Review: Addicted by Elle Kennedy

Review: Addicted by Elle KennedyAddicted by Elle Kennedy
Series: Outlaws #2
Published by Signet June 28, 2016
Genres: Dystopian, Erotica
Pages: 368
Format: ARC
Source: Copy for Honest Review
Also in this series: Claimed
Also by this author: The Mistake (Off-Campus, #2)

Lennox used to live in a paradise on earth with his best friend Jamie, in a place where visitors came and went, allowing their desires to run free. But everything changes when a deadly attack forces them to take up with Connor Mackenzie’s band of Outlaws. Lennox knows Jamie is hung up on someone else, but he’s always believed he’s the man for her—and won’t let her go without a fight.

Even though Jamie is well aware that Lennox is one hot specimen of a man, she refuses to let sex ruin the most important relationship in her life. But when the object of her interest spurns her, she indulges in a little pleasure-filled revenge with her very magnetic, very willing best friend. One thrilling night with Lennox is enough to awaken Jamie’s unexpected desires for him. And now that she’s had a taste, she’s not sure she can ever give him up...

Claimed, the first book in the Outlaws series, was a favorite read of mine last year. Which, of course, had me excited for this follow up.

However…I was underwhelmed.

I was so eager for Lennox and Jamie’s story. They intrigued me in book one but we didn’t really know that much about them. While Kennedy allows us to learn them quite well in Addicted, the rest of the world suffered for it, in my opinion.

Addicted starts off with a group from Connor’s clan heading off to a friend’s settlement to help train them to fight against a rising bandit threat.  It’s a settlement that was touched on in Claimed and again, I was eager to know more about this group of people. And again, I got what I wished for there. But too much happened within the walls of this little ‘town’ and too much happened within the bed of Lennox and Jamie.  There was not enough to progress the series as a whole for me. Really, that’s about all I have to say about the plot of this story.  They trained some people, Lennox and Jamie figure out they love each other and they fuck. A lot.

Addicted lacked the action and excitement I got from Claimed. It felt more like a set up, a bridge, between book one and book three. There is some excitement at the end of the book and some content that makes it all more emotional than I anticipated. It wasn’t enough though. Honestly, other than the little surprise Male/Male action I got towards the start of the book, I was a tad bored. I AM SO BUMMED BY THAT!

I’m not giving up on the series, I’m actually highly anticipating Reese and Rylan’s story because that man lights me up each time he drops on to the page. I am hoping for the same level of energy and steam that I got from Claimed though.

About Elle Kennedy

A New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Elle Kennedy grew up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, and holds a B.A. in English from York University. From an early age, she knew she wanted to be a writer, and actively began pursuing that dream when she was a teenager.

Elle currently writes for various publishers. She loves strong heroines and sexy alpha heroes, and just enough heat and danger to keep things interesting!

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RERUN Review: On Dublin Street by Samantha Young

RERUN Review: On Dublin Street by Samantha YoungOn Dublin Street by Samantha Young
Series: On Dublin Street #1
Published by Signet July 2, 2012
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 372
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Amazon US

Jocelyn Butler has been hiding from her past for years. But all her secrets are about to be laid bare…

Four years ago, Jocelyn left her tragic past behind in the States and started over in Scotland, burying her grief, ignoring her demons, and forging ahead without attachments. Her solitary life is working well—until she moves into a new apartment on Dublin Street where she meets a man who shakes her carefully guarded world to its core.

Braden Carmichael is used to getting what he wants, and he’s determined to get Jocelyn into his bed. Knowing how skittish she is about entering a relationship, Braden proposes an arrangement that will satisfy their intense attraction without any strings attached.

But after an intrigued Jocelyn accepts, she realizes that Braden won’t be satisfied with just mind-blowing passion. The stubborn Scotsman is intent on truly knowing her… down to the very soul.

Rerun Reviews features reviews by Debbie, previously published on Keep Calm Read Romance or Talk Supe — and reviews by Ali previously published on GingerRead Reviews.

