Read the gamble by Kristen Ashley Online


Love is the greatest gamble of all...Nina Sheridan desperately needs a timeout vacation. With a fiancé who can't even remember how she takes her coffee, Nina wants some distance to rethink her engagement. Flying halfway around the world from England to a mountain town in Colorado should do the trick. But when she finds a gorgeous man at her rental cabin, Nina's cold, lonelLove is the greatest gamble of all...Nina Sheridan desperately needs a timeout vacation. With a fiancé who can't even remember how she takes her coffee, Nina wants some distance to rethink her engagement. Flying halfway around the world from England to a mountain town in Colorado should do the trick. But when she finds a gorgeous man at her rental cabin, Nina's cold, lonely adventure suddenly heats up.The owner of the house, Holden "Max" Maxwell is surprised by the beautiful woman who turns up at his door. But when Nina becomes ill, Max spends days nursing her back to health. A private man with a broken heart, Max finds himself drawn to the strong-willed woman. Soon it becomes impossible for Nina and Max to deny their growing attraction to one another. Yet even as these two wounded lovebirds think about taking a chance on a relationship, a dangerous secret from Max's past emerges-and threatens to end their love for good....

Title : the gamble
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 18246040
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 679 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

the gamble Reviews

  • Jessica's Totally Over The Top Book Obsession
    2019-05-22 12:18

    4.5 Wonder Max Stars“Duchess?” He threw his other hand out, his gaze drifting the length of me as he said, “Fancy-ass clothes, fancy-ass purse, fancy-ass boots, fancy-ass accent.” His eyes came to my face and he finished firmly. “Duchess.”-Nina and Max SpoilersOk so this is only the 4th book by Kristen Ashley that I have read. The other 3 being the books from the Three Series which is her PNR series. The Three Series was iffy for me. I hated the first book Until the Sun Falls from the Sky with a deep passion. I hated that hero so much I thought my head was gonna pop off. Then I loved the second book With Everything I Am and the third book Wild and Free was just Meh for me. So I have been putting off reading any more Kristen Ashley books afraid of what I would get. But because a ton of my friends love KA and brag about how great her books are I thought I would give her another shot. I'm so glad I did. I loved this book, but boy is it a big book. 629 pages but never was I bored. Also because the book was so big it never felt rushed. There was great character, and relationship development in this book that I felt like I really got their whole story. “Jesus,” he muttered, dropping his head. “What?” He looked back at me. “Duchess, you can argue about anything.” “No I can’t.” “So, now you’re arguin’ about not arguing?”-Max and Nina“Has anyone told you you’re domineering?” “Nope.” “Well, let me be the first. You’re domineering.”