A captivating new sexy standalone romance by New York Times bestselling author Melissa Foster.
Special Forces veteran and Dark Knights Motorcycle Club member Bullet Whiskey lives to protect his family, their bar, and the residents of his small hometown. He’s rough, unapologetic, and haunted by a secret, painful past. He’s also a master at keeping people away, and when his sister hires gorgeous and sweet Finlay Wilson to help expand their biker bar, he knows just how to get rid of her.
After losing her boyfriend and her father, Finlay moves back to her hometown to be closer to the little family she has left. She needs her temporary job at Whiskey Bro’s to get her catering business off the ground, and she’s determined not to let the gruff, arrogant mountain of a man Bullet Whiskey scare her off.
Finlay is everything Bullet has never wanted. She’s afraid of his dog, afraid of motorcycles, and sweet enough to give him cavities, but as she weaves her way into the hearts of everyone around him, he’s powerless to resist her charms. Passion ignites, but trust doesn’t come easily, and when their pasts collide, Bullet finds out the true meaning of protecting those he loves.
Finlay smiled and waved as she slipped into the dingy bar. “Hi. Am I interrupting?” From the scowl on Bullet’s face, she was not only interrupting, but she’d somehow pissed him off. Well, good for him. Let him be angry, the big, tattooed bully. What kind of man comes up to a woman at a wedding and says, Hey, sweetheart, whaddaya say I take you for a ride on the Bullet train?
She smoothed her sundress over her hips, trying to gather her wits about her. Bullet train. She had no doubt he had a train in his pants. The man was larger than life in too many ways to count, and when he set those cold, dark eyes on her, she swore they ignited right in front of her. Lordy, now my pulse is racing. She’d been thinking of that flash of heat ever since the wedding, and she couldn’t deny that it scared her and turned her on in equally frustrating measures. If she were honest with herself, she’d thought she was too damaged after losing Aaron to ever feel this type of spine-tingling excitement over a man again—and the fact that she felt it around a guy like Bullet scared the heck out of her. But this was not the time for honesty. She needed to pull herself together so she didn’t make a bad impression.
Dixie pushed past her massive brother to greet her. “Not at all! I’m glad you made it in.” She gave Finlay a quick hug and then glared at Bullet. “Right, Bull? Aren’t we glad she made it in?”
He lifted his chin in a half-cocked greeting before stalking around the bar and busying himself pulling bottles from shelves. Was he upset that she’d refused his magical penis ride? If so, he was going to have to get over it, and fast.
“Don’t pay attention to him. He had a rough night.” Dixie waved a hand as if Bullet didn’t matter.
Finlay forced a smile, knowing the big oaf mattered a heck of a lot. She’d grown up in Peaceful Harbor, although she was several years younger than the Whiskeys and she hadn’t known them then. She’d moved back into town two months ago, hoping to put down roots near her sister, Penny, after leaving to attend college in Boston nearly a decade ago. Penny had filled her in on the Whiskeys when she’d accepted the catering job for their friends’ wedding. Apparently, the Whiskeys and their motorcycle gang owned her small hometown. Only, according to Penny, it wasn’t like the stories she’d heard about bikers causing a ruckus or scaring people. No, the Whiskeys were known to be good folks, and apparently their gang was more of a club. She didn’t know the difference, but understood that they protected the community, keeping crime down and helping with bullies—except, apparently, for their own big, pushy son. From what Penny had said, they might look intimidating, but beneath all those tattoos and dark leather, they were kind, caring, generous people. She’d noticed that at the wedding, and in the weeks since, as she’d seen Dixie, her other brothers, and their parents around town. They were all as nice as could be. The jury was still out on big, bad Bullet.
But if she was going to spend any amount of time in his presence, he needed to respect her. This was why Penny had pushed her to take this job, wasn’t it? Because she’d been hiding behind her past, living a safe, comfortable, lonelylife for so long she’d all but forgotten how it felt to be hit on? And how to handle it. Well, that ended now. She straightened her spine, the way she’d learned to do in culinary school, when top chefs came in to teach and they’d ream the students for the smallest errors. There was no room for thin skin in catering—and she’d be darned if she’d let Bullet Whiskey intimidate her one bit.
“It’ll be fine,” she assured Dixie, and walked directly behind the bar to the mountain of a man who was trying his best to ignore her. Every step made her heart beat faster. Holy moly, she hadn’t remembered him being that tall. She was only five three, but even though she had heels on, he was well over a foot taller than her.
She reached up and tapped Bullet’s shoulder. It was like tapping stone covered with a black leather vest. He turned slowly, his broad chest and massive arms suddenly taking up all the extra space. She stared up at him. His dark beard and eyes gave him a menacing look. She swallowed hard, steeling herself to say her piece. In the next second those angry eyes turned even hotter and hungrier than they’d been at the wedding.
Her traitorous insides flamed.
Oh boy. She was in way over her head. This man probably got everything he wanted from women with that look. He cast some sort of spell with his leather wrist cuffs, scary-looking silver and black rings, and go-ahead-just-try-to-mess-
Forcing her sternest expression, she said, “Bullet, if we’re going to work together, I expect you’ll let what happened at the wedding go and get behind me on this project.”
