Warning: This book includes mature content such as: sexual content, and/or drug and/or alcohol use, and/or violence.
Series: Ultimate #0.5
Published by Harlequin HQN on 4 August 2012
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Source: Kindle Purchase
In the stunning prequel novella to her new mixed martial arts series, New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster brings together an elite fighter and the woman he’s determined to win.
Power. Brute strength. Unforgettable moves. It’s no wonder Harper Gates hasn’t been able to get her fling with Gage “Savage” Ringer out of her head. Months have passed since she laid eyes—or any other body parts—on him. Months without a word of contact… until, sidelined by injury, he comes back to town.
Staying focused on his training seemed like a smart move to Gage, even if he thought about Harper every day. Seeing her again only makes it clear how much is at stake. He’s got one night to earn back her trust. One night to show her that behind his breathtaking skill and ripped body is a man who’ll give her everything she needs.
Hard Knocks features Gage and Harper, as well as several other characters that are part of Foster’s Ultimate universe. Short and very hot, it hit the right spot!
My Hard Knocks review:
Capturing the tension between Gage and Harper from the first line, Hard Knocks is a sweet introduction to the Ultimate series. If you’re wondering what series that is, you can check out my review of No Limits. The universe is that of MMA fighting, and the characters are very well done, some of them I already knew from the Love Undercover series, which is also truly excellent!
Hard Knocks is short, but still manages to bring out the main characteristics of Gage and Harper, both through the way they think of each other or look at each other, or with their interactions with the other characters. If you’re not familiar with this series, I’m pretty sure you’ll be left wanting much, much more after this hot little number.
Gage has been away from his hometown for a few months, preparing for the biggest fight of his life, only to be injured and sent home instead of going to Japan. He had thought coming home meant picking up right where he left off with Harper before leaving – only she didn’t seem to be all that into him anymore, at first treating him the exact same way she treated the other fighters – like a brother.
Hard Knocks has everything I need in a novella, characters I want to know more about, some very steamy hotness, enough of a back-story to make the story unfolding seem natural, and very strong writing.
Some of my favorite Hard Knocks quotes:
Gage heard a distinctly female laugh and his gaze automatically went to Harper Gates. So she had arrived. Without meaning to , he inhaled more deeply, drawing in a calming breath. Yeah, Harper did that to him.
There were nights he couldn’t sleep for wondering about all the places she might have freckles.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: