Blog Tour (Book Review, Excerpt & Giveaway): Bounty by Kristen Ashley

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Title: Bounty (Colorado Mountain #7)
Author: @KristenAshley68
Reviewer: Grace
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 635 pages
Rating: 4.25 stars

Synopsis

Justice Lonesome has enjoyed a life of bounty.

Even so, she’s inherited the curse of the Lonesome. A poet’s soul. Which means she’s still searching for something. Searching for peace. Searching for the less…that’s more.

And when the foundation of her life is pulled out from under her, grieving, she goes to the mountains to find her oasis. She hits Carnal, Colorado and decides to stay.

Deke Hightower lost everything at the age of two. He lost it again at fifteen. His life has not been about bounty. It’s been about learning to live with less, because there’s no way to get more. 

Deke’s also watched all his friends go down to the women who gave them what they needed. He wants that for himself. But he knows that search isn’t going to be easy because he’s a rider. His home is the road. That’s the only place he can breathe. And the woman who takes her place at his side has to do it sitting on the back of his bike.

When Deke meets Justice, he knows she’s not that woman. She’s cute. She’s sweet. And she’s into him, but she’s got it all and Deke knows he won’t fit into that. So he holds her at arm’s length. Establishes boundaries. And Justice will take it because she wants Deke any way he’ll let her have him.

But when Justice finds herself a pawn in a dangerous game, Deke makes a decision.

When he does, he has no idea he’s just opened himself up to bounty.

Grace Review

If you know me, than you know how much I love this author. However, you may not know, since I read most of this series before this blog started, is that the Colorado Mountain series is my favorite from her, with The Gamble being my #1 book. So, my favorite author with a new book in my favorite series, equals total freak out when I got this book!

Going into this book, I knew very little about Deke. I mostly remember how he played a role in saving the women in the previous books in this series. He’s a free man, not tied down by anything. He likes to roam. There has never been a woman, other than his Mom, worth settling roots for. Cue the celebrity . . .

Compared to the author’s other books, this story had a bit of a slow burn. Justice and Deke are from two different worlds, and they took their time to see if the other would fit in their world. It began with a brief meeting, then years later, maybe with a twist of fate, they became employer/employee (sort of). Friendship formed slowly after that, mostly due to Justice trying to get into his space. During all of this time, from dual POV you learn how much the two are feeling for each other. But both are weary to cross the line, one afraid of rejection, one afraid the other was the opposite of what they needed.

Like many previous heroines in this series, I felt that Justice was easy to like. She got everything a woman could possibly want. She has more money than most people need and celebrity status, but at no point in the story did I feel she was spoiled. She mentions most times that money didn’t matter to her and even though she built herself the perfect home. She seemed to fit just as comfortably in Deke’s trailer with no complaints, so I knew she wasn’t blowing smoke. In addition, while she battled with her jackass brother and his Mom, over money, what really mattered to her was her father’s guitars, not the money. Justice was truly “Daddy’s girl” and those guitars meant everything to her. A final keepsake to remember him by.

No poet could be truly happy or their soul would waste away from starvation.

What’s great about this couple is while they are very different, I didn’t feel like either of them had to change for the other. They simply adjust to each other’s needs and became a perfect fit. Although they take a while to progress physically, once they do, it is full speed ahead.

Most of this book focuses on the relationship between Justice and Deke, as well as her building a new life in Colorado. As the town of Carnal has gotten a reputation for, there is some danger and drama with Justice in their everyday lives. But even with her celebrity status, she does everything in her power to fit in and become one of the gang.

Yeesh.  Mountain men.  Who knew?

And just when I thought I could get through one of this author’s books without crying . . . no such luck. Yes, I spent the last 10% or so, whipping my eyes. No, I won’t tell you why.

Every time I read a new book from this author, I feel like she is giving us a gift. The gift in this case, is the inclusion of so many characters from the author’s other books. There were at least four other series’ mentioned, and one of those characters is from a very popular book that takes place in Indiana . . . Let your imagination wander with that knowledge.

This book felt like the best kind of reunion. Every couple from the previous books in this series gets at least a mention, but some play a bigger role. I loved reuniting with the gang and catching up with their antics. It surprised the hell out of me as to who becomes Justice’s first friend in Carnal. Oh, how times have changed! While this small Colorado mountain town seems to attract danger, that danger only seems to drive the community closer together. I loved the whole group and what they mean to one another. And now Deke has something he saw all of his buddies get, never once expecting that kind of happiness for himself.

“Like you were made for me.”

Final note: With Justice’s musical background, her BFF, Lacey also being a musician, and Justice being a songwriter for Stella from the Rock Chick series, you can see that the author is laying the groundwork for her upcoming series, a spinoff from Stella and Mace’s book (my favorite in that series). I CAN’T WAIT FOR IT!!!

– Grace

*An ARC was received from the author for an honest review.

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Excerpt

 

 

A lip brush then a whispered, “Relax, Deke.”

His hand resting on my hip slid up to my waist and squeezed.

It did not push me away. It just squeezed.

“Jussy,” he muttered. “Now’s not—”

I went in for another lip brush, another whisper of, “Relax, honey,” and then I went for it and slid my tongue out, gliding the tip along the crease of his lips.

God, he tasted yummy.

I had just enough time to have that thought before I drew in a soft breath when I suddenly found myself on my back, Deke’s weight on me, all of his lower half pressing me into the bed.

“Jussy, don’t,” he growled, his words contradicting our new position. “Now’s not the time.”

Now was totally the time. If I didn’t feel that “now was the time” gathering between my legs (which I did), I could feel that indication hardening on my thigh.

I moved both my hands to his neck, its back, fingers up in his hair and I used those hands and his stiffness to pull me up and I put my mouth back to his.

“Now’s a great time,” I said softly. “You’ve been taking care of me. It’s my turn to take care of you.”

“Jus—”

“Shush,” I whispered.

“Jussy—”

I cut off whatever he was going to say by sliding my tongue in his mouth and touching it to his.

His head jerked back.

My body went solid.

He didn’t move.

I held on to his neck and stared at him staring down at me.

Okay, maybe I shouldn’t have pushed it. Maybe now wasn’t the time.

Hell, maybe I was even wrong about the whole thing. Maybe Deke was that guy who went the extra mile to look out for his friends. And maybe the evidence that was growing hard against my thigh wasn’t evidence of what I thought it was, but just that I was a girl, he was a guy, we were in bed in the dead of night and that was the natural order of things.

I started to feel weird, scared, embarrassment creeping in, and I was about to let him go when it happened.

Thunder rolled in my bedroom, feeling like it was emanating from his stomach, through his chest, his lips, swelling in the room, over my skin, straight between my legs.

Then he shifted one of his hands that were in the bed at my sides, his weight up on his forearms, so it was wrapped around the back of my neck and his mouth slammed down on mine.

I opened my lips and his tongue thrust inside.

Oh God, yes, fuck yes.

He tasted yummy.

Another fierce growl released from Deke, sinking down my throat as he slanted his head and took the kiss deeper.

Okay.

Yes.

Okay.

Damn.

The man could kiss.

Giveaway text

1)     Grand Prize winner will receive a $100 Gift Card to the winner’s favorite bookseller.
2)     First prize winner will receive all the books in The Colorado Mountain series signed by Kristen plus tons of KA swag.
3)     Second prize winner will receive a signed copy of BOUNTY plus tons of KA swag.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Click on the images to purchase the previous books in the series:

1g 1h 1i 1j 1k 1m

 

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