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Release Blitz and Giveaway: Ruin and Rule: Pepper Winters

Ruin and Rule (Pure Corruption MC #1)
Pepper Winters
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Expected July 7, 2015


"We met in a nightmare. The in-between world where time had no power over reason. We fell in love. We fell hard. But then we woke up. And it was over . . ."


RUIN & RULE

She is a woman divided. Her past, present, and future are as twisted as the lies she's lived for the past eight years. Desperate to get the truth, she must turn to the one man who may also be her greatest enemy . . .

He is the president of Pure Corruption MC. A heartless biker and retribution-deliverer. He accepts no rules, obeys no one, and lives only to reap revenge on those who wronged him. And now he has stolen her, body and soul.
Can a woman plagued by mystery fall in love with the man who refuses to face the truth? And can a man drenched in darkness forgo his quest for vengeance-and finally find redemption?


 

Taking a deep breath, I helped him undo the heavy silver buckle, then locked eyes with him as he popped the top button and moved his and away from the zipper.

We didn’t speak, but something so sharp and in tune hung between us. It spoke in whispered verse, in barely acknowledged lyrics.

Kill cleared his throat.

I didn’t move.

Then my fingers fluttered over the most private part of him, grasping his zipper and tugging slowly, oh so slowly down.

He gritted his teeth. His jeans gaped open, showing dark grey boxer- briefs.

He arched his hips, giving me space to yank them down.

My eyes flew briefly to the gun resting beneath the desk. I could crawl to it within seconds. I could hold it to his head while I stood and walked away. He wouldn’t die—not now that I’d stemmed the bleeding.

I didn’t need to ask questions. I’d been given all I needed to know.

But I couldn’t.

I just couldn’t.

The only sound was the clunk of his heavy jeans as they slipped off his large legs. His hips fell back onto the cold tiles and my eyes latched onto a huge art piece encapsulating his entire left leg. The design was of crashing waves with hidden symbols, equations, and promises hidden in the froth. A girl, whose red hair flowed up with the tide and disappeared into his boxers, smiled sexily, while her green mermaid’s tail kissed his knee. The damn Libra sign was in there, too—repeated over and over—yet another reminder of something I’d forgotten.

“You aren’t anything like I expected a biker lord to be like.”

“You had expectations? That’s dangerous.”

I tensed, wanting to trace the beautiful colors on his leg. “Regardless, it seems we have something in common,” I whispered.

He breathed hard, kicking away the material by his feet. His eyes fell to my T‑shirt- covered side, almost as if he could see my tattoo beneath the cloth. “Seems so.”

His cryptic reply sent my nipples stiffening. Something undeniable drew me to him. Something I doubted I would ever be able to understand.

I jerked into action.

Grabbing the first fluffy white towel, I tapped his hip. “Up. I’ll put this beneath you.”

He smirked. “If you’re worried about getting the tiles wet, don’t bother.”

I scowled. “It’s for you. You’re freezing. Your body has been through enough.”

He froze; his eyes searched mine, deeper, harder than anyone before. “Who are you?” he breathed again. “Why the fuck do you care if I’m uncomfortable or bleeding to death?”

“Did you have someone to take care of you?” I hated the thought that another woman had been close to him.

I’m jealous.

He never stopped staring. “What does it matter?”

“Why is it such a mystery to be cared for? I can’t let you die.”

“Any other girl would’ve pulled that trigger the moment she got her hands on the gun.”

I asked, “If I hadn’t helped you, who would? You live alone. Those men at the compound seemed like half were on your side and half weren’t. You have a first aid kit stocked with things I doubt are legal, yet you’re amazed that I’m willing to stop you dying. I think the main question is—who are you?”

Tell me.

He didn’t respond for a minute, raising his hips again for me to spread the towel beneath him. His boxer-briefs were so tight they didn’t hide the very obvious outline of his large but flaccid cock.

His tone dropped to a curse. “No one.”


In Ruin and Rule we literally wake up as the heroine with no memory, trapped, and in a dangerous situation. We feel all of her confusion, fear, and the blankness that should be her memories. It is so descriptive from sounds, smells, and images that you literally are living it with her.

Then there is a brief flash of a connection with a man that just adds to the mystery. He is a man on the edge, unyielding, dangerous, and in control. He is entombed in darkness due to past demons and now living a lonely life. He is obsessed by vengeance and unwilling to spare emotions or revert to the man he used to be in any way.

She is looking for answers, craving his connection, and trying to figure out how she ended up in this perilous situation. He is fighting his past, his ghosts, and emotions and wants to ruin those that have wronged him and taken away what he cared about. She is trying desperately to prove their connection and past as fiercely as he is fighting it. And she is also trying to remember more of her past and put the puzzle of her life back together. But it is told in mostly her point of view in present and in flashbacks that come sporadically and out of order.

