Review: Anchor Me (Stark Trilogy #4) by J Kenner

Title: Anchor Me
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year: J Kenner 4/1/17
Length:   249 Pages
Series:  Stark Trilogy #4

Overview

Fourth novel in the fast-paced series including Release Me, Claim Me, and Complete Me. This sexy, emotionally charged romance continues the story of Damien Stark, the powerful multimillionaire who’s never had to take “no” for an answer, and his beloved wife Nikki Fairchild Stark, the Southern belle who only says “yes” on her own terms.

It’s a new chapter in the life of Nikki and Damien Stark …

Though shadows still haunt us, and ghosts from our past continue to threaten our happiness, my life with Damien is nothing short of perfection. He is my heart and my soul. My past and my future. He is the man who holds me together, and his love fuels my days and enchants my nights.

But when tragedy and challenge from both inside and outside the sanctity of our marriage begins to chip away at our happiness, I am forced to realize that even a perfect life can begin to crack. And if Damien and I are going to win this new battle, it will take all of our strength and love …

My Thoughts

Well when i thought this was a trilogy, it was fun to see that we get another installment.  There’s so much left unsaid with this happy couple, and seeing what we’ve gotten glimpses of in the spin off series wasn’t quite enough.

So this fourth installment shows us what’s next for Nikki and Damien as their lives continues.  They are both coming into a new phase of things, Nikki getting her business off the ground with a potential new deal in Dallas and Damien trying to wrap up loose ends that keep coming up and causing rifts in their relationship.  Then there’s the constant conversation around them of when they are going to have a baby  – and of course that means that when a series of events happen, we learn that Nikki isn’t sick, but preggo that their world spins.

Nikki has a hard time dealing with the news since we all know that she’s had the worst relationship with her mother and fears what that all means for her in the future.  Damien’s reaction doesn’t make her any happier given that she wonders why it’s such a positive reaction and maybe he’s been hiding his true feelings about putting kids on hold.

Of course, the dynamics of their relationship mean that we’ll see resolutions come from their love and steamy sexual chemistry.  It’s no wonder they have no trouble getting the pregnant part to stick, just a wonder of what it will mean in the future.

On top of that, there’s so much more going on.  Sofia, Nikki’s nemesis shows up in the story and that can’t be anything good.  Giselle pops up again too and you have to wonder what her angle is since she’s also one who was trying to get between them.

If those 2 weren’t enough, Nikki’s mother continues to haunt her, with Nikki feeling like she’s seeing her mom everywhere, and when she’s in Dallas and learns that her mom has sold her house there, she’s convinced that her mom’s in LA and that’s just a bad sign yet again.

So as you can see, so much turmoil and bad omens popping up that the true question in this book is what will be the breaking point and how much will they have to fight for each other in the hopes of keeping their relationship sound and happy.

The great thing that our author does throughout this series though is tee up that there are going to be spin offs and continuations of the series with the supporting characters that we know that we’ll get to continue on the journey with them all in one way or another.  The way that all the stories are interwoven is amazing and i think that we get to see a deeper story line in that sense.  I can’t wait to see what’s next for Nikki/Damien as well as all the others since there’s so much more that can be done to keep this series alive.  That and the intense heat that makes you want to root for them and the others.  Enjoy!

Review: Play My Game (Stark Trilogy #3.7) by J Kenner

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Title:  Play my Game :
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year:Random House Publishing 2/17/15
Length: 100 pages
Series: The Stark Trilogy #3.7

Overview

never imagined that anything could top our honeymoon, but life as Mrs. Damien Stark is sweeter than any fantasy. We are forever bound by our love and our desire. His touch is my greatest treasure—and is purely mine alone.

Yet no matter where we go, the ghosts of our pasts follow. We can’t escape our secrets, or the people who desperately want to bring us down. Even on Valentine’s Day, neither of us is safe.

I’ll do whatever it takes to protect Damien, to fulfill his every need. His kiss is my calling, his passion my truest bliss. The dangers we face, we now face together—and nothing can make me run.

My Thoughts

Oh how i love this couple and this series overall.  while i don’t know that i love the novellas here since they are too short to really get to the crux of anything, we get a LOT that’s being set up and it really makes you wonder what’s going to happen in the end.  I know that i’m really curious – although i know that there’s definitely not enough there that would break this insanely happy couple up.

