Thursday, June 9, 2016
Review for After the Hurt by Shana Gray - 4 out of 5 stars
SYNOPSIS FROM GOODREADS -
Pepper Chapman refuses to throw in the towel. Six months ago, she made the biggest mistake of her life. Blinded by grief after her mom’s death, Pepper abandoned the man she loves. Now she wants a second chance at everything she gave up: strong hands driving her to ecstasy . . . a deep voice whispering naughty promises in her ear . . . the future they’d planned since they were teenagers. So Pepper comes home looking for forgiveness, ready for a new beginning—if he’s willing to give her a shot.
Retired MMA star Tank Sherman may be used to low blows, but Pepper’s emotional sucker punch left him reeling. Trying to ignore the pain and forget the pleasure of her body beneath his, Tank is prepared to ring the final bell on their relationship. Then Pepper shows up out of the blue, radiating pure sex. But Tank won’t let himself get hurt again, and that means resisting the heat that still burns between them. Because if he takes Pepper back, he knows he’ll never be able to let her go again.
MY REVIEW -
The cover was making me think this would be more of a dark story, but it wasn't, and I enjoyed that the story was pretty much all hopeful, and about people who aren't tortured, but normal people. There isn't too much that happens in After the Hurt because it is mainly about Pepper and Tank trying to find their ways back to each other. Pepper left town, six months ago, without a word to anyone, after her mother died because she was having a really hard time with her death, and was feeling like it was her fault. The person most affected by her leaving was her long-time, live-in, boyfriend, Tank. When Pepper returns home to Tank, he isn't very welcoming because he was extremely hurt by her leaving, and has sort of closed his heart off; he doesn't trust her anymore. Pepper loves Tank very much, and wants to win him back. I think Pepper could have done a better job of telling Tank she was sorry in the beginning of the story; she sort of just jokes around with him, and I felt she should have told him how she was feeling about him in a better way, but I still liked her character, and thought she had a good heart. Tank is great! He is a strong, manly guy, and he is really sweet. I loved that he wasn't the sleep around type; that is always refreshing to me, when I read romance books. As I said earlier, the story is mainly about them finding their way back to each other, and through dual POV's, the reader gets to see how each character feels, and there is also some scenes from the memories of each character about the development of their relationship; not flashbacks, but just quick glimpses into their past with each other, so those glimpses helped show the connection Tank and Pepper have. It is mentioned that Tank use to be an MMA fighter, but that isn't a main part of the story because all of that is in Tank's past. There is a bit of a side story that has to do with Tank's past, that is interfering with Tank's life, so there is a pinch of mystery, but I did feel it was a bit glossed over; I felt the story could have been a bit more developed. There was some really sweet scenes between Pepper and Tank, and they definitely have some heat and passion. All in all, I really enjoyed After the Hurt, and I was interested through the whole book and it kept me reading, so those are all pluses in my book, and I definitely look forward to reading more books by Shana Gray!