Book Review – Own The Wind by Kristen Ashley

by Maryse on April 3, 2013 · 15 comments

in Kristen Ashley, My Book Reviews

Own the Wind: A Chaos Novel
I’m almost 100% crazy about this book. For sure I’m 5-star crazy about the whole first 75% of it. What. Intensity. The slow, sweet and at a few points, very sad build-up, and paced oh so well that I was starving for relief. Though, happily so. I love having to work for it.

Loyalty obligations that turn into hurt feelings. Moving on… that turns into more hurt feelings.

When he saw her it happened like it always happened. He didn’t know why he hadn’t learned, why he didn’t brace. He always expected he’d get over it, get used to it but he didn’t.

Seeing her hit him in the chest, the burn in his gut moving up to flame in his lungs, compressing them, making it hard to catch a breath.

Time goes by, and a secure friendship suffers from a well-meaning, yet poorly executed intent (although if you ask me.. I can’t help but wonder if that poorly executed lesson was actually perfect in it’s own way).

How the f*&k Tabby hadn’t learned her lesson after that mess, he had no clue, and as he drove it came crystal that she needed to get one.

And he was so pissed, he decided he was going to be the one to give it to her.

Tonight.

A beautiful family friendship  (OMG it was soooooo wonderful) that mends itself in an extreme time of need.

“I dreamed a dream, Shy.”

“You’ll dream more dreams, baby.”

“I’ll never dream,” she whispered, her voice lost, tragic.

“We’ll get you to a dream, honey.” he promised, pulling her closer.

And builds. And builds. And builds until I was just a sappy puddle of pining. Quite the untouchable infatuation between these two main characters… and one that had me hooked! The tragedy, the comedy, the anger, the love… it was all there.

He lifted his hand and no bell this time, he knocked.

Loud.

Oh God.

What did I do?

Before my mind figured it out, my feet took me running toward the hall, then they shifted me and sent me back to the door while my mouth shouted, “Coming!”

Okay, I didn’t know what to do but my feet and mouth did, and apparently that was acting like a dork.

LOL!!!!! OMG that would have totally been me. I think I’m the dorkiest of dorks and that some of my favorite characters/authors think like me, ergo… are dorks, too, makes me smile!

But there were problems. MANY of them. From explaining past actions, current situations… and of course… Tack. Who in the heck wants to break it to the MC leader that you and his daughter are, you know… in puppy-love. ;) (sorry Shy!!! I’m just teasin’. I know bad-a$$ bikers don’t “puppy-love”. Tee heeeeee!!!)

Lots of intensity, and everything so passionately argued, handled, and destroyed (not necessarily in that order, but I’ll let you discover how everything goes down).

Moments of GAH!! No. Freakin’. WAY!!!! <— yep! You know it… my favorite kind of reveal. Painful and shocking and you just wanna kick someone you know where. ;) And scream and sob at the top of your lungs at what you didn’t see coming.

“He’s a dawg, Tabby, and you can’t forget that. If he’s bein’ cool with you, awesome. Pleased he’s giving’ that to you. Take it. You need family. I’m just tellin’ you to keep your eyes open and watch your heart. Or, more to the point, watch your a$$ because if you don’t, Shy’ll tap it.”

The characters agonize over it, and I love agonizing with them. There are a few of these shocking moments in this one (different kinds… all of ‘em equally heart-clenching). Real-life me would be a ruined mess!!! Book-life me? I get to be a ruined mess for a few sweet hours while subconsciously soothed by my own reality, so I totally immerse myself as much as the author will indulge me in it.

And guess what? Kristen Ashley is a queen of surprise reality shock-value moments and drawing out the game-playing/pain/no game-playing “but I still don’t like what I’m perceiving” kind of stuff.

“You’ve sung that song before, Tabby,” he reminded me. “Didn’t like it the last time. Really don’t f&%kin’ like it now.”

Nothing toooo crazy, mind you, but crazy enough that your heart is in a world of pain. And when it comes to bad-a$$ bikers in a motorcycle club? They tell it like it is, no matter who it might hurt. And if they were hurting first? Watch out, ’cause they can be ruthless in guy-’tude. Is it a front? Well… that’s to be discovered, isn’t it? And that’s where the fun is.

