Where to start? I originally was going to rate this three stars, but I slept on it and decided that although this book and the previous one drove me NUTS, they also sucked me in and kept me turning the pages, so somewhere between 3 and 4 seems to be about right.
I'll start with what I enjoyed about this series. The author's writing is FLAWLESS. It flows amazingly well. The POV changes are seamless. The characters are distinctive in their voices. The plot (though a little too OTT in the drama department for ME) was nonetheless interesting, and as I said, kept me turning the pages. The sex was SMOKIN and the sex scenes were plentiful.
My issue was KIRA (in a nutshell). I just never felt she grew as a character, unfortunately. In book two we get a Brayden that shows tremendous growth. He finally mans up and gets his head out of his ass. And while I admired Kira's ability to hold a grudge in book two (who could blame the girl) by the end of that book I was EXHAUSTED of the back and forth and was hoping book three would be this couple moving forward and maturing into a more stable adult relationship.
I didn't get that. The continuous throwing of Brayden's past in his face by Kira (that was understandable in book two) grew annoying and tiresome in book three. I get what he did was VERY hurtful. I really do, but at some point, a decision needed to be made to put the past behind them and move forward. EVERY TIME they argued or had a slight disagreement she was throwing what he did back into his face like a three-year-old. Even by the end, I didn't feel like she had TRUELY let it go.
Of course, this wasn't helped by the authors when every other page we are reminded of what he did in the form of OW grabbing his junk. Showing the heroine videos of him having sex etc. These characters (in books two & three are 18 and 21) but he had a past worthy of a 40-year-old. I also hated the way she basically strung Austin along...sigh.
Lastly, the whole "forbidden stepbrother" angle just didn't work for me. I struggled to see WHY this was such an issue. Thier parents had only been married 3.5 years (I am pretty sure.) They grew up as friends and were already starting something before their parents got married. It seemed a bit over the top that people would be throwing around "INCEST" and calling him her "BROTHER" and that they'd have to go to such great lengths to hide their relationship. *shrug*
In any case, as I said above, even though this had several issues for me, the authors still managed to suck me right in and had me hooked enough to read boon one and two back to back. So kudos to them for that.