Book Review – Mystery Man by Kristen Ashley

by Maryse on December 21, 2011 · 26 comments

in Bad Boys & Rock Stars, Kristen Ashley

Mystery Man (Dream Man)
Kristen Ashley’s done it, yet again. I went crazy for the infuriating bad-boy alpha guy. LOVED IT!! And this one is at the top of the list with Tate. I gotta say… it’s getting crowded up there.

Sure… sure… there’s some repetition, in a few parts, some similarities in the alpha characters, of course. Even some conversations (or should I say Alpha vs. his woman “do it my way” arguments) that were familiar. But ya know what? I’m still not bored of it. In fact, I find the more I read ‘em, the more I crave yet another Kristen Ashley mega-alpha-dose. I’ve noticed they’re even more exciting when I read a little something different between her books, but I always want to get back to ‘em, I’m always always right there with her. It’s an addiction. What can I say? *shrug*

And here’s why each book keeps me coming back for more. Because despite the similarities, each male is special. Each one has his own reasons for his *freak-outs* and each one handles his freak-outs differently (and usually… terribly). But I LOVE that. I love how terribly they handle things, and ache with them (and even more so, with the heroine) as they find their way back to love. It’s those moments that keep my heart racing.

So what makes Hawk a bad-boy?

Well, once upon a time, Gwen went to a bar that her friend was working at. She looked hot! And as Gwen was laughing it up with her friend, in walked Hawk. Tall, dark, brooding, and utterly gorgeous. Heart stoppingly so. He sat near her in a booth and she did everything in her power (albeit subtly) to get his attention. Body language, laughing, sexy leg moves.. the works. He ignored her. LOL!!! YES!!! I love it. Hard to get, aloof… uninterested.

And as he got up to leave, and seemed that he was about to bypass her altogether…

… I felt a warm hand on the skin of my lower back.”

I twisted my neck, looked up and there he was.

I held my breath and he asked, “You comin’ or what?”

That was it. That was his pickup line. “You comin’ or what?”

I went.


Yep! She went! I LOVED that premise. And even better yet, he stole into her house, late at night, weekly, for a year. No promises. No talk. No names. Just Hawk for a few hours, once or twice a week. She never knew when… but she never refused him. She was THAT into him. And I know that sounds far-fetched, but just go with it. The ride is super crazy, and very fun.

‘Cause you see, when her sister gets involved with the wrong crowds, and makes a mess of a few “business dealings”, and then hightails it out of town, the bad-guys start stalking Gwen. Bad things happen. And when she goes to the local biker gang to discuss her “sister’s issues”, she attracts the attention of yet another bad-boy hottie, lead biker-dude, Tack.

“You strutted your ass into Ride, and got Tack’s attention and, trust me babe, you do not want Tack’s attention. And doin’ that you made yourself visible to a lot of people you do not want to know you exist.”

And with all of the criminal action and danger suddenly surrounding Gwen, sexy Mitch Lawson (tee hee! Lawson!!), the head detective on her case develops his own personal interest in her well being. Very personal.

Hawk closed the door behind him but didn’t tear his eyes from Lawson and me.

Then he put his hand on is hips, the bag banging against his thigh.

“Am I interrupting something?”

“No,” I said hurriedly.

“Yeah,” Lawson replied at the same time.

I took a careful step back and Lawson’s hands fell away.

This was when Lawson and Hawk went into a macho man, death match stare down.

Which spurs the elusive Hawk into territorial action.

“Clue in, Sweet Pea, I keep tabs.”

“You keep tabs?”

“You’re mine so I keep tabs.”

I felt my eyebrows shoot together.

“I’m yours?”

And Hawk goes into full protection mode for what’s “his”. But the thing is… Hawk’s got his own bad-boy reputation, and when it starts coming to light…

Yep. I freaked and twittered Kristen:

“BTW Kristen… about Hawk. Grrrrrrr!!! *spoiler*!!!?? OMG I … *speechless* LOVE IT when books make me speechless!

