Title: Fighting Attraction
Series: Redemption #4
Author: Sarah Castille
Genre: MMA/BDSM Romance
Release Date: Available Now!
My sweet, sexy Penny has a dark side. Just like me.
I will have her. And then I will lose her, and suffer a lifetime of regret.
Rampage. Everyone loves him. He is Redemption's top heavyweight fighter and the biggest gossip in the gym. But he isn't the teddy bear everyone thinks he is. He's hiding a dark secret-and he hates himself for it.
Twice a week, Rampage transforms into Master Jack, a notorious dom only the most hard-core submissives will play with. How can he-a Southern gentleman, bred to respect and protect women-want to dominate them?
But Penny Worthington wants him. Beneath her pearls, kitten heels, and prim British exterior beats a tortured heart...Master Jack is the only one who can set her free.
This is the fourth book in the Redemption series but can be read as a standalone. I had not read any of the previous books but found it easy to catch on.
Rampage is a taking up the challenge of going pro in the MMA circuit and making a good business with his partnership in a distillery. Whilst his career and business are soaring his relationship status is not but that is how he prefers it. After having his hopes crushed for a life planned, he now stays away from relationships. After all who could he ever trust to share his darkness with again after it went so drastically wrong the first time he placed that trust with somebody?
Penny is a regular at the Redemption gym and is friendly with most of the guys there, especially Rampage. The happy go lucky man is easy to get along with and she enjoys the banter she has with him. However when something happens when she goes to cheer him on at one of his bouts, things start to change for the pair and when she stumbles across his secret then she start to wonder if he can provide the outlet she so desperately needs.
I loved the atmosphere in this MMA world that also takes you into a more secretive and dark place. The main characters were so deep to fathom out which is something I yearn when I get a good book in my hands. Just trying to figure out a character and what makes them tick and why they are the way they are. There was lots of good grounding to search through with both Penny and Jack (aka Rampage) I loved that their bright and sunny personas were also hiding a whole lot of darkness and the way they each unconsciously sought each other to provide the deep need they had.
I’m not a big fan of BDSM but the psychology of Jack was an interesting one. Here was a sadist who was in hiding and the way he fought through his darkness was spellbinding. I also loved that he was a southern gentleman and I loved the way the author brought to life his accent (I can still hear him whispering PINny!)
As for Penny I loved that she was British with her prim and proper ways and her girlie outfits. It was doubly thrilling that she was from my part of the World and my city – Leeds! I had already connected with her and could relate to some of her thought process so to read she was a Leeds lass was a squee moment (strange how seeing your home place mentioned in a book you never expected can take you unawares haha)
Overall this was a good solid engaging read with plenty of darkness, sprinkled with some comedy but intense in the passion. I would like to see more from this author and a book I would definitely recommend. Four stars.
Rampage tracks me with his gaze as I skirt around the people getting into position on the mat. He is breathtaking in his crisp, white gi, a worn black belt tied tight around his narrow waist. Some of the fighters wear T-shirts under their gis, but I am not so lucky. As I slow to a stop in front of him, I am forced to endure the visual feast of his truly magnificent chest.
Burn cheeks burn. “Um…hi.”
“Penny.” His voice is laced with amusement, thick with his Southern drawl.
“Blade Saw said you needed a partner.” I amaze myself at my ability to form a coherent sentence without collapsing in a puddle on the floor.
“So he sent me a white belt? Did I do something to piss him off?”
My cheeks heat, and I look up, only to fall into the warmth of his gaze. “No one else is free.”
A smile tugs at his lips. “I’m just messing with you, darlin’.”
My insides turn to mush, and I dip my head so he can’t see just how red my cheeks can get.
Rampage lies on his mat, propping himself up on his elbows in a semi-recline. His gaze sweeps over me as I get in position on my knees in front of him. He’s got guard, which means he has to make me submit, and I have the goal of passing guard to a dominant position and holding it for three seconds. The irony isn’t lost on me, but I don’t laugh because his eyes suddenly darken almost to black.
Boy, am I ever. “Yes.” I try to play it cool, like I wasn’t shackled to the ceiling of his BDSM playroom in my bra and knickers last night, stroked into a frenzy, and ordered not to touch myself. Like that was going to happen.
“You understand the drill?” He licks his lips, like a predator about to feast. “When one of us succeeds in our goal, we stop, and the loser goes back to the end of the line. The winner stays out and takes guard on the next person in line.”
“You have to make me submit.” I toy with the ends of my very white belt. “Maybe I should just go to the end of the line now. You didn’t seem to have any trouble with that last night.”
“Come here and say that,” he murmurs, patting his belt. “I’ll give you the advantage of full mount.”
