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Sunday, October 5, 2014

Review: ACE'S REDEMPTION by A.C. Bextor

Title: Ace's Redemption
Author: A.C. Bextor
Devil's Despair #1
Publication Date: January 1, 2012
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Memories alone can ruin you. Fear has a paralyzing effect, and love isn't always enough to keep you safe.

Ace was the gateway to freedom I hadn't known since I was fifteen. He offered his protection from the demons that haunted me; both living and dead. Although I knew I wasn't enough to keep him, this didn't deter my hope that one day he'd love me for who I was, not the broken girl he tried so desperately to save. In the end, the ghosts of my past found me. Their malevolence knew no bounds, and I was forced to succumb to their will of darkness. Each threat named against those I loved made any escape impossible; choosing my life for theirs became my desolate absolution.

Inevitably, it was my own weakness and self-doubt that became my undoing.

Emotional ties are sometimes severed. Friendships down always endure their hardships, and love offered isn't always returned.

I was in love once. For me, leaving her back in Ohio was the hardest thing I've ever had to do. For her, moving on with her life that included her son and the man she loved was no less than she deserved—unconditional happiness. My reasons to bring Cherry home to California were obvious. I needed help with my family, and she needed help staying clean and convincing her parents she was ready to give her son the life he deserved. It was the perfect plan. However, the best laid plans often get lost amidst their best intentions.

Cherry fell in love with me, and in return my love for her acted as the catalyst to her destruction.
*This novel contains material that is not suitable for individuals under the age of 18. Content includes: drug use, explicit language, violence, rape, and other scenarios with content that readers may find offensive. Please use caution when deciding on this book, as every reader has the right to understand the product before purchase.

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**ARC was kindly provided by author A.C. Bextor via The Book Nuts in exchange for an honest review**

"I don't think it's possible to forget, but eventually you'll make other memories
good ones that will outlive the bad ones."

I really, REALLY enjoyed this one!! It wasn't what I was expecting, which was a story centering around a male motorcycle club member (the name Ace just screams 'hot biker' you know?) falling in love with a distraught woman that club saves. I wasn't entirely off the mark though. Ace was a MC member, specifically the Lights of Peril MC. He gave up his cut and returned home to California, to his sister, grandmother and his friends, because he couldn't stand seeing the woman he loved (Sadey) be happy and in love with the club President. Peril was actually where Ace first met Cherry. She was the 'club whore'.

Raegan, aka Cherry, had an extremely rough past. She was caught up in drugs and terrible people. She was forced to give up her baby boy at a young age because of it. Eventually, Cherry became a club whore at Peril for a place to stay and belong. She was intimately acquainted with Ace and was there for him during the times he wallowed over Sadey. From there, they became friends. And as a friend, Ace agreed to take Cherry with him to Cali and help get her life back on track if she helped with his family and stayed clean. 

"I'm your friend, and you can talk to me... even if you want to talk about her."

I loved Ace and Cherry's relationship. Ace was protective of her and cared for her but he couldn't bring himself to love her because of his lingering feelings for Sadey. They were just friends, but he couldn't imagine Cherry being with anyone. The just the thought pissed him off. He was a controlling alpha but he was also very sweet. Then there was Cherry. Words cannot express how much I felt for this girl. She's certainly become one of my favorite heroines! Having gone through what she did, she was still sassy and strong. She didn't let the past define her. The fact that she wanted to get clean for her son was admirable as well. Learning about her unrequited love for Ace made my heart ache. Cherry's the kind of character that you can't help but cheer for.

The secondary characters of Ace's Redemption were wonderful. I loved them all, even man-whore Hayden! Ace's friends were a funny bunch and a part of a band called Devil's Despair. They accepted Cherry into their folds easily, as did Ace's grandmother Bean and little sister Sarah. Cherry hadn't spoken with her parents since dropping off Decklan (her son) with them long ago. You really notice how much love she had to give, so seeing her have a close relationship with Ace's family was heart-warming.   

"You can't always protect those you love from everything, and feeling guilty 
about it doesn't help the circumstance."

I did love that Cherry reconnected with her dad. But most of all, I got all teary-eyed when she was finally face-to-face with her son! I had a feeling Cherry's past would come back to haunt her though. And when it did, I couldn't stop reading. I was on a mission to get to that happy ending!! I felt disgusted and angry learning the details of her horrid history. I wanted those responsible to suffer a painful death. Although, I could understand her actions as a means to protect her loved ones, I wanted to shake her when she tried to 'escape' the way she did. I cried a good amount during the last 30% of the book, let me tell ya.

The only reason I docked half a star was because there were some time jumps. I would have loved to have witnessed Ace and Cherry's romantic relationship develop the first few months after they finally got together. Overall, Ace's Redemption was an intense and incredible read! Great romance and character dynamics. Ace and Cherry first appeared in the Lights of Peril series but I thought, having not read that series myself, A.C. Bextor did a spectacular job in 'introducing' them and their complicated relationship quickly. I will probably end up reading Lights of Peril anyway though haa. I can't wait for the next book in the Devil's Despair series! :D

"No more escapes. You never need an escape again and most certainly never from me."

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The wise and loving grandma. 
She refers to texting as "sending words" (how adorable right? heh).
She didn't have much dialogue but when she did, you shut up and listen.
I loved when she gave Ace the 'you're worth it' speech.

I'm right here
"I'll give you anything as long as you don't go anywhere without me. I miss you, Rae."
Every time Ace called Cherry by her real name my heart got all warm.
This scene made me teary-eyed! He was laying out his feelings without actually saying I love you.
And to me, it was just as meaningful, if not more, given their history. 


  1. I think I might have issues with Ace constantly on about his ex-girlfriend. Other than that, I do love a good MC romance. Great review, Jennifer! :)

    1. Thank you, Rachel <3 The sad part is, Sadey wasn't even his ex-girlfriend. He had an unrequited love for her. Luckily he moves on in the first quarter of the book and realizes what's right in front of him :)

  2. Oh this one wasn't on my radar at all but you make me want to give it a try so bad! I'm thrilled this one worked for you and that you ended up truly loving it :) Great review :)

    1. I find that happens a lot with me with self-published books too! Thanks for stopping by, Lily :D :D

  3. This sounds like a really good book especially coming from a fan of Sons of Anarchy! ;) Too bad about the time jump that sounds like it could have been a great opportunity to really cement our emotional attachment to their relationship. But it sounds like a really good read overall! Great review, Jennifer!

    1. Thanks, Giselle!! Ahhh I have friends who love SoA! I haven't watched it myself though hehe. Yeah, I'm glad that there weren't that many time jumps but still, I certainly wouldn't have mind the extra 20+ pages to gush over in this case :)

  4. I haven't heard of this one but from the cover I could guess that it wasn't for me and well I was right. It's just NA and somehow same old story that is not for me. I do like the sound of characters, even like Rachel I'd probably get annoyed with him going on about his ex, but well I have a short filter for bad boys xD So it's basically all me. Anyhow I'm so so so happy that you loved this one!!! Great review, Jennifer :)

    1. I'm a sucker for covers with half-naked men. I know...It's a flaw of mine, okay?! ;) I definitely had a moment where I wanted to yell at him to realize the heroine was there for him this entire time. But good think he didn't brood about Sadey for long. Thanks for stopping by, Tanja!! <3