In this next installment, we are back from the honeymoon and we see that Nikki and Damian are trying to find their rhythm back now and they are still in the loved up phase but have to sort out going back to work and the real world.  While the torture and torment of the lawsuit against Nikki seems to be behind them, you know that there’s going to be something else since trouble likes to follow them, and that’s exactly what happens here.

We fall into the story just aroudn Valentine’s day where Nikki thinks that Damian has forgotten about it and yet he manages to out do himself by sending her on a scavenger hunt to all of their favorite places from the initial stages of their relationship.  He takes her on a trip down memory lane so to speak and it’s really nice to see how she puts the puzzle pieces together.

It’s when things seem to be going really well when they both find that they’ve been blackmailed in a sense – and to add insult to injury, there are others that are ‘close’ to them that find themselves in a similar place.  There are videos, emails, pictures and so much more that’s being threatened to be released unless Damian pays up and that’s the ongoing debate throughout this story.  Is he going to pay and who’s behind ti all.  what do they really want exactly since it’s can’t ever just be about the money.

So we’re taken on the journey with them to try to find out those details and along the way we get the same hot passion and chemistry that we’ve come to know and love from these 2 in the middle of it all.  I think that’s one of the GREAT things that J Kenner does – regardless of where the story takes us, we’re still in a place to really love these 2 and see that they are inseparable and that the more that they are together, the stronger the chemistry and passion gets.  It still makes me all hot and bothered each time i read through their scenes, and it’s never going to get old i don’t think.  so on that note – enjoy!

Review: Have Me (Stark Trilogy #3.6) by J Kenner

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Title:  Have Me
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year: Random House Publishing 11/4/14
Length: 105
Series: Stark Trilogy #3.6

Overview

Our wedding was everything I dreamed of, and now the honeymoon is a living fantasy. To be Mrs. Damien Stark is the ultimate rush—to know that our claim to each other is real, our fierce passion sealing our bond. My kiss is forever his, his touch is forever mine.

We both harbor deep scars from our pasts, and we’ve done everything we can to lay our ghosts to rest. But there are still dreams that haunt me, and people that threaten to tear us apart.

Our shared ecstasy makes me feel alive, and I’ll do anything to keep Damien close. He is my future, my hope, my every want and need. And once you’ve tasted that kind of obsession, nothing can make you give it up.

My Thoughts

While i do so looooove getting these novellas as means to hold me over until the continuation of the story, they sometimes feel like a tease.  Oh well – regardless, we have a nice continued bit of the story with Damian and Nikki, where we re-join them right after they’ve run away to get married and are now spending time together as Mr/Mrs.

Things seem like they couldn’t get any better for these 2, they are deeply and madly in love, they have explosive chemistry that makes the passion that they share leap off the pages, and it adds to the dynamic nature of their relationship.  It seems like the ghosts from the past are finally being held at bay, and things are going tin the right direction for them so that they can enjoy being married and being together.

And for a while, it seems like that’s exactly the case.

Until they are on their way to Paris for their honeymoon, and Nikki gets a call about a looming lawsuit for one of her app technologies, and the papps invade the lovers, and i can only guess that this is the lead into something really big and bad.

Where we are left though with this couple is seeing that their bond is forged even stronger – we know that Damian will do ANYTHING to protect Nikki and Nikki will stand by Damian and endure anything to be with him.  Again, which seems ominous, and i can’t wait to see where the next installment takes us since this one has left us on uncertain terms and unstable ground.  Enjoy!

Review: Take Me (The Stark Trilogy #3.5) by J. Kenner

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Title:  Take Me
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year: Random House Publishing Group 12/3/13
Length:  90 pages
Series: Stark Trilogy #3.5

Overview

I’ve long dreamed of my fairy tale wedding, but it wasn’t until I met Damien Stark—who captured me with his kisses and undid me with his touch—that I began to believe it was my destiny. Though we both carry secrets and scars, our shared passion heals us, binding us together. We have surrendered to each other completely, and our mutual ecstasy is the brightest light in my life.

But darkness still snakes through the cracks in our armor. Ghosts from our past have moved in, bringing fresh pain that cuts deep and threatens to destroy everything we hold dear.

Damien is my anchor to this world, and I am his. But if we are going to keep each other, we have to fight the shadows of our pasts to move forward into our future.

