For those of us who love books with a biker hero (or should I say anti-hero), Joanna Wylde’s Reapers MC books have the perfect mix of sensuality, grittiness and a measure of authenticity. Wylde notes in her forward that she did her due diligence in researching outlaw motorcycle club. She even had a person who is currently attached to an outlaw club review the book for accuracy in club life. I believe that this adds to my enjoyment in getting a “real” glimpse into a secretive culture that is often misunderstood. The books are stand alone, however, characters and previous events crossover.
Sophie admits that she hasn’t made the best decisions in life so far. Her first was when she was 17 and fell in love with Zach Barrett. Her second mistake was trusting that Zach would take care of her the first time she had sex. There were no tender sweet words, flowers or music. Instead, Sophie just laid there while Zach pounded away, then Zach’s biker step-brother, Ruger, walked in on them embarrassing Sophie incredibly and, to top it all off, the condom breaks. Eight months later, Sophie is pregnant and Zach is still a loser. When Sophie goes into early labor, it’s Ruger that rushes her to the hospital only to have to pull off the road and deliver baby Noah himself.
Ruger has loved that boy from the moment he came into the world. He stepped up as father figure in Noah’s life when it was clear that Zach was going to be a deadbeat dad. Ruger unhappily let Sophie and Noah move to Seattle to get away from an abusive Zach. An emergency situation with Sophie’s neighbors has Ruger hightailing it to get them out of their ghetto apartment and move them safely in with him. Ruger loves that Noah is close again, but having Sophie this close is driving him insane. There has always been an electric connection between them, but for Noah’s sake, they’ve kept it (mostly) platonic.
Now that Sophie and Ruger are living in the same house, they can’t deny what’s going on and what goes on is smokin’ hot! However, there’s still so much between them; Sophie is leery and mistrustful of the MC world and Ruger is unwilling to relinquish any part of his debauched lifestyle. They fight all the time about everything and when they aren’t fighting, they are naked. Ruger is definitely an alphahole. He’s possessive, demanding in a my-way-or-the-highway and brutally honest. At the same time, Ruger is this paradox; a man who doesn’t even want feelings while still showing his love through his actions. He is so stubborn that something cataclysmic has to happen before he realizes the nature of his feelings for Sophie.
Sophie is just as stubborn as Ruger. She continually makes poor decisions, even when she does have her son’s best interest at heart. It’s understandable that Sophie is adamant to keep Noah away from the MC and any violence. What irked me was that she was unwilling to try to understand the lifestyle being explained to her by the other Ol’ Ladies. On one hand, I respected the reluctance to avoid any violence but on the other hand, her maturity seemed very young for a single mom having to do things on her own. She kept up the poor decision making nearly to the end of the book.
I liked the banter between the two. Sophie definitely didn’t let Ruger walk over her. She made it clear from the start that she wouldn’t get into any kind of relationship with him other than monogamous. I loved that she kept in touch with her friend, Kimber (who was a riot!) and began to form ties to other women.
There isn’t as much action as there was in Reaper’s Property. This novel gave the reader more insight into a club life that many readers might not agree with. It’s patriarchal, misogynistic, and sometimes violent, but founded on a strong familial bond that outsiders are not privy to. Outlaw clubs live by a different set of rules than the regular public or “civilians”. Wylde does an admirable job showcasing the nonconformity of the club set against the traditional ties of the club family life. I continue to recommend this series as a real peek into a different kind of life.
“I think you’re a raging asshole.”
“Yeah, well I think you’re a bitch, but my cock likes you, so we’ll figure something out.”
*ARC Provided by Berkley/NAL
Click to purchase: Amazon
by Joanna Wylde
Release Date: January 28, 2014