Nick Sebring has issues. Born feeling like an outsider in his own family, growing up under the shadow of a brother who could do anything, Nick isn't that great of a guy. But when this culminates with Nick lashing out to hurt his brother through the woman he loves, Nick turns inward and makes some decisions about the man he intends to be. And as he does this, he falls in love and truly learns the man that he's grown to be.
When his love is murdered right before Nick's eyes, Nick knows he has to avenge her. He knows how he's going to avenge her. And he has no qualms about using Olivia Shade to exact that vengeance.
Olivia Shade has grown up on the outside of her family, too. Her problem is that they don't want her outside. They want her all the way in, right under their thumbs. She pays the price for seeking escape and learns her lesson - she'll never see a dawn where she wakes up free. Then she meets Nick Sebring, and even as she fights it, the hope that died years ago starts to blossom. She can find love. She can have a man of her own. She can be happy. She can be free.
Olivia hopes while Nick schemes. However, as Nick peels back the layers of all that is Olivia Shade, he finds something surprising. He understands its fragility. He falls in love with its beauty. He seeks to protect it. But he forgets to protect his Livvie from one thing: Nick Sebring.
©2016 Kristen Ashley (P)2016 Audible, Inc.
Obsessive reader of at least 5 kindle books a week. Only use audiobooks to survive my daily 90 minute walk to work.
This is, perhaps, the most extreme of Kristen Ashley’s “bad boys” with an H who was very dislikeable in previous books. His transformation into one of the “good guys” all happens in the prologue and it did feel like a critical part of the story development was missing.
The H plans to use the h to get inside her father’s criminal network, to get revenge for the murder of his FBI girlfriend. The h was a reluctant part of the family, (keeping the books and laundering the income). She had given up on ever having a happy “honest” life as her past attempts to escape had been brutally punished. She (conveniently) finds the H irresistible, and they have ten chapters of hot sex with very little conversation. As the h openly did not trust the H for anything apart from sex, what this was supposed to achieve was unclear.
The couple somehow fall in love, even though they never really talk honestly to each other - or talk much at all between their many sexual encounters. They then change from edgy, cynical and damaged underworld characters, into a mushy, loved up couple. The h, who had been so deeply unhappy that she did not smile until Chapter 15, becomes a rock chick clone and was suddenly “cute” and “klutsy”, while the H, who had spent four years preparing for revenge, falls in love with ease. It would have made more sense for both characters to strongly resist admitting to any sort of emotional caring for each other – they were both wired to be in control, so more of a tussle for dominance and less of the cliché secret trip to Vegas would have made this romance more convincing.
In some places this book is really good, particularly when the couple are apart (!), and I adore so many of KA’s books, but she does seem to be struggling lately with what market she is aiming for. This book, and the previous one I listened to (Deacon), both seem to be targeting the YA market, with musical "messages" and videos as part of the romance. But then there seems to be the obligatory BDSM thrown in to target the FSOG market and so many chapters of fabulous sex that it becomes a bit mundane. Her earlier books were more “romantic suspense” with super hot guys (and super hot sex), whereas now they are more “erotic romances” with less emphasis on a strong plot line and instead there are chapters and chapters of lengthy sexual encounters. I guess it’s a personal preference, because her writing ability is, without a doubt, already proven, but I do wish for more along the lines of “At Peace” “The Gamble” and “Sweet Dreams”.
"A HOT LISTEN THAT LEADS TO A BEAUTIFUL LOVE STORY"
One of the things that you know a Kristen Ashley book will give you is a loveable, sexy Alpha Hero who, once he's made you his, he'd lie, cheat, steal, kill or die to protect you. They have clipped speech, are hard, possessive, jealous, demanding lovers, often dirty talkers, cryptic, intelligent, loving, protective, very sexual and, as Knight declared to his woman in book 1 "wars fought over a face like this, a man would work himself into the ground for it, go down to his knees to beg to keep it, endure torture to protect it, take a bullet for it, poison his brother to possess a face like this"..... yup, they're not afraid to show that they love deeply, are vulnerable to the woman that holds his heart..... and the family he makes with her.
The second thing is a fantastic storyline, filled with suspense, angst, drama, bad guys, quick witted banter and dialogue, twists and a plot that includes well loved characters from the previous books. Finally, the third thing that KA gives you are mesmerizing romances that are passionate, filled with heartfelt declarations, unpredictable, very hot and they'll curl your toes, make your blood pressure rise, frustrate you, charm you, have you eager to get back to them and finally leave you sighing in pleasure, and on a book high, because you know you've just listened to something awesome.
Nick and Olivia's story was all this and much more.... they came from different worlds but somehow found each other.... but it wasn't going to be easy, it wasn't going to be without it's bloodshed and it wasn't going to go smoothly. Nick has wanted revenge for the death of his girlfriend for four years and his ticket to get it is Olivia - she's quiet, vulnerable yet strong and is the disillusioned Boss' Daughter.... but what he wasn't prepared for was for Olivia to stir up and ignite intense, possessive and protective feelings. Slowly she comes out of her shell, trusts and puts her faith in Nick but he has hidden his agenda and secrets from her and, when she eventually learns the truth (not, of course, from him) the sht hits the fan, hearts are broken and dreams crumble. The roller coaster ride does stop at some precarious situations but it left me with that 'feel good' feeling, wishing there was more but very grateful that I found this talented and gifted Author.
