Monday, May 18, 2015

MAY 18 || release day • review

Ripped by Edie Harris

Publisher: Carina Press (5/18/2015)
Series: Blood Money, book 2
Genre: Romantic Suspence
Source: NetGalley
Purchase links || amazon | bn || add to goodreads

Rating: ★★★★★

Attorney and political heavyweight Tobias Faraday is the Ice King, a man alone in the eye of a deadly storm. And in the wake of his sister's torture, he's out for blood.

The key to Tobias's revenge is the disavowed British spy he's kept imprisoned for weeks. Chandler McCallister can get him behind enemy lines in Russia, but the clever double-agent has a demand of her own before she puts her life on the line in the name of redemption.

Posing as Chandler's boyfriend at an aristocratic wedding in the English countryside won't kill Tobias. Not in theory.

As the threat of Moscow looms larger and the enemy reveals himself to be crueler than any human can imagine, Tobias reluctantly partners with his prisoner to derail the immediate threat—to their families, to Faraday Industries, and to their lives. What he finds in the process is a feverish, relentless need already melting the ice from his veins.

{ review } .
When I read BLAMED, what drew me in was the prologue. Edie does such a terrific job with her descriptions, you can't help but be drawn in. With the spy life that Vick and Beth lead, at times I felt a little lost, but I found that I still liked their story.

In BLAMED, we learned a bit about the Faraday family and how Beth felt the furthest removed from her brother, Tobias.

...we also learned why Tobias held himself apart.

Well, this is his book, so we get to learn just a little bit more.

Tobias is a protector, but his way of doing that is to keep everyone at an arm's length away. He wants nothing more than to take completely over their father's empire so his siblings can live a life away from the spy world, the world of the deceit, and the world of harm. When Beth was tortured, we saw Tobias's carefully structured world fall apart -- and because a certain British agent had a hand in Beth's torture, we learned that Tobias wasn't going to be a pushover by any means.

It was easy to leave BLAMED and feel some hatred toward Chandler, but quickly, very quickly, you get a new opinion of her in RIPPED.

Chandler has seen her fair share of dark days. She knew what she was signing on to when she took this career path, but it didn't make the torture and rape any easier to bare. She successfully keeps Tobias on his toes by being snarky, short, and labeling him with a dreaded moniker -- Toby.

He's always been Tobias, never had a nickname, and it irritates him to no end.

Chandler will do as Toby asks -- go to Moscow on a revenge plot -- even though she knows that by going back there, she will likely not come home alive. There is just one thing she asks of Tobias, then, and it's to go to her twin's home for Pippa's wedding week.

...however, to pull it off without her sister knowing what is going on in Chandler's world, she asks him to go under the disguise as her boyfriend. Tobias has never had a girlfriend -- it's that keeping people at arms' length thing again -- so he calls the one person he knows who's in a healthy relationship.


...Oh, God, he was taking notes on how to be a good boyfriend. Beth's heart melted a little.

I loved that Beth and Tobias's relationship grew in the weeks that BLAMED and RIPPED take place. I even love that we get to know another Faraday -- Adam. Where Tobias is serious and hard, Adam is very much not. Adam is the epitome of a playboy.

A playboy who can hack into computers, but he's loose and easy and all that -- which Tobias is not.

I loved watching Tobias crack when it came to Chandler. Never had he cared for a woman -- I can't even add "as much as he does her" because that's just it... there hasn't been anyone for him. He's never cared to let a woman close, but Chandler slips under his skin. He wasn't looking for it, she wasn't looking for it... it just happened. As a reader, you were certainly feeling it when he would calmly scold her for putting herself down; when he would correct Pinney in his head with 'Mary Chandler' whenever he'd refer to her as 'Mary something'; when he tried to calm her after her nightmares.

"...Jesus, Toby, don't make me like you."

For someone who didn't have a lick of experience, he certainly did well where Chandler was concerned. Did he make his mistakes? A few, sure. But the big elephant in the room between the two of them -- Beth -- needed to be talked about, and with two individuals who's career involved evading the truth...

I learned that I enjoyed Edie's writing style in BLAMED.

I learned that I loved Edie's characters in RIPPED. I enjoyed seeing new glimpses into Vick and Beth's relationship. I loved learning about the twenty-six year old Faraday (and I'm excited to read his story next!). I want Pippa to get a HEA. I want the cousins to have HEAs, too.

But above all else, I learned how much I really loved Tobias and Chandler. I had a sense that he could be warm with the right incentive...

"Do I matter, sweetheart?" Oh, God, the earnest entreaty in his lust-roughened whisper. "Even for one moment, have I mattered? Do I matter?"
Those weren't tears knotting her throat. They just weren't. "Yes."

{ previous reviews of series }
Blamed review here }

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