Hard as Steel is a standalone Hard Ink/Raven Riders crossover novella from Laura Kaye. This one features Jessica Jakes and Ike Young. When Jessica's apartment is broken into by someone after Jessica's friends at Hard Ink, she turns to Ike Young for help. Ike has been her friend for a long time and he is the one person that she trusts to keep her safe. He is also the man she has always wanted. But Ike has a past that keeps him from allowing himself to get close to anyone, including Jess. Though he wants her more than anything and will do whatever it takes to protect her, he knows that he needs to stay as far away from her as possible. With Ike and Jessica shacked up for protection though, will he be able to continue to avoid the attraction between them?
I really liked Ike and Jessica. It has been clear for awhile for fans of the series that there is something going on between these two. I really loved the heat and chemistry between them, and I liked how they were together. Jessica is fun and feisty, and she gave as well as she got. The banter between these two was so entertaining, and I really enjoyed seeing the tension between them. Ike wanted Jess, but he had a lot of guilt and pain that he let keep him from her. I was glad to see these two open up to one another though, and I thought they they were each really supportive and great for one another. These two might have been the hottest couple from the entire series, and I could not get enough of them! Their sexy times were seriously scorching, and I easily could have read a full length novel featuring these two.
Overall, this was a great addition to the series and I really loved seeing the heat between Jess and Ike finally explode! Not only were these two steamy, but they also connected so naturally and I loved the friendship that was their base. My only complaint here was that I wanted more. It was a short story and while I loved seeing them fall for one another and acknowledge their feelings, I did feel as though the ending and conflict resolution was a bit rushed here. I think that was only due to the length of this one though, and that is why I would have preferred this one to have been full length. Laura Kaye is a great writer, and the Hard Ink series is one of my favorites. I loved seeing more of the Raven Riders MC here, and I cannot wait to read more from Laura Kaye in the future.
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