I still have some blogger guilt for completely missing May’s review but I decided I would not miss June’s. So for the TBR Challenge, June’s prompt was favourite trope. I didn’t go with a trope but I did pick a favourite sub-genre – the motorcycle club romance. 😛 Joanna Wylde’s MC romances always hit the spot. 😛
Reaper’s Fall by Joanna Wylde
He never meant to hurt her.
Levi “Painter” Brooks was nothing before he joined the Reapers motorcycle club. The day he patched in, they became his brothers and his life. All they asked in return was a strong arm and unconditional loyalty—a loyalty that’s tested when he’s caught and sentenced to prison for a crime committed on their behalf.
Melanie Tucker may have had a rough start, but along the way she’s learned to fight for her future. She’s escaped from hell and started a new life, yet every night she dreams of a biker whose touch she can’t forget. It all started out so innocently—just a series of letters to a lonely man in prison. Friendly. Harmless. Safe.
Now Painter Brooks is coming home… and Melanie’s about to learn that there’s no room for innocence in the Reapers MC.
It’s been a while since I read the book preceding this one, Reaper’s Stand, but as I read along, the story and characters started coming back to me. Painter goes to prison due to events from the previous book and he lends Melanie his car while he’s locked up. They start writing each other for the next year or so. Melanie definitely wants Painter but he’s not willing to go there. A fact he makes obvious when he’s released and keeps his distance. He thinks Melanie deserves better than him. And then that excuse doesn’t fly when he sees another guy hitting on Melanie. Melanie wants Painter but she isn’t on board with the whole MC lifestyle. She didn’t grow up in that world and she doesn’t understand it fully. She struggles with Painter’s loyalty to his brothers when she sees them as being the reason he was in prison. For someone who’s mom left her when she was younger, she wants to be important to the person she loves and she knows with Painter she’ll always come after his club and brothers. This is where the main conflict fell between Painter and Mel.
So the story actually opens up with a present day scene, with Painter getting mad at Melanie (she brings a date to the club’s clubhouse) and then we go back a few years to how they got to this point – of them not together. I really like how the story unfolded. It shows how Mel and Painter became friends via their letters so they had a good foundation for their relationship. And Mel and Painter were well drawn characters. You get with their backgrounds why certain things are important to them. But when these two were together, they were good and their chemistry was scorching. Knowing that they do split over something at some point did create a bit of tension that had me on edge.
Reaper’s Fall was a solid addition to the Reapers MC series. I really enjoyed Mel and Painter’s characters. The club stuff that is developing in the background is interesting too.