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The Harder He Falls

(Kick #1)

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  448 ratings  ·  141 reviews
Expert whitewater-rafting guide Grady Kelley lives for that rush of adrenaline: at work, as the newest employee of a Portland-based outdoor-adventure sports company, and off the river, where liaisons with anonymous men keep him satisfied. Grady prefers no drama and no strings attached, but when tragedy strikes, fate leads him to Micah Swaine. He’s hot, masculine, distracti ...more
ebook, 224 pages
Published June 7th 2016 by Loveswept
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Average rating 3.71  · 
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Start your review of The Harder He Falls (Kick, #1)
~✡~Dαni(ela) ♥ ♂♂ love & semi-colons~✡~

Very sexy and very angsty, The Harder He Falls is the first book of a promising new series by Lynda Aicher. Kick, the name of the series, is also the name of an outdoor adventure company owned and operated by gay Marine Doms.

Grady's cousin Finn, who hires Grady to run some seasonal whitewater rafting trips for the company, is one such Dom. When Grady takes Finn and another Kick partner, Chris, down a river, tragedy strikes.

Micah, a bartender at a leather BDSM bar called Dane's that most o
Apr 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Release Date : June 7th 2016

Story Rating ~ 3 Stars
Hero Rating, Grady ~ 3 Stars
Hero Rating, Micah ~ 4 Stars
Heat Level ~ 4.5 Stars
Ending ~ 3.5 Stars
Overall Rating ~ 3 Stars

The Harder He Falls was an OK read for me but it could have been SO MUCH MORE!

What worked for me :

I really liked the whole set up of the white water rafting accident, it made the beginning interesting which kept the pages turning.

Both the hero’s backgrounds were done very well which added a LOT to the story line. I loved wh
May 09, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fr, erotica-contemp
A new to me author and not a good fit if this book is representational of their work.

Sporty guys going full throttle is my thing and the blurb drew me in. I was totally sold on an outdoor adventure with some smoking hot men. What I got was BDSM club book with hurt/comfort themes. None of this was evident in the blurb.

So, there's entry level kink, which attempts to explain as it goes about the dynamics and procedures in play. Features light D/s, more just D (dominance) than s (submission), strict
Right off the bat we've got a fascinating story of hurt/healing/comfort. White water rafting guide Grady is living with extreme guilt after leading an expedition that caused the death of his friend Chris and put his cousin Finn in a coma. He is wound up incredibly tight and suffers from panic attacks.

Bartender Micah is still recovering from being in a coma 5 years ago and the side effects are interfering with his ability to enjoy life to its fullest. (His side effects are incredibly fascinating
I enjoyed reading this one, but it also irritated the hell out of me. I hate characters who grow hot and cold and I'm not a big fan of the push and pull that takes place in this book. It was however very hot. Lynda sure knows how to write a steamy scene.

I didn't really like Grady, but I loved Micah, eventhough he put up with way to much shit.

The ending also felt a bit rushed to me.

Will I be reading the rest of the books in this series.....Hell yes I will ;)
This may not have been a big winner f
Apr 22, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: mm-romance, meh, 2016
This was my first time reading this author. And, I have to say, I truly enjoyed her writing style. It flowed smoothly, and I found myself very caught up in the world she created.

Where this book fell apart for me came down to the characters. Specifically Grady. He is an MC that made impossible to like him. He's feeling an extreme case of survivor's remorse, but he takes it to every extreme. He's volatile, snarky (and not in a good way), and downright asshole-y. I couldn't, for the life of me, un
2 very tepid stars. I have to apologize up front for the general snark of this review. Generally I try to give a balanced review, but honestly? This book irked me, big time.

The main character Grady is pretty much an ass hat through most of the book, starting off with insulting Micah, the man who has volunteered to read to Finn, Grady's comatose cousin in the hospital. And what a Special Story Hour it is, with Micah reading aloud "Satisfaction tumbled through Dan, his muscles clenching against t
Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth
My review @ Coffee, Cookies & Books

3.5 stars

I was really torn how to rate this (damn you, GR, for not giving us half stars) There were aspects which I liked a lot. Others not so I'll dive right in and hope this won't be too rant-ey.

Grady is a whitewater rafter. If you have been on a river whitewater kayaking or rafting you know that it takes a lot of skill to ride the rapids. I went kayaking on a category II two years ago and hell that was tough (fun, too though!). Anyway, Grady works
2.5 stars

Well, this is a case of too much sex (scenes) not enough story combined with wrong expectation based on the blurb. Duly noted I only read the blurb once before requesting the ARC, then I forgot about it when I started to read since I wanted to be in a 'clean slate' when I was reading. However, I definitely didn't expect the D/s tone.