So what’s it about?

Tabby has been crushing on Shy (a few years her elder and “brother” of her father’s motorcycle club) since she was a teen. He’s been protecting her for most of her young adult/new adult years. And like a typical young adult/new adult… she gets herself into a bit of trouble. A few times too many and Shy decides it’s time for her to grow up and straighten up. Improve her chances of leaving the potential “biker-groupie” life and taking advantage of all that her father’s money has to offer her.

But family is family and she considers ALL of them hers. And is severely disappointed in Shy when he shows a different side of himself to her, for the first time. And overtime, Shy watches her grow. Happy to see that the lesson has been learned, that she is becoming exactly what she was destined to be, but sad that he lost her in the process…

And this is their story. Of them trying to find themselves, and in turn finding each other… again. Or is it the other way around? Either way, I loved the discovery.

75% genius work!! A drawn out friendship/frenemy/bff’s and oh you can bet it’s gonna be more… but what about that guy? Or that girl? And what about when you actually HURT for someone that you shouldn’t even hurt for (keyword here for those of you who have read or are reading… the part with this song: “Why Ya Wanna?“) OMG I cried… I seriously CRIED!!! and I was essentially crying for the wrong team!!

… the pain was close to the surface, right there for anyone to see. She didn’t even have it in her to hide it.”

What the heck did Kristen Ashley do to me? THAT story… I want it. The intro, the build-up, the realization… that song. I want an HEA!!!!

Anyway, ;) I’m off-track ’cause Kristen surprised me yet again with something I have barely (if not EVER) experienced in a book before, and it just had to be highlighted. Darn you guys… I’m not really a “country-girl” but that song? WHOA Kristen. You couldn’t have chosen a better song/scene combo. Cried I tell you! Oh who am I kidding. Now I wanna listen to country songs. ;)

Anyway… a mostly AMAZINGLY fun read, ’cause along with the shock value, Kristen gives us a few doses of “regular” reality too. Domestic reality that is oh so … EXACTLY THAT!!! More OH NO HE DIDN’TS, and I giggled like mad with my “gentler bouts” of infuriation.

So what happened to me in the last 25%. *shrug* Well you know what? I think I was just SO mad at a certain character that I dunno. I didn’t connect to that part. Sure it was MC club business that needed to be dealt with and this kinda stuff happens (territories, pain in the butt “affiliations” and loyalties that no matter how much are not deserved, are enacted upon when it comes to an MC family)… so I LOVE them as a whole. I just didn’t love that part… much. I did love the cameos of my favorite men, and that “tight” feeling no matter what reality dealt them. They are all part of different cliques, but the loyalty is what makes all of Kristen Ashley’s series mesh together so wonderfully. So I’ll still say overall, I mostly just… loved it. There was enough of everything else, a few strokes of genius even, that I’m not so put off by that moment of me thinking… “just leave it to deal with itself”. LOL!!! I know. I’m not very nice. ;)

So here it is:

5 stars for the first 60-75% and 3 to 3.5 stars for that last bit of crazy stuff that went down. Maybe it needed to happen, maybe it didn’t, but either way it was the only part that I was less than hooked on. (Thank you to the publisher for sending me this review copy.)

P.S. Gah!!! I just watched the video of that song with my mom (I made her) and I’m crying again. What’s up with that?! My mom and I both had the same reaction of “beautiful” and “pooooor her”. *sigh* Kristen!! I need that story!!!! PLEASE!!!!

P.P.S: (and kind of important to me)… Okay so the very very beginning is a bit… “clean” writing-wise. At least, that was my very first impression as I started reading. Almost too clean, if referencing Kristen Ashley’s writing. You could tell they were bad-a$$, and this story was heading to bad-a$$ territory, but I was worried perhaps her very unique writing style might have been overly… edited. Fear not. It comes right back into FULL-ON Kristen Ashley, soon enough. Just lettin’ y’all know, Kristen rocked this!