-Nina and MaxMax was amazing for me. AMAZING!!!! I fucking loved him. He was super sexy, totally domineering, and could be really sweet. Max for me was the perfect Alpha male. He had all the yummy qualities of a bossy, protective , possessive Alpha without going over that line into abusive controlling dickwad. I loved that even though Max is a widow and even though he really loved his dead wife, I never felt like Nina came second. I never felt like he compared the two, never felt like she had to compete with a ghost. Hell he never even brought Anna(Dead wife) up until almost the end and that was after he found out she already knew almost the whole time they had been together. Max didn't come off bitter, mean or uncaring. In fact he treated Nina great was thoughtful, romantic, and supportive. Truly Max made this book for me. "Shut up and kiss me, Duchess." "Max!" "All right, I'll kiss you.” -Max and Nina“Fucked her last night, man, and this morning. Five times. Five. It was like she hadn’t been touched in a decade. So fuckin’ sweet. Damn,” he taunted, his eyes locked on Niles. “You’ve had her, you gotta know, not enough money in the world’s worth that.” -MaxNina I also really liked, not as much as Max but damn close. Nina wasn't perfect, but her flaws made her endearing for the most part. The only thing she did that kinda annoyed me was all through the book she kept saying Sorry?...... Uhh....... HMMM..... I'm sorry.....mmmhmm...... Max....... I bet she said sorry at least 200 times in this book! Oh and I didn't really care for the fact that she had some major insecurities. It didn't make me dislike her but I wish she would have just talked to Max about her fears instead of getting all up in her head. Max may have never seen her as second to his dead wife or treated her that way but Nina seen herself that way. She just decided that because he loved Anna and she died that she was his one great love and she would never have his love. And that she would be his second and have to settle for being runner up if she stayed with me. And although I think any woman would have her doubts She should have talked to him about it like a grown up. He asked her a number of times what was wrong and each time she lied to him. That being said I still really liked her crazy, sassy, and funny self. The thing I loved the most about her was that she didn't take shit. If someone got in her face she would go off. I love that she stuck up for herself and the ones she loved like a little bulldog!“Babe,” he replied, grinning then said no more. Still being helpful, I explained, “I know you think that word speaks volumes but, I have to tell you, it actually doesn’t.”-Max and Nina“Learned some things in my life, Duchess, one of the most important, you find a good woman, you take care of her.” “Please” “This happens between us, Duchess, I’d take care of you.” “Don’t” “Die doin’ it,” he vowed.” -Max and NinaNina and Max's relationship was cute. They bickered all the time. Neither one had a problem with speaking their mind or taking the other to task if they did something hurtful. There was some steamy sex in this book, but not so much that it was ott. I also liked that that sex happened towards the middle of the book. Giving them time to get to know each other. I loved Nina's mom and step dad. I also loved Mindy and was glad that she got her Hea in this book. Something I noticed right from the start was this book made me laugh. I laughed so much reading this book that my face hurt at times. I love that when a book can make me smile and laugh and just give me hours of happiness. I adored the HEA totally swoon worthy. I can't wait to try another KA book. "I lucked out, baby," Max went on. "When I was young life handed me somethin' beautiful. Then it took it away. Ten years down the road, somethin' different, but no less beautiful, showed up right at my front door. I knew it almost the minute I saw it and nothin' has happened since to shake that. You think, findin' that in you, I'm gonna let you change my password, write me some fucked up note and walk away?"-Max

