I’ve long been a fan of Jessica Clare. She is one of my favorite erotic romance writers in fact. When I first heard about this series, I passed on it. Just not my cup of tea, with the whole hit man angle. However, when Jane of Dear Author recently admitted that she is author Jen Frederick, I was intrigued. I definitely wanted to see what her stories were like. I have since purchased the first two in her New Adult Woodlands series but I haven’t read them yet. I decided to start with a known quantity (Jessica Clare) and see how things went. Overall, I was very glad I decided to purchase Last Hit.
This book had me intrigued from the beginning. When Nikolai lays eyes on Daisy (okay, more like when he first starts spying on her) he is instalove. He wants to watch over Daisy and protect her. Unfortunately, he is also in Minneapolis to do a job. (I love reading books set in Minnesota!) He has a certain man to take out and Daisy is interfering with his job.
Daisy has just arrived in Minneapolis, fresh off the farm, literally. She escaped her father’s closed off life and is ready to live a normal life. Unfortunately, things like finding a job and making rent definitely are major obstacles in her path. When she meets Nikolai, they just click. She sees in him the same loneliness and lust that she feels. And so, instalove. Well, not exactly but close.
I wasn’t sure how I would respond to a story about a hit man. Anti-heroes have been the big thing for a long time now and I’ve fallen in love with my fair share of them (looking at you, Kaleb Krychek). This story has a sort of ridiculous over the top quality to it. Daisy is everything virginal and sweet but when she is ready to have sex she has no problems with showing Nick her “vampy” side. Nick wallows in emotions. He is kind of a tortured, sensitive hero and while he does not feel guilt over all his kills, he definitely takes a bit of a Batman approach and feels justified in getting rid of the bad people. His youth was spent learning to kill people for the Russian Bratva so murder is all he knows. Definitely a bit over the top.
I still ended up quite enjoying this book. It had a bit of an action movie quality to it. I knew that some of the things going on were rather unbelievable but yet, I still found myself rooting for Nikolai and Daisy to have a happy ending. (And they do, but only in the way that a hit man can have a happy ending). As expected, the love scenes are really, really hot. I expected no less from Jessica Clare. Nickolai is a bit of an evil James Bond, able to use any weapons at his disposal to make sure Daisy is safe. Daisy is… at times, rather bland and cartoonish. But she really does come into her own as the story continues and I was satisfied with her big moment at the end. I believed, given her own unique background, that she could indeed do what needed to be done.
So, is this the romance for you? Well, if you can handle action movie style storytelling, with characters who are a bit larger than life (especially in Nikolai’s case), and if you happen to like your sex extra naughty and thrilling, this may be the story for you. I know I was hooked enough on book 1 to purchase book 2, Last Breath! I’m looking forward to reading it in fact.
I had wondered if this was a romantic suspense type book and let me tell you, I don’t consider it romantic suspense at all. The focus was definitely more on the romance and the action was not all that suspenseful honestly. Others may have different opinions though.
I was pleased with my first foray into the writing of Jen Frederick/Jane from DA and I look forward to trying her other books. I’m not surprised she kept me interested! She definitely knows how to appeal to the romance reading crowd.
Book purchased by Sarah.