14 July 2014

Review: Skye Jordan's Ricochet is a hot, sexy, cannot-put-it-down summer read!

Have I got a smutastic, sexy, and keep-that-Kleenex-box-at-your side read for you! Yes, that’s right, Ricochet the third book in Skye Jordan’s Renegades series is just plain out amazing.

I thoroughly enjoyed the first two books in this series - Reckless (Book 1) & Rebel (Book 2) - and their stories about former top models, now successful women of business, who hook up with members of the A-list Hollywood stunt team, The Renegades. But hold on to your seat, Jordan has not only turned the heat level up in Ricochet, but I’m still wrapped up in the story almost 12 hours after I turned the final page.

The group of hunky, alpha guys that form the Renegades are truly eye candy for readers. These thrill seekers channel all that adrenaline into creating stunts that propel them them on the top of their industry. This is the second book where the team is creating stunts for the latest James Bond film. Yep, there in charge of creating the innovative and dangerous stunts for one of the longest running film franchises. These guys ROCK!

Who keeps them in line? That would be their office manager aka little sister, Rachel. While she’s only been with the team for six months, her organizational skills, ability to assess risks, and most importantly, ease in working with difficult personalities, has made her an invaluable asset. So invaluable, that she’s declared off-limits to the team members for any extracurricular action.

When we first meet her, Rachel’s having a particularly lousy day, that just keeps getting worse. When she’s told she has to collect a demolition consultant at LAX, I groaned along with her. Sure enough her luck holds and she’s stuck in traffic for over 90 minutes in the sweltering summer heat and then she can’t find the consultant anywhere. He’s disappeared.

Ryker, the consultant, is on leave from his military job in Afghanistan for two months and is the best friend of Renegade stuntman, Troy. In Ryker's mind, he’s doing his bro a real favor by coming out to LA to give the Renegades some advice about how to safely blow some things up. But is Troy looking out for him in creating this opportunity? From the moment Ryker intervenes in a fight among three taxi drivers at the airport, cursing them out in Pashtu while flashing back to the war zone he just left, the inner battle he faces in this story is poignantly made clear.

When he heads to the bar in the International Terminal he hooks up with a woman who’s 180 degrees different from his normal one-night-stands, a series of encounters that help hold his demons at bay. He can’t understand the attraction to her, but he can’t and does not want to escape it.

The woman just wants to have anonymous hot and heavy sex, because she’s been betrayed by the two people she trusted the most. She  no longer trusts or believes in “relationships.” The tough guy on the bar stool next to her is perfect for her first foray into the world of a one-night-stand. Not only does he like the same craft brewery, but with a glance he gets her hot and bothered. More hot than she's ever been.

Yep, you guessed it. Rachel is the woman sitting next to Ryker and the sizzling encounter they have will leave your eReader smoking. Ryker (or Nathan as he introduces himself to Rachel) realizes who she is, but doesn’t say anything. I know, kind of silly, but he doesn’t want to take the chance of his night going south.

In the morning, when she’s gone, he realizes that he’d like this one night to last through his time in LA, but will that be possible? Not from the reception Rachel gives him when she realizes that the anonymous Nathan she never expected to see again is Nathan Ryker. Unknowingly, she’s just broken her cardinal “no involvement with the team rule,” but that wild passion they shared probably can't be denied.

From this moment forward, I was totally involved with the story, so involved I ignored the wild thunderstorm that erupted around me. Sure I loved the hot and dirty sex scenes, but I wasn’t counting the pages till the next one popped up. No matter how well written they are. Nope, this whole story just wrapped its fingers around me and pulled me in headfirst.

Between Rachel’s quandary of how to handle her growing attraction to Ryker alongside her devotion to the Renegades to her dealing with a constant barrage of messages from her parents and her sister, I was totally hooked by her character. I love it when there is a heroine like this who is not only fiercely attractive, but wildly intelligent and take-no-prisoners kick-ass fabulous. And yes, I loved it when she channeled her inner bitch!

And Nathan Ryker? Well, I fell a little bit in love with him too. I admit it. I. Did. He is unabashedly secure in himself, in his military service both as a former Ranger and as a demolitions (EOD) expert. However, he’s also not afraid to express himself to those he serves with. When he tells his comrade “I love you,” you know that this tough alpha guy is solid with himself in so many ways. Yes, he’s had a tough childhood (in and out of foster homes), but he had therapy and seems to have dealt with a lot of those issues. What is dragging him down now though, is the recent loss of several of his EOD team from a hidden bomb in an Afghanistan market. Instead of addressing his PTSD he’s been self-medicating during this forced two-month leave. Yes, that’s why he went through a woman a night in New Orleans. But when he encounters Rachel, it seems no other women will do. For now, anyway.

Rachel and Nathan just captured my reader’s heart. Truly. They. Did. In her afterword, Jordan described how much she enjoyed writing Nathan’s “damaged layers.” May I say she triumphed in doing so. May I say that’s why I really enjoy reading books by Skye Jordan (aka Joan Swan). She’s a writer who is always surprising me in the most wonderful way. Plus she’s an absolutely fabulous storyteller.

So if you’re looking for a hot, sexy, cannot-put-it-down, summer read, pick up Ricochet today!

From the Publisher

Renegades, Book 3
Ricochet by Skye Jordan
Cygnet Books
ISBN 9780985870157
Price $2.99
Publication Date: July 12, 2014

After a tragic incident in Afghanistan leaves Master Sergeant Nathan Ryker the only man standing in his tight-knit team, he spirals into an alcohol-and-sex induced escape. A call from his lifelong buddy pulls Ryker from the shadows with a request for help with his stunt company’s latest blockbuster. If Ryker can survive the next three weeks of leave and get back to his remaining men, he might just be all right. But a sexy woman who can take his mind off his trauma is too hard to resist, and when he hooks up with Renegades’ sultry, snarky office manager, his sanity takes a backseat to his first glimpse of a future he isn’t sure he deserves.

Still reeling from a bitter romantic betrayal, Rachel Hart wants nothing more than an uncomplicated hookup. So when the mysterious Nathan seduces her with a little dirty talk and one delicious kiss, Rachel drowns all her good sense in a Mandarin and soda and gives herself over to a night of sexual bliss. But her memories tarnish in the morning light when Rachel discovers his real identity and his link to Renegades. Her job and her friends are the only thing holding her life together, and she won’t be ruined by one sultry night with this damaged and dangerously sexy man.