I’m very picky when reading books about motorcycle clubs, but Riding Steele was an interesting read for me. There are some pretty dark events that take place, but there are also some very sweet moments, which I didn’t expect. Also, the epilogue is actually pretty cute. Although there are a few predictable elements, the book surprised me at times and I liked it.
Laurie is in danger. She has been trying to break up with her boyfriend Donovan, who has turned out to be a sadistic, abusive creeper who won’t take no for an answer. In an effort to protect Laurie, her brother Craig has contacted his good friend, who in turn is close with a group of bikers. The idea is proposed to kidnap Laurie to keep her safe.
Steele is the leader of the club and is opposed to the kidnapping. But when it becomes clear that Laurie is in imminent danger, Wild Card (one of Steele’s crew) actually does kidnap Laurie and saves her from Donovan.
When Steele and Laurie first meet, there’s a case of mistaken identity. After they get things sorted out, there’s a lot of insta-lust between them and they hook up pretty early on. (Never mind that they’re on the road, fleeing trumped-up criminal charges brought on by Laurie’s crazy ex, because there is sexing to be had, okay?)
Speaking of which, there’s a lot of sex in this book in various forms (m/f, m/f/m, m/m/f/m…I think I’ve lost track at this point, but you get the idea). So if you’re bothered by sex that’s all over the map, you probably should avoid this book.
Steele is actually a pretty nice guy when he wants to be. But Laurie has spent the past six months under Donovan’s thumb, so it’s hard for her to trust Steele fully at first. There’s also the issue of what it means for her to ride with this club. At first, Laurie is resistant to the idea of being “shared” between the various men in the club. But she changes her mind rather quickly–too quickly, I thought, especially considering she’s just coming out of her relationship with her ex. I didn’t find her change of heart that believable, but I just went with it.
It also seems like a contradiction that Steele would be willing to share Laurie. As his feelings for her intensify, he does become more possessive of her, yet he’s still willing to share her. But then he has moments when he gets jealous, too. I found that confusing.
As I mentioned, there are some dark and disturbing moments involving Laurie’s ex, but not so bad that I felt like I couldn’t keep reading. Those scenes definitely made me uncomfortable, though (and rightly so).
Overall, I liked the book. It has an interesting mix of suspense and tenderness. Even though there are some events that frustrated me, I liked the main characters. This book is actually #3 in an ongoing series, but I read it as a standalone and I didn’t feel lost as far as the plot goes. I plan on going back and reading books #1 and #2. Lastly, the author is a very good storyteller–the narrative is written in such a way that made me want to keep reading. I’ll be reading her more in the future.
I received an advance copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my review.