Can a love built on secrets survive?
Rugged, hot, and rock hard, Dred Zander is exactly the type of man that normally sends Pixie running. Not dreaming about running her hands down his washboard abs…and lower. The lead singer and guitarist for the band Preload embodies trouble behind his quick smile and guarded eyes, and Pixie left trouble behind her years ago along with the name Sarah Jane Travers and the pathetic trailer her mom called home. With her abusive past in her past, she has a new life, a new family at Second Circle, and a dream of opening her own business. She needs capital and time. What she doesn’t need is a tempting long-haired rocker or the paparazzi that follow him around.
But Dred has other ideas. Pixie’s sweet hazel eyes, purple hair and kaleidoscopic tattoo of exotic flowers that swirl up her arm haunt his dreams, and he knows she wants him too. He just has to convince her. But as a juicy exposé threatens to expose their pasts, and a blackmailer terrorizes their present, Pixie and Dred have to decide what really matters and fight like hell to keep it.
First of all, let me apologize for my lack of enthusiasm. I need to stress that it is not a reflection on the book or the author’s writing, but rather due to an allergy attack with a side order of post-nasal drip that has left my nose sore and my throat raw and has shattered my concentration. Rest assured that I absolutely loved The Purest Hook as much as I did the previous installments, and am so glad that I finally got to read our purple-haired Pixie’s story – and it was way better (and darker) than I expected.
While you can read this installment as a standalone, I think you will enjoy it more if you’ve read the previous books simply because of the relationship Pixie has with Trent and Cujo. While both Pixie and Dred have been active characters in the previous books, Cole does a nice job of setting the stage for those new to the series to be able to understand the dynamics between all involved. And she most certainly saved the juicy and horrifying details about Pixie and Dred for this book. I was floored to learn how Pixie came to be at Second Circle Tattoos. Her story just got worse and worse with each piece of information that was revealed, and just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, we learn that everything wasn’t as she thought, but that didn’t make it better because of the cloud of fear she lived under for years. I felt awful for her, but learning what had led her to Trent’s doorstep and how much he and Cujo did for her, almost no questions asked, made me love those men even more. As for Dred, while his past is also bad, it is what happens to him regarding the paternity suit that appalled me. I don’t recall ever wanting to beat the ever loving heck out of a character so badly before in my life. And while that part of the story sucked the big one for a while, ultimately I enjoyed how it played out.
Getting to see Pixie finally give Dred a chance was great. She’s been telling him no for so long that I didn’t know how the author would ever get them together and make it believable – but Cole absolutely did. Their chemistry is great, and it’s downright combustible when the clothes come off. Whew!!! I loved watching their story unfold – even the painful moments – and really loved that the guys never once waned in their support of Pixie. I was surprised by the saboteur’s identity and finding out all that he had done. Getting to know the other members of Preload was awesome, and I’m really hoping that we’ll see more of them in the future because I need to know their stories, especially Jordan’s. The Purest Hook is an excellent addition to the Second Circle Tattoos series and I’m looking forward to book four already.