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Strong Hold

(Redemption #5)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  766 ratings  ·  153 reviews
For the longest moment Zack's brain couldn't process the sight in front of him.
Seven years, ten months and twenty-seven days. That was how long it had been since he'd seen her. That was how long it had been since he'd lived a life without regret.

Fight promoter Zack Grayson is on the prowl for a rising star. As the top recruiter of a prestigious MMA promotion
Paperback, 384 pages
Published July 3rd 2018 by Sourcebooks Casablanca
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Average rating 4.15  · 
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 ·  766 ratings  ·  153 reviews

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Chris  C - A Midlife Wife
Great story and so hot!!
I have read two other books by this author so far, including book 4 in this Redemption series. I have rated both of her other books 5 stars as well. This is unique for me as I do not give 5 stars easily, and yet, it tells me something. This writer has the amazing ability to touch something deep inside.

I am not usually a fan of MMA stories, for the most part. Reading about the pain and injuries as a way to punish yourself, or hide your feelings, is
XxTainaxX Curvy and Nerdy
Jul 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
I’m so happy I got to know Shayla a little better. Though the story didn’t address a few of the insecurities that seemed to have seeped into Shayla’s character while she was a secondary character, it gave her some new dimensions. Zack was a great match for her and the love scenes really accentuated that.

The writing was flawless. The pace, imagery, development, and prose on point.

Great addition to the series.
Jessica Alcazar
Sarah Castille writes sexually driven stories. There’s no doubt about it. Some more sexual than others, but they are all driven by the sexual chemistry/electricity between the leads. She also packs a punch to the heart …. Every.Single.Time. #TRUST

Zach and Shayla have a second chance to get it right. One of my all time favorite tropes :) I love it because the author doesn’t always have to take up space on the page with the get to know each other. If the author is as a word wizard like Sarah i
Tanja OMGReads
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: omgreads
This second chance was everything I wanted. I love when broken love is repaired and everything is right in the world. I loved the whole »let's keep it professional« vibe they agreed upon but failed miserably at it. I loved the persistence in Zack. It was felt through every page how much he wanted Shayla back. And i loved his way of looking out for her: "I'm goind to kiss every part of your body, so when you get hit tomorrow, you'll remeber i was there first." . Oooo Zack.

I loved how she came
Seven years ago Zack left Shayla so she could follow her dreams. His plan was to return to her once he had made a name for himself and secured his and her future. However, things didn’t work out that way. Shayla was heartbroken when he left her and she moved to begin her career. A year later she was married and still trying to get over Zack and the way he had destroyed her.

After her marriage leaves her even more damaged, she sets out to build a new better Shayla. Now she’s only months away from
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

3.5 stars

Second chance romances can go either way with me I either love them or I have issues with them and Strong Hold by Sarah Castille is in the latter category. Over all I did like the story, but it wasn’t without some problems making it a challenge for me to finish. Almost 8 years after a special night between them, reunited lovers face challenges as he tries to find a way back into her heart while she keeps him at arm’s length.

Shayla Tanner aka Shilla the Killa is thrown for a loop when th
Gretchen  (About That Story)
I have really enjoyed this series so it pains me to say at 66% I have no desire to finish. The story line was decent but I didn't feel it was executed well, I never felt invested. It felt extremely rushed in the beginning laying everything out and it felt like there was more telling than showing happening. I felt it continued to be overly fast paced from there. I really wanted to like Shayla and Zack, sometimes I did and sometimes I didn't, honestly I never really warmed up to them. Having read ...more
♥ WishfulMiss ♥
I loved the Revenge & Ruin series and thought I tried something new by this author. Going in I actually thought this would be a lighter version of R&R but I was blown away by the gritty apologetically violent world that is club Redemption.

Shayla is a former ballerina turned MMA fighter. Having been burned by love in the past, she's learned that the only one she can rely on to stay safe is herself. After getting out of an abusive marriage that ripped to shreds her dance career and almost killed h
Kodie Mackay
Holy hotness. I can't even with the kind of heat coming from this book.

Shayla "Shilla the Killa" Tanner has had a rough life. Being left in a dirty motel room at the dead of night like a used up rag was not something she could forgive. In fact as the years went by her resentment only fed the anger and hurt. Life became easier for a short while again until it didn't. Broken inside and out she found Redemption and that's when a graceful ballerina turned into a badass MMA queen.

Zack Grayson spent
Rosa Sharon (iScream Book Blog)


"We all have a past. It's what you do with it that determines your future."

