Series: Vicious Cycle #1
Published by Penguin, Signet Eclipse on 6/2/15
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Suspense
New York Times bestselling author Katie Ashley revs up the danger and sexual tension in her brand-new Vicious Cycle romance series.
Deacon Malloy’s life is dedicated to the Hell’s Raiders motorcycle club. Tough, hard, and fast with his fists, he serves the group as sergeant at arms. But his devil-may-care approach to life is thrown for a loop when the five-year-old daughter he never knew existed lands on the club steps.
Alexandra Evans is devoted to all her students—but there’s always been something about Willow Malloy that tugs at her heart. There’s an aura of sadness about her, a girl in need of all the love Alexandra can give. When Willow stops coming to school, Alexandra’s search leads to a clubhouse full of bikers…and a father hell-bent on keeping his daughter always within sight.
The moment Deacon sees Alexandra, he has to have her in his bed—and he’s never met a woman yet who couldn’t be persuaded. No matter how attracted she is to Deacon, Alexandra refuses to be just another conquest. But it’s Deacon himself who could be seduced—into a brighter future for himself, his daughter, and the woman he’s falling for against all odds.
Vicious Cycle is filled with grit. It’s raw and grimy, and it’s totally different from anything that Katie Ashley has written so far. This thrilling and sinfully sexy motorcycle romance is well removed from the rock star heartthrobs, swoon-worthy heroes and lively heroines that we’re used to. Vicious Cycle is edgy, ferocious, and from the start, you’ll feel like you’re on an electrifying ride.
When I first read the synopsis for this book, I’m pretty sure my reaction went something like this: “Ahhhh!!! A badass biker and a long lost daughter!! This is gonna be gooood!” I mean, how could it not be? Well, Deacon Malloy did not disappoint.
“A boy would have been one thing, but a girl? You had to be tender and sweet to girls. I didn’t have a tender or sweet bone in my fucking body.”
Deacon is what any MC biker fangirl wants in her hero: he’s sexy, he’s brutal, and he’s unapologetic about it. When we first meet him it’s clear that he lives hard, fights hard, and fucks harder. This dude only cares about his club and getting laid, in that order. Nothing is more important to him that his brothers, and protecting his father’s legacy. He wasn’t always like that though. Once he did love, and she left him brokenhearted, so imagine his utter shock when he finds out that she took something else with her.
“I was a father. And even if it fucking killed me, I was going to be the best damn one I could. No one was ever going to hurt Willow on my watch.”
Deacon doesn’t know how to be a father and he doesn’t know how to love softly. What he does know is how to protect what is his, so when someone threatens his girl, he does what he does best. What he does best doesn’t always vibe with the law though, so he makes a deal with Willow’s teacher to avoid dealing with the CPS.
When Alexandra decides to track down her absent student, she isn’t expecting to find her in a bar full of bikers. Nor is she expecting to feel hot for her student’s abrasive father.
“At the same time as I was enraged by his behavior, goose bumps of attraction rose along my arms. I couldn’t believe I was slightly turned-on by this asshole.”
Alexandra is dedicated to her job, so she does what she thinks is right for Willow, even if being around Deacon makes her nervous. Everyday that Alexandra teaches Willow she grows to love her more, and everyday the harder it is to fight her attraction to Deacon.
Vicious Cycle was an exciting love story. I absolutely loved the chemistry between Deacon and Alex, and I especially loved the scenes where they revealed their true selves to the other person.
Deacon isn’t who Alex thinks he is; he’s more sensitive than she thought, and he has a great capacity to love. But he’s relentlessly loyal and his code of ethics isn’t what she’s used to. Deacon’s believes are simple and deadly: protect those he loves no matter the cost, and avenge them if they’re wronged.
“You and your club live by a different code that I can’t even begin to understand.”
I loved how passionate Deacon was and how unrelenting he was with his beliefs. Yeah, sure he could be a macho asshole sometimes, but that’s just who he was. No apologies. Alexandra knew that she shouldn’t want such a beast of a man, but he called to a part of her that is just as animalistic.
“My head tells me to be leery of you. That I shouldn’t want to be with an outlaw like you. But no matter how hard I try to talk myself out of my feelings for you, my heart and body rage an riot for you.”
My heart and body raged too while I was reading this book. It never let up and it never got boring. Katie Ashley created a fast-paced joy ride that left me feeling wild. Just as quickly as she had my heart racing and my skin heated because of a hot scene, by blood would run cold, and my lungs would freeze because of the terror and violence. I went from feeling one emotional extreme to another with just the turn of a few pages. The suspense had me on edge, and the romance was wild, just the way I like it. Although there were some moments toward the end when I thought the story got a bit convoluted and the heroine’s actions were inconsistent, it wasn’t anything that would deter me from recommending this book.
This story is pretty violent and the sex is raunchy. The romance is passionate and the action thrills. The characters are compelling, and I thoroughly enjoyed experiencing the biker lifestyle. I don’t read a lot of MC romances, but when I imagine them, this is what I picture. Read it if you like Alpha males, ride-or-die heroines, and an unconventional romance. This book is a standalone in a series, and I can’t wait for the next book!