Title: Rock Hard
Author: Nalini Singh
Series: Rock Kiss #2, Hard Play #4
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Contemporary, Contemporary romance, Sport
Dates read: 16th June 2020
Publisher: Nalini Singh
5th sentence, 74th page: “You see why a second date would’ve been a bad idea, don’t you, Ms. Baird?”
In New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh’s newest contemporary romance, passion ignites between a gorgeous, sinfully sexy man who built himself up from nothing and a shy woman who has a terrible secret in her past…
Wealthy businesman Gabriel Bishop rules the boardroom with the same determination and ruthlessness that made him a rock star on the rugby field. He knows what he wants, and he’ll go after it no-holds-barred.
And what he wants is Charlotte Barid.
Charlotte knows she’s a mouse. Emotionally scarred and painfully shy, she just wants to do her job and remain as invisible as possible. But the new CEO – a brilliant, broad-shouldered T-Rex of a man who growls and storms through the office, leaving carnage in his wake – clearly has other plans. Plans that may be equal parts business and bedroom.
If Charlotte intends to survive this battle of wits and hearts, the mouse will have to learn to wrangle the T-Rex. Game on.
Charlotte’s history is alluded to in Rock Addiction, and like Rock Courtship, that little allusion in the first novel made me really, really want to find out more. And I was seriously happy that Charlotte and Gabriel get their own full-length novel. Because, wow, Charlotte’s story is seriously intense and somehow all the more beautiful for the horrors that she faces.
One of my favourite things about this novel is the dynamic between Charlotte and Gabriel. Sure, the other couples thus far have a great dynamic… but I much preferred the argumentative side of this couple. It had me laughing and grinning all throughout. And I seriously enjoyed that not matter what happened, they constantly bickered and found a place in which they could both be themselves and stand up for themselves.
I found this book even more impossible to put down than most of my other Nalini Singh books. Mostly because I just HAD to find out what happened to Charlotte. What her horrifying past was. And even though there were breadcrumbs all throughout and bits and pieces, it isn’t until about three quarters of the way through that you finally find out exactly what happened. This, intertwined with the familiar scenes with Molly, but from Charlotte’s point of view… worked fantastically, unforgettably well. There is just this amazing sense of completion and wow that you get when they finally get their happily ever after… because Charlotte has been through the damn ringer.
Although it is mostly Charlotte’s past and hang-ups that get in the way of their relationship, Gabriel is in no way perfect. And I love that his own hang-ups and imperfection is represented by his workaholic tendencies. The more you get to know each of these characters, the more steadily and heavily you will fall in love with them. Although, I’m looking forward to returning to Molly and the band in Rock Redemption.