Monday, 4 August 2014

In Your Corner (Redemption #2) by Sarah Castille


"You have to go. I won't be able to control myself. I've wanted you so bad for so long and after I've been in the cage...I can't think straight." He gives a guttural groan and his fist clenches on my hip.

Primitive. Primal. His need speaks to me. I tighten my grip on his neck and rock up to kiss him. He takes over. His kiss is hard and demanding.

"Mine." His voice is raw, savage and for a moment I truly believe he may lose control.

He rules in the ring

Two years ago, Jake and Amanda were going hot and heavy. But when Jake wanted more, Amanda walked away. Jake immersed himself in mixed martial arts, living life on the edge. But that didn't dull the pain of Amanda's rejection-until a chance encounter throws them together.

A high-powered lawyer, Amanda was a no-strings-attached kind of girl. But two years after her breakup with Jake, she still hasn't found anyone who gets her heart pumping the way he did. And then he shows up in her boardroom, hot as sin and needing help...

But can he rule her heart?

Jake is darker, sexier, and impossible to resist. As their chemistry builds, Amanda's not sure if she can stay in control, or if she's finally willing to let him claim her body and soul.

This is a direct sequel to Against the Ropes, a book I liked very much. The hero and heroine of this story were introduced there (along with a number of other supporting characters) and had the breakup which is at the root of this story. In other words, it CAN be read as a standalone (the author does a good job of providing the backstory) but I recommend starting with the first book.

I liked Jake. A lot. I mean, he’s hot, he’s alpha and is not totally blind to reason – so what’s not to like? Amanda on the other hand is more driven than the entire crew of the Indianapolis 500. Add to that the fact I REALLY disliked her promiscuity in the first book and you can see it took me a while to warm up to her. In fact I kept checking out other characters hoping there was someone better waiting in the wings for Jake… That said, I finally got it that she was just a girl looking for love in all the wrong places and calling it by all the wrong names. So looking at Jake just plain scared her – and she messed it up because she couldn’t accept what she knew he was offering.

This book starts two years after their breakup in book one. They run into each other professionally – his company needs legal assistance and she is the lawyer assigned to the case. Awkward? Oh yeah. She still has issues but has come to realize how much she lost and he is afraid she’s still the same person who threw him away. But the old chemistry is still sizzling, and sparking, and just about combusting… They bounce apart and together like they were on bungee cords.

Being a Redemption book, there are lots of great action scenes at the gym but the primary plot is the romance between Jake and Amanda and their confrontations with their various issues (commitment, self-worth, living – and frequently NOT living – up to the expectations of others to name but a few.) The underlying question, especially for Amanda, seems to be ‘Do you let your past define you or do you take charge of your own life?’

One of the author’s strengths is in her strong supporting characters – each has a definition and voice that add to the story and the setting. Each of them is clearly an individual, someone you’d recognize if you met them. I hope some of them will get their own stories in the future.

It’s an excellent read.

Redemption series:
1. Against the Ropes 
2. In Your Corner 
3. Full Contact - upcoming

Copy received from Netgalley and publisher for an honest review.

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