Who is lying and what is the truth? How does she have separate pasts that seem different but both feel right?

Can she get through to the heart of an angry, embittered man who refuses all attachments? Or will she end up as part of a business transaction or worse yet a casualty in a dangerous game?

This was raw, gritty, and dark at times. I honestly did not like Kill for a good part of the book. I wanted to, but he was so stubborn,  untrusting, and focused on being right. It was hard to take some of his actions. Yes, I know he is a biker and expected to be rough and ruthless as part of an MC club so the club business did not bother me. It was his treatment of her,  refusal to see signs right in front of him, and his anger, cruelty, and pain being used against her. I felt that there was enough to her story and physical appearance that should have at least made him give her the benefit of the doubt. I need my hero to have a heart and his was buried way deep. It is hard enough dealing with verbal abuse, but a hero using any kind of physical abuse is harder to take and I was not sure I could come back from that.

Sometimes she seemed to have more info from her flashbacks than she revealed to him but held back which seemed odd. It might have given her more credibility with him earlier if she told him all of what she was remembering consistently. But despite the holes in her memory, her fear, and the precarious situation, she still had a caring heart and deep emotions. Even when he was horrible to her, she had a little hope that she could reach the real man underneath.

I was intrigued to see the mysteries unfold and their full stories unravel. In addition to their personal story line and her memory loss there were also MC club drama with deals, debts, deceptions, and battles. So there were plenty of threats, suspense, and danger. Vengeance is a big theme and driving force of Kill's actions. It took me awhile to connect in the beginning even though I was intrigued. But partway through I got more and more interested  and had a harder time putting it down. I did come to like Kill more as his layers and hardcore outer persona started to peel away. He is a complicated man and he has spent years putting on more and more armor to shield his heart and cover his pain.

He's got secrets that he is afraid to reveal. Her memories return inconsistently and do not provide her with all of the info she seeks. I liked how their story progressed and getting to explore the characters and their pasts more and more, but at the same time started to get frustrated again with them holding back. I kept thinking if each of them just shared all of what they know that they could figure things out easier. Even when we got a bit more of Kill's point of view closer to the end, it did not reveal his biggest, baddest secret to us or her.

This is my first book by Pepper Winters and she is very descriptive and involves all your senses and emotions. It is as horrifying as it is fascinating, and I had a love/hate relationship with it. It is tension filled, compelling, addicting, angsty, and thought provoking as you try to unravel all the pieces. The story had many layers, multiple possible antagonists, mysteries, and twists. The characters were complex, damaged, and multi-faceted. It was at times hostile and violent, and at other times hopeful, steamy, and emotional. It ends with some answers, but still some more questions remain and their story will continue in Sin and Suffer. And just from the sneak peek of the next book, it is going to be another dramatic and intense read.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review. 

Ruin & Rule is gritty, violent, and dark. This was a challenging read full of betrayal, lawlessness, and vengeance.

The narrator has no idea who she is, where she came from, or who the men around her are. But when her blindfold is removed, a spark of recognition makes her question if she is as far from home as she originally thought. At times, I was baffled by her actions and thought process. It seemed for some time as if she was making things more difficult for her captivity on purpose, ignoring opportunities for escape and digging herself in further.

Arthur “Kill” Killian is holding on to control of the Pure Corruption MC with an iron fist, and the blood that goes with it. He has a plan for vengeance that will give him peace from his past. His actions, too, made me question continuing the book. While he has a polished, good standing in the community, he is also fighting to keep control of his MC, with a puppet-master behind bars, and at times I questioned his blind trust of his benefactor's requests.

This is as dark and horrifying as it is intriguing and fascinating. Never know who to trust, what motives lie behind actions, and what really happened, readers are as off-kilter as the main characters. I spent as much time disturbed by what I was reading as I did unable to put the book down. While I had a hard time following the action at first (not unexpected when following a story narrated by an amnesiatic), I was pulled into the suspense of how she ended up in her current situation and how events had been twisted to put her there in the first place. 

The end raised as many questions as it answered, and though I’m still not sure who to trust in the whole scheme, I look forward hesitantly to reading Sin & Suffer for answers. 
I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Expected January 26, 2016



Pepper Winters is a New York Times and USA Today international bestseller. She loves dark romance, star-crossed lovers, as well as the forbidden and taboo. She strives to write a story that makes readers crave what they shouldn't, and delivers complex plots and unforgettable characters that keep readers talking long after the last page is turned.

On a personal note she loves to travel, has an addiction to creme brulee, and is married to an incredible Canadian who puts up with her endless work hours and accompanies her on signings. She's also a firm believer that the impossible can become possible.
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