See, I am not really keen with D/s in general. On cases where D/s stories work for me, it usually because I am mentally prepared somewhat or at least the D
Aug 30, 2016 rated it it was ok

I barely made it through this book. Ok...honestly, I probably skimmed 75% of it.

I think I missed the bit that this was a Dom/Sub BDSM'y type story...which so very rarely works for me. And even less so in this book where the sex didn't contribute to the (barely there) story.

And Grady drove me nuts. Selfish, whiny, irritating.

I have zero desire to read book 2. Heck, I barely read book 1.
Ivy Deluca
Apr 13, 2016 rated it liked it
I do enjoy Lynda Aicher’s writing, and the sex was hot, but the emotional distance between Micah and Grady, left me a bit cold. It makes sense in the context of the story, but I just didn’t connect with it and it was a little too easy for me to put this aside for long periods of time. That said, Ms. Aicher is an excellent writer who I will always check out, even if this particular tale didn’t quite work for me.

**ARC provided by publisher via netgalley for review**

For more reviews, visit
Apr 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: erotic, bdsm
The blurb drew me into this one - I perked up when I read "whitewater-rafting guide" - however, while rafting has an impact in this story, there isn't much page time (okay, really zero page time) devoted to actual rafting. It worked for me though! Because instead of rafting down a river we have a sex scene on a mountaintop. We have a lot of sex scenes - and they were really hot and dirty and intense.

Grady worked for an adventure company, and his specialty was being a whitewater rafting guide. Hi
Maria Rose
The Harder He Falls is the first story by Lynda Aicher in her Kick series, featuring the crew of an outdoor adventure company, all of whom are practitioners of BDSM in some form or other. Grady is a newly hired but experienced white water rafting guide who experiences the worst kind of tragedy – the death of a man on his boat, and the serious injury of his cousin, now in a coma after their raft hit an underwater log. Grady’s guilt is intense, and he spends some time at his cousin’s hospital beds ...more
Annelise Lestrange
Review originally posted on The Book Adventures of Annelise Lestrange :)

I received this copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Let's go :D

The Story

Grady is a broken man. Despite being healthy and vigorous, he’s been depressed and desperate since an accident put his cousin Finn into a coma and killed one of their work colleagues. An accident that was Grady’s fault.

Grady doesn’t want pity, doesn’t want to be cooed or saved. He only wants for Finn to wake up. Maybe then Grady him
Dec 29, 2016 rated it liked it
The Harder He Falls is the first in a new series from Lynda Aicher, and if you follow me you know that she is one of my favorite authors out there. Her books are always so compelling and emotional, and this one was no exception. We have two main characters that both have plenty of baggage they are dealing with, but they also have an intense amount of sexual chemistry you can feel coming off of the pages too. Those two elements combined make this story an interesting read.

Micah and Grady's attrac
Jun 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Let me just start by admitting I didn't know this was a BDSM book. I knew it was MM. I love MM plots. BDSM plots...not so much.

So I read it with a bit of caution, afraid it would give me a scene I'd rather not read. Fortunately for me, and my rating of the book, it only included one BDSM scene that I could have done without. In fact, as far as BDSM books go, this one was pretty mild. The lifestyle was more "alluded" to than actually described. It was like we were on the outside looking in at tha
Grady has had an awful life, he thought he'd finally left all that behind when he went to work with his cousin, the only member of his family who still speaks to him. He is still reeling from the tragic accident that killed one man and left his cousin in a coma when he meets Micah who volunteers at the hospital reading to comatose patients.

Micah has problems of his own that he is no hurry to share but there is something about Grady that calls to him and has him opening up to him about what happe
Valerie ❈M/M Romance Junkie❈
No rating. DNF @ 18%. I hated Grady from the start. He was an absolute ass. Sexual chemistry can’t make up for him being a douche.
My review cross-posted from Wit and Sin:

The Harder He Falls is sexy, angsty, and features two wonderfully flawed heroes. Grady is a whitewater rafting guide who is floundering after an accident on the river lands his cousin in a coma. While visiting his cousin in the hospital, Grady meets Micah, a bartender who gets under his skin from the moment they meet. Their attraction is red-hot, but both men carry baggage that could crush any hope of a relation
2.5 stars

It took time for me to get somewhat comfortable reading this because of the much-too-soon clash of bodies in a save room. Too soon for lil' old me, anyway. After that sort of beginning, I should've been prepared for the next sex scene after another. I guess I just got numb in the end.

