Splage's Reviews > The Gamble
by Kristen Ashley (Goodreads Author)
bookshelves: 2012-read, 3rd-party-mistress-boyfriend-girlfr, alpha, bicker-bicker-bicker, contemporary, couldn-t-put-down, emotional-made-me-cry-lump-in-thr, epilogue-totally-fab, favorite-series-1st-book-only, funny, good-secondary-lovestory, hero-big-time-player-man-whore, hero-heroine-construction, hero-heroine-lawyer, hero-heroine-widow-er, highly-recommended-by-others, jealousy, kidnapping, love-triangle, ebook, pregnant-at-end, revenge, sex-medium-to-very-sexy
Kristen Ashley has a style I love. I love the in charge alpha, no game playing, knows what he wants, says what he wants, takes what he wants...Okay he is also a gorgeous, masculine, mountain of a man, with crude talk that shocks you and then melts your insides. You also get your moneys worth with her books. They are very long, with lots of action, lots and lots of characters and even though there is one large plot, mystery, romance there are so many subplots, secondary romances and connections. So from what I have read from Kristen Ashley so far this is her format and this is what I love in a book!
It is hard for me not to compare The Gamble and Sweet Dreams (Sweet Dreams being epitome), but I am going to try. The story drew me in immediately, I love how KA starts her books with a bang. Max and Nina come together in hilarious explosion of a way. She is in a "timeout" in her current life and rents a gorgeous A frame in a secluded Colorado town called Gnaw Bone. After a long travel to get there, she is exhausted and ready for her new adventure, but is greeted by an unfriendly, gorgeous, and emotionally untouchable Max. Max realizes there is a mix up and that his friend Slim accidently rented his house when he is in residence. Max's response is basically I don't care, I am here, there is a hotel in town. At first Nina is calm and then her inner feisty, logical, take no prisoner tongue lashing surfaces. Awesome! and she has many other tirade moments throughout the book that were priceless. Even though I live for KA's heroes I find that her heroines are perfect matches to keep them in place and satisfied.
There were a ton of wonderful, interesting, well developed characters that both the H&h touched in immense ways. There is a mystery and a couple of bad villains and although the mystery and action were good, not quickly solved an tidied up, they weren't the central focus, but placed in small amounts throughout the book. Another plus for me. I did feel there were a few holes that I would have liked to go a little deeper with, (view spoiler)[such as ex-fiance/ Nina's father and the Shauna/Max relationship could have been a little spicier, it was way to cold. I think it would have caused a little more friction, jealousy, lump in the throat moments. Also there was such great sexual tension between Max and Nina, but it took forever for them to get to the consummation. They almost seemed like they were an old married couple and I lost a little steam waiting for their horizontal mambo. Let's just say that when it did come I had the glow afterwards too and they would have received all 10's on Dancing With The Stars for their mambo. And finally one other slight critique was one of the villains came out of left field and made me sad. (hide spoiler)]
My absolute favorite part of this book was The Epilogue (thanks Karla for giving me the anticipation of its coming). It is rich, long and beyond satisfying.