He cocked his head, his lips curving up in a wicked smile that brought goose bumps to her entire body as he said, “I’m happy to get behind you anytime, sweetheart.”
MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:
With her latest book Ms. Foster continues to write romances that emphasize family and friends with a tale that brings together past characters, as well as new ones, in a dreamy story full of scorching encounters and sugary sweetness. Set in the MC world of the Dark Knights, a gruff man with a hero-complex and PTSD finds himself attracted to a good girl with sparks flying as she gives him a reason to live again...instead of merely existing.
Ever since he was a kid Bullet Whiskey felt a need to save everyone. Ingrained in him by his father he saw his mission as keeping his town free of criminals and to revere women. It was a restless time growing up too, and with his need to be heroic, he eagerly joined the military where a single event left him scarred both inside and out. Since returning home his need to keep others safe has become an obsession. It’s become his focus to the exclusion of living as he devotes himself to the family bar, club business, and a handful of nameless women he has no problem leaving behind. Though he tries to keep Finlay Wilson at arm’s length the moment he meets her, she slowly wears him down with her sweet smiles and kind heart and with her he finds a way to look towards the future instead of the past. Bullet’s not your typical biker as there’s lots of sweetness behind his gruff exterior. The way he treats the dog he rescued especially warmed my heart as they both soothed each other’s bruised souls. He’s extremely protective of the women in his family too, never allowing them to be disrespected, and he quickly brings Finlay into that fold in a way that seems overbearing at first but later shows his burgeoning affection for her. He’s a talented dirty talker too but it’s tempered with sweet speeches that have him wearing his heart on his sleeve. With Finlay he truly sees her, respects her talent, and supports her in going after what she wants. Though he doesn’t think he’s worthy of her, he can’t help claiming her as she brings light to his dark memories in a romance that pulls at the heartstrings.
Finlay’s lost many people in her life, from her parents to her one true love. For a time she wallowed in her grief, the loss of her soldier boy almost breaking her. But she’s ready to start again and a job adding a kitchen to the Whiskey Bro‘s bar gives her just that chance. After a crass and memorable first meeting, Finlay swears off having anything to do with Bullet but he slowly wears her down by showing her his kinder and gentler side. Theirs is ultimately a romance of healing in a journey full of sweetness and scorching encounters that kept me fully immersed in their emotional ups and downs. Finlay’s a very good girl, almost too good as she’s portrayed as angelic throughout the story. She pushes Bullet to work through his pain, supports him by getting him to admit his pain in heart-wrenching interludes that gave us greater insight into his psyche. Finlay seems almost virginal early on too, quick to blush and unable to say exactly what she wants while growing closer to Bullet. I enjoyed seeing her get a bit dirty, enjoyed Bullet getting her to take a walk on the wild side as she had her own issues to deal with. Though she’s the opposite to Bullet in many ways they’re a dynamic duo whose romance jumped off the page and had me rooting for them every step of the way.
This was a romance with very little angst despite Bullet dealing with issues of PTSD. The romance between he and Finlay was a powerful one though, showing the power of love and acceptance in healing one’s soul. From the moment they meet they’re a crackling couple teeming with sensual tension and blush-worthy banter that was nicely balanced with heartfelt talks. Bullet’s a biker, finds freedom riding his motorcycle, but that’s the only typical thing he does as a member of a MC. Readers get an introduction to the Dark Knights here but it’s a sanitized one where they’re all about family and good deeds. I prefer my MCs to be a bit dirtier, a bit more bloody, so this was a bit disappointing. That’s not to say that I was disappointed with Bullet though as I found him delightfully decadent. I was drawn to the dichotomy he presented and wanted to hug him (and more) as he worked through his guilt. Finlay’s almost too good to be true at times, too perfect despite having her own issues, which frustrated me a bit. She was immensely likable though, and just what Bullet needed, but I prefer heroines with a bit more grit and wish her journey to HEA had been a bit rockier. This was an entertaining story on a whole, a bit too saccharine at times, but it felt like being wrapped in a comfortable blanket. It was a heartwarming tale with an emphasis on family and through its likable cast of characters it has me greatly anticipating the next story in this series.
My rating for this is a B+
*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.
TRU BLUE (Book #1)
TRULY, MADLY, WHISKEY (Book #2)
Melissa writes sexy and heartwarming contemporary romance, new adult romance and women's fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Readers adore Melissa's fun, flirty, and sinfully sexy, award-winning big-family romance collection, LOVE IN BLOOM featuring the Snow Sisters, Bradens, Remingtons, Ryders, Seaside Summer, Harborside Nights, Wild Boys and Bad Boys After Dark, and the Montgomerys. Melissa's emotional journeys are lovingly erotic and always family oriented-- perfect beach reads for contemporary romance lovers who enjoy reading about loyal, wealthy heroes and smart, sassy heroines with complex and relatable issues.
Melissa also writes sweet and clean romance under the pen name Addison Cole.
Melissa has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Her interests include her family, reading, writing, painting, friends, helping others see the positive side of life, and visiting Cape Cod.
Melissa is available to chat with book clubs and welcomes comments and emails from her readers. Visit Melissa on social media or her personal website.
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