*Disclaimer: I received an e-copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my rating or the content of my review in any way.
The big guy of this series is finally getting his story told and let me tell you, I'm a really happy reader.
You already know about my love of Ian and Charlotte Taggart, so it's no surprise that I love their book as much as I do. I may or may not have read this book multiple times too, because that's just what I do with stories I love as much as this one, I obsess over them.
I finally understood why Ian was as dark as he was in the beginning of this series. And as reckless as he was. It all makes sense. I also kinda understood why he did what he did in the first book of the series, Sean's book, when he made a decision that put his relationship with his brother at risk. But I get it. Everything made sense when I read this book. The fact that Ian survived the emotional pain of losing his wife shows just how strong he is. And I say survived, but definitely not recovered from it, because we know he never truly did recover from it. Charlie was the one for him. And I completely understood the way he treated her in the beginning of this book. He basically got his heart broken twice by the same woman, so him being a bit angry, hurtful and mean makes a lot of sense.
At the same time I couldn't help but love Charlie. She had to overcome a lot of tough shit from her past, and while she had to do some really bad stuff along the way, she didn't lose her humanity or her soul in the process. I loved how throughout the book she and her sister Chelsea are shown to be complete opposites. Chelsea, her younger sister, is darker, more lost due to the horrors of her childhood, while Charlie still has some pureness in her.
I really liked how the issue of commitment in a BDSM relationship was approached in this story. Here we have a guy whose wife died and tried everything in his power to survive that pain and did everything he possibly could to cope and to live in the fantasy of being with her one last time, while at the same time we have a woman who knows her husband is alive and well, and she did everything her Dom told her to do, even after she left him. I liked that aspect, as well as Charlotte's reasoning behind doing some of the things she did to honor her contract with Ian.
There were some funny moments too. As already used to from future books when these two appear, I already knew Ian and Charlie are a really funny couple, so I was very glad to see that this was also present in their book.
The plot was really interesting and it shows how cunning the villain was, and how dehumanizing ultimate power can be for some people. It also kind of explains the first arc of this series really well and it shows that sometimes there's a fine line between good and evil. We also understand what ties together certain events and certain characters, because this book adds a piece to the puzzle that shows exactly those details. The ending was really fitting and I liked how in the end Ian chose Charlie above everything else, even when everything seemed to be pointing towards her not being a trustworthy person. So I liked that he took a chance with her. As always, we get a glimpse in the future of the series and Damon is next. I am very excited to see what his story will bring.