Slow & Steady
Alphas Undone #2
When Greyson Archer tosses a twenty on the stage of a strip club, the last thing he expects to see are the haunted green eyes staring back at him. Finley should be home raising her infant daughter and baking cookies, not tucking singles into her G-string and giving lap dances.
Greyson can’t deny that he’d like his own private show, but there’s not a chance in hell of that happening. The last time the former Navy SEAL saw her she was dressed in black, holding a folded flag and sobbing that it was all his fault… and he agreed with every single word. He couldn’t do anything to help her then, but he can now.
Finley deserves better than this dingy club, and when an obsessed customer crosses the line, Greyson leads the rescue and will do whatever it takes to make amends for their broken past.
He never expected to want to settle down, but with Finley, everything is different. For the first time ever, he can breathe. But Greyson will have to fight for what he wants in order to keep the woman with the green eyes he’s dreamed about so often.
Slow & Steady is book 2 in the Alphas Undone series, but can be read as a standalone novel, as it features a new couple.
It was nine o’clock on a Saturday night and I was totally out of my fucking element. A bottle of red wine tucked under one arm. A bouquet of wild flowers in the other. A condom tucked into my wallet, just in case. I was in foreign territory, and my entire body knew it – tense shoulders, my heart beating like a drum, and arousal barely contained beneath the surface.
Finley was standing at the doorway, watching me with a confused expression.
She looked gorgeous, makeup free, pink-painted toes, hair mussed and loose. Little cotton pajama shorts and a tank top that hugged her lush breasts.
“Maple’s not here.” She said the words, but she knew as well as I did I wasn’t here for Maple.
“I know that.” My voice was sure and confident.
“Then why are you … oh.” Finley shifted her weight, her eyes dropping from mine as she saw the wine and flowers. She could read it all, plain as day. I knew she could see my intentions, my uncertainty, and underneath it all, my desire. Maybe it was the desire to fix everything I’d broken, or maybe it was just my desire for her as a man desires a woman.
Normally when I felt that primal urge for sex, I headed to West’s bar. I’d pick out a woman for the night. Share a few drinks with her, a few laughs. Later, we’d head back to my place and fuck until dawn. And that was it. I’d be set for a few months.
This … with the courting and the nerves … it was nothing like my standard operating procedure.
I’d never felt so stripped bare and vulnerable. Never put myself out there so completely with a woman before. But then again, Finley was unlike any woman I’d ever met.
And she was still just standing there. “Can I come inside?” I asked, heart in my throat.
She didn’t say anything. But she opened the door wider.
With Nolan’s words ringing in my ears, I stepped over the threshold, sure that whatever happened tonight had the power to heal us both.
A quick, sweet story about second chances.
I liked the idea behind this one–the still-grieving widow, struggling to make a decent living for her daughter and her husband’s best friend, who blames himself for the death meet up two years after under some…unusual…circumstances–and parts of the story worked really well. Finley, Grayson, and Maple (Findley’s daughter) were all kinds of cute together. I liked Gray’s protective streak and Finley’s determination to be independent (though she did have a tendency to take it a wee bit too far sometimes). For the most part, I thought their “slow & steady” relationship was nicely handled.
That said, there were some odd parts. The pacing is uneven–sometimes we jump ahead weeks at a time, weeks when we should have seen some more relationship building going on, so we end up feeling like we’ve missed out. There were also a few instances of one (or both) characters making a fast 180 about something that just a few sentences before they felt strongly about in another direction. It gave the story an odd, disjointed feel at times. The stalker/kidnapper plot needed a bit more fleshing out to feel truly effective…as is, it felt like little more than an extended scene designed to bring Fin and Gray together. (Not that this is a bad thing, necessarily, but a kidnapping stalker should be able to carry scenes all on his own thanks to his creepy mastermind-like tendencies and this guy was pretty weak.)
Overall, though, there was more here to like than not. The hero and heroine from book one ( Bait & Switch ) make brief appearances, but Slow & Steady worked fine as a standalone.
Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
Kendall Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance novels, including Hard to Love, Unravel Me, Resisting Her and When I Break.
She’s a sassy yet polite Midwestern girl with a deep love of books, and a slight addiction to lipgloss. She lives in Minneapolis with her adorable husband and two baby sons, and enjoys hiking, being active, and reading.
Visit her at: www.kendallryanbooks.com for the latest book news, and fun extras