ARC Review: Say My Name (Stark International Trilogy #1) by J Kenner


Title:  Say My Name
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year:Random House 4/7/15
Length: 254 pages
Series: Stark International #1


ew York Times bestselling author J. Kenner kicks off a smoking hot, emotionally compelling new trilogy that returns to the world of her beloved Stark novels: Release Me, Claim Me, and Complete Me. Say My Name features Jackson Steele, a strong-willed man who goes after what he wants, and Sylvia Brooks, a disciplined woman who’s hard to get—and exactly who Jackson needs.

I never let anyone get too close—but he’s the only man who’s ever made me feel alive.
Meeting Jackson Steele was a shock to my senses. Confident and commanding, he could take charge of any room . . . or any woman. And Jackson wanted me. The mere sight of him took my breath away, and his touch made me break all my rules.

Our bond was immediate, our passion untamed. I wanted to surrender completely to his kiss, but I couldn’t risk his knowing the truth about my past. Yet Jackson carried secrets too, and in our desire we found our escape, pushing our boundaries as far as they could go.

Learning to trust is never easy. In my mind, I knew I should run. But in my heart, I never felt a fire this strong—and it could either save me or scorch me forever.

My Thoughts

WOW – i loved this first installment to this spin off series – it was AMAZING!  If you thought i was all ‘fangirl’ on J Kenner before, i think i may be in competition to be executive committee of the club now.

First off – thank you Netgalley for getting me a copy of this before it comes out – but now i’m sad that i’ll have to wait even longer for the 2nd installment.  Anyhow, we are quickly dropped back into Damian and Nikki’s world but from a semi indirect manner.  We get to see Sylvia (Ms. Brooks), Damian’s assistant take a lead role – both professionally and personally.  We also get to see more about Jackson and what makes him tick since he’s dark, handsome and has an aura of naughty that we love.

Sylvia has managed to snag the lead role on a new development project after convincing Damian that buying an island off the coast of Cali is the way to go while they are sorting through options for the Bahamas resort.  Since we know that no good business deal can go off without a hitch, we are fast to learn that there are issues with the architect that they had signed – deciding that he was retiring and moving to Tibet.  This is where things get even better.

Sylvia and Jackson have a bit of a past – a fling of sorts from when she was living and working in Atlanta and they crossed paths.  IT was hot and heavy and something that scared them both, but because of her own demons, she asked Jackson to let her walk away and not follow him and that was five years ago.  Those feelings of course are never quickly dispelled and when they are forced to cross paths again, it’s explosive.  in more ways than one.

The journey that we go on is really complex and that’s something that our author is amazing at doing.  We get to see how complicated and hot and passionate a relationship is, but you know that there has to be soo much more underneath for both characters that we have to dig and dig and dig and when you dig enough, you either get hot passion or deep anger.  we get both.

There are so many demons that Syl has been hiding – getting tattoos as a way to cope that it’s no wonder things are heated and steamy with Jackson.  The man is no saint either – we only get to see glimpses of things with him, but he has his own share of issues, and interestingly you want to think that there’s something there with Damian since there’s so much hatred.  I think that the 2 directions that J Kenner takes us on that one is really amazing and while sort of expected, i think the progression and build up was great.

We’re left at the end with minimal resolution of things – you know that we’re just about at the tipping point for so many of our characters.  Folks that we want dead are coming up, and the strength of relationships are being tested.  While i know that we all want our characters to be happy – i think that the fighting and the turmoil that they put on themselves makes it so much hotter to read.  I for one have spent most of today turned on and aroused since there is so much passion going on here that i couldn’t put the book down until it was done.  on that note – enjoy – please please enjoy!