Title: Strong Enough (Tall, Dark, and Dangerious #1)
Author: M. Leighton
Published: August 4th 2015 by Berkley
Source: Copy sent by the publisher in exchange for an honest review
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"From the author of the New York Times bestselling Bad Boys novels comes the first in a dark, sexy contemporary trilogy.
Is she strong enough to trust the most dangerous man she’s ever met? And is he strong enough to let her?
How would I describe myself? Well, I’m Muse Harper. I’m a twenty-something painter who loves red wine, quirky movies, and men with a fatal flaw. But that was before I met Jasper King. He became my fatal flaw. Eight months ago, I had a choice to make—abandon everything I’ve ever known to protect my family, or stay and risk someone getting hurt. I chose the former. My plan was working just fine until I found out my father had gone missing.
That’s when I met Jasper. A bounty hunter with the eyes of a tiger and the nose of a bloodhound, he was supposed to help me find my father. What I didn’t know was that meeting him was no accident. Hunting people isn’t all that Jasper does. And helping me was only part of his plan. I just wish I’d found out sooner, before my heart got involved. But even then, I don’t know if I’d have done things differently.
Now, I have another choice to make—trust the man that I’m falling in love with and hope that he’ll do the right thing, or run as far away from him as I can get."
Thoughts: This is actually the first book I've read by M. Leighton. I have a couple of her other books but have yet to pick them up. No reason outside of just haven't gotten around to it. When I initially picked up STRONG ENOUGH, I was really excited. I loved the idea of bounty hunters and figuring out what makes Jasper one of the tall, dark, and dangerous ones. Well, now I'm wondering why I waited so long to read any of M. Leighton's books, because she is a fantastic story teller. More, please!
First off, the prologue really kicks the story off into an emotional roller coaster. I almost burst out into tears, and I was only three pages in. The point of view alternates between Muse and Jasper's. Muse is looking for her father and with the suggestion of her friend, decides to hire Jasper the bounty hunter. The two immediately have sparks flying between them. It's almost comical how many times they come close to doing something only to have Jasper pull away. It doesn't last too long though, because all it took was one steamy kiss before the two are no longer able to hold back.
What I was surprised by and enjoyed the most were all of the plot twists and discoveries. I honestly went in expecting a classic romance-contemp-erotica novel, and STRONG ENOUGH delivered more than that. The writing was great, and flowed really nicely. The sex scenes were sexy, but some (I must admit) were a bit too much for me. I'm all for dirty talk, but Jasper is on a whole different level. It's all about personal preferences, and some of these scenes just weren't for me.
Also, while I generally liked the characters, I have to admit that I never truly connected with either of them. I liked Muse and I liked Jasper just fine, but I didn't love them. To be honest, I found myself more drawn to the plot and where the story was going rather than how the characters would turn out.
All in all, I liked STRONG ENOUGH and also enjoyed the preview at the end for the follow-up. It's a solid book with a unique story line. If you're a fan of Katie Evans or K.A. Tucker, this is the book for you!