Also by this author: Hard As It Gets, Hard To Hold On To, Hard To Come By, Hard To Be Good, Hard as Steel, Hard Ever After, Ride Hard, Ride Rough
Series: Hard Ink #2
Also in this series: Hard As It Gets, Hard To Hold On To, Hard To Come By, Hard To Be Good, Hard as Steel, Hard Ever After
Published by Avon Books on February 25, 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense
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Five dishonored soldiers.
Former Special Forces.
One last mission.
These are the men of Hard Ink.
Ever since hard-bodied, drop-dead-charming Shane McCallan strolled into the dance club where Crystal Dean works, he’s shown a knack for getting beneath her defenses. For her little sister’s sake, Crystal can’t get too close. Until her job and Shane’s mission intersect, and he reveals talents that go deeper than she could have guessed.
Shane would never turn his back on a friend in need, especially a former Special Forces teammate running a dangerous, off-the-books operation. Nor can he walk away from Crystal. The gorgeous waitress is hiding secrets she doesn't want him to uncover. Too bad. He’s exactly the man she needs to protect her sister, her life, and her heart. All he has to do is convince her that when something feels this good, you hold on as hard as you can—and never let go.
Erin: Hard As You Can, Book 2 of the fabulous Hard Ink Series, picks up right where Book 1, Hard As It Gets leaves off and the intensity doesn’t let up once. The entire group of hard ass, take-no-prisoners ex-Special Forces guys are back in this next installment and this time it’s southern charmer Shane McCallan that is the focus. Yes, the five remaining teammates are still searching for clues as to what happened in Afghanistan. Yes they are determined to regain their honor and reputations and after the riveting rescue of Charlie from the basement of the strip club, Confessions, things start moving at a breakneck clip. (I highly recommend that you read Book 1 first, the background information is absolutely necessary to understand the who’s and why’s!)
Enter no nonsense, sassy Crystal Dean, a waitress from the club that bravely helps Shane and his friends during Charlie’s rescue. Shane’s brief encounter with Crystal is enough to set off his well-honed instincts, both personal and as they relate to his and his teammate’s mission to uncover exactly who is behind the set-up. It was a treat to be able to see Charlie’s rescue from Crystal’s POV and it really helped to show exactly how much danger Crystal finds herself in. And much like Becca Merritt in Book 1, Crystal is definitely no shrinking violet. She works in a place fraught with danger and willingly puts herself into the clutches of her unstable boyfriend, Bruno, in order to ensure her sister—who suffers from epilepsy—gets the medical care she needs and is able to attend college.
Shane’s presence is exciting and terrifying at the same time—giving Crystal a glimpse of the kind of man she desperately wants, the life she wants, but knowing that her sister’s well-being must be her first priority. The chemistry between Shane and Crystal sizzles and crackles and it’s so much fun watching these two dance around one another.
“God, I can’t get rid of you.” Exasperation had her throwing up her arms.
“I specialize in pain in the ass, darlin’.” He smiled, forcing himself to gear down the intensity.
“Well, congratulations, because you clearly graduated with honors.”
Laura Kaye does a fantastic job of giving us Shane’s background and letting us see exactly what ghosts he’s carrying around with him. She also keeps the team’s mission front and center, letting us follow along as the men gather clues and begin to piece together the mystery. The more the team digs, the more the bigger picture becomes clearer, leading to organized crime, human trafficking, and drugs, making figuring out exactly who and why imperative not only to them but to everyone they care about. I definitely highly recommend you check this series out and strap in for the ride, it’s gonna be something else!