Thursday, June 5, 2014

Review: Bite and Release by Cory Cyr

Ryan Chase left Fairbanks, Alaska, when she was 21 years old to pursue her dream of becoming an actress. Somewhere along the way her dreams of stardom crashed and burned, along with her life.

Thirteen years later she is forced to return to Fairbanks because her unforgiving and emotionally-distant father has suddenly died. Ryan seizes the opportunity to not only escape her abusive husband but to be able to attend her best friend's wedding. What could go wrong? It's only Fairbanks, Alaska...
While wishing she was anywhere but her father's funeral and wake, Ryan is struck senseless by a stunning, drop-dead gorgeous man. Her thoughts turn carnal and she desperately wants to know him in every way—and position—possible. There's only one problem...

He's the devil's spawn.
He's the one who marked her for life.
He's the kid she used to baby-sit.
And he's hotter than hell!

Shea Michaels has loved Ryan Chase for most of his life. After surviving an unspeakable childhood, he became a man of whom she could be proud of...if she ever came back.
Now that she's returned, Shea pursues her with a vengeance, undaunted by the thirteen year age difference that Ryan uses as the shield between them.

Confusion, guilt and lust bombard Ryan as she battles the memories of the little boy she used to know while still being drawn to the heart-stopping man he has become.

4.5 Star Review by Jennifer Hagen

I loved this book!  I was initially captivated by the cover and the blurb…title not so much, but when I read the story I completely understand how the title means so much to the story.   Andrew “Shea” has loved Ryan since he was 8 years old.  Ryan moved away to New York City when she was 21 years old to pursue her dreams of acting.  Those dreams didn’t pan out the way she thought they would and she now finds herself back in Fairbanks, Alaska.  When Shea was 8 years old he had an issue with biting.  When he learned that Ryan was leaving, he bit her and in return she bit him.  They both have the scars to show they are bonded for life.

Thirteen years have now passed and Ryan is 34 years old.  She is returning to her hometown to bury her father and finding an escape.  This was the perfect time to run from her abusive husband, to whom she has been married to for 5 years.  She and her father did not have a close relationship since she left home and for the past 5 years had not spoken to one another.  Her father was still aware of her life due to the fact that Ryan’s best friend and her mother were keeping him in the loop.

Shea is no longer the bratty 8-year-old boy that Ryan once babysat.  He is now 21 years old and is studying to be a veterinarian.  He has done well with his life considering the abuse he had to endure as  a child from his father.  He almost didn’t survive the last attack.  Shea went through a dark phase in order to cope with the abuse.  He used alcohol, drugs, and sex as an escape.  Shea has been having sex since he was 13 years old. 

When Ryan sees a tall, dark and handsome man at the funeral she has no idea who he is but is soon rendered speechless when she finds out who he is…”I had just been eye-f*cking the kid I used to babysit.”

Shea has been holding onto hope that one day Ryan would return home and see him not as the boy she used to babysit, but as a man who is worthy of being loved.   Shea’s attempts at having Ryan see him as this man are unsuccessful.

“I’m laying down the torch I’ve carried for thirteen years.  I actually dreamed about this moment for years, and I honestly thought that if you saw what I had become you might want me, but I can’t force you.  I can’t make this happen, regardless of how much I want it to.”

Shea’s heart has been shattered by Ryan not once, but now twice in his life.  He is utterly defeated.  My heart hurt for him.  Ryan wants Shea, but she cannot get past the huge age gap between them, that she used to babysit him, and the fact that she is still married.

Ryan’s best friend, Trina, also happens to be Shea’s older sister.  Trina is the catalyst of their eventual union and after one night together there is no going back.  Shea is finally living his dream with Ryan in his bed and he in her heart.   Although initially Ryan was reluctant to admit her feelings, she realizes that she does love Shea.  Shea has always been completely honest with Ryan.

“I love you so much, I feel like my heart can’t hold it all,” he pledged.

Ryan is not honest with Shea.  She continues to keep her marriage a secret from Shea knowing that he will be completely distraught with the realization that Ryan once loved a man enough to want to be with him forever.  Soon the secret of her marriage becomes the least of her worries.  At 67% my stomach plummeted and even though I had an inclination this could be a possibility, I didn’t want to face the facts just as much as they didn’t want to.

“Andrew will not survive this.  He’s gone through so much, and you were the one bright spot for him, the one thing he always wished for and finally got.  This will be too much.”

 I have to admit that I rarely am able to read a book cover to cover without taking a peek at the end.  For some reason I decided I was not going to peek and I was going to ride the wave of angst.  Hours after I finished this book I was still feeling my stomach hurting.  Shea and Ryan’s story touched a part of my heart and soul and it continued to remain.  So what did I do?...I went back to re-read the story!  They are stuck in my mind!

 I can’t say enough good things about this book.  The hotness factor alone is 5 stars!  The love that Shea carried for Ryan all those years is unfathomable.  Shea is an enigma, and one that deserves to be discovered.  He hurts, he loves, and he holds strong when the walls are crashing down around them.  There is no wrong age when it comes to love even at the age of 8 years old. 

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