I took a chance on this author and this series in 2014. She won me over and I've never turned back. What a journey I've taken with the Redemption team. They are a crazy bunch that keeps me laughing, but they are also strong and supportive. You can't go wrong if these guys and girls have your back, but that doesn't mean it won't hurt. They take 'tough love' to a whole new level sometimes, but it's always en
Lover of Romance
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review was originally posted on Addicted To RomanceI received this book for free from Sourcebooks Casablanca in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Strong Hold is the fifth in the Redemption series, and I had a fun time with this story. I have really enjoyed this series, although I will warn you that the sex scenes are pretty HOT and spicy. They do have some BDSM elements, but I would consider them light and not full on BDSM
Jun 05, 2018 rated it liked it
ARC received for review

It's Shayla/Shilla the Killa's turn for love and it's a blast from her past. Since Zack left her she been down a rough patch, but come through better and stronger. There was a lot of back and forth with the two of them just annoyed me. Lots of "help" from the rest of the Redemption gang. I can't wait to see who's story is up next.
Magic book club
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you Net Galley and Sourcebooks Casablanca for this ARC .

May 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: net-galley
Absolutely loved Shayla and Zack's story. These two were each other's destinies as they had the deep bond growing up that cemented their souls! Each have struggled and have relied on each tremendously as young kids/young adults. One special night that Shayla has waited on forever ends with heartbreak and devastation. Shayla takes a different path in life that shatters her hopes and dreams, but that path has made her into the strong willed and strong bodied woman Zach sees when he walks into Rede ...more
This is based on the reviews.
The H and h separate because he wants her to "follow her dream" ..
I don't understand why this is such a popular trope.

The H expected her to wait for him while he enjoyed sleeping with other women.
I am not even going to comment on the stupidity of the H.

She got married and obviously, her ex is abusive. It's like these days no one wants their heroine to have a healthy sex life, its either a virgin or a heroine who is traumatized.
I am not sa
t'irla ~The Bookslayer~ aka Barbara
Thanks to Netgalley for giving me this book in exchange for an honest review.

I love this series and have since book 1 and this one did not disappoint. Strong characters who are likable and relate able. A storyline that makes you want to keep reading when you know you have to get some sleep. I love that the characters from past novels are reoccurring throughout the book.

I love big strong tough heros and now I love big strong tough heroines. I love the weaknesses and the strength of both protago
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
6 stars, a million stars, a galaxy of stars
That's how I feel about this book. I was addicted to this series from book 1,but this book was perfectly titled because it had a seriously Strong Hold on me. I'm talking super glued to my kindle type strong hold. I think this may be my favorite book this year! I literally couldn't put it down. Sarah NEVER disappoints. When I see she has a new book coming, I stalk her like a madwoman. I don't want to miss one thing she writes.

What makes this story my fa
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
I’ve only read the first book in this series when it first came out. I have the second in my tbr pile. This one is #5 and it was pretty good. I enjoyed all the details with the fighting. It definitely makes me want to read the other 3. I didn’t have a hard time following along with the other fighters. Zack and Shayla were pretty hot together. They were making up for lost time in the bedroom, multiple times, and twice on Sunday. Heh, just kidding. I think they only made it to the bedroom once. Ov ...more
Mel Sparks
Jul 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
Strong Hold was a typical contemporary romance. There was over dramatic dialogue, egotistical, testosterone filled male characters, a conflicted, weak willed female and unsuprising underwhelming chemistry between main characters. Everything read like a generic prototype of a Harlequin romance that fell short of my expectations and that's disappointing.
Shayla and Zack's relationships stemmed from childhood, as a young adult he made the decision to leave Shayla behind in order to pursue a career
Jul 03, 2018 rated it liked it
The MMA world that Sarah Castille creates in her Redemption series is gritty, dangerous, and violent, which is a fitting setting for the characters who reside in it because not only are they fighters in every aspect of their lives, but their pasts and perhaps even their presents dictate their successes and their struggles

The background and insights into this fighter environment illustrates Castille’s desire to paint a realistic backdrop for the series and it’s those intricacies that allow reader
Catty Jane
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
****5 STARS****
****ARC Received for Honest Review****

Thank you Sarah…this is the book I have been waiting for, the book that told Shayla’s story. I thought the other Redemption Series books were great, this one topped those for me. I loved to see Shayla in a more vulnerable and exposed space, where we can see her at her rawest. We get her back story and what makes her the person we have seen in some of your other books.