  • Aestas Book Blog
    2019-05-26 15:03

    “In my life, I’ve learned when to let shit go and when to fight for it. This, babe, what we got, I’ll fight for.”What is it about Kristen Ashley’s books that just leaves you with thewarmest, fuzziest feelingsever ? They just reach right into your heart and connect you so deeply with each of the characters *big smile*. Absolutely LOVE her writing!! and I’m officially in love with Macho Mountain Max!!Tired of her boring life with her bland and clueless fiance, Nina decides she needs a timeout to rethink what she wants out of life and so she books an idealic 2-week stay in a gorgeous mountain house in Colorado. But things don’t quite go according to plan. She arrives in the middle of a bad storm, late, exhausted, coming down with a bad cold, only to find that there was a mix-up with the house and that the owner, swoony-gorgeous-Alpha-hot-Macho-mountain-man Max, is occupying it. At first, he wants nothing to do with her and tried to send her back to town to stay at a hotel. Frustrated by this huge wrench in her plans, Nina leaves in a huff only to end up in a ditch on the side of the road. Utterly depressed over her ruined timeout vacation plans, she bursts into tears and promptly falls asleep. When she wakes up some time later, she’s in a warm, fluffy bed back at Max’s house, and is changed, cleaned up and sick as a dog. And over the next several days, Max continues to look after her and nurse her back to health.Right from the start, they have grin-enducing banter and Max just swoonily slips into her life. And, unphased by her many ruffled feathers, he starts convincing her to stay a while longer.. and take a gamble on him. “You’re half a world away, Duchess, you been sick as a dog and your man doesn’t contact you?”…“Niles is reserved,” I whispered.“Niles is an ass,” He returned…“You don’t know him.”…“I’ve seen you naked, I’ve seen you sweet, I’ve seen you unsure and I’ve seen you riled and, seein’ all that ,I know, you were half a world away from me, I’d fuckin’ phone.” Then, to add a little spice to the story, a local man is murdered, and, as with many KA books, there is a healthy dose of kidnappings, death threats, swoony seductions, second chances, brawls, shebitchesfromhell, healing, rape (happened to one of the side characters prior to the story), beautiful family moments, squee-worthy showdowns, plot twists…. oh, and did I mention the Macho Mountain Man?! Oh, Max! Holden Maxwell. LOVED him! I loved how affectionate he was – both physically and verbally. He was always doing something sweet, calling her affectionate names, looking out for her, paying attention to the small stuff. I love that he just never let their relationship slide into the “stupid zone.” He was laid back, but at the same time deeply possessive and totally Alpha.“Found somethin’ I want, don’t tend to fuck around when that happens, Duchess. Ever.”Its kinda hard not to love a man who calls his woman ‘babe’, ‘darlin’ , ‘honey, baby and Duchess… and all in a sexy-as-all-hell gravelly voice… *swoooooon*“Learned some things in my life, Duchess, one of the most important, you find a good woman, you take care of her.”“Please.”“This happens between us, I’d take care you you.”“Don’t.”“Die doin’ it,” he vowed.“Nina was also a surprisingly fun heroine. Sure, she fought his affections a little at first, but only to the extent that it was cute, not annoying. She could be soft and sweet at times, but had a totally tough-as-nails side and would take no shit from anyone or let anyone walk all over her or her friends. She was loyal, and I loved how she just ‘got’ some things – there were some characters with some serious hurt and trauma in this book, and she just totally knew how to handle it.There’s a whole slew of side characters that we meet who become integral parts of the story. There is something just so deep about many of KA’s characters – little gestures and actions that convey a world of understanding or tell you so much about a character. I just love it! It connects you so strongly to the story.The pacing of the book just never lets up – you go from funny to swoony to action-packed to oh-my-god to *squeeeee* to fanning yourself to heart in your throat – its just non-stop and keeps you flipping the pages!It had me smiling right from the beginning! KA’s writing style is so effortless and easy to connect to – I could literally just see the story enfold in front of me as though I were watching a movie. My first sitting reading this book, it kept me riveted to the story until 5am!This book was not quite as light-hearted as the Rock Chick series and not quite as badass as the Dream Man series. It was just about a real life, super-swoony Alpha guy finding his woman and I loved every minute of it. It’s the perfect kind of story you can just loose yourself in“I’m not making out with you in a bar.”“Why not?”“Why?”His face dipped closer. “Because, first, I want you to. And second… guys are checkin’ you out and that’d be me stakin’ my claim.”“Staking your claim?”“Its a guy thing.”“Its a Macho Mountain Man thing.”“Same thing.”“You’re impossible.”“You gonna kiss me or what?”“If I don’t, you’re just going to kiss me anyways, aren’t you?”Again, he gave me a grin. “You finally got that?”“Impossible,” I muttered.“Kiss me, Duchess.” C’mon, doesn’t that make you smile?!And I have to just say that Kristen Ashley writes the. BEST. epilogues.EVER!!!!The HEA was perfect and beautiful and I ended the book wiping my happy tears <3I don’t think I’ll be able to stop myself from going straight to book 2 of this series…How I see Max and Nina:For more of my reviews, visit Aestas Book BlogAnd come join the Aestas Book BlogFacebook Page

