*I received a free copy of The Darkest Link from St. Martin's Press via Netgalley. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *
Warning: This book includes mature content such as: sexual content, and/or drug and/or alcohol use, and/or violence.
Series: Second Circle Tattoos #4
Published by St. Martin's Press on 30 August 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance, Suspense
Reading Challenges: 2016 New Release Challenge
When her car breaks down off the side of a lonely highway far from her sunny Miami home, tattoo artist Lia never expected her very own white knight to ride up on the back of a barely street-legal motorcycle...and she never expected to fall for her dark savior. After a string of failed relationships and a bruised heart, Lia is not looking for forever, and the hot mechanic, with his sexy scruff and shaggy hair, is simply impossible to resist and the perfect candidate for mind-blowingly-perfect, no-strings-attached one night stand.
Reid left his life in Chicago far behind him and hasn't been back, but he's never been able to escape the guilt he feels about his own painful role in inviting a monster into his baby sister's life. A monster who almost destroyed her. Being with Lia is an unexpected gift, one he doesn't feel he deserves, and their one night together has him wanting more than he should. Especially since she doesn't know the truth about his past. However, when he finds Lia’s bracelet in his bed, he has the perfect excuse to drive down and surprise her at her tattoo studio, Second Circle Tattoos, in Miami. He's in for an even bigger shock - and a fist to the face - when his past and present collide in the humid Miami weather when he runs into the last person he’d ever expect to see in a tattoo studio: Harper, the sister he betrayed, and the last link to his former life.
The Darkest Link is the perfect ending to Second Circle Tattoos, as most of the stories have now come full circle. I loved getting to know Lia better, and the romance and suspense were just as good as in the prior books.
Lia was the only female tattoo artist at Second Circle Tattoos, and I was always so very curious about her! In The Darkest Link, I finally got her story, and it was definitely worth waiting for. She and Kenny met on the road, where Lia was stranded on her way to a tattoo convention, and he was just out cruising on his bike after a long day at work. Needless to say, there were both chemistry and sparks between the two of them from the get-go. Neither of them thought it would ever amount to anything more than a night of passion and hotness, but when they went their separate ways, it was impossible for both of them to get the other out of their mind.
The connections with the other characters were very strong in The Darkest Link, both because Lia was such a big part of the tattoo parlour and because Kenny was Harper’s missing brother – whom Harper knew as Reid. There was mystery and suspense in the story as well as hot romance, as Nathan – Harper’s attacker – was talked about quite a bit because of the upcoming trial. And even more so because Lia’s slimy politician of a father had a sort of political relationship with Nathan’s father. When weird and dangerous things started to happen to Lia and Reid, it wasn’t hard for them to think that it all went back to Nathan.
Written in third person point of view, past tense, with parts from Lia’s perspective and others from Reid’s, The Darkest Link moved forward at a good pace, and both the overall story arc and the plot were tied up nicely, but not always neatly. This whole series is really well done, and I can’t recommend it enough – all romance and suspense lovers should just go ahead and get it already!
Bikers did it for her, no question. She just couldn’t put her finger on why. Maybe it was the mystique of the visor, or the smell of gasoline and leather. Big hands capable of revving the accelerator had always made her tummy flutter.
“Not one bit.” He laughed. “You look dressed for sunshine, sushi, and saki.”
“Any other S words?” she asked playfully, placing her hand on his side which was, Lord God, so freaking solid.
He leaned forward and slowly ran a finger down the length of one of her curls, watching the way it bounced back into place. It was a simple move, and should have aroused her like it did. Kenny placed his lips next to her ear. “Slipping, sliding, seducing, sucking, screwing, and sexual.” He stepped back. “Will those do you, Red?” he asked gruffly.
[…]”Plus, saunas, snow and sex go together perfectly.” Why had he never realized just how handy the letter S was?(un)Conventional Bookviews thinks The Darkest Link brings the Second Circle Tattoos series full circle, plus it was swoonworthy! Click To Tweet