Thursday, February 5, 2015

Last Hit by Jessica Clare and Jen Frederick

Now Available in Paperback!
Nikolai I have been a contract killer since I was a boy. For years I savored the fear caused by my name, the trembling at the sight of my tattoos. The stars on my knees, the marks on my fingers, the dagger in my neck, all bespoke of danger. If you saw my eyes, it was the last vision you’d have. I have ever been the hunter, never the prey. With her, I am the mark and I am ready to lie down and let her capture me. Opening my small scarred heart to her brings out my enemies. I will carry out one last hit, but if they hurt her, I will bring the world down around their ears.


I've been sheltered from the outside world all my life. Home-schooled and farm-raised, I’m so naive that my best friend calls me Pollyanna. I like to believe the best in people. Nikolai is part of this new life, and he’s terrifying to me. Not because his eyes are cold or my friend warns me away from him, but because he’s the only man that has ever seen the real me beneath the awkwardness. With him, my heart is at risk... and also, my life.
4 Killer Stars 

I’m a fan of Jessica Clare books. I’ve read all of her billionaire series.  She usually gives me a damsel, a strong Hero and some crazy, but cute story-line. 

Nikolai is a hit man.  He’s monitoring his next hit, but as he is monitoring, he notices a girl that lives in the building across from him. Daisy is everything Nikolai is not. She’s sweet, pure and too good for him. 

But that doesn’t stop Nikolai from getting to know Daisy 

I’m a huge fan of killer Heroes. I think I love how ruthless they can be. Nikolai grew up in Russia. From an early age he has trained to be cold and heartless. He doesn’t have anyone, but himself and years later he branches away from the people who have made him what he is today.

He works on his own, making money, sleeping with women and just living an okay life. 

Daisy is a sad case. She’s poor, she has a girly roommate and she is completely innocent. Daisy’s father is very protective, to the point where he’s controlling, but in an odd loving way. She kind of runs away from home and goes to live her life, except she hasn’t really lived and she’s find it hard to make it on her own.

As much as I love a strong Heroine, I love a damsel! I love the silly naïve girl! 

The beginning gets me hooked. I loved reading about Daisy’s home life and how she struggles with her father. I also love reading Nikolai’s inner struggles and how his killing is kind of his outlet. 

When Nikolai and Daisy first meet, she is unsure about him, but she doesn’t really know anyone so she kind of takes on this crazy relationship. 

The interaction between Nikolai and Daisy is very fast emotionally. I thought it would be more insta-lust, but it wasn’t, it was more like, oh-I-like-you and let’s-be-together. 

Nikolai of course pampers and tries to protect Daisy. Daisy does try to be strong and independent, but it kind of falls flat. 

There’s plenty of tension with Nikolai’s past causing issues and it prevents Nikolai from having an honest relationship with Daisy.  I loved the plot and storyline to Last Hit, but I did have some issues with the flow. I wished Daisy and Nikolai had a slower relationship and really build up that sexual frustration that I crave in a read. 

Overall, Last Hit is an enjoyable read with most of the things I looked for in a Jessica Clare book and I’m happy to say this is my first Jen Frederick read. 

Oh and I love Daisy’s roommate and I can’t wait to read her story in the next book!

By the time six rolls around, I am ready for my date. My long brown hair has been pulled into a ponytail, the ends curled; my fringe of bangs are trimmed and perfect. I am wearing a light dusting of makeup with gray eyeliner that makes my eyes seem bigger and bluer than ever. My lashes are curled and darkened with mascara. My lip gloss is just a faint sheen of color.

  Even though it's just a movie theater, it's a first date, and both girls insist I should ‘wow' Nick. I have no dresses, and they think I should wear one, so I've borrowed from Regan. It's black, and it has lacy sleeves that caress my arms all the way down to my wrists. The neckline is high and the bustline modest. It almost looks schoolgirl-ish, until I turn around and the entire back is made of the same sheer black lace as the sleeves are.

  Becca declares it perfect—not too trampy, not too sedate.

  Regan has let me borrow a pair of hoop earrings and a small sparkly necklace that caresses my throat. I have also borrowed a pair of black, low-heeled Mary Janes that Regan insists she never wears.

  I feel pretty. I'm me, but just a little better than usual, with a little more pizazz.

I glance at the door repeatedly as it gets closer to our meeting time, worried that my date won't show. Will Nick stand me up again and make me feel stupider than ever for trusting him?

  But at six on the nose, the doorbell rings.

  "That's me," I say breathlessly, throwing my purse over my shoulder and scooping up my phone.

  "Have fun," Regan tells me. "Call me if you need a ride home." She's smiling, though I know she's a little worried for me. Becca's gone and Regan's home alone, staying in just in case I need her. She's a good friend.

  I pause before opening the door, smooth my ponytail and bangs with nervous fingers, adjust my coat, and then put my hand on the knob.

  When I open it, I can't help but smile at him.

  He's so beautiful, my Ukrainian. I know I have the silliest crush on him, but I don't care. From his high cheekbones to his arching brows to that cleft in his chin, he's all elegance. He's wearing a nice trench coat, his clothes entirely covered up by the length of it. He looks the same as he does every day—incredible. For a moment, I feel silly that I've gone to such lengths for a movie date.

  But his eyes warm as he sees me, and I'm glad I did. His gaze travels over me, pauses on the jacket in my hands. "Allo."

  "Hi, Nick." I smile broadly at him.

  He puts a hand out for my jacket. "You must allow me to help you with that."

  I hand it to him and turn my back obligingly, an excited shiver going down my spine. A man is putting my coat on me!

  To my horror, I hear a rip, and then a muffled curse in Russian. I turn around to see that Nick's large foot is standing on one of the sleeves of my threadbare jacket, and it has ripped it entirely away.

Oh no." I take the jacket from his hands and clutch it to my chest. I should be horrified that I've had another piece of clothing destroyed, but all I can think is that this might make us late for our date, and right now, the date is so much more important than my stupid jacket.

  "I am mudak," Nick says in a flat voice. "Leave your coat. I will buy you a new one."

  "That's not necessary," I say quickly. "It's not that cold out."

  He grunts agreement, and then he crooks his elbow at me. "Shall we go, Daisy?"

  I slide my hand against his arm and let him lead the way. We step down to the curb and toward what must be his car—no motorcycle today. It's a dark gray. Non-descript, with tinted windows. A sedan.

  "Wait here," he tells me as I stand on the curb.

  I shiver as I do. My dress isn't warm at all, and my back is almost entirely exposed. I will need to buy a jacket with my first paycheck, I decide. Maybe they will have something in my size at the thrift store…

  My thoughts trail off as Nick pops open the trunk of the sedan and pulls out a large box. He hefts a leather jacket—a women's leather jacket—into his hands and then holds it open for me. "Here. Come put this on."

  I approach him, eyeing the jacket. It's one I admired in the store the other day. He had this one already waiting for me? "Nick! Did you tear my other jacket on purpose?"

  "Of course not," he says in a tone that indicates he is a terrible liar. There is a hint of a smile playing on his lips. "I am mudak, yes?"

   "You are sneaky," I tell him, but I let him put the coat on me. It's cold thanks to the wind, but it's heavy. As soon as it warms against my skin, it will be perfect. "And thoughtful. Thank you, Nick. You must let me pay you back."


  "Nick," I say protestingly. "You can't keep ruining my stuff and then replacing it."


A paperback copy is offered on my Facebook Page

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