After reading On Dublin Street I was surprised to find out that this was Samantha Young’s first venture into the adult romance category. I was totally astounded by that little tid-bit because On Dublin Street was so incredibly awesome. If you are a sucker for a sexy man with an accent then I can tell you right now you will be falling and swooning hard for Braden Carmichael. Weeks after reading this book I am still thinking about that sexy Scotsman. I’m kind of kicking myself right now because I’m just getting to this review and not told you about the awesomeness of this book.

College student, Jocelyn ‘Joss’ Butler has been living on her own in Scotland for the last four years. Joss had lived through enough heartache and loss that would last a lifetime. She loses her mother, father and younger sister in a single tragic vehicle accident at a young age and has been on her own ever since. So as soon as she graduated high school in America, she quickly jumps on a plane to moves to Scotland, her mothers homeland. Not wanting to suffer through such tragic heartache again, Joss keeps everyone around her at an arm’s length. She’s unwilling to let herself care for others, including her roommate and new friends in Scotland. After her best friend and roommate moves to London, Joss is on the hunt for a new flat and finds a vacancy for a beautiful flat on Dublin Street.

“Our attraction was nuclear. I had never known anything like it. It made Braden Carmichael extremely dangerous to me.”

“Why the hell did he have to be the human version of a sexually charged nuclear weapon?”

On the way to visiting her new potential home and future roommate, Joss has a chance meeting with an alluring Scotsman. They unexpectedly share a cab ride and from the instant she meets this mystery man, Joss recognizes her attraction to this stranger. Although she’s attracted to sexy Scotsman, Joss is put off by his flirty ways and cockiness. Leaving the mystery man in the cab, Joss goes on to inspect her new flat and agrees to move in with the young and beautiful, Ellie Carmichael.

Unbeknownst to Joss, Ellie happens to be the younger half-sister of Braden Carmichael, the stranger she shared a cab ride the first time she visited Dublin Street. The two unexpectedly meet again when Joss steps out of bathroom totally naked and runs into Braden in the hallway of her flat. Not only is Braden Ellie’s brother but he also happens to be the owner of the flat and feels he can walk-in whenever he pleases. Braden makes it clear from the very beginning that he’s interested in Joss and even tries to stake a claim on her even before they start any sort of relationship. Although Joss acts put off by Braden, she’s unable to keep herself around him and finds out that he’s not so bad to be around with. She’s extremely attracted to him but as her rule in life, refuses to let her self get close to him. Braden presents Joss with a “friends with benefits” deal where that can satisfy each others desires and needs with no strings attached.

“After last night, there’s no denying the promise of what’s between us. I’m not backing off, so rather than coming up with a new defense – which I’m sure I’d find highly entertaining – just give in, babe. You know you’re going to eventually.”

From the moment Joss and Braden get together, their relationship was absolutely electrifying. Braden will completely sweep you off your feet and consume all of your thoughts. Even with his cockiness and bluntness, you will not be able to ward off his charms. Braden totally had me from the moment you meet him in the cab ride scene and he continued to woo me till the very end. I found his aggressive and dominant persona to win Joss over completely sexy. With his determination, Braden was the first person in years to crack the protective wall Joss had built ever since she was a freshman in high school. He not only wanted to break down her barriers but he was willing to stick around even when Joss was hurdling through all her personal issues.

Joss was an interesting character. Although I found her never ending melodrama annoying at times, I couldn’t find myself not liking her. Seeing the barriers she’s created throughout the years is understandable, especially after suffering a great loss at such a young age. It’s a little heartbreaking to see her isolate herself because of her fears. Joss thinks that if she just lives in the now, she won’t set herself up for heartbreak in the future. You are with her when she finally starts to let herself feel for others around her and you see her wanting to make a change in her life and psyche. Some of the scenes I really enjoyed while Joss was working through all the muddle in her head took place in her therapists office. Her therapist didn’t push her to do things but allowed her to work things out in her own pace. She was even able to let Joss workout her feelings for Braden and the therapist was a fan of him from the very beginning.

“You’re a good person, which makes the fact that you don’t trust anyone really hard for the people who care about you.”

