Dangerous. Ruthless. Savage. And she's the good guy.

Abby Sinclair had a desperate childhood until she was rescued and adopted by a retired army ranger who molded her into a master of self-defense. Now, she's a cunning and fearless assassin thrust into assignment after dangerous assignment, using everything she has-nerve, resilience, strength, sex-to come out on top. Her only rule: trust no one. Abby's latest assignment is in Columbia: go undercover and snuff out a dangerous arms dealer active in the underground sex trade. But when Abby purposely blows her cover in a last-ditch attempt to free the helpless victims, deadly mercenary Kane Woodland is recruited as back-up. His mission: get Abby out of that hell hole.

The last thing Kane expects is to feel a primal attraction for Abby. But when she convinces him to join her on her perilous mission, their newfound passion could put the lives of their whole team at risk.

♠ Rating and Mini Review: 3 stars! Kennedy definitely went for a knockout punch from the start in the first book of this companion series. I really appreciated that while our heroine, Abby, seemed like she needed rescuing to others, she was well on her way to rescuing herself. I respected that she was fierce and cunning—even had the guys afraid of her. I also appreciated that despite her sexual abuse history, she didn’t appear too damaged or broken, and especially that she had such a good heart. As for the hero, Kane, I liked that he pushed Abby in a good way and how protective he was even though she didn’t need him to be. Plus, built dudes with charm oozing out of their pores and a little cockiness are basically my jam.

The downside of this review is that this book was particularly difficult for me to read because of all the alluded to and remembered sexual assault, especially when it happened to minors. Ms. Kennedy isn’t afraid to delve into the mind’s of the scariest, scummiest criminals in the world, and while it was believable and was a crucial part of the plot, I’d be a liar if I didn’t admit it was also extremely difficult for me to read. Sadly, this definitely effected my rating and overall enjoyment of the book.

That being said, the sexual chemistry was excellent and the brief third person POV of some of the secondary characters had me anxious to get to the next books.

♠ Rating for Killer Instinct #2-#6: DNF

I have to admit, my interest was immediately piqued when I saw a NetGalley invite from Signet for this series for two main reasons: I love Elle Kennedy and mercenaries sound like my type of alpha hero. It also helped that the heroines seemed kind of badass in their own right and with the urging from a few other readers and such good reviews, I downloaded them all. Which is why it kills me to say what I’m about to say…

There’s something truly great about Elle Kennedy and the focus and attention that she brings to each of her series and the characters and worlds you’ll find inside them. I’m such a huge fan of two of her other series, the Outlaws series and her Off-Campus series, but I’ve really struggled with this one. While all the reviews were glowing and I knew I loved so many of her other books, there was still that nagging little voice in my head that made me pause and really consider if this series was for me before I took the plunge and snagged all the available books. I mean, there was a reason I had stayed away for so long, right? I really wish I had listened to that voice because my gut instincts are usually spot-on.

I want to make it perfectly clear here: my “DNF” rating and inability to finish these books are in no way a reflection of this author and her ability to write a kickass novel, because she can and she does so many times over. This simply boils down to the kinds of stories she’s trying to tell in this particular series. I applaud her for going hard for her characters, from tackling the grittier, uglier issues in the world and the monsters that commit those crimes, and for making the heroines just as badass as the guys. The truth is, I wanted to love these books so damn much just because of those reasons, among many more. However, and I’m about to get crazy-personal right now, my childhood and some of the awful things I had to witness and survive through in my own home make some subjects just too damn hard to read. I love books that make me laugh and cry and heartclench and sigh until I swoon, but when a book’s plot brings me to a dark place and leaves me there for days after walking away from it, I just have to realize that it’s not for me. That it can’t be for me. I’ve tried time and again for months to pick up with book two (and only ever it made it a little over halfway) and even skimmed through the first parts of three and four, and while I loved the romantic chemistry and the jovial mood between friends and comrades, I just couldn’t keep the dark mood from creeping in. So, it’s for that reason, and only that reason, that I’ve decided that I need to part ways from the rest of this series. I’m far from done with Elle Kennedy and her other books, but I’ve already lived through dark days and I don’t care for the memories that surface when I read certain things, especially when reading is supposed to be that escape from all of that in the first place.

 Author Bio:

A New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Elle Kennedy grew up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, and holds a B.A. in English from York University. From an early age, she knew she wanted to be a writer, and actively began pursuing that dream when she was a teenager.

Elle currently writes for various publishers. She loves strong heroines and sexy alpha heroes, and just enough heat and danger to keep things interesting!

To learn more about her and her books, 
find her here:

Website ♦ Twitter ♦ Goodreads ♦ Facebook

 

Full of giggles, flails, snark and Southern endearments. Avid Reader. Lover of swoony boys, kickass heroines, yummy kissing scenes, and pretty prose.

I like to draw hearts in the sky (eternal optimist) and wish on stars (forever dreamer). Documentaries, sweet tea, sleep, and brightly colored knee-socks are a few of my favorite things. ♥

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