Harper Connelly never expected to find herself outside of a tattoo parlor at one in the morning. The scars that decorate her back are just one more reminder of things she'd rather forget, the past she wants to leave far behind her. Running was the only thing that saved Harper last time, but each session at Second Circle Tattoos brings her closer and closer to Trent Andrews. His lingering touches seduce her, making her believe in a life without fear, where she can be happy, whole, in love. But when cryptic messages start appearing on Harper's phone, strange deliveries arrive at her door, and Second Circle is vandalized, Harper is convinced that her ex-boyfriend has tracked her down and, worse, that he knows about Trent. She ran from her past once before, but this time will she have the strength to fight back?
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Harper has been through Hell and is now a living shell of what she once was... after the abuse, the heartbreak, the blood and the scars that were all dished out to her by her crazed ex boyfriend. She is reminded daily by the physical scars that his angry handwork left behind but now, 4 years later, Harper wants to change that and her dream is to have a full back tattoo done by the talented Celebrity Tattoo Artist the handsome, sexy and charismatic Trent Andrews whose skills might just cover up the physical reminder. But can she overcome all the emotional torment that'll come with it because Harper can't physically cope with being touched and will Trent be willing, or able, to take on the challenge. So, courage in hand, she walks into his shop... but nerves, shyness, trepidation, anguish and fear accompanies her.
Trent has seen the beautiful yet haunted looking woman before and he's lusted and called out to her but she's never acknowledges him but then she walks in and blows him away by her vulnerability, her inner strength and her emotional heart felt request. But what really pulls him in is the brutal words that have been carved into her back and that tells him so much about the bravery and courage of the woman that is there ready to face so much pain and turmoil in order to be free. However, it isn't until he slowly hears Harper's heartbreaking story, through hours and hours spent under his tattoo gun, that he becomes totally entranced and vows to change this emotionally damaged (but not broken) woman.... and in doing so Trent changes their futures too.
What a beautiful and touching love story this is as Trent slowly, patiently, carefully and lovingly transforms, not only Harper's back, but also her whole demeanour as his tender touches and heartfelt words slowly penetrates and transforms, not only Harper's mind and spirit, but also her heart too. There was a great connection between them from the very start which resulted in banter, a slow seduction that was so sweetly, skilfully and sensually achieved. Then came a deep understanding, trust and acceptance followed by passion, romance, steam, angst, suspense and drama as Harper's ex is released from Prison meaner, crazier and more vengeful than ever before and he isn't going to stop at just taunting, scaring and scarring Harper. No, his retribution is far more sinister. It was instant attraction between Harper and Trent but it was the way that Trent earned Harper's trust and loyalty that was so beautiful to witness along with their character development and the simmering chemistry that was paced so well into true love and a HEA. Dual POV's, good secondary characters and the narration was ok.
Worth a credit? This wonderfully patient and sexy Hero is one I'll remember (huh, and I thought I only liked Alpha bad boys), the plot's addictive, enjoyable, delicious and very very very creditworthy.
I'm a sucker for tattoos and hot romances, so of course I wanted to read Strongest Steel.
I liked the book, it was just missing that something extra to make it stand out. It had a really good plot, but I feel like there was a whole lot of build up and a short climax... So much more could have been done to make the story amazing.
I understand that after a traumatic event your going to be vulnerable, but I feel like it was a bit extreme after four years to still be jumping every time something touched her, and then in a matter of a few weeks she's pretty much cured of that.