October Releases

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Beneath the Surface Blog Tour - Book Spotlight + Review: Beneath the Surface‏ (Reluctance #1) by M.A. Stacie

Author: M. A. Stacie
Series: Reluctance
Number in Series: 1
Format: ARC ePub (Netgalley)
Release Date: August 29, 2013
Pages: 239
Publisher: TWCS Publishing House
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Erotic Romance/Sports

Synopsis from M. A. Stacie

Kyran Reese is a man in control. Driven when it comes to work, focused when it comes to play. From his office to the chalk circle of the bare-knuckle boxing ring, his only thought is to win. That thirst heightens when Dale Porter enters his life. His brother’s assistant should be off limits, but her witty comments and sarcastic comebacks have him desperate to get her between the sheets. 
When Dale agrees to Kyran’s relationship stipulation of no labels she’s sucked into a whirlwind of lust, money, and underground boxing. Dale fights her growing affection, trying to hide it when the world around them spirals out of control. All too soon she realizes she can’t hide her true feelings any longer. 
Has Kyran finally met his match? Could playing to win mean playing for keeps?

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     Another read by an author I wish I found sooner. Goodness, this was some steamy stuff. Stacie is being added to my authors to keep my eyes on. I really enjoyed this story a lot. There were a few hiccups, but I fell in love with this book and may just read it again before the next book is out. I had no idea there was a sequel until I just stumbled on it. The story seemed pretty complete for the most part, but I know I have questions about certain characters, so I am anticipating this sequel.

    I really enjoyed our main characters though it took a while. Kyran is a business man by day and a boxer by night. He lets all of his angst out in the ring. He could come off a bit cold and distant. But I warmed up to him. Dale was interesting. I loved the banter between her and Kyran. He loves to see how he can catch people off guard and she wasn't having any of that. She was witty and surprisingly confident. When we first met her, the first word that popped in my head was "mousy" by the way that Kyran described her. How she could barely walk in her shoes and how she fiddles with her hair as more of a childish habit. But she turned out to be quite the fiery vixen. Then again, Kyran would bring out the vixen in me too, so i can't blame her. 

    Dale has been hired to be the new secretary for Taylor, Kyran's brother, who runs the business with him. There are a couple of problems that arise with the situation. One, Dale works for Taylor and Kyran (well, sort of) and she knows she shouldn't get involved with her sort-of boss. Two, Taylor is barely there and when he is, he is drunk as hell. He has some history that is pretty much kept secret until near the end of the book. As a matter fact, things are pretty much swept under the rug and not taken care and someone could pay the price for it. This causes quite a few explosive and emotional scenes. Stacie definitely puts her characters through a wringer, let me tell you.

    I really enjoyed this story a lot. I liked how Kyran used boxing as an outlet, but you can see how Dale has become his outlet. He wants a just sex relationship and Dale thinks she can handle it, but she falls and she falls hard. Kyran is so out of touch with himself due to his family issues, he doesn't even know how to feel for Dale. I did have a problem with this part to be honest. While I thought the character development was good, the book doesn't fully explain why Kyran is so apprehensive to take that next step with Dale. He says because there will just be hurt and pain, but how? The book never says whether it has something to do with his family's past or if he has been hurt in the past. He says he has never been love, but who knows. I would have liked a better explanation here.

    Another problem, well nitpick to be fair since this only last a few pages, was the Dale-in-the-bar scene. This was a scene in the book that made no sense to me and I just wanted to know why. Dale just got out of a relationship which is why she needs a new job because she moved to get away. Dale doesn't seem like a woman who will dress to get attention from idiots in a bar. Yet, there was a scene where she dresses in a crop top and a tiny skirt just to talk to her brother, Trace. who happened to work at the bar Kyran fights at. It just seemed a bit out of character for her because she doesn't seem like the clubbing type. It felt a little like a plot device to make Kyran think she was some sort of floozy (do people use that word anymore?). It never happens again in the book though. I know I am nitpicking, but it just struck me as odd. Kyran is already quite the alpha male, seeing her talk to any guy would set him off which happened a time or two in the book anyway. So long story short, floozy outfit was unnecessary. Well, that was a bit verbose, wasn't it?

    Ok, back to the story. I liked the connection between Dale and Kyran. I also enjoyed seeing the interactions between Dale and Kyran's family. It was kind of sad because no one would open their eyes and see that something was really wrong with Taylor until Dale said something. He is seen as the screw up in the family and just write him off as a drunk and they are done with it. But we find out that there is a lot more going on with him and it was quite scary. I just couldn't believe it no one would help. He is obviously not perfect, none of them are, but he had some pretty dark demons, that is for sure. I would love to learn more of what and how all of this happened. The book doesn't give us much to go on really. He may be a side character, but I found him fascinating. I hope we get more of his story in the next book.

    Overall, I really liked this book. Stacie is a great writer. She creates some pretty incredible characters that you could relate to. The story flowed together beautifully. There were some very memorable moments (I definitely liked the day they played hooky and the talks with Trace). This was quite the exhilarating read. Like I said, I can;t wait for the sequel. It will be worth the wait. I recommend this to anyone who would want a steamy, sweet and emotional read.    


*This book belongs to the following challenge* 


About M. A. Stacie

M. A. Stacie is never without a book or her eReader. A voracious reader, with a love of sexy, yet angst ridden novels, she loves getting lost in new worlds. Her need to write did not grip her until after her second son was born, when her previous rambles became fully fledged stories.

She describes herself as one huge contradiction, and though not the most conventional of hobbies, she counts getting new tattoos as one of hers. Along with running, knitting, and listening to loud music. However, she is yet to work out how to do them all at the same time.

M. A. Stacie lives in the UK with her husband and three sons.

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