And then, there was a second part… (I mean there are lots of infuriating parts along with all of the sigh inducing parts) but there was one in particular. A monumental Ty-style freak out, where I said to Kristen:

“… he ticked me off TWICE!!! Kinda like Ty did. A mini “tick off” moment that was very bad in itself, but then…


which in turn, prompted Kristen to respond:

“Hawk is a master of the mini-ticked-off moments (Oh yes he did! The jerk!) then makes them worth it.

No, maybe Ty is the master at that. :-) .”

I loved all of Gwen’s options. I loved the territorial “pissing matches”, and better yet, I especially loved her on-the-spot very real (at least to me) reactions to some of the truths she was suddenly confronted with. Excellent read!! Made me feel every emotion one could feel. Anticipation (for her intense romantic interest in Hawk), confusion (at what they were to each other), apprehension (when she doubted who she was to him), excitement (when she was suddenly the main interest of three mega-alpha-men, including the one she was so deeply into), fear (you know.. ’cause despite all of the sudden heart-action she’s getting, there are still bad-guys out to exact revenge), love, anger, deep heartache, sadness. Loss. It’s all there. All of it.

And so much of it felt real. That’s the most important part for me. I don’t just want to know it. I want to feel it.

5 stars!

Interested in the series? —> Kristen Ashley – Dream Man Series Reading Order

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Whitney December 21, 2011 at 9:20 AM

Now I’ll have to start that series. I’m almost done with the Rock Chick series. The Colorado Mountain Series is still my favorite. I LOVED Tate and Ty.
I was surprised to find out that Kristen Ashley is self published. Publishing houses are losing money by not having her! I loved At Peace too. I laughed and cried in equal measures with that one.

Jessica C. December 21, 2011 at 9:51 AM

I just finished Wild Man this week and I LOVED it! I started this series out of order, but I’m definitely going to read Mystery Man now. Kristen knows how to write the perfect ALPHA male. Thanks for the recommendation!

Peggy December 21, 2011 at 11:00 AM

I finished WM a couple of weeks ago, and I am sooo ready to read it again. And I’m not one of those people who love to reread a book, I already know what happened once, why reread? But for the love of Hawk, Joe and Tate, I just need more time with them :-)

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 11:34 AM

I’m with you! When I was re-reading my favorite parts for the review, I was getting all of those intense feelings back. I’m usually not a re-reader, but knwoing what to expect sometimes allows you to slow down on a re-read an denjoy the *other* stuff ;)

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 11:34 AM

Good to know Wild Man was good. I’ll be reading it soon. I was so sure it was gonna be about Tack, but I guess it’s a new character? Very anxious for Tack’s book.

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 11:41 AM

Whitney: So many self published authors are SO good. Their stories just blew me away, and many of them top my favorites list. I have yet to start Rock Chick. Very anxious to. People say it’s really funny!

Kara December 21, 2011 at 12:31 PM

Oh.Em.Gee…Maryse – you got me into this starting with Tate and Laurie and NOW I CAN”T STOP!! I am not sleeping lately with all the Kristen Ashley books I keep zipping through! …And Kristen – if you are reading this – you are AH-FREAKING-MAZING! I just started Rock Chick and I (as usual) can’t put it down – Maryse you are gonna love it :)

Melanie Fling December 21, 2011 at 1:26 PM

I am amazed at how good all her books are. This book is definitely a favorite. I also loved that some of the Rock Chick cast visited in the series. So I would suggest reading it first if you can. Wild Man is about Skull from Mystery Man *spoiler*. I am looking forward to Tack’s book too. I don’t know if I could have resisted Tack, he even cooked.

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 2:16 PM

OH YAY!!!! SKULL!!! YES! I was very intrigued by him…. Okay I’m so in!

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 2:16 PM

Kara! My thoughts exactly!!!

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 2:17 PM

Melanie – and he cuddled!

