Elliot “Pyro” Dawson burns up the lead guitar like a legend. But the nickname Pyro isn’t just a clever play on words. It’s much darker. A past he’s fought like hell to overcome.
Grocery store cashier Kendalee Walker is at her wits end and homeless. She’s watched her fourteen-year-old son, Daniel, go so far off the rails, he can no longer see the tracks.
When the two are brought together, attraction flares, but can Elliott find the family he never had with the sexy woman and her son, or will he fall back on dark habits?
Source: Netgalley and Purchase My Rating: 5/5 stars
There are a few authors in my world I feel never, ever let me down and Scarlett Cole is absolutely one of those authors!! Elliot Redeemed, the second book in the Preload series is wonderfully strong and incredibly moving!
Elliott Dawson is exhausted and that is how he spends most of his life. Make no mistake, the time he spends on the road with Preload is worth the tired, but the time he spends struggling with his darker desires, that’s not worth the tired. Elliott’s darker desires have been under control for many years now, but it is truly a daily struggle to maintain that control. His desire for fire sometimes becomes nearly overwhelming and there is nothing Elliott can do but escape to his safe place and create a blaze that burns off his anxiety and reduces some of his exhaustion. Elliott has long thought this exercise is the only way he can continue to control his dark desires, and then he meets Kendalee Walker.
Kendalee Walker once had it all; the doting husband, the well-mannered and handsome son, and a home and bank account that allowed for serious comfort. That all went away when she caught he husband in bed with another woman and her now-depressed and angry son burned down their home. Kendalee is now broke, her marriage is over, and her son has burns over a significant portion of his body. The only thing that seems to brighten their seemingly dismal future is the completely random and unexpected visit from Elliott and one his bandmates, a service they offer exclusively to the children’s hospital. As it turns out, that visit changes everyone’s life.
Elliott understands his connection to Kendalee’s son (fire and abuse!) but, he can’t explain nearly as easily his connection to Kendalee. Kendalee sparks (HA!) everything good and protective in Elliott and quiets the demons and dark desires he battles constantly. For the first time in his adult life, Elliott can see beyond his own colossal struggles and can envision a future with true and lasting happiness. All he must do is convince an extremely guarded and wary woman that he’s not only good for she and her son, but he’s exactly what they both need in their lives. Oh, and he has to find a way to break it to her that he has his own issues with fire and abuse that will continue to be a factor in their lives forever.
The Bottom Line: Holy Hell!! I’m not sure how dark it got in Scarlett Cole’s head when she was writing this book, but what came out on the pages is awfully dark. In fact, I think this may be the darkest book of the entire world/series – Second Circle Tattoos included! This book runs the gamut from arson/pyromania to physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, to extremes in love and devotion. There isn’t a reprieve of any kind once you start this book so be prepared for all the feels and prepared to experience a sleepless night because you aren’t going to want to put this one down. I thoroughly enjoyed this read, but need to make clear to protentional readers, this isn’t an easy read. Oh, the writing is flawless so that part is easy, but the topics touched on are very dark and emotionally challenging. There was no way I was turning down the challenge and I simply can’t wait for the next book to hit the shelves!
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About the author and where to find her:
The tattoo across my right hip says it all really. A Life Less Ordinary. Inked by the amazingly talented Luke Wessman at the Wooster Street Social Club (a.k.a. New York Ink). Why is it important? Well, it sums up my view on life. That we should all aspire to live a life that is less boring, less predictable. Be bold, and do something amazing. I’ve made some crazy choices. I’ve been a car maker, a consultant, and even a senior executive at a large retailer running strategy. Born in England, spent time in the U.S. and Japan, before ending up in Canada were I met my own, personal hero – all six and a half feet of him. Both of us are scorpios! Yeah, I know! Should have checked the astrological signs earlier, but somehow it works for us. We have two amazing kids, who I either could never part with or could easily be convinced to sell on e-bay.