Everyone I follow who said this book was excellent was absolutely right! On Dublin Street was such a wonderful treat and I devoured this book in about a day. It was an emotional, angsty and enthralling read that me wide-eyed and glued to my Kindle. I really enjoyed seeing Joss grow and learn how to love and trust those around her. Braden is able to teach her how to trust and love someone whole heartedly. Ellie is even able to teach Joss that it’s easy to care for folks even with all of their faults. With Braden and Ellie’s help, Joss is able to learn that loving someone should not be something that we fear and that she is only holding herself back from finding peace and happiness by withdrawing herself from those who love and care about her. Like I said I was shocked to find out that this was Samantha Young’s first adult romance novel. On Dublin Street had all the passion and intensity that I crave in adult romances. Ms. Young created captivating characters and an emotionally and sexually charged story that will leave you wanting more, more and more.

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Review: Claimed by Elle Kennedy

Review: Claimed by Elle KennedyClaimed by Elle Kennedy
Series: Outlaws #1
Published by Signet October 6, 2015
Genres: Dystopian, Erotica
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Source: Copy for Honest Review
Also in this series: Addicted
Also by this author: The Mistake (Off-Campus, #2)
Amazon US | Amazon UK | B&N

The bestselling author of the Killer Instincts novels “knows how to write scorching sexual tension” (USA Today). Now she really sets it on fire in a new series about men and women living on the edge of violence, sex, and life and death.

After a devastating war decimated most of the world, Hudson Lane has only known the oppressive life under her own father’s tyranny. She finally escapes, branding herself an outlaw and hunted by the Enforcers. Her best chance at survival is Connor Mackenzie, an aggressively sensual fugitive who opens her eyes to the wicked possibilities of a world without rules.

As the leader of a band of outlaw fighters, Connor can’t resist the beautiful stranger who asks for his protection. Despite his reservations, he agrees to introduce her to a whole new way of life. But when Connor discovers Hudson’s connection to the enemies of liberty, he wonders how far he can trust the woman who has abandoned all inhibitions to challenge every forbidden desire.

Some things I love: Dystopian stories, erotic stories, Elle Kennedy‘s writing.

Imagine my delight at having all three of those show up in my mailbox, packaged in one very nice looking paperback?

Claimed is set in a post war torn America.  The geography is much different than what we now have, parts of the country are now under water and what is left is either controlled by an unforgiving government or you are an outlaw surviving on whatever you can manage to scavenge.

Hudson grew up in a city controlled by the government.  It wasn’t always as controlling as it is now,  there used to be something similar to fairness.  That’s all gone now and left in the wake is nothing but violence and murder.  Escaping the city may be easy for her but she won’t go unnoticed and she’ll have the two most powerful men in the area searching for her. Her overlord brother and her fiance, the most ruthless Lieutenant alive.

Hudson knows that surviving in outlaw land will require some help. Some shelter.  She finds that shelter in an unlikely source.  A group of five very capable, very powerful and yet, fairly unwelcoming men.  Convincing them to take her on requires her to reveal just enough about herself to make them want her around, but not quite enough to make them want her dead.  It’s a dangerous line and if not walked carefully, could cost her everything.

Connor can’t deny that Hudson stirs some parts of him better left settled. He also can’t deny that the woman is more trouble than she lets on.  But it’s the first feelings that have him ready to give in to her.  She’s smart, she’s capable, she’s gorgeous and she has this heady desire to learn what it’s like to live free.  Connor wants to be the one to teach her that.

And teach her, he does.  But when the truth comes to light, everything Connor struggles to hold together starts to crumble.

Claimed is a smut filled dangerous ride and I loved every bit of it.  Kennedy writes with a cautious balance between sexual tension, explosive eroticism and suspenseful excitement.  Nothing felt like too much, nothing felt like too little.  There is a wonderfully interesting cast of characters introduced in this first Outlaw installment and I’m eager to hear everyone’s stories.  I loved what she gave us in Claimed, strong characters, secrets, deceit, danger, lust, love…so much packed into this book!

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About Elle Kennedy

A New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Elle Kennedy grew up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, and holds a B.A. in English from York University. From an early age, she knew she wanted to be a writer, and actively began pursuing that dream when she was a teenager.

Elle currently writes for various publishers. She loves strong heroines and sexy alpha heroes, and just enough heat and danger to keep things interesting!

read more

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