Raw Rhythm had me run the gambit of emotions and it was a beautifully told love story for two people who so fiercely needed someone to be their champion and they found it in each other. I loved this book! ~ Slick, Guilty Pleasures
Saving her was his addiction.
When Warning Sign drummer Malachi Shawcross first saved Elle Crandall, he put her in a box in his head—do not touch. Not that she remembered him anyway. Then he joined her band, and he got to spend every night behind the kit watching her shred on her guitar.
Hating himself for wanting her.
But that was before the night the band he’d never wanted to join became his family. The night he had to make a choice to save someone, and someone else was lost.
Of course he saved Elle. He’d do it every damn time.
Though she’s filled with guilt, Elle survived—with scars. With her reason to stay clean gone, even temporarily, she’s tempted to be bad.
Oh so bad.
Until Mal’s unexpected help as she recovers turns into something else entirely. She never expected him to offer her another kind of addiction, one just as dark and dangerous as the chemicals she craves.
But with the band under siege from a threat from the past, Mal is no longer fighting to keep from falling for the one woman he shouldn’t.
He’s fighting to keep her alive.
I never know exactly what to expect from a book by the writing team of Cari Quinn and Taryn Elliott, I know I’m going to get lots of emotion, colorful characters, a hard fought love story, and time with characters from previous books. I also know that they have surprised me on a few occasions and they really did so in Raw Rhythm, to say I didn’t expect the way things played out to happen is an understatement and it is not a bad thing, in fact I have to give them kudos for the twist in this story, one I didn’t expect and one that made for very entertaining reading. On top of that we got a fantastic love story between two people who have antagonized each other since they were placed in the same band, but we also find they have a bit of shared history and more than that when they fall, they fall deep and hard.
Malachi (Mal) Shawcross has always put on an a$$hole front, but the thing is with characters like Mal is that I always feel there is way more to them than meets the eye and in this book we get to see a whole lot of what makes Mal tick. I wasn’t at all surprised that he fell hard, the broody ones always seem to do so, but I was surprised by how deeply he feels for not only Richelle (Elle, Ricki) Crandall, but for people he calls his grandparents and honestly everyone who he works with even though he’d never admit it. I loved the complexity of Mal and that underneath his hard outer shell lurks a sentimental, sweet man who wants nothing more than to be loved and to be seen for the man he is, not for the way the press has portrayed him in the past. He is loyal, thoughtful, protective, and most of all dedicated all qualities very few people see in him.
Ricki Crandall has made some big time mistakes in her life and she has spent the last few years trying to not only make up for them, but to keep her life together so she never goes back to that dark place again. Following an accident at a show, she is in the hospital with a lot of damage to her body including her arm she uses to make a living as a guitarist in Warning Sign. She is scared, traumatized by the fact that one of her best friends lost a man she loved in the accident when she lived, and she longs to bury her head in the sand and forget it all which is behavior she can’t afford to repeat. When she spirals out of control the man who saved her life at the concert, saves her again and leaves her off balance and seeing him in a totally different light. Little does she know that for years he’s wanted nothing more than to be the one she needs, but he’s not sure he can go down that road again with a recovering addict.
The complicated relationship between Mal and Ricki from being band mates certainly put an interesting spin on them moving on to friends and then more. There was no doubt after Mal moved heaven and earth to save Ricki at the event incident that he felt way more for her than just a member of his band, but he backed off to let her heal until she reaches out and then all bets were off. I enjoyed watching them build a relationship even when it was volatile at the beginning with both of their emotions running all over the place from contempt, to hate, to scared, to grateful, and more, but when Ricki began to see the man beneath the mask he always wears I was as entranced as she was. I’ll put it out there because I know people want to know there were several sex scenes and they were fantastically written and hot and that is all well and good, but it was the emotional journey that these two took that made this book so special. I was thrilled that the majority of their conflict came from outside sources and instead of letting it break them, it made them even closer which is always a win.
Raw Rhythm had me run the gambit of emotions and it was a beautifully told love story for two people who so fiercely needed someone to be their champion and they found it in each other. I loved this book!