Logan Rettino never imagined she'd fall so far. Dropped by her ex on national TV, she's gone from prima ballerina to ring card girl, reduced to revving up the crowds before MMA bouts. However distasteful she finds her new job, it pays well…and she needs the money if she's ever going to rebuild her life. Promised a huge bonus if she can convince a brooding, gifted welterweight to keep fighting, she'll do whatever it takes to earn his trust.
Keane O'Shea is unbeatable in the octagon. A former marine, he fights with a ruthlessness no gym jockey can match. He knows his brutal strength is too much for the delicate ex-ballerina, regardless of how fascinating he finds Logan's tight dancer's body. But one private performance and he's drawn to her in a way he can't - or won't - resist.
As Logan discovers the heartbreaking truth that lies beneath this handsome warrior's rage, she'll need to forfeit everything she thought mattered for the one thing that matters the most: saving Keane from himself.
©2013 Michele Mannon (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
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"I loved this book"
This has to be one of my all time favourite books. It kept me guessing and all the characters were awesome. It also points out an issue that is very relevant today (PTSD).
"Very good start to the series :D"
This was a very good story. I liked Logan and Keane and was rooting for them from the beginning. This is the first story I've read by this author and based on this I’ll probably try more of her work in the future.
Logan used to be a very talented ballerina that performed all over the world including for royalty but a bad fall took any chance of her continuing to dance professionally away from her. The dancer that dropped Logan was her fiancee who she broke up with after she found him cheating on her. Not only did he ruin her career and cheat with her understudy, he screwed her over financially as well. Now that her career is gone and she has no money (because her Ex took most of it), Logan has been forced to work as an Octagon girl, trying to save up enough money for her new dream, to open a dance school so she can teach little girls ballet.
Keane is an ex-marine and an MMA fighter. He has some issues with PTSD that causes him to have nightmares and a problem sleeping which basically makes him behave like a jerk most of the time. As I read the story, I couldn't help but think of Keane as a bear with a thorn embedded deep in his paw. The Keane bear is is hurting from the thorn and whenever someone gets too close he lashes out to keep them away rather than risk them aggravating the thorn and causing him more pain. Unfortunately he doesn't get professional help for it and instead self-medicates with booze, women and working out to try to dull the pain enough to get by.
When the story begins, Logan is doing her job, strutting around the octagon with her card and when done she ends up in an encounter with Keane. This doesn't last long but part of it involves Logan’s boss getting pissed off and firing her when he was really mad at Keane because Keane had just decided not to fight any more. Logan is desperate to keep her job and makes a deal with her boss that she keeps her job if she can get Keane to come back and fight in the qualifying rounds for an upcoming MMA tournament. Logan gets some help from one of Keane's trainers to find him and goes to try to talk to him. She meets with a lot of resistance as Keane isn't very talkative or helpful and pretty much just acts like a grump and wants to be left alone. He does have his sweet side though. When a woman he knows steals Logan’s coat, cell and wallet, Keane goes out of his way to get them back for her (if grumpily). Keane doesn't agree to fight though and Logan is feeling pretty down. It doesn't help matters for Logan that her Ex has been lambasting her in the news, trying to say that the reason he dropped her was her fault because her C-cup breasts were too big and overbalanced him (or some such crap like that…he’s just a publicity whore that uses any reason he can to get on TV). Since her Ex is using her to make himself look good and making her life worse with the negative publicity Logan’s desperate to find something to help the situation and even tries finding a different fighter that she could bring her boss in Keane’s place but has no luck. Thankfully, Keane eventually agrees to go back and fight for Logan but since the paparazzi are circling due to her Ex’s lies, Keane brings her to his place to stay with him. Logan is supposed to help him with training and herbal remedies for his pain and other problems but having her there is a sweet torture for Keane.
Logan and Keane are definitely attracted to each other and even shared a trip to third base but once she moves in to help with training, Logan decides they shouldn't have sex. Keane isn't quite as sure about this but goes along with it for now. Logan sticks to her rule but still wants Keane and has a hard time keeping her hands off. While they train together, Logan starts to get some insight in to Keane and realizes he has some deep seeded hurts that are still causing him issues. Logan wants desperately to help Keane, especially as she realizes that she’s falling for him. Keane tries not to let Logan get to him but even while he tries to be grumpy towards her and push her away, he still has very protective feelings for her (as well as very sexual feelings). The feelings and attraction build up between Logan and Keane and it’s a back and forth at first because there are a few times they almost go there but don’t. The last few times because Keane stops things, knowing that if they sleep together, Logan will get hurt because he’s too messed up to do a relationship. Regardless of the yo-yoing, things eventually break between them and they end up in bed together and it’s great on both sides. However, it complicates things and Logan tries to put on the brakes but it doesn't really have much success. They have a tumultuous and intense beginning but the fighting and Keane's issues with PTSD cause roadblocks…especially since Keane would rather try to ignore the issues rather than fix it. Things do get dramatic at the end and a bit sad but thankfully Keane gets his act together and he fixes things with Logan so they get a sweet start to their HEA.