Nancy Parken December 21, 2011 at 2:33 PM

Oh you really should not put a Book Review like this up this close to Christmas, after finishing the Colorado Mt. Series, I really need to get things done before I start another one, but maybe I’ll just download this one, so I can read it later. Yeah that’s what I’ll do. lol

Lauren December 21, 2011 at 2:39 PM

I think I have been reading Kristen Ashley for 3 weeks and haven’t even started on the Rock chick series. I just saw another rock star book. Up front I have not started reading it but it came up as a recommendation. Ravensong by M.L. Hamilton. It will be added to my list once I have my Kirsten Ashley fill.

patricia December 21, 2011 at 5:22 PM

I think we should notify local law enforcement of Ms.Ashley’s books she is selling “my brand of heroine” (twilight)……this crap is addictive…,

Mariel December 21, 2011 at 8:03 PM

Ok, just finished the Colorado mountain series, with Ty…. Omg I cannot wait for the story about Chace and Faye!!!!! ^_^ Kristen Ashley is genius :)

Mariel December 21, 2011 at 8:06 PM

Is there somewhere I can get help for this reading addiction? ^_^

Maryse December 21, 2011 at 8:30 PM

Mariel: LOL!!! No help available, just a “support group”. Us!!! At least we have each other. heheheh

Patricia. For sure. Addictive!

Lauren, me too, and I’m still going strong. I haven’t even started Rock Chick either, so we still have plenty to look forward to. I read Ravensong. It was good but didn’t get me all crazy-like. I like all-crazy-like. That’s my favorite way to be!

Nancy: Suuuuuurrrre… you’ll just download and read it later. Suuurrrre. Keyword. Addictive. If it’s within reach… you know how it goes. ;) Tee hee!!

Lori December 22, 2011 at 9:31 AM

It is all your fault I have become obsessed with Kristen Ashley’s books! I loved Mystery Man but loved the second book Wild Man even better….Brock “Slim” Lucas was so on the Tate list for me :) . Don’t get me wrong though…I did love me some Hawk (enough to gave read the book twice) and I adored Gwen! It seems that not only does Ms. Ashley write some perfect alphas but also some awesome heroines who know who they are.

Maryse December 22, 2011 at 10:01 AM

Can’t wait Lori!! I’m finishing up another rock-star book, and then back to a Kristen Ashley ;)

Missy December 22, 2011 at 3:39 PM

I like MM but I have to say Rock Chicks was so much better! I am totally in love with Vance! I felt like Hawk and Lee are the same man but Indy was a better female love interest. I love the girls and secondary characters in RC series. This book to me missed Tex.

rachel December 23, 2011 at 12:16 AM

I loved Hawk!!!

Tarah January 15, 2012 at 7:21 PM

I am reading Mystery Man right now and I am soooo loving this book! I love Hawk but man he does tick me off sometimes then turns around and makes it okay. Are all of Kristen Ashley’s books like this? I LOVE this book. Any suggestions as to which one I should read next? Thanks and love your blog!

Maryse January 16, 2012 at 2:41 PM

Tarah… mostly, yep! But that’s what I love about them. Each guy has a different “issue” and they can tick you off, like no other and in so many ways, but I can’t help but get completely absorbed into the story each and every time.

Next read my favorite one (but there are MANY of her books that are my favorite), but my first was Sweet Dreams and I still love it to death!

Nat September 26, 2012 at 10:19 PM

I’ve loved soooo many of your recommendations (including another of Ashley’s books, Sweet Dreams), but this book was not for me! I couldn’t get past 1) the heroine already being in a strictly sexual relationship with the “hero” for 1.5 years before the book even starts (during which she doesn’t ask his name, doesn’t care that he breaks into her home, and doesn’t practice safe sex!!!!) and 2) in defending himself against accusations of being a womanizer, the “hero” admits there are indeed “other women”. Present tense!!! I’m all for a territiorial, alpha male, but for me it’s only palatable when he’s paired with a strong, territorial woman. Didn’t see that with this one.

Megan August 3, 2014 at 8:51 AM

OMG Thank you so much, this was such a good read, I couldn’t put it down, can’t wait to read the next one!

Maryse August 3, 2014 at 7:21 PM

My other #1 favorite book by Kristen Ashley. I’m so glad you loved it too, Megan!!! :D

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