Then you see Zack and what the MMA realm has given him, what it has taken fr
Renee Entress
Jul 03, 2018 rated it really liked it

4 star

I was pulled right into this story. The story has abuse, second chances, and heartbreak.

If you have not read the below I would recommend reading those books(s) first
Against the Ropes (Redemption, #1)
In Your Corner (Redemption, #2)
Full Contact (Redemption, #3)
Fighting Attraction (Redemption, #4)

This is Shayla and Zach’s story. When Zach left her seven years ago Shayla built steel walls around her heart. Then she reinforced those walls when her husband turned his violence on her. He wants to
Crystal's Book World ~ Crystal Cordova
I have been a huge fan since Sarah Castille started writing her Redemption series. I was super excited when I heard she was bringing us a new book out of this series! WOW!!!! I could not take my eyes off each word. Zack had me from the get go and Shayla was my hero. When I saw the heartbreak and then the endurance to put their lives back together, I was lost in their world. I love a good fight series, but Sarah adds more heart than what I have read in the past. You will fall for these characters ...more
Sissy's Romance Book Review
Strong Hold by Sarah Castille is book Five in the Redemption series. This is the story of Zack Grayson and Shayla Tanner. I have read the previous book but feel this can be a standalone book.
Zack and Shayla once had a relationship but Zack walked away from it. While trying to move on Shayla ended up in a very bad relationship which brought her to the next part of her life. Becoming a fighter in her personal life and moving on to be a Top amateur MMA fighter. Shayla is now called "Shilla the Kil
Nadine Bookaholic
The attraction is obvious, the pain is visible, what you don't see right away is why they broke up the first time they were together. Can Shayla and Zack both get past the pain the break-up caused each of them?

This story is HOT!!!!
You can see my full review here: https://nadineisobsessedwithbooks.blo...
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Firstly, a big thank you to Netgalley and Sarah Castillo for my advanced copy for which I leave my honest review:) Sarah Castille is one of my go to authors as her books pack a powerful punch (yes, yes, MMA pun intended)! Shayla is the one character I have had a love hate relationship with since this series started and she found herself amongst our Redemption family, but purely for the reason that no one knew much about her and even though she fought well, she was a loner which ultimately made m ...more
Sandy S
Jun 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.25 stars

ABOUT HE BOOK: Release Date July 3, 3018

For the longest moment Zack's brain couldn't process the sight in front of him.
Seven years, ten months and twenty-seven days. That was how long it had been since he'd seen her. That was how long it had been since he'd lived a life without regret.

Fight promoter Zack Grayson is on the prowl for a rising star. As the top recruiter of a prestigious MMA promotion company, he wants to take someone where he will never be able to go again: the
Jul 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, role-play, sports, mma
In this corner, we have Shilla the Killa. In that corner, we have Slayer. May the best fighter win!

I'm not normally much of a sports kind of person. I say that I cheer for the local teams, but I really don't pay all that much attention to when anyone is playing. I've lusted mightily after MMA fighters, but I've never watched a fight or anything. But, dayum, all those muscles just do something for a person, you know? But, when I ran across this one, I decided that it sounded good and decided that
Blodeuedd Finland
That blurb is...not quite right. Sure it is right, and still not right. Let me begin.

Zach is looking for a new star, that is right. He was a winner himself, and then he quit. He seems like a good guy, until he is around Shayla. I mean wow, can you spell Alpha!? He gets really protective and I really wish he was not 5 years older cos...yeah something gets weird when you think too long about it. Still, he means well and really really really loves her.

Shayla was a ballerina and now she is a fighter
Mar 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is the last in a series, and I managed to somehow read it first. Yeah, not always a great idea. “Strong Hold” managed to hold up as a stand alone, though, and actually made me eager to go back and read the rest of the series, in order this time! The story revolves around Shayla, a retired ballerina turned aspiring MMA fighter, and Zack, an MMA fighter who has left the ring after a deadly bout an now works as a recruiter for the industry. I must admit to little interest in MMA, or the f ...more
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New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author, Sarah Castille, writes contemporary erotic romance and romantic suspense featuring blazingly hot alpha heroes and the women who tame them. A recovering lawyer and caffeine addict, she worked and traveled abroad before trading her briefcase and stilettos for a handful of magic beans and a home near the Canadian Rockies.

Other books in the series

Redemption (5 books)
  • Against the Ropes (Redemption, #1)
  • In Your Corner (Redemption, #2)
  • Full Contact (Redemption, #3)
  • Fighting Attraction (Redemption, #4)

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