Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Desolation Road by Christine Feehan

Take the ride of your life with the Torpedo Ink motorcycle club in this thrilling romance novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Christine Feehan.

Torpedo Ink is Aleksei “Absinthe” Solokov’s whole life. They’re his brothers, his family—his everything. But that doesn't stop him from wanting something that only belongs to him. That’s why the tough biker has spent the last six weeks at the library, reading every book he can get his hands on and watching the prim and proper librarian who makes his blood rush.

For the past six weeks, Scarlet Foley has been fantasizing about the handsome, tattooed man whose eyes follow her every move. She senses he's dangerous. She wants him to get close enough to touch. She wishes she could let him know the real woman, not the one she pretends to be. But Scarlet has a plan to carry out, and she can’t afford any distractions.

Absinthe is well aware that Scarlet is hiding something. She’s a puzzle he intends to solve, piece by intoxicating piece…

Book 4
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Absinthe opened the door to the restaurant for her, scanning the room quickly for potential trouble before allowing her to do the same thing while he turned back toward the street and gave that another quick once-over. Certain no one was paying attention to either of them, he closed the door and followed his librarian’s amazing ass. She was in a black skirt with small white polka dots scattered over it. The material clung to her curves. He appreciated that particular skirt very much.

Absinthe held the back of her chair for her, ignoring the waiter who looked as if he might conk him on the head and abscond with the girl. She looked regal as she took the seat, smiling up at Absinthe, nearly taking his breath away. Whatever it was that she had affected him like some kind of aphrodisiac. Her small teeth. That mouth with her full, pouty lips that were made for a man’s dirtiest fantasies. He hadn’t had them until she came along. Not like this. Mostly he’d had nightmares. The erotic, very graphic dreams were a welcome change.

“Are you a wine drinker?” Absinthe didn’t know the first thing about wine. He could make her any kind of drink she wanted, or talk beer, but wine eluded him. If she loved wine, he was going to be taking a crash course. It wouldn’t take him long to catch up.

She shook her head. “I actually don’t drink very much. Once in a while, if it’s really hot out, I’ll have an ice-cold beer. But other than that, it’s a very occasional drink and usually I go for something girly like a cosmopolitan.”

“I don’t drink wine,” Absinthe admitted. “Like you I’m not a big drinker, but mostly that stems from wanting to be alert all the time.”

“You don’t put your feet up, relax and have tons to drink?” There was the merest hint of amusement in her voice. Mostly she was serious.

He loved the look on her face when she gave him her full attention. He focused completely on her once he was certain the few couples already eating or waiting to be served weren’t interested in them in the least.

“No, that wouldn’t work for me. I do like to put my feet up though,” he admitted. “I’m going to be very up-front with you.” It was confession time. If he didn’t say it straight up, she’d find out anyway. “I’m not good at this. I never know what to say and I come off stilted and awkward, but I don’t want to be that way with you.”

Her green eyes were hard to stay still under. She seemed to see right through his skull into his mind where chaos reigned—thanks to her.

“I’m not so great at this either,” she declared. “I guess we’re going to have to learn. I’m very competitive and I have a fast learning curve. Very fast. Wait.” She frowned at him. “You weren’t reading a help book on dating, were you?”

“Do they have those in the library?”

Her lashes swept down and then back up. A small smile teased the curve of her mouth, causing his heart to accelerate. He found himself staring. Shit. He was going to lose before he got started because he couldn’t stop staring at her.

She laughed. “I’m not telling you. I’ll read them and turn into a scintillating conversationalist in minutes, leaving you in the dust.”

He instantly learned three things. There were multiple self-help books on dating, she read extremely fast, and she really was competitive. He flashed a small grin, looking at her with hawk-like eyes, giving her the predator look just for a moment. Just to see the shiver that crept down her spine.

“I’ll have to be there first thing in the morning before your shift.”

“You know my shifts?” The smile faded, and she sounded uneasy.

He shrugged. “How was I going to ask you out? I went multiple times without seeing you, so clearly you had a shift and only came into the library during those times. I kept having to trade work with friends, and drive here from the coast, so, I found out when you worked. I came as often as I could, and just waited until we’d established a very tentative woman can charm the socks right off a shy man any day of the week.”

“Is that what we established?”

Her laughter got him every time. He found himself actually relaxing. The waiter hovered, and both guiltily studied the menu. She ordered a pasta dish and he ordered a steak. Fresh-baked bread was put on the table, and he suddenly realized he was very hungry.

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

4.5 stars of painful but wonderful reading!

This is the fourth book in the series – I would definitely recommend that you read them in order, as they do follow on in time, and as each member of Torpedo Ink gets their happily ever after, it impacts on the group as a whole.

Not an easy book to read for many reasons, but incredibly beauty and love shines through all the darkness. Absinthe had a terrible life from when he was a toddler, trained as an assassin and a plaything for evil perverts, but he now lives free with his brothers and sisters who survived. They are bonded to each other and live to keep each other safe and to free those who have been enslaved or harmed to lessen evil where they can. They also all developed talents which go beyond the usual and for Absinthe, that means taking on the pain of others. It may free them of some of the worst of their nightmares, but it costs him a lot. So when he finds peace in the presence of Scarlet, a librarian in a nearby town, he knows he has hit gold.

Whilst Scarlet's traumas are somewhat different to Absinthe's, they have changed everything about the life she should have led. As we learn why and what happened to her, it is clear that she has the strength to support Absinthe and the need to have a family again. That they both have such strong talents of insight and empathy brings them closer, but the sexual chemistry is explosive too.

High drama, horrible violence, and corruption give this story some real edge, but at its heart is the redemption of a much abused man and an abused woman, who discover in each other their peace.

Beautiful, heart wrenching, and one of those books that I could not stop reading – so it was fortune I had no other urgent plans!

Mary Jo☆☆☆☆
Triggers: Click HERE to see Mary Jo’s review on Goodreads for trigger warnings.

This book is about two people with vastly different childhoods, who both endured horrendous tragedies with the sole purpose of just surviving another day.

Absinthe grew up in a hellish "boys school" in Russia after a mobster killed his parents for not voluntarily giving up their children. His brother died in that terrible place before the members of Torpedo Ink were able to escape their tormentors. Ab has blamed himself for years for failing to protect his brother and for his part in "soothing" the rest of his family (the other children who are now members of the club) into enduring the torture placed upon them. The guilt that Ab has is slowly eroding his soul and he cannot see a way out of the darkness. Until he stumbles up a small town library and the librarian therein.

Scarlet Foley has her own scars, emotional as well as physical. Having been the victim of a sexual assault, the father of one of the boys – an influential man – managed to have the tables turned and while Scarlet was serving time in prison, her younger sister was also assaulted, which led to the deaths of Scarlet's entire family. Upon release from prison, Scarlet has trained herself to be steady and stealthy and very dangerous.

When Ab steps foot into her little library, she knows that nothing in her world will ever be the same. Knowing she can't put Ab in danger, she tries to distance herself from him, but he won't let her. Scarlet is the one person that soothes his soul and gives him peace.

The book is not for the faint of heart, but if you want to read about two people who have overcome the traumas in their lives to find a peace within themselves, this book is for you.

Also Available in the Torpedo Ink Series

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Judgment Road post.

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Vengeance Road post.

Book 3
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Vendetta Road post.

Christine Feehan is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Carpathian series, the GhostWalker series, the Leopard series, the Shadow Riders series, and the Sea Haven novels, including the Drake Sisters series and the Sisters of the Heart series.

Connect with Christine

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Desolation Road (Torpedo Ink #4) by Christine Feehan to read and review.

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