Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Blog Tour Review & Giveaway ~ Strike (Sphere of Irony #2 Dax) by Heather C. Leigh

Meet Dax & Kate in the newest standalone in the Sphere of Irony Series.

Dax Davies has one job to fulfill in the Davies household. Earn money at the family business. The problem is that the family business was illegal underground fighting.

From a young age, Dax and his brothers are groomed to become money earners in their father's club. Broken bones and bruises are commonplace. Their father pits the brothers against each other to 'toughen them up' for the ring, using his rules to bend his sons to his will. His future is in the cage, not on stage where he dreams of making music.

Kate Campbell loves one thing in life. Well, two. Soccer and Dax Davies. Growing up in the poorest part of London, soccer is her personal escape from reality and from the fact that Dax doesn't seem to know she exists. She figures if she can be good enough at soccer, maybe she can get away from Hackney, and leave the poverty behind.

Kate doesn't plan on ever getting to know Dax as more than a passing acquaintance. In fact, she isn't meant to go with her friend to Dax's father's business, but that one night changes everything.

***This is book 2 in the Sphere of Irony Series. It can be read as a standalone. This is a spin-off of the Famous Series***

I follow Adam’s gaze to see Ellie hurrying towards us, towing a friend by the hand. Ellie immediately latches on to Adam, prattling on about something or other. Tuning out the happy couple, I take a moment to check out Ellie’s friend, Kate. I’ve seen her around, mostly with Ellie, but she’s in my maths class as well. In fact, now that I think about it, we’ve been in school together a long time.

The fact that I didn’t remember her until now makes me frown, which in turn, makes Kate’s eyes go wide with fear. The girl is fiddling with her hair, pulling it up into a ponytail. She’s clearly uncomfortable around me, so, being the heartless prick that I am, I decide to make it worse.
You’re Kate.”
When impossibly green eyes shoot up to meet mine, big and innocent looking, all of the smartass comments I have at the ready fall away. Smooth, lightly freckled skin flushes pink and full lips part, making my cock sit up and take notice. It’s then I realize I’ve never really looked at Kate before.
How did I not see how gorgeous this girl is? She’s not obvious or flashy—no, she’s very… girl next door. Sporty and fit with tawny brown hair always pulled up on her head, showing off two very high cheekbones. I’m surprised how affected I am by her. My heart has begun thumping hard and my palms are sweaty. How angry would Adam be if I shagged Ellie’s best friend?
Probably very. Not that I care much what he thinks.
While I’m thinking of how she looks naked, she gathers herself together and answers my question. “Yes. I’m Kate.” Shit, even her voice affects me—soft and slightly scratchy in a sexy kind of way. Now my dick is throbbing, pressing uncomfortably against my zipper. I need to hear that voice again.
I’m Dax. You’re in my maths class.”
Those emerald eyes get even wider and her jaw hangs open. “How do you know who I am?”
Why wouldn’t I know who you are? Haven’t we been in the same year for ages?” I furrow my brow, trying to decide if I’m thinking of a different girl. But no, it’s her, I’m sure of it.
Y-y-yes. Since third year.”
I hold back a smile, keeping my cool exterior. At least I got that right. “Well then, apparently I’m not as stupid as some might say.”
Kate’s fingers untwist from her hair, settling on her hips. Lush, ruby lips turn down in the corners and her eyes narrow. She looks downright offended. “Who says you’re stupid? You’re in my advanced maths class, so I know that can’t be true.”
For once in my life I’m speechless. No one ever gives me the benefit of the doubt or defends my intelligence. Do I bother explaining to her that most people associate a big, muscled guy with an empty skull? Add in the underground fighting and they assume I’ve taken enough hits to the head to be rendered daft and dumb.
No one talks about it, but the teachers here know what I do—what my dad’s business is. I am the fourth Davies son at this school after all and they treat me accordingly. They don’t even bat an eye at the bruises anymore.
I tilt my chin to look down at her. Kate’s not at my eye level, but for a girl, she’s fairly tall—maybe five foot seven or eight? In those eyes, eyes as green as the stripes on the Davies family tartan, I see something I haven’t seen on a girl’s face in… well, ever. Admiration? Respect, maybe? Is it possible Kate respects me? That she sees past my intimidating exterior to the man beneath the brawn? That she sees more than just a conquest to brag to her friends about?
One of dad’s rules pops into my head.
Rule 2—Never let your emotions show.
I lock down the surprise on my face, keeping it to its usual icy fa├žade.
What if she doesn’t like what she finds? I don’t know why I care, but suddenly, I don’t want Kate to know about the fighting, the girls, my family… those goddamn rules. For the first time in my life I’m not proud of my wins, of all the girls I’ve shagged or had suck me off at the club or behind the school. For once, I’m truly ashamed of what I am.