My mouth goes dry as I crawl up his body and seat myself over his belt, my knees spread uncomfortably wide on either side of his hips in a fully dominant position. Something hard and smooth presses against the juncture of my thighs, and I pray he is wearing a cup because the urge to rock against that delicious hardness is almost overwhelming.
Rampage’s corded neck tightens when he swallows. “Move up. Your knees should be under my arms.”
I shuffle up, and he grabs my hips and drags me forward until my knees are on either side of his chest and I can feel the heat of his breath on a place where heat should not be felt in the middle of a packed Brazilian jiu-jitsu class.
“I think maybe I’m too close.”
He heaves in a breath, his eyes glittering as he grips the inside edges of my gi. “Not close enough.” With a hard yank, he pulls me down until I am laying flat on his body, my breasts against his chest, my hips against his cup, my hands braced on either side of his head.
“Full mount is where you want to be when you’re grappling a bigger, stronger opponent.” His words whisper over me, his lips so close to mine I only have to drop a few inches to have a little taste.
“You can use the strength and power of your own body and the force of gravity to your advantage.” He pulls me right down, wraps his free hand around me, shifts his hips and rolls. Before I can catch my breath, I’m flat on my back and Rampage is on top of me.
“This is where you don’t want to be as a smaller grappler,” he says. “How are you going to get out of this?”
The question isn’t so much how am I going to get out of it but do I want to get out of it? And with Rampage’s hard, muscular body on top of me, his legs between my thighs, his hardness pressed tight against the juncture of my thighs, I’m not sure I do.
Rampage stills, and his eyes widen.
Bugger. Did I say that out loud?
“I’m not sure I want you to either.” His breath is warm against my ear. “But if you don’t move, we’ll both get kicked out of class. So, what are you going to do?”
“Um…overhook an arm, bridge and roll, then get on top into the closed guard?”
Rampage drops his weight, stealing my breath. “Won’t work against a larger opponent. You need to blast through my hips and use a bit of strength to overturn me. Strength you don’t have. Your best bet is to escape back to half guard.”
“Okay.” I wiggle just the tiniest bit against him, seeking more of that delicious pressure against my clit. With my vibrator on high, I was able to take the edge off this morning, but with Rampage on top of me, I’m wound up all over again.
A low growl rumbles in his throat. “You’d better be wiggling ’cause you’re moving into half guard,” he warns. “Now straighten up and make your transition.”
“This is as straight as I get,” I mutter. “I’m a woman. Women have curves. I happen to have a curve in my back, and it wants to stay that way.”
“I can feel your curves, darlin’. Every one of them. And it’s making it fucking hard to concentrate. Make your move ’cause if you don’t do it soon, I’ll have to go out and get a cup.”
I suck in a sharp breath. “You aren’t wearing a cup?”
Don’t move. Don’t move.
I can’t help it. I move. Or, more accurately, I grind.
Wham. Rampage transitions into half guard and flips me onto my front. While I try to get my knees under me, he straddles me and grabs my hips in his huge hands. Heat surges through my body, and I groan quietly in my throat. “What are we doing?”
“Hips up,” he barks. “Ass down.”
“They’re connected,” I point out. “Where the hips go, the ass follows.”
Shilla snorts a laugh and drops to the floor beside me. “Like this.” She stretches her body out into a perfectly smooth, flat, plank position, holding it with one hand. On her knuckles. Then she rolls to show me what Rampage wants me to do.
“If my body was one solid sheet of muscle, I could do that.” I tense my muscles, try to force myself into a position my body is not meant to go. “However, I have a weakness for chocolate biscuits, lazy Sundays on a blanket in the park, scones with clotted cream, and chicken tikka with thick, white naan bread slathered in butter. Unfortunately, it lowers my middle center of gravity.”
Rampage’s hands slide over my stomach, his touch firm, arousing my whole body with the promise of what those fingers could do if they drifted just a little lower. My mind goes hazy with desire and I can’t tell if I’m flying or if my hands and feet are still on the floor. I don’t care about jiu jitsu transitions. I don’t care that Shilla is watching us with curious eyes or that we’re supposed to be doing a group drill. I don’t care if the whole class is watching us. All I care about is feeling connected to Rampage and wanting this moment to last forever.
He lifts me right off the floor, as if I weighed nothing, and pulls me against his broad chest, my ass against his hips, feet barely touching the mat, his hands firm around my body. My stomach clenches. My heart pounds. He leans down until his mouth is so close to my ear, I can feel the heat of his breath.
“I told you not to touch yourself last night,” he whispers.
A flush of adrenaline tingles through my body, followed by a thrill of fear. “What are you going to do about it?”
About the Author
Sarah Castille is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Redemption Series, Ruin & Revenge Series, Sinner’s Tribe Motorcycle Club series, Legal Heat series and the Club Excelsior series. A recovering lawyer with a fondness for dirty-talking alpha males, she now is a full-time writer, who lives on Vancouver Island.
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