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Review + Excerpt: Ruled by Elle Kennedy

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ruledRuled
Author:
Elle Kennedy
Reviewer:
VampBard
Rating: A+

What I’m Talking About:

The Outlaws series by Elle Kennedy is my go-to dystopian read. I’m not even sure why. Oh, wait. I know. Ms. Kennedy has crafted a world in which I get lost. Each of the three titles has focused on people struggling with their every day conflicts—what it’s like to live in that kind of society. Ruled isn’t any different. And I adored this book.

Here’s your warning, folks: if you’re not a fan of boy bits touching boy bits, this isn’t a read for you. And if ménage isn’t your thing? Consider giving this one a try—it’s… different and I loved it (even though I’m a big fan of a well-written ménage, this was still different!).

We need to talk about Reese. She was introduced in the first Outlaws title. She’s portrayed as a cold-hearted witch, basically. But that isn’t the case. It was really awesome getting to know Reese. Getting inside her head. Watching her change.

Sloane is Reese’s shadow. Her right-hand man. He’s been around for about five years, and has had Reese’s back for every single minute. We learn why, and I was sincerely floored. I’d had theories, but none of them panned out. Congrats to Ms. Kennedy for surprising me.

Rylan. OMG. My gut wrenched for him during this book.

The road to happily ever after is never easy, and everyone deserves one. Getting Reese to hers was a special brand of heartache for me. The poor woman, in charge of Foxworth, had so many skeletons in her closet it was like a haunted house at Halloween. The things that haunted her aren’t for the squeamish, and made me think. I could actually relate to Reese in a way I haven’t related to a character in a long time. The parallels I drew to myself were powerful and allowed me to take a step back and re-evaluate a few things in my own life.

I highly recommend Elle Kennedy’s the Outlaws series for dystopian fans, as well as readers of romance who like things gritty and hard-hitting. I have a theory about the next couple, for the next book—but it’d be spoilery to talk about. It makes me extremely happy, though!

My Rating: A+ Personal Favorite

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About the Book:

In the latest novel in the series with the “sexiest, baddest, hottest”* outlaws around, one woman must choose between the two men who want to claim her…

…Or does she?

Despite his magnetic personality, Rylan can’t seem to seduce Reese, the deadly leader of their town of outlaws. Winning her over is a welcome challenge, but her indifference isn’t the only thing standing in his way. If he wants Reese, Rylan must also win over Sloan, her stoic protector…

Sloan has always loved Reese, but their painful past has stolen his chances of a future with her. Rylan’s interest in Reese only intensifies the tension—until Sloan begins to wonder if the reckless man might be the one person who can bridge the distance…

The last time Reese fell for the wrong man, she had no choice but to kill him. Now, she desperately wants to take what both Rylan and Sloan are offering. But if she makes the wrong call again, she risks losing them both. 

Release Date: November 1, 2016
Publisher:
Berkley
Series:
The Outlaws #3
Genre:
Dystopian Romantic Suspense
Format(s):
paperback (352 pages), e-book, audiobook
Book Source: Publisher/NetGalley/

Purchase Info:
Amazon

Reviews in the Series:
Claimed by Elle Kennedy (Outlaws #1)
Addicted by Elle Kennedy (Outlaws #2)

Excerpt:

Reese curled both hands around the cracked ceramic mug and breathed in the mint-flavored steam rising from the rim. It heated the tip of her nose and brought a much-needed rush of warmth. She’d felt chilled to the bone all morning, and it had nothing to do with the dipping temperature outside.

“So the raid was a success?” The very pregnant Bethany waddled over to the small sofa under the window.

Reese nodded. “We’ve got enough guns and ammo to start a war.”

Bethany’s eyebrows flicked up. “Or a revolution.”

“Same thing.”

“Is it?”

She didn’t even know anymore. Reese lifted the mug to her lips and took a small sip, all the while doing her best to avoid looking at Bethany’s bulging stomach. Seeing it reminded her of her own losses, the choice that had been stolen from her. And it reminded her of Arch, the ginger-haired giant who was never going to see his baby come into this world.

Arch had been a good man, an exceptional soldier. Everyone in town was still grieving for him, but none more so than his woman, whose brown eyes fixed on Reese now.

“What’s going on?” Bethany stroked her belly in absent- minded gestures. “You look worried.”

Reese set down her mug. “Nah, I’m fine.”

“Bullsh*t. Something’s up.”

She hesitated, because she didn’t confide in many people. Sloan was the one she went to when she was feeling vulnerable. Sometimes Lennox. Tamara. But for all the others, she put on a strong front. She was their leader, which meant they weren’t allowed to see her worrying, or vacillating, or drowning in self-doubt.

She’d known Bethany a long time, though. Sh*t, it had been almost eight years now. The two women were seventeen when they’d first crossed paths. Where the hell did the time go?

“I did something stupid last night,” she found herself confessing.

“Yeah? What’d you do?”

“Rylan.”

Bethany snorted. “Ah. So he finally charmed his way into your bed?”

The humor in Bethany’s eyes was such a welcome sight that Reese’s heart squeezed. In the two months since Arch’s death, Bethany’s expressions had alternated between completely vacant and raw with grief.

“How was it?” Bethany pressed.

How was it? Reese couldn’t even begin to answer that. Hell, she wasn’t sure there were actual words in the English language that could describe what went down between the two of them last night.

No, the three of them.

Her wrists were still sore from Sloan’s punishing grip. He’d held her, restrained her so she was at Rylan’s mercy. Sloan’s mercy. The memory sent a rush of desire to her core, which only confused her body. She didn’t even know who she’d been coming for last night. Rylan? Or Sloan? Or both?

What she did know was that she’d done a very bad thing. A dangerous thing.

Rylan had been as wild and addictive as she’d suspected he’d be, but . . . she’d crossed a line with Sloan. She’d stared into his eyes while she was sobbing in release. She’d clung to him while Rylan screwed her hard enough to make her see stars. She’d threatened their friendship, and for what? A few orgasms?

It wasn’t fair to Sloan. She knew damn well that he wanted her—she’d always known—yet she’d selfishly asked him to be there last night, even though it must have been torture for him.

What kind of friend did that make her?

“You’re worrying me again.”

Bethany’s quiet voice jolted her from her thoughts. “I’m sorry,” Reese murmured. She picked up her mug and took another long sip. “My head is foggy this morning.”

“Good sex will do that to you.”

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