No restraining order will stop Dare from protecting Teal…
The blackouts started happening when Teal was eight. There are long periods of her youth she doesn’t remember. She has woken up in strange places, feeling disoriented and unaware of how long she’s been out.
After two years abroad attending a private school and sessions with a top-notch psychiatrist, she’s been deemed cured. The blackouts have ceased, or so Teal thought, until she wakes up in a ditch back home in North Carolina. Dare, the man pulling her broken body from the wreckage, has a restraining order against him. He’s no longer the clean-cut boy she went frog gigging with but road-hardened. His lean, muscular arms, riddled with tats, drag her out of the SUV. She should fear him, but instead, his touch sparks memories that tell her she once worshipped him with all her heart.
Teal Covington has some sort of craptastic life!! At just eight years old she was attacked, her head split wide open like a melon, her best-friend was accused of molesting her, her mother disappeared from her life and, she began blacking out. In an effort to shield Teal from the small town fallout and harassment related to the events of her childhood, her father moves her to Paris where she spends two blissful years having only one blackout. Though Teal is thankful for the blackout reprieve she feels far from cured and desperately wants to understand what happened to her that fateful day ten years ago. In order to understand her past, Teal has to confront it and that means returning to the scene of the crime.
Returning to North Carolina is not something Teal ever thought she would do but her grandmother (a most delightful, Lulu!) needs her and if she is ever going to be cured, North Carolina is the place to be. Before she can even get home, Teal blacks out and buries her car in the swamp where her nightmare began. Before she can go down with the ship so to speak, Teal is rescued by her one-time best friend, Dare Tucker. The ten years between now and then have been both very good and very hard for Dare. On the one hand he has grown into the sexiest man Teal has ever seen and on the other hand, he has become hardened, cynical and, angry.
Dare Tucker only ever wanted to get out of his home town and become a veterinarian. The day he rescued Teal Covington in the swamp changed the course of his life and got him labeled as a sex offender for a crime he didn’t commit. Based on what Dare knows, Teal drove the final nail into his coffin with her testimony to the judge and though he has tried to forgive her, he just can’t forget how she derailed his life. To make matters worse, fishing Teal out of the swamp after her wreck gives Dare a chance to really see her. Dare is instantly struck by Teal’s beauty and though he wants to be mad at her, he just can’t control his body’s and heart’s reaction to her.
Within days, Teal knows coming home was the best and worst thing she could have done. She has a new therapist (a seriously funny and caring, Miles!) who is helping her understand the events of her past, she is actively pursuing why Dare hates her and thinks she hung him out to dry and, actively trying to push past her insecurities and stand on her own two feet for the first time in her life. Teal is determined to understand her past and someone is very intent on her not discovering the truth. It doesn’t take long for Teal to realize the closer she gets to the truth the more danger she is in. Her home is invaded, her security is threatened and those she chooses to be close too are in serious danger. Before all is said and done, Teal and Dare will rip the Band-Aid off a slew of old wounds, expose a crazy number of bat-shit crazy people and, find a way back to one another.
The Bottom Line: As always, Myers has created a crazy-complicated plot that is surprisingly easy to follow. There are more twists and turns in this plot than a crazy, country road but Myers takes you through it all with the smoothness and ease that only comes from a seasoned writer. Teal is a walking contradiction with her strength and her determination balanced by her vulnerability. She needs to understand her past in order to have any sort of future and she is willing to endure a whole lot of awful to get to her HEA. Dare is the highlight of this read with his actual physical strength balanced by a very caring nature. He and his brothers (whom I would love to know more about!) are a crazy mix of personalities that are ultimately loyal to one another and those they care for. Dare’s past has haunted him for ten long years and if he can do more than lust after Teal, he may have a bright and well-deserved future of his very own.
The big reveal in this story is somewhat expected but the extent to which everyone is involved and the activities they were involved in is most unexpected. The reveal regarding Teal’s mother is as interesting as it is abhorrent and adds a whole new level of ick to this read. Finally, there are the naughty bits with Dare and Teal. In general, I was quite pleased with the naughty bits – Dare is quite hot, after all – but some of the language was a bit off putting for me. I don’t mean the dirty words but some of the adjectives used to describe the bits and pieces. No girl’s vagina should ever be referred to as a squeezebox, especially in the midst of sex. With that being said, I certainly didn’t let this one minor element distract me (too much!) from my overall enjoyment of the read. Honestly, if you haven’t yet discovered Chris Myers, it’s time you do so and Blackout is a fine place to start!
Chris Myers suffers from an overactive imagination. She spent her high school years writing torch songs for fantasy guys then moved onto writing thrillers, new adult, and young adult. She has a real job but would love to write full time. Her books have won and placed in the finals and semifinals for several awards including Paul Gillette, Rocky Mountain Gold, and Amazon Breakthrough Novel. Chris lives in Colorado with her daughter, her better half, and BeBe, a rambunctious Bichon.