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Posted February 7, 2014
While this book is significantly better than the previous book in the series (Jagged), it is still far from the awesomeness of the first four (The Gamble, Sweet Dreams, Lady Luck - one of her very best -and Breathe). These characters were more interesting, evoking an emotional response, and the suspense was there, although on the mild side, it still lacked the total involvement in the characters and plot from the very first paragraphs that was so clear in the first four books. Those books, and other series she has written, are what make me love Kristen Ashley. Her work, since she has hooked up with a publisher and let them "guide" her, has been sadly lacking. I hope she truly gets her own voice back soon.
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Posted February 4, 2014
I really look forward to KA's books because I love her ability to engage the reader from the beginning. Her descriptions have a way of bringing the characters and situations to life in a manner that seems effortless. However, this is exactly what her last two novels have been lacking. Jacob Decker could have been the most interesting of all her "alpha-males" but instead comes off as less than anticipated and confusing. His sudden supposed change of heart regarding (the previously unknown to the reader) Emme seems forced and falls flat. I don't know what has changed other than KA's writing style but I'll continue to hold out hope that we'll eventually see a return to what made her novels my favorites.
5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 7, 2014
For the very first time I was dissapointed. I did not like the story line and felt like the book was trown together. I was expecting more for Decks story. This is one will not reread. And I reread a lot Kristen Ashley books.
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Posted January 18, 2014
My Rating: Five stars!
Release Date: February 4, 2014
Genre: Romantic Suspense
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Sexy, gifted, and loyal, PI Jacob Decker is a tall, cool drink of perfection who had Emmanuelle Holmes at "hello." His relationship with Emme's best friend kept them apart for years, but things have changed. Now that a case has brought him to Gnaw Bone, Colorado, the road is wide open for Emme and Deck to explore something hotter and deeper than Emme dreamed possible. So why is she sabotaging the best thing that's ever happened to her?
It isn't easy to catch Deck off guard, but Emme does just that when she walks back into his life after nine long years. The curvy brunette had her charms back in the day, but now she's a bona fide knockout . . . and she wants to rekindle their friendship. Deck, however, wants more. Emme's always been the one; she excites Deck's body and mind like no other woman can. But a dark chapter from Emme's past overshadows their future together. Now only Deck can help her turn the page-if she'll let him . . .
This was an interesting twist into the world that is Ms. Ashley’s series. I have to admit, I’m just catching up with all the past stories, so some of the characters I got a bit confused with. But overall, I love how she’s made all of her series link up. It’s fantastic to see, and it’s a great way to catch up with past character’s we’ve all fell in love with.
So coming off of the Dream Man series and walking into the Colorado series, I was thrust into a different world, but with very similar traits among men—all of which are so damn lovable it isn’t even funny.
The drama and action behind this one keeps you on the edge of your seat, waiting for when that other shoe is going to drop. I loved to see a lot more of the insight into what drove the characters with this story, and although there were times I wanted to strangle Emme, Ms. Ashley came through with her trademark epilogue and brought everything back to a fit in a pretty (not to rain on Deck’s parade) circle. It was a fabulous story that as with Ms. Ashley, manages to grip you and refuses to let go.
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Posted February 4, 2014
My Rating: 4 of 5 ¿¿
Last time Jacob "Deck" Decker, saw Emmanuelle Holmes, she had come to his door after he had been given the heave-ho by her best friend and what he thought at the time was the love of his life. The only thing he recognized about her now was her voice and her dimples, the rest of her had gone through a dramatic change. But boy was it good to see her. The two of them had had a great connection back then, a friendship that was swept up in the aftermath of his breakup with her best friend. But with the knowledge that Emme apparently was living in Gnaw Bone, where he would be working for the next foreseeable future on a case, he planned to rectify that.
Bumping into Deck brought home how much Emme had missed him over the years. She tried not to think about how much she lost when she lost her friendship with him, but now that she found him again, she wasn't going to let the opportunity slip away. After the year or so she has had struggling, she was ready to bring some positives back in her life, and she couldn't wait to catch up with Deck.
But Deck seems determined to not only pick up where they left off before, he intends to take it to a whole new level. Seeing Emme has clarified some things for him he should have seen years ago. She has always been the right one for him, challenging him intellectually and enticing him physically. But although Emme has always harboured more than just 'friendly' feelings for Deck, the future he is looking for is difficult to imagine when the ghosts of your past still haunt you....
It has taken me weeks to write this review.... Normally I am jumping up and down after reading a KA book, not able to purge the words and thoughts fast enough. This time. No jumping involved....I loved the book, don't get me wrong.....but my reaction was less adrenaline-infused.
I have had a 'thing' for Deck, since we first were introduced to him, found him to be deep and mysterious and utterly intriguing, but with his rather obscure profession, I thought for sure his story would be more suspenseful. The fact that it deviated not only from the character I had seen built up in earlier encounters with him, but also from my expectations from a KA book, threw me for a bit of a loop.
Oh, as an alpha male Deck worked well, real well. I liked this rather mellow person, who could turn fierce on a dime when those he cared for were threatened in any way. And I particularly loved his focus and patience with Emme, the way he interacted with her and built a strong bond, even before they reconnected after nine years of separation. But what didn't sit well with me, is the sudden realization of what he has in Emme, or rather what he lost in her nine years ago. Brought about by the jolt of her altered appearance. Out of the blue Deck has this wake-up call, that she should have been his all along, but for nine long years he couldn't be bothered to waste a minute finding out where or how she was. It's a hard sell for me to buy that it has nothing to do with the way she looks now versus the way she looked then.
Emme seems a pretty simple and straightforward kinda gal, but is anything but. She has some deep-rooted issues that may give the appearance of being involved, but she never quite trusts herself to become invested. She had been in love with Deck since he had been head over heels for her friend, and still was able to maintain a great friendship with him. That is the way Emme functioned, she could push things she didn't want to deal with so far down, they wouldn't see the light of day. That is, until some particularly dark memories would bubble to the surface and completely blindside her. Never properly processed or dealt with, they can wreak havoc on the psyche and cause all kinds of damage.
I enjoyed this book, even though it may have been a bit of a change of pace from what we have become accustomed to with a Kristen Ashley book, it had a deeper exploration of an emotional nature and frankly, less action. Enough Alpha behaviour from Deck to make my knees rubbery, and that's always good, and Emme had enough bite on her to create some decent friction to keep all types of sparks flying. No nail-biting, last minute rescues in this one, but an overall satisfying knowledge where the years are going to lead.
¿A deliciously steamy, spirited and honest interaction!¿
**ARC provided by NetGalley and Forever in return for an honest review.**
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Posted March 30, 2014
Every single time I read a Kristen Ashley book, as I read the last words of the last sentence on the last page, I sigh a happy sigh. Her books embody for me the entire reason why I love and read (and review) romance novels: the happy sigh. Her books are so good and touch a place in me so deep that they always give me the happy sigh.
Emme and Jacob have known each other for years. She was the best friend of his girlfriend almost a decade ago, and in being such was by proxy one of Jacob’s best friends too. They had a connection, a deep friendship and a high level of respect for each other. When Jacob’s then girlfriend dumps him, he detaches from everyone, including Emme. Now it’s 9 years later and Jacob is back in Gnaw Bone to investigate a series of robberies. When he sees Emme again for the first time, he doesn’t recognize her. Gone are the short hair and the frumpy wardrobe and in is the newer, sexier, more stylish Emme whom he cannot take his eyes from. He decides then and there (as only a KA Alpha can do) that Emme is his, and he wants to get her away from her current boyfriend (who’s a schmuck anyway) and into his bed. But Emme has a past; a past that just might ruin the promise of what the two of them can have together.
I have to start off with my hands down favorite thing about this entire book: Jacob Decker. How Kristen Ashely manages to make her heroes so alpha, but so endearing and loving and wonderful is a true talent. So many times (as you’ve heard me lament before), it’s too easy to crossover from alpha male badass to douchebag. She NEVER goes there. All of her alphas are determined, they are sexy as hell and they know what they want and get it. And they do all that without being a douchebag to the woman they love. They protect the precious gift of her love and hold it close, every single time.
As you know from the previous Colorado Mountain series books, there seems to be a common theme of danger to the alpha’s woman. They’ve all been kidnapped, shot, stabbed, buried alive…you name it. This book has cohesiveness with the other books in the series, but what I really found interesting was that the threat to Emme and Jacob’s relationship is not external really, it’s internal. This isn’t something that KA does much (which makes me happy), but it was a really interesting twist to Emme and Jacob’s story for me. The revelations that Emme goes through during the course of the book are interesting to read. However, unlike the other books in this series, the crime subplot is not as big a part of the story. At least the present day crime isn’t. It was a nice departure and no less interesting to watch unfold. And the whole Kaleidoscope thing is so profound and just so lovely…again, happy sigh.
Well, I’m sure you know that something pretty profoundly disappointing would have to happen in order for me to give this author anything less than 5 stars. She’s just so good at what she does, she could write a book entitled “The Historical Significance of Lint Collecting” and as long as one of the lint collectors was an alpha male lint collecting badass, I’d read it…probably more than once. 5 stars.
Reviewed by Sara for Crystal’s Many Reviewers
*Copy provided for honest review*
Posted March 26, 2014
Here’s the problem with writing this or any other review of a KA novel. I wanted to start this review by saying, “this is my favorite series!” But the reality is I can never choose a favorite series when it comes to the storytelling powers of Kristen Ashley. So here it goes…
Kaleidoscope is the 6th installment of the Colorado Mountain series. We FINALLY get Decker! And boy was he worth the wait!!! Sigh….. I could not put this book down. In fact, I read it in one day. No, I didn’t read it, I devoured it.
“You think you lost beauty, Jacob, but you didn’t.” “Just turn the dial.”
After having been great friends for some time and then being separated for years, these two are reunited and they pick up right where they left off like no time has passed. Emme has changed and Deck sees it. Emme had a lot of issues to overcome and Deck was there to support her. She becomes is favorite and most challenging puzzle. They have turbulence as would be expected, but it all flows naturally through the book. The love between Deck and Emme was so beautifully displayed across the pages of this book. I believed in them from the first chapter. I loved the way he loved her. In fact, their love was the center of this story. The suspense that we have grown accustom to with the other books in this series was not nearly as prevalent. It was not the focus and I liked it that way. I love suspense, but this story simply didn’t need it.
“Have mercy” she breathed, and he smiled.”
“We’ve always worked, Emme. Always.”
And Jacob “Deck” Decker. Seriously? He is so hot, if I met this guy in real life, I would actually try to climb him! How do you describe this uber-alpha with a heart of gold? Oh wait, that was pretty good. The number of times I said “OMG” while reading this one book was ridiculous. He was so amazingly kind, patient, and tender when Emme needed him to be and strong and dominant when she needed that too. I love that he guided her to make good decisions and conceded when he took things too far. His respect for her was just as obvious throughout the story as his love was. And Emme, this girl was no pushover. She certainly saw the world from a different view than I do, but she stood her ground when it mattered. She was damaged, so her life-goggles were a bit askew, but that is where the love and strength of a good man can make all the difference. Their chemistry was off the charts and made for excellent banter! I couldn’t stop laughing at some parts! Oh, and car names, that stole the scene every time!
“Wanna build a life with you, Emmanuelle.”
As with all KA books, the bonds of family and friendship are as tight as ever. They both have strong support systems. Emme is a bit closed off and actually lacks in the friend department, but that never stopped the women of the Colorado Mountain Series. We are gifted with the return of many members of the KA family in residing Colorado. They are always part of the network and I love how she is able to write them into the story so naturally. The care KA puts into writing her posse brings them to life in a way that few authors can accomplish. The people in a Kristen Ashley book are never characters, they’re family. I miss them when they are gone & cherish their return.
I give this book 5 solid stars and a big glass of pinot grigio! It will be moved directly to my “Read Again” shelf. The story didn’t just move me; it transported me. I felt like I was right along with them, riding shotgun.
My sincerest thanks to Kristen Ashley for offering this ARC to me in exchange for an honest review.
Posted March 12, 2014
Posted March 9, 2014
I loved this story. Like all of Kristens books it had a compelling love story with an alpha male and a strong woman. I.enjoyed reading it like I have enjoyed every other book that I have read by this authorWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 7, 2014
I didn't enjoy this book. I felt like the "f" word was greatly overused. I felt like Deck was very degrading to Emme with his sexual demands. I definitely would't like a man having that much power and control over me. Definitely not impressed.