I enjoyed this story very much. I liked both MCs very much. Logan was likable as a heroine and I was relieved to find a heroine that didn't annoy the hell out of me (I've run in to way too many like that recently). Keane...well like I said, he’s a grumpy wounded bear but deep down he’s a teddy bear and I liked him even though he was a bit of a butt head (considering his PTSD it’s understandable). While I thought the start of the story was a bit shaky, overall the story was very good and once I got in to it I was engaged until the end. I’ll probably read more of the series in the future. I’d recommend this book. 2 thumbs up. :D
Okay I LOVE all kinds of romance books, well not really, but this was not it for me. The story was strange. The storyline sounded okay but really didn't go anywhere. The couple never really got together until the very end, so we didn't see them as a couple at all. The ups and downs, they're together and not, he doesn't want her but he does, made me crazy!!! I actually stopped about 4 hours in because I couldn't stand it anymore then a few days later made myself finish it, why?? Honestly I will be returning this one. The narrator did a good job, no issue there. My issues are these: Stupid sayings (leaping leotards, crinkled camisoles, bleeding leotards, something about tights) these were said A LOT and were annoying, no depth, no true expression of their relationship, no real ending. I will be returning this one, not worth my credit!
"Knock Me Out!"
I loved this book from beginning to end.This book was heartbreaking and wonderful all at the same time. The characters were smart, witty and captivating. I loved how Keen (Boom-Yeah) O'Shea was a complex character that would make you want to beat him in the side of the head one minute and cry and hold him tight the next. I loved how Logan never gave up and showed him she could deal with whatever was thrown her way.
Her ex was an ass and got what he deserved :)
I laughed and cheered for the characters through the book. In the end....all I can say is, what comes around goes around. :)
Loved it. I have actually listened to this story more than once. The narrative was spot on. And, the issues they hit are alot of people go threw. Well wrote.
3hrs left in the book.....
how flipping selfish could Logan be? Through this ENTIRE story all Logan thought about herself, her own situation, her own needs and wants. What happened to HER. My cracking point was her trying to "talk" to him about his ptsd RIGHT before his fight and him trying to focus on winning FOR HER. Seriously, there's a time and a place for everything and woman that wasn't it. She needs an east to west coast slap for her selfishness.
back to the book....
ok all done and i'm glad it's over. I wanted to love the story but Logan wasn't going to let that happen. Like I said before she was selfish and spoiled. The entire story was about HER wants Her needs what SHE thinks. We were told Keane was such an alpha male but seriously we rarely got to see that side. and this next part requires a disclaimer.
**Disclaimer** I support our military. I LOVE our military men and women. I respect their service and believe they should received all sorts of rainbows, butterflies, fairydust, and pots of gold when they come home.
NOW with that said. The constant nagging, invading, and just pushiness of Stevie and Logan about Keane's PTSD was off the charts annoying. I can't imagine in what reality an octagon girl would be able to stop a fighter from coming to the ring and have a freaking come to Jesus moment with her boyfriend. NOT TO MENTION a freaking reporter stopping the guys from getting into the ring to have a bullshit interview about nothing fight related. I honestly felt that everything the author knew about MMA came from the first page in a Google search.
And at WHAT point did a woman who was 5'7" and a 34C cup become a boobalicious buxom bombshell. Her boobs sounded average but EVERYONE commented on them. I swear the author would have done better to give them a name or create a storyline for them.......... oh wait.......
narrator - 3
story 2 - Logan was unlikeable. Keane was 2 dimensional. the landlady was just ridiculous. why the heck was Logan buying her groceries?
"Just say NO!"
While it's a fact that it is much more difficult to create something than to criticize it.. This book has a few major flaws that make it very hard to listen to. First of all, there is a huge amount of time before anything of interest happens. Secondly the main female character has a habit of exclaiming bizarre ballet expletives, for example, " bleeding leotards". The visual that exclamation brings to mind is unpleasant to say the least. As a frequency audible listener, it is my opinion, that there are many many more fighting series erotic romances that are better written. Save your credit for one of those. For example JB Salisbury's fighting series is fabulous the only problem is they have only recorded a couple of her series on audible. This is a tragedy of epic proportions!
"Not that Excited"
Perhaps I started this book with an idea of what caliber of book I was anticipating. I absolutely love Katy Evan's Remy and Sarah Castille Against the Ropes so I was expecting something similar. This book didn't excite me in any way. There was no witty dialog between the main characters, no relationship between the different fighters to bring you into this world and the chemistry between the characters was very off putting. I've listened to other books narrated by Rachel Fulginiti but I didn't find her a good fit for this book and perhaps that played into my blaahh feeling after listening to this book.
"It was okay!"
I like audio better.
The story was okay.
Rachel was okay for a girls voice, but for the guys voice we should have a different person.
I don't know.
"Didn't knock me out"
An ex-ballet dancer is reduced to acting as an 'octagon girl,' walking the octagon shaped cage in skimpy clothing, holding round cards for MMA fights. Her continued employment in the high paying job is dependent upon her success in keeping a former marine turned MMA welterweight in the cage and winning. The dancer moves in with the fighter under the flimsy premise to help his tortured soul. The two try to resist each other, but predictably cannot.
The story is slow and foreseeable as interactions between the ballerina, lusty men, and the fighter are repeated several times with similar results, which are woven into an on-again-off-again relationship cycle of the two main characters. The author's use of the ballerina's ex-boyfriend and the fighter's playmate as antagonists is weakly executed. It's likely the author's goal was to explore sexual tension between two opposite characters, but their development is not deep enough to be intriguing.
The book reads as though the author jumped onto the MMA writing bandwagon for the sole purpose of selling books, rather than based on intimate experience or particular interest in the subject. Although the author's storytelling lacks creativity and depth, her writing technique shows glimmers of talent, earning a second star on a one star book.
Overall, don't waste a credit.
"Admirable female lead character "
Very enjoyable to listen to.
Well narrated and good story line, loved the positivity of the story, although the lead lady has had a rough time; the tenacious focus to make the best out of what she does have is great and makes a change from the woe is me 'I need saving' type of read many romances offer.
It only got 4☆ as it finished a bit abruptly given how in depth the rest of the story was.
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