5 – Exhausting, Frustrating, Packed with Drama – Stars
~this review may contain minor spoilers~

I tortured myself for nearly two hours watching my walking dream get eye-fucked by every girl in the audience. I need to get it through my thick skull – Dax Davies doesn't love me and never will.
It's better this way, I'm sure. But coming to grip with it? Well, that just plain sucks.

Dax Davies has one job in the Davies house – work in the family business and do a damn good job at it. The family business? Illegal underground fighting. He has been trained for this since he could walk, along with his brothers. It's what he knows, but not where his heart is. His only escape is playing with his band 'Sphere of Irony' and his dream is to make it big far away from his father and his rules. Little did he know that a chance meeting with a girl he never gave a second thought too would change everything.

Kate Campbell has loved Dax since she was eight years old – too bad he doesn't even know she exists. Her only escape is through her love of soccer, it helps distract her from the ache of an unrequited love and is her only hope of getting her out of Hackney, leaving the poverty and crime ridden streets behind.

She never thought Dax would be anything other than the unreachable bad boy she would always love from afar, but one night changes everything – setting her life on a crash course she never saw coming and changing the girl she once was.

There's something about Kate that's different than the tarts that normally chat me up – something that makes her better than them. She's much too good for a bloke like me. I'll end up fucking it all to hell somehow, I'm sure. Yet, she makes me want to take all the rules and toss them out the window.

That was goddamn exhausting. And frustrating. Packed with tears and drama, steam and lust, love and friendship. Be warned – this book may cause some violent reactions at times. I myself was caught cussing at my kindle more than once, screaming – FUCK the rules! FUCK YOU Dax Davies and your shithead father!! – yeah, violent. But you know what? I loved every damn minute of it, even when it was pissing me the hell off. What can I say, I'm a masochist. At least when it comes to my romances. This is definitely NOT a flowers and glitter type read, so if that's your preference turn back now. With that said, I sincerely hope you give this a chance. This thoroughly succeeded in pulling a WIDE range of emotions out of me, and strong ones too. There were times I wanted to choke the ever-lovin hell outta Dax, and times I wanted to lick him. I wanted to hug and cuddle Kate, but then I wanted her to grow a backbone – buck up and fight a little bit. In the end, they both surprised the hell out of me, in the best possible way. Still, the road to get there was loooong and hard, painful yet hopeful. I just wished these two would have pulled their collective heads out of their asses much much sooner, especially Dax. Seriously dude – wake the hell up. As you can see, I wasn't kidding about the strong emotions this yanked out of me. I finished this book days before attempting this review and I'm still worked up just thinking about it. But hey, props to the author for making me crazy – that's some seriously fantastic writing. This was surprisingly my first read by Ms. Heather but I can assure you it won't be my last. She has slammed her way onto my One-Click-Addiction List with this emotional hott-mess one scream, tear, blush and giggle at a time and I cannot wait to see what she brings us next.

What does it mean?”
“It means I'm living my life for
me, not anyone else. I'm going to do what I want.”
“And what is it that you want?”

After growing up in New England, I currently live just outside Atlanta, GA.
I love the Red Sox and hate the Yankees.
I love hot, sexy romance novels, but hate long, drawn out misunderstandings as a plot line.
I love book series, but hate cliffhangers.
I love alpha males, but hate when they borderline on abusive.
Mostly? I love love love chocolate.

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