After the Hurt by Shana Gray

Posted May 12, 2016 by Kate in Liked It, Review / 0 Comments

After the Hurt by Shana GrayAfter the Hurt by Shana Gray
Format: eARC
Published by Loveswept Source: Netgalley
Genres: Alpha Guy, Contemporary Romance, Love to Hate, MMA, Romance, Second Chances
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Pepper Chapman refuses to throw in the towel. Six months ago, she made the biggest mistake of her life. Blinded by grief after her mom’s death, Pepper abandoned the man she loves. Now she wants a second chance at everything she gave up: strong hands driving her to ecstasy . . . a deep voice whispering naughty promises in her ear . . . the future they’d planned since they were teenagers. So Pepper comes home looking for forgiveness, ready for a new beginning—if he’s willing to give her a shot.

Retired MMA star Tank Sherman may be used to low blows, but Pepper’s emotional sucker punch left him reeling. Trying to ignore the pain and forget the pleasure of her body beneath his, Tank is prepared to ring the final bell on their relationship. Then Pepper shows up out of the blue, radiating pure sex. But Tank won’t let himself get hurt again, and that means resisting the heat that still burns between them. Because if he takes Pepper back, he knows he’ll never be able to let her go again.

So there were elements of this book that really worked for me, and then elements that really didn’t. I will say the reason this appealed to me was because I seriously find MMA guys hot, and I love second chance romances. And honestly this book sounded like it might be a little darker or at least strong on the emotional components, which is way up my alley.

So the gist of Pepper is that she was involved with Tank for a really long time, and they were in the process of opening up a restaurant together. When her mother passed away, everything really changed for her, she really kind of fell down a hole of depression and decided to just up and leave her life. She spent a great deal of time away and is now in back in town wanting to make things right with Tank and kind of putting her life back together. I really liked her, and I wish could put my finger on why I liked her so much, but I’m not really quite sure. I think part of it is that there have been more than one occasion where something has happen in my life and I just wanted to take a bit of time out somewhere else. But I think what made her work for me in the story was that she was really patient with how she handled Tank, I mean she knew she had hurt him so she made sure that he knew without doubt that she wanted to be there with him, but never pushed too hard. I liked that about her.

Now as for Tank, he was really the good part of the story of me. I liked him a lot. I’m sure part of it is that he is a hot MMA guy, who is now an intelligent business owner, but he’s also a pretty good guy. He wants to push Pepper out of his life, because he got hurt, but at the same time they have such a lot history together that it makes it difficult to just let go of all his feelings about her. I really liked how he made her work for it, I mean he didn’t just fall back into the relationship without any questions asked, these two people took their time reestablishing their relationship, which I liked, it made for good character development.

The pacing in the book was pretty good. I did have one or two issues, the first is there is a lot of inner monologue going on especially on Pepper’s part, I wish there had been a little less of that and maybe more interactions instead. The other part that didn’t work for me was there was a bit of a suspenseful elements involved in the story, that continues throughout, I think it either could have been done a little bit better or not at all, it just didn’t work for me. Other than that, I did really like the two main players, and I totally enjoyed seeing how their relationship evolved throughout the book. The character development really made this book worth it for me.

About Shana Gray

Now writing under her new name, Shana will be published with Loveswept/Random House and Harlequin Blaze, as well she is an indie author. Shana is represented by Louise Fury of The Bent Agency.
Shana’s passion is to enjoy life! She loves to travel and see the world, be with family, friends and experience the beauty that surrounds us. Much of her experiences find their way into her books. First published in 2010, Shana has written contemporary erotic romances for Sybarite Seductions, Lyrical Press (now Kensington) and Ellora’s Cave. Her stories range from scorching quickie length to longer erotic romance novellas.
She splits her time between her house in a small Ontario town with her twenty something son’s, four cats, two budgies and, as the world knows him, Meat Man’s house. It’s an adventurous challenge that she loves.

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