Author: M. Leighton
Publisher by: Penguin, Berkley
Published on: August 4, 2015
Page Count: 304
From the author of the New York Times bestselling Bad Boys novels comes the first in a dark, sexy contemporary trilogy.
Is she strong enough to trust the most dangerous man she’s ever met? And is he strong enough to let her?
How would I describe myself? Well, I’m Muse Harper. I’m a twenty-something painter who loves red wine, quirky movies, and men with a fatal flaw. But that was before I met Jasper King. He became my fatal flaw. Eight months ago, I had a choice to make—abandon everything I’ve ever known to protect my family, or stay and risk someone getting hurt. I chose the former. My plan was working just fine until I found out my father had gone missing.
That’s when I met Jasper. A bounty hunter with the eyes of a tiger and the nose of a bloodhound, he was supposed to help me find my father. What I didn’t know was that meeting him was no accident. Hunting people isn’t all that Jasper does. And helping me was only part of his plan. I just wish I’d found out sooner, before my heart got involved. But even then, I don’t know if I’d have done things differently.
Now, I have another choice to make—trust the man that I’m falling in love with and hope that he’ll do the right thing, or run as far away from him as I can get.
Strong Enough is not your normal read by M. Leighton.
It really took me sometime to get into the book. I won’t lie the prologue wrecked me. I had to stop and process what I read. Could I read on just by read a few pages in the beginning? But I continued. I pushed myself. I kept reading and had to put it down and step away for a few hours. I couldn’t connect with the characters at the beginning. I got to the point where I could “get” with what they were dealing with and where they needed to go with their relationship.
Muse was a loss soul. She really frustrated me. She had to move across country and leave behind her father. She had this deal to speak with her once a month thru a pay phone. And when her father, the Colonel, didn’t call her she got help from her friend and got Jasper, the bounty hunter.
Enter Jasper. I still pictured him in the situation he faced in the prologue. He’s mysterious. And has this side of him that I just couldn’t grab ahold of. He comes to Muse to help her find her father because “he’s the best.”
Now this is the part of the story when I finally couldn’t put the book down. This for me is when the books picks up and I couldn’t put it down. You learn more about Jasper and his upbringing. You start to see more of him. They communicate better at this point because Jasper is finally able to reveal more about his past in order for Muse to understand. Certain situations had me and I could picture the whole scenario. I wanted to wrap myself around Jasper. Muse, I could finally feel somewhat of a connection with her but it still wasn’t fully there.
Then Jasper and Muse has things happen to them and then the truth comes out about Muse’s father and what exactly Jasper is. And the whole ordeal is just like what the hell! (I can’t say what it is because it would give away the book). There a mystery there and the whole time I keep trying to figure it out. And a part of the mystery is out there but the other is still hanging on. In the end, it left me wanting more. Like there is more to them and their story isn’t complete. I know that I would like to see where they go from there. There’s a lot unsaid.
Book 2 is about Rogue who you meet in Strong Enough. I was hoping it would be Jasper and Muse, so now I wait to see if these two will appear in book 2. However, to me that won’t do any good. They need another book! I need answers!!
Overall, the book isn’t bad. Like I said I had a hard time connecting. It’s not the type of book I normally would read, so I was out of my comfort zone.
He startles a yelp out of me when he stops suddenly and turns toward me. “I didn’t realize you needed stimulation. Maybe you should’ve made your expectations clear from the outset.” I crash into his chest and stumble backward. He reaches out to grab my upper arms, hauling me up against him to keep me from falling.
I gasp at the electricity in his touch, in the feel of his body pressed so firmly to mine. My front, from my nipples to my navel, is hot and tingly and . . . aware. Too aware.
His eyes burn down into mine. He’s so close I can see the black of his pupils explode to eclipse the amber of his irises. Whatever I’m feeling, it’s affecting him, too.
I struggle to keep my wits about me. It’s a struggle I lose. His nearness is too much. His emotion, something he has showed so little of, is too overwhelming.
“I . . . I . . .” I don’t know what to say. His reaction is so surprising that I’m struck temporarily speechless. I hold his gaze, let it wash over me until I see the golden orbs flicker to my mouth. I lick my suddenly dry lips and when his eyes return to mine, they’re full of fire of a different kind.
“While I’ve got you here,” he snarls, “might as well get this out of the way.”
With no other warning, Jasper lowers his head and crushes my mouth with his own. He’s so forceful, so . . . angry, that I remain stiff in his arms. Until the moment that I begin to taste the real Jasper, the Jasper that he hides beneath his gruff exterior.
I taste softening in the way his fingers loosen their grip. They caress rather than restrain, coerce rather than demand.
I taste dominance in the way his lips move over mine. He is in control, but he is sure to make certain I enjoy every second of it.
I taste acquiescence in the way he groans into my mouth. He didn’t want this, but like me, he can no longer resist it. There’s something between us, something that has a life of its own.
And, finally, I taste desire in the way his tongue slips inside to tangle with mine. He is heat, he is gravity. He is the center of all my senses. He is consuming.
Just like those few seconds when he first walked into my life yesterday morning, life ceases to exist outside his presence. He took my breath away then and he’s taking my breath away now. There are no fears, no reservations, no other people. There is only Jasper and this insane attraction I feel for him. He is wild and raw, dangerous and tempting. He’s a sleek, powerful animal, seeking to thrill and to destroy. He overcomes, he devours, he possesses. He refuses to share his kill with anything else. For a heartbeat, I’m his. His prey. Not necessarily willing, just helpless to fight against him.
And then, God help me, I respond. My body takes over and I lose myself in this kiss, in this moment. In this man. I arch my back, pressing my aching breasts into his chest. With every muscle, every nerve, every fiber, I strain toward him, drinking him in with my body, my soul, my mouth. Unwittingly, I unleash the animal I thought I’d already seen.
With a fierceness echoed in the growl that trembles into my open mouth, Jasper spins, plastering my back to one of the large, concrete columns that support the overhang. He tilts his head and deepens the kiss to a level I’ve never been before, to a height, to a depth, to an intensity I’ve never known. He punishes me with the pressure of his body, but he soothes me with the soft lick of his tongue. I feel him everywhere. Within, without, penetrating, radiating.
The kiss comes to a slow, tantalizing end that makes me want to whimper when Jasper breaks the contact. And then I’m free. Free to breathe, free to speak. Free to think and see and hear, but I don’t. I don’t do any of those things. I can only feel, like the residual sting of a burn. A burn so good.