Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Review: Kick by Carmen Jenner

Series: Savage Saints MC #1
Release Date: January 26, 2015
Publisher: Carmen Jenner
Genre: Dark Romance / Thriller
Source: Copy provided for honest review
Rating: ★★★★

When I was ten, my father indoctrinated me into the family.

A brotherhood who would fight, protect, and give their lives for one another. A club whose ties ran thicker than blood, murkier than the dirt and grime that tainted my soul. Stronger than the bonds that connected me to my own family.

A band of brothers, where loyalty was kept and paid in a currency of blood.

When I was twenty-seven, I betrayed that brotherhood.

I’ve spent every day since running, avoiding paying back that debt.

My name is Daniel Johnson. I have betrayed everyone I ever loved.

And I’ll betray her too.

This is my story—if you’re screwed up enough to want to read it.

Warning: Kick contains graphic violence, profanity, drug use, and explicit sexual situations of a taboo nature. Intended for an 18+ audience only. Not intended for pussies.

Kick is not a love story.

Kick is not an erotic story.

Kick is a not a story of redemption.

Kick is a story of survival.

Kick is a fucked up ride through a dark underbelly filled with violence, murder, monsters, drugs and rape.

And I enjoyed every moment of it. What does that make me?

In need of some sort of therapy, I'm sure.

Jenner gives clear warning that Kick is 'not intended for pussies', it's a warning that should be heeded.  It's not an easy read.  She didn't shy away from writing graphic, horrific scenes.

If you go into Kick looking for a bad boy turns good type story, you're in the wrong frame of mind for this one.  It's not that story.

Sometimes life hands people nothing but shit and they have to learn to survive in it, to maybe come out of it not whole and not broken, but irreparably fractured.  That's what this story is.  For Kick and for Indie.

Kick has known little but violence and hard times growing up an MC brat.  He's a selfish fucker and gives shit as good as he takes it.  Little penetrates his hardened exterior.  The people who get a glimpse inside him inevitably find themselves fucked over by him.  He's got a temper and it's easily lit up.  He likes to deliver trouble, control and pain.

Two times in his life he's been placed in a situation of seeing pain delivered by someone else.  Both situations set off him off.  Not because he really felt sympathy for the victim, but because he wants their pain and suffering for his own.  That's the kind of guy Kick is.  He knows it's fucked up, he just doesn't really care.  He gets off on the tears, the blood, the fight.

Kick doesn't want to hold and cherish your heart. He wants to rip it from you, wrap it in barbed wire and lick up the blood every time it swells just a fraction in size.

Indie didn't grow up in violence. Indifference maybe, but not violence.  That didn't stop her from finding herself in hell though.  Now she has the chance to walk out of it, but who will she be in the end?  Surviving is one thing, becoming a monster in turn is something else.

I liked the journey these two took, both together and separately.  It's not so much a story of growth as just acceptance and I'm okay with that because I don't know how you come out of situations like these as a better person.  I think you come out of them with an understanding that it's maybe not so fucked up to have that dark soul and finding someone else who not only understands the darkness but embraces their own...is maybe the purest kind of acceptance. And maybe, when you're fucked up that's better than love.

Again, I'll say this isn't a love story.  It's not an easy read. I felt like I should be running to the bathroom to vomit, not getting excited about what the next page held. But hey, I'm fucked up.  If you are too, you might like this one.


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