Posted March 2, 2014
The first several chapters of this book were are hard drag for me and then it got much much better.
During the early part of the book, it just felt like a typical Kristen Ashley book and not in a good way. There are things that KA does that I like a lot and other things that I put up with because everything else is so good. We got a bit too much of the later in the first chapters.
We had a heap of the fragmented man speak, clearly we were going to have several of those odd love triangles that happen, and the heroine was a girlie girl.
The last bit annoyed me the most because she use to be on the curvier, plainer, and nerdier side. And now the hero notices her sexually. I hate that. He was always in love with her a bit as it turns out so why not leave her as wonderful is?
There are character driven reasons for her changes that work in the overall plot but it would have been a much better romance and broken the KA mold to leave Emme as is or just a bit a different as per the life changing event.
What made me really annoyed about this plot point is that KA knows she made this choice and Deck spends time thinking about it and his preference for a high maintenance woman because he says it reflects self esteem. I think he was a a bit of a mouth piece of the writer here and I disagree with the viewpoint so this grated on my nerves. It doesn't mean it was out of character for him though and that is what saved it and made me keep reading.
So, how did the book get better? Well, it is a great character driven romance that really is centered around Emme dealing with the PTSD from a childhood event and Deck partnering her in this.
It is a lovely friends to lovers romance and nothing ridiculous happens. There is even some meta stuff about how insane the amount of things that happen in this small town is and some loosing at the villains with human eyes. His ex was portrayed as B in the end. Good stuff.
This is a very healing and touching romance especially if you have or have loved one with PTSD. She gets therapy. I love that.
There is an awesome dog, cool house, and interesting mystery to solve as well.
It is also sexy as hell.
A great read.
Posted March 2, 2014
I've been hooked on Kristen Ashley's books for the last year or so and was anxious to read this latest..it didn't disappoint. It felt a bit darker then most of the others but still enjoyed getting to know these characters.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 1, 2014
Posted March 1, 2014
U have not read everything she has written but I am working on it. The series this book is a part of is one that I have read and loved each and every book. This newest one did not disappoint me.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2014
Posted February 27, 2014
This was my first book by this author. It started out great, with a good premise and snapping dialogue. But as the book went on, it disappointed. The writing style was distracting, and the plot twists were too outlandish. I became less connected to the characters as the book went on. Too bad. I am not sure whether i will get another book by this author.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 19, 2014
Posted February 16, 2014
If you are a Kristen Ashley fan, love the knuckle dragging heroes with heart and a badass persona or façade, you are in for a surprising treat with Kaleidoscope as Ms. Ashley gives us a true romance between two absolutely likable characters!
A Private Investigator in town working on a case that may involve Emme’s boyfriend, Deck also brings memories from the past to the surface for Emme. He never loses faith in her ability to address and conquer her demons. Emme is strong, but she has issues to overcome and Deck comes back into her life when she needs the strong, unwavering support of a real friend the most. As their attraction grows beyond that of friends and they admit as much, I couldn’t help but get that warm, fuzzy feeling , accompanied by a few sigh-worthy smiles. These two are perfect for each other. Deck is a powerful force in Emme’s life, who handles her with the care she needs. When all is said and done, will Emme look for her future in the eyes of Deck’s love or will she push him away, destroying his feelings and her one chance at true happiness?
Kristen Ashley shows off her versatility as a writer by toning down the action and focusing on the characters and their feelings without missing a beat. She still gives us conflict, and the usual ups and downs of romance, but this is a softer read than her signature style, and I loved it!
I received this copy from Forever in exchange for my honest review.
Posted February 13, 2014
I wrote a not so good review forJagged so I felt compelled to comment on this book. Although I still feel that the editors cut too much from Kristens writing, this time it felt like she wrote it. I liked the book alot. Trying to keep Kristen to the 300 page maximum, changes the tone of her writing and her ability to put you right the with the characters. This book had some of that but edited. I did like this story and I would recommend it. I just wish the editors would realize that Kristen was very successful before they got involved and leave her alone to do what she does best. In reading the other reviews, I am not alone feeling this way.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 13, 2014
I liked the intensity and feeling though her sentence structure made it difficult at times to follow the authors train of thought which can jar you out of the storyline! But definitely worth the readWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.