Kristen Ashley is a very accomplished author and she has a strong fan base. I have to say for myself, I have not read her before. I have heard one of her books on audio and I enjoyed it but I was not overly impressed. I also have to say that “Ride Steady’ was phenomenal. I’ve been in a reading slump lately and it seems like it has been forever since I picked up a book and could not put it down. I was instantly captivated by Carissa and Joker. Even when I was not reading this book I was thinking about it and when it was over I missed the story and Carissa and Joker terribly! If you read nothing further in this review, read this- get this book!
First, after reading this book, it’s over 600 pages, I immediately started re-reading it. I also put the previous two books in the series on hold at the library to read them. I loved the main characters. Carissa is such a great heroine. She is definitely down on her luck. Although very popular in high school her life did not turn out the way she imagined it. Although she did end up marrying her high school sweatheart and having a little boy with him she is now divorced and a single mother. But that is not the bad part. The bad part is that she is financially struggling and her ex-husband has used her power and legal leverage to make sure that she basically has no rights and everything is on his terms. Although this is all happening with Carissa she is never hardened, she is still the kind and caring person that we meet in high school.
When she is reunited with Joker she can’t remember him from high school. Unlike Carissa Joker had a very tough upbringing and he was hardened by the blows that life dealt him and the blows his father laid on him as well. Finally fed up he leaves before graduating high school and to start a new life for himself. When he sees Carissa the tables have definitely turned. He is part of a motorcycle club and his life is nowhere near what it used to be.
Although Carissa is instantly drawn to Joker he is determined to keep her far away but he can’t help but lend his support to her situation. The more he learns about her life and her struggles the harder it is for him to keep up his wall of defense. Carissa is hurt and angry that Joker is determined to help her and lend the support of his club but keeps himself off limits. She takes it personally but is determined to show him her appreciation. As the spend more and more time together they can’t fight their feelings and life hands them both some curveballs.
It’s been so long since I could not put a book down that I devoured this book. I was obsessed with it and felt for the characters. I loved all the information that Ashely gave about the motorcycle club and the way that both Carissa and Joker evolved. There was never a dull moment and I could not wait to see what the next page would bring. Carissa was a perfect match for Joker and he for her. I highly recommend and loved this book!
**ARC provided by Publisher**