Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Standalone/Series: Standalone (part of a series)
Published on: May 23, 2017
POV: first dual POV
Source: Publisher (e-ARC)
Rating: 4 STARS
Buy on Amazon
Ruckus is the second book in the Sinners of Saint series following the first book, Vicious, by L.J. Shen. Although it is part of a series, it can be read as a complete standalone. However, it will be best to read in order to understand the whole story since both are interconnected stories.
”I should probably get one thing out of the way before we begin. My story? It doesn’t have a happy ending. It won’t. It can’t. No. matter how tall or handsome or rich and captivating my Prince Charming might be… Only problem was he wasn’t really mine. He was my sister’s. But there is something you should know before you judge me. I saw him first. I craved him first. I loved him first.”
This story follows Rosie Leblanc, a young woman who has secretly fallen in love with Dean “Ruckus” Cole since the moment she laid her eyes on him when they were teenagers but decided to avoid him when he started dating her sister, Millie. Born with a life-altering illness, she has never believed that she is a normal girl who can date, fall in love, marry and have happily-ever-after-after like others. Tired of being treated as a delicate flower by her parents all her life, she secretly dreamed of leaving the place she was growing up and had an adventure to leave her life her own way, away from pitied eyes she received all the time.
I wasn’t born like the rest. I had an illness. Sometimes I conquered it. Sometimes it conquered me. Everyone’s favorite rose was wilting. But no flower wants to die in front of an audience.
Ten years later, life does not get easier, the way she thought it would be. Her body seems to get weaker the older she gets and it prevents her to live some of her dreams. Her situation seems to get worse when she meets Dean again. Having a boyfriend made it easier for her to avoid him. However, after breaking up and finding herself living in his apartment alone made it harder to do it.
I never stopped loving Dean Cole. Not even for one damn moment. I just convinced myself that I stopped caring. Until I didn’t. Until now.
Dean “Ruckus” Cole is an intelligent, sexy, handsome young man who lives his life with work and random girls. Out of all the members of the Hot Holes—a group of him and his best friends—he is the easiest going one and one of the most workaholic. Together they created Fiscal Heights Holdings, a monstrous investment firm, that made their names listed in the richest people in America. Young and extremely successful.
Unknown to everybody he has always had eyes on the baby Leblanc, Rosie, but life happened that made him to date her sister instead, which killed every opportunity he had to pursue her. Now, ten years later, after finding out that she has broken up with her boyfriend and lives in the same apartment building, he decides to relentlessly pursue her. He then realizes that it is not an easy road. His brief history of dating her sister in high school, his secrets, and her secrets makes everything seem to be impossible; the challenge he is willing to take No matter how hard it is.
“I’m about to rewrite the pages of our fucking history, baby.”
This story deals with a taboo subject that might be hard for some readers—the hero dated her sister in the past—but I think the author did a great job tackling the subject. The mixed of past and present revealed the things from both of their point of views, and although it was hard to swallow the reality, it made me understand why it happened and helped me to connect with them as a couple.
L.J. Shen managed to make a heartbreaking and seemingly taboo love story become a fun, light-hearted story that makes it easier to fall in love with the characters. I found their banter humorous, fresh and entertaining which made me laugh and root for them.
“And, sweetheart?” He looked over his shoulder, pressing the elevator button. “Yes, Mr. Bossy Pants?”
“Congratulations, you have a new boyfriend.”
“You’re not my boyfriend.”
“Your Facebook status claims differently.”
“What?!” Ping. He walked into the elevator, a cunning smile on his face as the door slid shut. “Like the fucking post, Rosie. Goodbye.”
Moreover, I enjoyed reading his point of view. Although it was hilarious and fresh, it showed the different sides of him that he refused to show—a laid back man on the outside who is broken on the inside. He was not a likable hero that one would instantly fall in love with in the first chapters but the author managed to make me fall in love with him the more I read his inner voices. It made me connect with him and root for him at the end.
However, to be honest, connecting with them as a couple was hard at first. While I did enjoy all their banter, conversations, and at some point connect with them individually and as a couple, I would have liked to see more in-depth conversations and acts between the two in the first half of the book considering the complicated situation they were in along with her illness and their secrets. The sex scenes, as much as I enjoyed them, made their relationship felt merely physical and their characters were somehow shallow, which made me lose the connection I was hoping to feel between them.
Thank goodness, it started to get the momentum I was dying to witness as the story reached the end. I felt all the emotions and their deep feelings for each other. I could finally feel their love and fully connect to them. It was heartbreaking yet beautiful; made me sit on the edge of my seat with anticipation of the heartbreaking moment I knew would come. Thank God, it had a happy ending. A perfect one which was worth all the waiting in my part.
And if you think I’m going to settle for something, you’re dead wrong. I am taking everything. We will have kids, Rose LeBlanc. We will have a wedding. And we will have joy and vacations and days where we just fuck and days where we just fight and days where we just live. Because this is life, Baby LeBlanc, and I love the fuck out of you, so I’m going to give you the best one there is. Got it?”
I enjoyed this story and hope everyone gives it a try. I recommend Ruckus to those who love a mixed of emotional, a little bit taboo, a light-hearted love story with a sassy heroine and a bad guy plus alpha male. 😀
“You are chaotic, crazy, and full of wars and angst. But you’re the liveliest place I’ve ever been to.”