t seen one another for nearly half a year! Related to those NOLA issues, and I swear to God I’ll stop after this, was Nick’s beef with Ty. I didn’t get it. It felt… a little forced. I understand why Nick was upset, but there didn’t seem to be any build up to it. One minute Nick was chilled, and the next Nick was all pissy.

I’m sorry that this turned into a rant. But I just needed to get it out there. This isn’t to say that there weren’t any good points because there were. I just probably won’t remember them in the long run…

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Holy Wow Wednesday: Long Time Gone

I believe that I mentioned in my review of Long Time Gone, book 2 in the Hell or High Water series by SE Jakes, that this book was scorching. And I wasn’t lying. Even though I last read this book in October, those sex scenes made a lasting impression. Let me just give you a snippet. And you’re in for a treat because this is reunion sex.

“Prophet?”

Tommy? “Tom?” Prophet couldn’t see much, but he knew that drawl. Recognized the feel of the man’s hands as they touched Prophet’s cheeks, traced them with fingertips… Tom reading him like Braille. As the rain washed over them, the smell of grass and earth and floral spice filled the air. His skin tingled from the electrical currents carried on the storm, and his entire body was in a state of heightened awareness that was almost painful.

He wanted to ask what the hell Tom was doing here, why he’d risked everything–including his job at EE–to come here. Wanted to ask if Tom had somehow known he’d be here. But he didn’t.

And he also didn’t know how he even heard the man over the dull roar of the wind, but he did, heard Tom whisper, “Yes,” against his cheek in answer to his unasked questions and fuck, that could mean so many damn things.

Too many to give a shit about parsing, and in the wet, hot darkness, Prophet’s mouth found Tommy’s instead.

They both groaned into that first kiss. Four months and more of longing released in a frantic rush that started out fast and rolled into something more, faster than the gathering storm and threatening to do far more damage.

And Prophet didn’t give a damn, wasn’t able to stop himself from rutting against Tom, the friction of the fabric between them and Tommy’s hardness sending shockwaves through his system.

And he was finally alive again. Holding onto his lifeline in the flesh, knowing that it had almost been too late. If he hadn’t read those emails… Another day, another hour and he would’ve been buried so far underground he would never have seen daylight again. 

He brushed that thought away for what was real right now–Tom’s hands in his hair, keeping him close. Tom’s thighs spread for him, heavy boots landing on his ass and locking around his lower back so the heels dug in, spurring him to rut harder. Tom, holding him in place from that submissive position. And Prophet was fucking Tom’s mouth with his tongue, the way he wanted to fuck Tom. The way he wanted Tommy to fuck him. Tom was matching him kiss for kiss as they alternated between wet and messy, ferocious to lingering, lip-biting to tongue-sucking.

Everything else fell away but Tom. The wet, stinging downpour, the wind, the mud… the danger, were all merely physical barriers to overcome. The easy shit.

The fact that Tom was in his arms again meant they’d already dug into the hard shit.

He pulled back from the kissing to bite Tom’s neck. Tom hissed, bucked his pelvis up, and a low shudder ran through Prophet. And then he made the mistake of opening his eyes and realized he couldn’t see. The electricity had cut out, and it was too damned dark.

He could still feel Tom under him, but that wasn’t enough. He started to count to thirty, because that’s when the generator would kick on. Panic shook him harder than lust, panic leftover from earlier. Then Tom’s hand slid into his pants, along his bare ass, trailing a finger between his cheeks and pressed against the tightened muscles of his hole.

“Mine,” Tom growled against his ear and Prophet whimpered–fucking whimpered–as Tom kept his finger in place, more pressure than an attempt to gain entrance. He had to know Prophet was too goddamned tense for that, but that started to bleed away when Tom said, “Mine,” again.

“Yeah. Yours,” he agreed, blinked against the rain, seeing shadows as his eyes adjusted, and just let himself feel Tom’s hands anchoring him.

It didn’t matter what happened in the morning, in an hour… even in ten minutes. It mattered that Tom was going to make him come in his pants, especially when Tom’s finger pushed inside him and the lights flickered back on.

“Proph,” Tom moaned as Prophet dug in and writhed with zero control. Tommy gripped his shoulder tightly, pulling Prophet into him. Prophet buried his face against Tommy’s neck and knew what Tommy’s face would look like–almost angry that Prophet had gotten to him so easily.

God, he wanted to see that.

Long Time Gone: 680 of 3704

 And lucky for us dirty little pervs, there’s even more after this. But you’ll have to buy the book here to see what happens next. Have an awesome week, everybody!

 

Book of the Month: February

I’ve only just started this series, but I can already tell it’s going to be a favourite. Everything about J.D Robb’s In Death series so far has just blown me away. While I gave both Naked in Death and Glory in Death 5 star reviews, February’s book of the month is going to be Naked in Death. I was so completely absorbed in the happenings of this book, I found it virtually impossible to put down. I know that if you give it a try, you’ll feel the same.

So here is an excerpt. Eve’s had a really rough day and she’s in a dingy bar, hoping to drown her sorrows.

“This doesn’t seem quite your den of iniquity, Lieutenant.”

Eve opened her eyes and stared up at Roarke. “Every time I turn around.”

He sat across from her. The table was small enough that their knees bumped. His way of adjusting was to slide his thighs against hers. “You called me, remember, and you’d left this address when you logged out,”

“I wanted an appointment, not a drinking buddy.”

He glanced at the drink on the table, leaned over to take a sniff. “You’re not going to get one with that poison.”

“This joint doesn’t run to fine wine and aged scotch.”

 He laid a hand over hers for the simple purpose of watching her scowl and jerk away.”Why don’t we go somewhere that does?”

“I’m in a pisser of a mood, Roarke. Give me an appointment, at your convenience, then take off.”

“An appointment for what?” The singer caught his attention. He cocked a brow, watching her eyes roll and gesture. “Unless she’s having some sort of seizure, I believe the vocalist is signaling you.”

Resigned, Eve glanced over, shook her head. “She’s a friend of mine.” She shook her head emphatically when Mavis grinned and turned both thumbs up. “She thinks I got lucky.”

“You did.” Roarke picked the drink up and set it on an adjoining table where greedy hands fought over it. “I just saved your life.”

“Goddamn it–“

“If you want to get drunk, Eve, at least do it with something that will leave you with most of your stomach lining. He scanned the menu, winced. “Which means nothing that can be purchased here.” He took her hand as he rose. “”Come on.”

“I’m fine right here.”

All patience, he bent down and until his face was close to hers. “What you are is hoping to get drunk enough so that you can take a few punches at someone without worrying about the consequences. With me, you don’t have to get drunk, you don’t have to worry. You can take all the punches you want.”

“Why?”

“Because you have something sad in your eyes. And it gets to me.” While she was dealing with the surprise of that statement, he hauled her to her feet and toward the door.

“I’m going home,” she decided. 

“No, you’re not.”

“Listen, pal–“

That was as far as she got before her back was shoved against the wall and his mouth crushed hard on hers. She didn’t fight. The wind had been knocked out of her by the suddenness, and the rage under it, and the shock of need that slammed into her like a fist.

“It was quick, seconds only, before her mouth was free. “Stop it,” she demanded, and hated that her voice was only a shaky whisper.

“Whatever you think,” he began, struggling for his own composure, “there are times you need someone. Right now, it’s me.” Impatience shimmering around him, he pulled her outside. “Where’s your car?”

Naked in Death: pg 169-171