The lead character's hot and cold attitudes (more on Grady, though at first Micah acted likewise) grated on me. Plus - being a skeptic by nature - I found it hard to believe instant attraction in a contempo
Jun 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
"The Harder He Falls" , is a wonderful start to a new series by Lynda Aicher. The series based around the men of Kick outdoor adventures, mostly all former marines and Dom's kicks off with Grady Kelly's story.
Grady has spent most of his life since a teen working as q white water raft guide , something he is extrodanarily at doing, rafting served as an escape from a bad home life when younger and has served him fairly well over the years; but for an error in judgement when he was a teen and now w
BookAddict  ✒ La Crimson Femme
Poignantly displayed, this story is a tale of rebirth for Grady Kelley. This series is definitely a kinky m/m romance I can enjoy. The characters are well developed and pull at the heartstrings. The community of adventurers who enjoy kink is a fantasy come true. In this story, Grady Kelley is a masochist with a past. It is a bit alarming how he will not safeword and just how deep he wants to go. When he takes up with a hardcore sadist, it is anyone's guess if he will survive the encounter. Lucky ...more
Jul 14, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m
Hot mess

Part of the problem could be that I've only read one book from the author's previous series, so maybe some of these characters and the setting were more well defined there. I don't read MF anymore and I felt like there was some prior book I should have read to know who the hell Ash, Rig and Finn and Dane were. Because they were never defined well here, except through Grady's disjointed thoughts.

Which was the next problem. Nearly the entire book, aside from some sex scenes, was written as
I really loved this book. The series was not on my radar at all, and I'm so glad I found it. I'm a sucker for an angsty story with kinky elements. The Kick series revolves around an outdoor adventure business run by a group of former marines who are also Doms. Sign me up! This is the first book and lays some ground work for the series while also giving two outstanding MCs. I loved Micah and Grady. Neither of them are former marines, although Grady works for Kick. It was started by Grady's cousin ...more
Tamika♥RBF MOOD♥
DNF @37%

Nothing about this worked for me. I cannot deal with immediately meeting and then 5 seconds later them having sex. I cannot deal with all the talk around conversations. The guilt over the accident was like a heavy cloud throughout the book. I just didn't have the patience to deal with it. I've only read 37% of the story. The stopping point was Micah deciding to have sex after a major episode. It wasn't explained and I'm expected to be okay with that? No not for me, and I didn't appreciat
HEChapter -Tina J
✩ ✩ ✩ ✩ FOUR-STAR ✩ REVIEW ✩ ✩ ✩ ✩

> > Judging a Book by it's Cover < <
Black and white composition with red edge and banner. White font. Bold, eye-catching design. The synopsis is interesting; intriguing.

> > Looking Deeper < <
POV ~> Third-person

Grady is a new whitewater rafting guide at an extreme adventures company where his cousin, Finn, is a founding partner and the others all seem to be retired Marines and Doms. This initially made Grady shy away, having had an abusive experience with a p
Vfields Don't touch my happy!
The Harder He Falls is first in a series by Lynda Aicher who is new to me. Big tough marine guys with a lot of baggage but I was not annoyed. Micah was one of the most lovable, strong character even though his affliction was a little peculiar. I enjoyed the book. The Harder He Falls has a lot of first-in-the-hiccups but it's one of those things where I didn't care I just kept reading. I have no major complaints, it wasn't perfect but I enjoyed it. I want to see where this author is going to take ...more
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews
Leigh and Slick's 's reviews posted at Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Slick's 5 star review
Sometimes reviews can be so hard to write and that is the case with this review. Please don't misunderstand, I loved The Harder He Falls but I'm not sure if I can fully express everything I feel about this book or the complexity of these characters. As a new to me author, I was sure what to expect from Lynda Aicher's work, but she impressed me beyond reason and I look forward to discovering more from this ta
Lisa The Novel Approach
Jun 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
I’m gonna just dive right in to this thing, and give you guys a one-word reason to read this book.


I loved Micah. He was awesome from the fabulous scene where we meet him—Scene: hunky bartender from the local leather bar reading BDSM erotica to a coma patient. Amazing, right?!? Ha!—right on through to the epilogue. He’s strong, kind, patient, and sexy as hell. And, his story is fascinating. There were a couple of times where he allowed Grady to treat him like shit unfairly, and I wished he
1-Click Addict Support Group
Jun 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Grady Kelley and Micah Swaine are both quite bent—very close to broken. Grady’s been living the high life—living off the land quite a bit, seeking thrills around the world as an expert white-water rafting guide. He’s seen the best of the world but now he’s living the worst after an unforeseen tragedy strikes.

As a bartender in a leather bar, Micah’s seen and heard a lot. He meets all different types of people, but Grady is a bit different than the normal guys he ends up having sex with. Grady’s m
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I love to read. It's a simple fact that has been true since I discovered the worlds of Judy Blume at the age of ten. After years of weekly travel as a consultant implementing computer software into global companies, I ended my nomadic lifestyle to raise my two children. Now, my imagination is my only limitation on where I can go and my writing lets me escape from the daily duties of being a mom, w ...more

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