… looking down at me still smiling that unbelievable smile, he whispered, “Let’s ride.”

I smiled back, took off, grabbed my shoes. he held my hand all the way to his bike and we rode.

For a long time.

It.

Was.

Paradise.

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

keri April 3, 2013 at 7:02 PM

Loved your honest review. Interesting……I felt the same way. I hate to admit that sometimes!

Brooke April 3, 2013 at 7:30 PM

Absolutely love Kristen Ashley’s work and have been waiting for this series for what seems like forever!! Sad to say I’m still waiting……… any idea when it will be released over here in Australia???

Darlene E April 3, 2013 at 7:54 PM

I enjoyed this book even though I did not attain full on giddiness that I normally get when reading a KA book.. I have to say I said a big ole WTH with the last 25%..

The Lanie and Hop preview was yummy.. For some reason I am liking the mustache right now ;)

Takisha April 3, 2013 at 11:49 PM

Just finished and I loved loved loved this one!!!!!! I thought KA did me in with Creed…she straight up MURDERED me with this one..and that’s all in a good way!!! Yes I will agree with you that some of the mess towards the end didn’t really hold me, but overall this is a 5 star for me all the way! KA with her brilliant writing gave me everything I needed and wanted as a reader! KA is the sh*t!!!

SoHo April 4, 2013 at 6:29 AM

It’s a great book, I loved it too :) Thanks for the great review!

sandy sciacca April 4, 2013 at 6:30 AM

Loved this book, loved your review:),,,,, can’t wait for the next one:), if only she could write as fast as we can read LOL

Val April 4, 2013 at 10:11 AM

Totally agree with your review, Maryse! Get out of my brain! The last 25%, I was just ehhhh, then I felt the last part of Shy & Tabby was rushed. Overall, still LOVED the book! Can’t wait for the next installment. Thanks for a great review!

Kahea April 4, 2013 at 11:45 AM

This was my first Kristen Ashley read and I LOVED it. Totally got the “tight” feeling of brotherhood with the MC and adored the heck out of Tabby and Ash. I also started singing “Why You Wanna” in my head as soon as it was mentioned and have had it on repeat since! :)

Victoria Paige April 4, 2013 at 2:20 PM

I also had a feeling that her voice was edited out. But it was a good read still. However, my favorite part was the preview of Fire Inside with Hop and Lanie. Now that was off-the-charts hot and it’s only the prologue. I can’t freaking wait for June.

Jewels April 4, 2013 at 10:46 PM

I’m with you guys on this…loved it til that last part…then rushed. Is it just me or did all of KAs books used to be so much longer?, so much more time to get to know and love the people on the pages…slowly building to ..perfection. Still loved it, dont get me wrong, was just hoping for more, as in a longer ride with them all.

Connie April 4, 2013 at 11:44 PM

Just finished Own the Wind, another 5 star by K.A. Loved Shy and Tabbys story, love how Kristen intertwined all her books….can’t wait for all her new books coming this year..

Teri April 25, 2013 at 2:28 AM

Thanks Maryse. I read your blog religiously and was introduced to KA through it. I am a huge KA fan and have read almost everything she has written. I did like Own the Wind but I felt like it was missing something (s). It felt over-edited and rushed. I missed that long, meandering style that is KA. I missed the gal posse. I missed the depth of the family and friend relationships.

Michelle M April 29, 2013 at 12:00 AM

Just read Motorcycle Man and Own The Wind this weekend and abosultely LOVED them. I want Rush’s story! :-)

Jill May 7, 2013 at 4:30 AM

I just loved! this book. I was a bit unsure at first when I started Tack’s story but once I finished it I was desperate for Tab’s story. It seemed shorter than her usual offerings. Cannot wait to read Rush’s story

Sheera June 29, 2013 at 8:26 PM

You know how there’s that list of books that made you cry … parts of this made me tear up — maybe not full on boohoo-heart-wrenching-cry but cry, nevertheless.

Oh and IDK if you or anyone else mentioned THE scene near the end with guys from at least one of her other Denver based series –I was just so overcome with the hotness on page that I had to put my kindle down and take a few deep breathes!

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