Opens with: Amazon Kindle
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: Skin, Book 2
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Hero: Søren Frost
Heroine: Mia Sauter
Date of Publication: June 1, 2010
Started On: February 16, 2011
Finished On: February 16, 2011
Those who have read Skin Game, Book 1 in the Skin series would know what I mean when I say that the hooker scene featuring the enigmatic Addison Foster totally reeled me in on his character and made me impatient to find more about him and what tragedy it was that was driving him to seek the destruction of whoever it is that he is seeking. And it is during the aforementioned book 1 that Mia and Addision come in contact with each other which made me totally itchy from the need to read Skin Tight. And thank God for the fact that this title had already been released by the time I decided to indulge in the Skin series or I would have been in deep trouble if not! Though Skin Tight can be read as a standalone, I would advise you to read book 1 first because you really need to see Addison in his element in book 1 to really appreciate and feel for his character in his own story.
Søren Frost or Addison Foster is a man who has lived by so many personalities and names in the past few years that he has almost forgotten who he really is. Originally from Denmark, Søren’s parents had arrived in America as immigrants when Søren had been 3 years old. It is two years later that Søren gets vaccinated by “free” vaccines passed out by The Foundation whose main agenda had been experimenting on humans to create a superior race which would profit them with millions and billions of dollars in the times to come. Søren’s ability lies in making those who come in contact with him live or believe him to be what their fantasies want him to be. Unable to bear with the loneliness of being single all his life Søren had taken the plunge and got married to a woman who had never seen him for who he really is but called him James all throughout their marriage. Piece by piece, shard by shard, Søren had crumbled and fallen apart so much that he had turned into a shell of the man he had once been until his daughter Lexie had been born who had been his single most priced “possession” in his otherwise bleak world. When Lexie had been taken away from him in a horrible car accident, leaving just a brainless body behind who requires a life support machine, Søren’s fury knows no bounds as he vows vengeance on The Foundation who has turned him into what he is, nearly driving him to take his own life at one time. It is when Mia accidentally stumbles into his life that color begins to seep into his otherwise gray world, thawing the blocks of ice that has surrounded his heart and locked away his emotions for far too long.
Mia Sauter is the daughter of a feminist American mother and an Iranian father who had tried and failed to convince the woman he had fallen in love with to marry him so that they could become a proper family. Mia had never known any happiness during her childhood, either at home or school where she is ridiculed for being geeky and nerdy and not being interested in the usual things that kids her age are forever losing themselves in. Mia’s carefree photojournalist mother resented Mia’s existence which had reined in her constant need to roam and travel around the world and later had turned to the bottle to cure all her woes. Mia, a woman who has a way with numbers and computers becomes a forensic accountant specializing in corporate embezzlement and it had been her ingenuity in stealing from others that had made her so successful in finding out those who were stealing from the big corporations who were willing to pay huge sums of money to sniff out those leeching money from them. Like Søren, Mia too has no place she would call home and constantly travels from one place to another as her career demands from her though she yearns for someone to love her and ride into the sunset with her as Reyes had done for Kyra.
It is when Mia rushes in to save Kyra that she meets the enigmatic Søren, then known as Addison and the attraction that flares between them is hard to ignore for Mia though Søren makes a convincing job of showing that attraction is the furthest thing he feels for her. When Søren feeds her to the wolf and leaves her alone in captivity till Kyra and Reyes comes along to rescue her, Mia is more shattered than she should be about a man with eerie glacier blue eyes ringed with silver, who seems to affect her in ways no other man has ever had.
When Mia stumbles across Søren once again a year later when she takes up a job at Micor Technologies she doesn’t know whether to consider him friend or foe; but neither is she immune to the strong feelings of the baser nature that Søren still seems to be able to invoke in her – feelings that he seems to feel for her in spades this time around. With secrecy surrounding Søren’s every move, Mia is hopelessly ensnared in Søren’s plans of revenge against The Foundation without having a clue into the kind of world that she has stepped into.
As the body count begins to rise, so does Mia’s need for answers from the man who is such a bundle of contradictions, who steals her heart regardless of the continuous pep talks that she subjects herself to. And Søren is not much better off when Mia steals the key to his heart and unlocks the steel fortress that has surrounded it for so long and it is then Søren has to decide whether his love for Mia should triumph over his need for revenge or whether he should walk the Earth as a lonesome shell for the rest of his life.
Things that made this book rock my world:
- Søren Frost. He is undeniably one of the most broken heroes that I have come across and that made me fall for him that much harder in the end. I felt his pain, anguish and sorrow at things he couldn’t change regardless of how much he wanted them to and when he is confronted with baring his soul once again, I understood what was driving him to deny his feelings even though it was clear for all the world to see how he really felt about Mia. Seen through Mia’s eyes, Søren is a character that any romance reader would feel for and fall head over heels in love with and I was in no way an exception to this rule.
- Mia Sauter. I didn’t care much for Kyra in Skin Game and was prepared to not feel much for Mia as well. But Ava Gray has done a splendid job with her heroine in this one and I couldn’t help but admire and love her all the more because even with all the secrecy that shrouded Søren’s character, she accepted him for who he is and loved him for the man he is inside trying to break free from the emotional shackles that had bound him for such a long time. Loved Mia for seeing the man underneath all the ice and breaking it apart so that Søren could live and love once again.
- The stimulating conversations between Mia and Søren. Though Søren is hardly the type for jovial conversations, Mia’s wry sense of humor is hard to ignore and it is those moments that she manages to steal a rusty smile from our hero that belong in the most unforgettable moments in the story. Loved the dialogs!
- The insane Dr. Jasper Rowan who lends this story the heinous villain it needs. He is just what the doctor ordered to make this story of the spine tingling variety.
- Trey and Gillian’s characters to whom we are introduced to in this story. I did some quick digging to find out that their story will come out in July of this year and let me tell you – the cover alone would make me buy the book, let alone the fact I am highly intrigued to find out more about both of them!
I can’t think of anything that could have made this book a more intriguing one than it already is. I would say, it is just damn near perfect the way it is!
“I’ll share if you like.” He cut into his mushroom with surgical precision, using both knife and fork in the European fashion, reinforcing her belief that he hadn’t been born in the United States.
“In case you hadn’t noticed, I’m a vegetarian.” Mia lifted her glass and took a sip.
“Hm. Does that mean no oral sex?”
She nearly spat her wine.
“Are you suggesting a partnership?” she asked. “To what end?”
“You can get into the lab. I need to see what’s there.”
Her expression hardened. “Why?”
There was no help for it. He had to tell the truth. “I suspect Micor is conducting illegal experiments on human beings. I want to stop them.”
“What are you, Batman? You go around righting wrongs?”
Despite his tension, he smiled. “Something like that. But latex gives me a rash.”
She bit him lightly on the ear, earning a shudder. “I don’t have any protection. I’m on the pill, but it’s not one hundred percent.”
“I don’t care,” he breathed. “I’ll take my chances.”
“Are you sure?” In answer, he pulled her atop him. She settled, thighs framing his hips. “I guess you are.”
He lifted up, rubbing against her heated flesh in long strokes. “Now. Take me, nothing between us this time.” It was both a plea and a demand. “You’re mine, and I’m yours. I won’t lose you again. Oh, God, Mia, you’re my breath and bone. You’re the song I sing.”
Recommended very highly for fans of romantic suspense who love a tortured and broken hero and a feisty heroine who has the guts and what it takes to bring the said yummylicious hero back to the world of living. Ava Gray’s characters will certainly never leave you bored as they never behave in the way you expect them to.