Also in this series: Sweet Dreams , Lady Luck, Breathe, Jagged, Kaleidoscope
Series: Colorado Mountain #1
Published by Forever on December 11, 2012
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense, Small Town
Love is the greatest gamble of all...
Nina Sheridan desperately needs a timeout vacation. With a fiancé who can't even remember how she takes her coffee, Nina wants some distance to rethink her engagement. Flying halfway around the world from England to a mountain town in Colorado should do the trick. But when she finds a gorgeous man at her rental cabin, Nina's cold, lonely adventure suddenly heats up.
The owner of the house, Holden "Max" Maxwell is surprised by the beautiful woman who turns up at his door. But when Nina becomes ill, Max spends days nursing her back to health. A private man with a broken heart, Max finds himself drawn to the strong-willed woman. Soon it becomes impossible for Nina and Max to deny their growing attraction to one another. Yet even as these two wounded lovebirds think about taking a chance on a relationship, a dangerous secret from Max's past emerges-and threatens to end their love for good.
The Gamble is the first book in the Colorado Mountain series and I have to say that I was vastly impressed with this one here. I just love Kristen Ashley, and I understand that her writing style and her characters aren’t for everyone, but I love them so much and I find them really easy to relate with and I always know that this author will give me some great laughs that will prove entertaining. Now I just haven’t gotten around to all the great classic series by Ashley and after finishing up the Rock Chick series I knew it was time for her Colorado Mountain books. Especially since I do own a few of these in print and are just sitting on my shelf collecting dust.
The Gamble starts off with our heroine, who is a Brit and has come to this small town in Colorado for some peace, relaxation and think about whether or not to stay with her current boyfriend. Nina knows that he is a good guy and hasn’t ever treated her badly like her previous men in her life, but she also isn’t happy. She doesn’t feel like he even cares for her and wants to do some reflecting so when she sees an ad online for a beautiful a-line mountain cabin for rent for a couple of weeks, she goes for it. But when she arrives, she is getting the flu, there is a terrible snowstorm and what she thinks is a ready place available is NOT open and already has a man living there who isn’t very nice about the mix up and so after a verbal spat she leaves and drives into a ditch and then wakes up in the cabin after being cared for by the current resident Holden “Max” Maxwell.
Nina doesn’t know what to make of Max, he is a bit way too domineering for her liking, but she hasn’t ever felt such chemistry with someone like she does with Max. She likes how she feels when she is around him and even though there is a part of her that wants to just go back to Denver, she reluctantly stays and discovers that how Max treats her with such care and consideration is more than her current boyfriend has even shown for her. After being around Max, she begins to realize that she hasn’t really been “in” her current relationship and starts something with Max and sees where it goes, but while Max and Nina explore this new fresh relationship there is a murderer in town and their lives may be in danger from the most unsuspecting individual they would least expect.
“Not one fuckin’ thing gentlemanly about protecting what’s yours. Looks like you’re gonna lose it, you do everything you can to stop that from happening.” Max looked back to Niles. “And you didn’t do that. She was a week away from me, she walked into a room I was in holdin’ another man’s hand, I’d lose my fuckin’ mind. Not at her. Wonderin’ where I lost my way and I’d talk to her about how to find my way back.”
The Gamble was simply a true treasure and I loved it. I won’t say it’s my favorite Kristen Ashley book because Knight is still in that spot, however, I fell in love with many aspects of this story here and it was so superbly written. I was curious to see how this series would be handled and how the set up of this series would occur and I want to say to Kristen Ashley WELL DONE because I love mountainous regions and love books set around Montana, Colorado, Utah, Idaho and Wyoming. So to have one of my favorite states which is Colorado, to be the setting I was thrilled especially a mountain small town and I felt that Kristen Ashley really handled the details of it perfectly. Now I know sometimes her detailed are a bit too much for some, but I LOVE details. And they weren’t overdone in this book, I loved how she sets the tone for the story and lets us imagine what the cabin looks like and everything.
“Learned some things in my life, Duchess, one of the most important, you find a good woman, you take care of her.”
“This happens between us, Duchess, I’d take care of you.”
“Die doin’ it,” he vowed.
The romance that builds between these two is so beautiful and their is some great emotional displayed in the story and we see how Max and Nina work through their pasts together and despite a couple of misunderstandings, they really handle this new relationship so well. There is some great intimacy growth in this story and I liked that their story is slowly built up, and they don’t have sex until about the halfway mark which is great because I love great sexual tension built up and Kristen Ashley does that really well.
I closed my eyes and my body settled.Without thinking my body knew it’d do anything,anything, for Holden Maxwell
We have a delightful murder mystery that comes into play and I appreciated that it didn’t overtake the story, it felt really well balanced with the romance between Max and Nina. We also have some delightful supporting characters that definitely add some humor and mischief to the story. I guarantee that they will give you some great laughs along the way.
Overall I found The Gamble to be a truly beautifully told romance that gives us some edgy suspense, sizzling sparks of chemistry and depths of emotion to stun the reader!! OUTSTANDING!