My Thoughts

Since we saw the conclusion of their story in Book 3 – complete me, i wasn’t really expecting much more out of the tale of Damien and Nikki.  Not that it wouldn’t have been nice to see a bit more into the future, i don’t know that it was necessary.  What we get in this short novella is a slight jump into the future, where we see what’s become of the couple now that things are starting to settle down between them.

The introduction to this story makes you wonder what’s really going on though since it’s quite dramatic, but after you settle into it after a few pages, you see that there’s the expected anxiety that comes with preparing for your wedding, when stress isn’t your friend.  We get a constant reminder through this story of how Nikki used to deal with pain and stress, and that’s something that she’s constantly fighting with.  Damien continues to be her rock, but is that what’s good for her?

Nikki’s mother of course shows up at an inopportune time, when things couldn’t be worse for Nikki – and of course that adds to a few pages of stress.  The question becomes whether Nikki will let her mother run over her or if she’ll find her inner strength and fight.  Of course you can expect what the answer is – but will that be the last we hear of it?  i’m doubting it.

What i really liked though is that our author – Julie Kenner sets things up nicely for a spin-off which i would welcome.  We got to know Jaime quite a bit throughout the Stark trilogy that i think we could see something come of her life.  It sounds like she’s starting to sort things out and realizes that on her own she won’t be strong enough to stay on the right path, but i think that there’s a hint of things to come.  Aside from that, there seems to be a lot of hinting towards relationships with either Evan (one of Damien’s friends that we just met) and Ryan (one of Damien’s security). so, we’ll see what happens 🙂

Enjoy this quick read – nothing too dramatic, but at least it sticks with the heat and passion and protectiveness that we’ve come to love and appreciate.  there’s also a nice little flashback scene in this installment that takes us back to the first night that Nikki and Damien reconnected (at that party not at the pageant).

Review: Claim Me (The Stark Trilogy book 2) by J. Kenner

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Title: Claim Me  
Author: J. Kenner
Publisher/Year: Random House Publishing Group 4/23/13
Length: 384 pages
Series: The Start Trilogy #2

The Plot: 

We’ve found ourselves once again in the middle of the torrent love affair between billionaire  Damian Stark and Texas pageant transplant Nikki Fairchild.  When these 2 re-met each other in the first installment of the series, we learned that they had this chemistry even from day 1 (which was 6 years prior at a pageant that Nikki was competing in and Damian was judging).  Fast forward, she’s found herself in his circle by a number of circumstances.  The first being that she received a scholarship funded by him, and 2nd she’s a software developer that found employment at a company that was hoping Stark would fund it.

She is obsessed with him, he is obsessed with her, but the question that lies here is whether it’s the same obsession, for the same/right reason, and is it equal?

but a bunch of horrible circumstances, all things crumble, however Nikki found that Damian wanted to pick her up and claim her which is exactly what he continues to do in this 2nd book.

Where we pick up: 

The opening is a reminder of how the relationship grew – Nikki is still posing for the nude portrait that Damian has commissioned and paid her $1MM for, and Blaine – the artist is putting the finishing touches on it.  This means that the deal that they struck was about to come to an end.  Nikki had agreed to be Damian’s ‘sexual slave’  for the length of time that it took to complete the portrait.  Now that the time has ended, the dynamic of their relationship was going to take a turn…or so we assumed.

while this is going on, there’s the darkness that lies under the surface with Damian that we tried to hone in on during book 1 and are still trying to decipher in book 2.  We don’t truly get to the bottom things because Damian is so closed off, yet we find that there are a bit more answers that we get this time around.

If that weren’t enough, the paparazzi are hounding them – following the pair EVERYWHERE they go, trying to throw in whatever lies and untruths that they can for a comment or reaction.  It starts to grate on Nikki and her own demons come to haunt her, in the form of cutting.  we know that she likes the pain to ground her and she continues to fight that throughout this story in the hopes that it will make Damian stay with her.

So, the story lets off with a catastrophic turn of evens for the couple and for Damian specifically.  Their troubles cross the pond to London and Germany, and there are no certainties or promises that can be made to carry us through without holding our breath until book 3 comes out.

so, in my usual fashion – a few questions:

What’s Next: 

1) what’s going to happen with Nikki and Damian?

2) Are they going to find out who the leak is for all the papps and everything else that’s gone awry?

3) who is Lisa really, and what role will she play in book 3.  (for some reason she just rubs me the wrong way….)

well, enjoy and we’ll pick up the finale of this story in the summer!