Sunday, May 20, 2018

2 in 1: Unraveled & Jagged by Lauren Dane

Unraveled: Whiskey Sharp #1
Publisher: Harlequin 
Date of publication: January 2018

Maybe Dolan has lived independent, free-spirited and unattached since leaving home at sixteen. Whiskey Sharp, Seattle's sexy vintage-styled barbershop and whiskey bar, gave her a job and a reason to put down roots. Cutting hair by day, losing herself drumming in a punk rock band by night, she's got it good.

But a longtime crush that turns into a hot, edgy night with brooding and bearded Alexsei Petrov makes it a hell of a lot better.

Maybe's blunt attitude and carnal smile hooked Alexsei from the start. Protecting people is part of his nature and Maybe is meant to be his even if she doesn't know it. Yet. He can't help himself from wanting to protect and care for her.

Unraveled is the first in the Whiskey Sharp series.  This is Maybe and Alexsei's story.  Maybe (it's a nickname from her sister when they were younger) has had a huge crush on Alexsei for the three years she has worked for him.  Being her boss, Alexsei has been trying to keep his distance for years. When they finally get together, it's explosive.

I enjoyed Maybe and Alexsei's romance.  They were really good together and I was rooting for them.  I loved Alexsei's family and how they embraced Maybe and her sister and made them their own.  They seemed like a fun family to be a part of.  Maybe's relationship with her own parents was so sad, yet over the top.  Her father really needed a reality check.  However, I loved Maybe's relationship with her sister Rachel.  In all, this was an enjoyable first book in a series.

Jagged: Whiskey Sharp #2
Publisher: Harlequin 
Date of publication: March 2018

Vicktor Orlov took one look at the wary gaze and slow-to-trust personality of the deliciously sexy and fascinating Rachel Dolan and knew he wanted more than just a casual friendship. But as a natural protector, he also knew bossiness and overprotective maneuvering would push her away rather than draw her close. He’ll use every tool in his easygoing arsenal to convince her to take a chance on them.

Rachel’s flourishing new career as a tattoo artist has brought color back into a life previously damaged by a series of bad choices and violence. She knows she can trust Vic—it’s herself she’s not sure of. She doesn’t want to be caged or controlled. Doesn’t want to be protected so much she has no ability to make her own choices.

And damn if the man doesn’t know it.

Jagged is the second book and takes place right after the events of the first book. Unraveled.  This is Rachel and Vicktor's story.  Rachel has come a long way from her FBI years and her harrowing captivity by a serial killer.  She is finally starting to explore the possibility of commitment and Vicktor is just the man to be the one she explores it with.

While I enjoyed this one, I didn't like it was much as the first book. It felt like it took me forever to get through.  I found it really repetitive.  I get that Victor and his cousins are hot Russian men.  I just don't need to be reminded every other page. Nor do I need to be reminded that Irene likes to feed people she loves...I could go on.  I think this book could have been shortened because a lot of that felt like filler.  The issue with Rachel and Maybe's father really got old after a while.  Honestly, it was a bit over the top and I'm still not sure why he went off the deep end.  I did enjoy the ending and I look forward to reading Cora's story next.

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