Dual POV's (with multiple POV's at the end) and a really good narrator who delivered very convincing male voices and injected the perfect emotional dialogue into well described and easily visualized scenes. Could be stand alone but it does refer to characters from the past 5 books and gives an Epilogue which wraps up all the characters HEA's from the entire series beautifully.
Worth a credit? Yes, not only is KA an auto download Author for me but her books are also worthy pre-orders too. Each and every one of her books in the Unfinished Hero series, IMO, are creditworthy and this story has made me want to listen to this wonderful series all over again.
"A Fantastic Brilliant Close to a Touch & Go Series"
This portion of Kristen Ashley's The Unfinished Heros series is the final chapter. While each book can stand alone, if you are going to read the entire series – you may want to stop reading this review. It contains spoilers, I don't purposely do this but you have been warned!
Olivia Shade is the daughter of a crime family powerful. Nick wants retribution from them for making him watch them murder his woman.
Olivia feels that she is nothing more than a pawn to be used however her father seems fit, to advance to business and career.
Nick and Olivia cross paths. Nick is never going to love again, after the murder of his girlfriend. Olivia does not even know what love means. However there is an electric spark that flows through Nick & Olivia every time they touch.
I really enjoyed this book and it seemed to go a lot deeper as far as the plot, etc. I do not know if that is because it is the final book in the series or what, but I had difficulty putting it down.
SPOILER!! The very end chapters of this book, KA brings us up to speed on all of the previous characters and how their lives look now. I really enjoyed that, so very much.
Stella Bloom is new to me (in this series.) I would mark her performance as above average because of her ability to handle such a large class cast of characters. There are male & female and an occasional kid. If I see something that looks interesting to me in the future and she is the narrator, I will grab it in a heartbeat.
Notes/warnings: graphic descriptions of sex, violence & strong language, also the discussion of trafficking anything from drugs to girls to women – this may upset some readers.
This is definitely for the older than 18 years crowd. I like my books racy & spicy and this series was a little bit outside my comfort zone. If you don't mind the things that I warned about, it is a great series. I had a chance to read it from beginning to end and that's how I would recommend anyone else listen. I also prefer my books a little bit deeper.
Ratings: The first book I enjoyed, the second a bit less, the third about average but Sebring knocked my socks off, I felt great after having read it especially as the characters from previous books came into play.
Stars: Four stars overall
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"So Hard to Say Goodbye"
I fell a little in love with each and every one of the hardcore men of the Unfinished Heroes Series. I set aside a small place in my reader's heart for Mr. Nick Sebring when his story became available and I wasn't disappointed.
Of course one of the darkest of the bunch would be paired with the princess of an empire he was employed to bring down because that's just how Kristen Ashley rolls.
The heat between Nick and Olivia was off the charts and made it easy to believe that they would create rules that would allow them to continue experiencing each other without getting scorched. It was a good try anyway.
I rooted for them even though I knew they would each have to battle through their personal hells to want something lasting.
My heart went out to Olivia who seemed to be the proverbial princess held captive by her family, but it was also nice to see that she had some claws of her own.
As secrets were revealed and lies exposed there was one choice for these two to make. Give up their former lives or give up each other. I was very happy with the choice they made, but of course I want more. On to her next series.
"Best one yet !!!"
Fan of Ashley in the past books were the same this one didn't follow the rule. So that was great. Don't get me wrong I love the past books. This one made me smile and laugh and that is the big plus.
"Hated Finishing the Series"
These unfinished heroes are perfect book boyfriends - under the talented narration, the characters come to life in all their alpha goodness. The story grabs you and before you know it, you're done listening and wishing there was more.
OMG this book was awesome!! I knew it was going to be great because I love every last book in this series. At first I disliked Nick so much in the first 4 books, but in this book I fell in love with him. OMG Olivia had my heart tearing apart but I am so glad she found her HAPPY!! This book is a must read and definitely worth the credit, but you really need to read the first 4 books to understand how far Nick has overcome!! LOVE IT!! Kristen Ashley is my favorite author.
"Always darkest before the dawn"
Sebring is very in keeping with the Unfinished Heros series in being much darker than Ms Ashley's other series.
Nick had not endeared himself to anyone with his previous appearances in this series but he certainly redeemed himself in his story.
The female protagonist, Olivia, may have one of the saddest back stories in the KA bookverse. A loveless life of family duty where she was nothing but a pawn and betrayed by everyone. Everyone until Nick.
An ugly start to a story that eventually becomes one of love. Bitterness, betrayal, violence play majors roles in both Nick and Olivia's lives. Two people resigned to living their lives without love.
Other well known KA characters make cameos in this story, interweaving KA series/storylines. Her storyboards must be crazy busy.
With KA books there are normally minor characters introduced that as a reader I'd like to read more on, a standalone book, but I didn't feel that any character deserved more airtime.
"She Wasn't Alive Until He Showed Her How to Live"
Absolutely! I LOVED this book/series
Each book in the Unfinished Hero series is a stand alone, so it's hard to say it compares to any other book
I LOVE Stella Bloom's voice, she's an amazing narrator.
The part were she has to make a the choice. Go to Nick or keep the life she's use to living.
LOVED this book! I highly recommend it!
"Great Series Ending"
Loved this book. Great Ending to a fantastic Series. Kristen Ashley knows how to please and Stella Bloom just brings it home.
"The best for last!"
So GOOD! What an amazing end. Kristen finishes the series up in such a perfect way. I wish there was more!! Worth the credit, great narration, and great story!
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