  • Misty
    2019-06-08 20:08

    I made it to page 1354 of 1466 before I decided to stop torturing myself (Kindle pages! The book isn't THAT long...though it sure felt like it).The main character, Nina, is British (American really, but has a British Accent). I didn't like her. It's not that I disliked her, I just didn't like her. I found her very one dimensional, without depth to her character. And she says Um a lot. A LOT. I tried to use the find button to find a specific paragraph that really irked me, but I gave up after the first 100 "Um.."'s. Here's how it went.Max "So you knew?"Nina "Um..."Max But you didn't tell me?"Nina "Um..."Max " How could you not have told me ?"Nina "Um..."Max " Didn't you know how that would hurt me? Jesus Nina!"Nina "Um..."Ok, possibly not quite that bad, but seriously, there were quite a few "Jesus, shoot my head off now!" moments for me. If Nina wasn't bad enough, the rest of the characters were. Maybe it's because I'm from the west coast, and never been to Colorado,but none of them seemed real to me. Especially the way they talked. They were all over the top, and they were ALL eccentric. I can understand having a kookie mother, or neighbour, or main character, or sister... but when they're all competing it hurts my eyes!Max... I had to re-read his sentences SEVERAL times because they left critical words out. Not a grammatical error, either- as it was done throughout the book. I don't know why, perhaps people in Colorado talk like this, but I sincerely doubt it. It aggravated me to no end. Oh, and Max also says "Yeah" a lot, which bothered me. It seems British or Australian. "Nina, just don't do it again. Yeah?" But the main thing for me is that they ALL sounded alike, and none of them had any distinguishing characteristics. They were too cliche. Macho mountain man always protecting his woman, eccentric mother who wants to move in next door, crazy hermit get the idea.And Max...I have nothing against domineering men. I LOVED Fifty Shades, and I think that's why this was on my recommended list. But Max isn't the same. Sure he talks dirty, but it didn't turn me on. I didn't feel the chemistry between him or Nina either- I mean, he falls in love with her because she gets pissed at his cabin? Really? After that it was over, and he'd die for her. Oh, taking her car keys away? That kind of did it for me. She wasn't even angry (well,the book says she was angry, but I didn't see it!). The moment his lips touched hers, she was happy. I would love to meet a man whose lips are so magical, no matter how angry I was, I forgave him instantly and jumped on my back. Ugh.Take this review with a grain of salt, because I'm obviously a dissenter here. A book with this many 5 star reviews must have something going for it... I'm just not sure what. Maybe the sex scenes? They were pretty hot. But I can't even bring myself to finish the last 100 pages to find out who did it (the murder, which apparently is the "plot" of this book). I don't care- about who did it, or why, or even that the guy is dead. I grew up reading Harlequin romance novels, and while my literary palette has slowly graduated, I do still love to read beach novels and easy reads. I was hoping this would be one of them.Alas, all I can think is ick- and I'm glad I don't live in Colorado!

  • Kristen
    2019-05-29 15:02

    Solid 4 starsWow! Kristen Ashley is one fantastic storyteller! I adore her charismatic characters, her intimate writing style, and her fabulous, sexy, overprotective, alpha heroes. Her heroes are truly swoonalicious!Overall, I really enjoyed The Gamble. I did feel the book was a tad long-winded and wish the hero and heroine spent more time together without the constant interruptions from the secondary characters. With that said, I still loved this story. I loved Max's and Nina's characters. I loved their chemistry, as well as their bantering. I did have a few small issues with their lack of communication (i.e., talking about Max's deceased wife) and Nina's inability to utter more words than Um... Max... and I'm sorry?  Those small annoyances, however, were not enough to hinder my overall enjoyment of the story. (Note: I might tear my hair out in frustration if all Kristen Ashley's heroines use the term "I'm sorry?" when not comprehending a question or statement. Just saying.).The secondary characters were superbly developed, entertaining, endearing, and, frankly, nuttier than fruitcakes! There were times I felt Nina and the cast of characters belonged on an episode of the Jerry Springer Show.  It became that kind of crazy! That being said, I couldn't help but fall in love with them. The best part of The Gamble, other than Max, was the epilogue. It's become my favorite epilogue to date. It was poignant, heartwarming, and left me with happy tears and a full heart. Thank you Kristen Ashley for another great story with a lot of heart-and-soul. If you're already a Kristen Ashley addict, or interested in checking out her books, be sure to stop by our Kristen Ashley Addict's Support Group here on Goodreads!

  • UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish
    2019-05-18 18:07

    There are already many excellent reviews of this book, so I’m going to keep mine short - I kept seeing Kristen Ashley’s name show up on my Goodreads friends’ status and review updates, so I had to see for myself what all the hoopla was about! Well, to be honest, I can't quite put my finger on it, but whatever it is about this book and this author, I’m sold! The writing isn’t flawless and it took me a bit to get used to the author’s style, but once I did it was easy to read and I couldn't put it down. The characters are often times annoying as hell, especially Max who is, hands down, one of the most obnoxious, domineering men I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading about. The story itself is all over the place and yet easy to follow and a joy to read. The bottom line - Sometimes heartwarming, sometimes tragic, The Gamble is a funny, romantic, hot story, one I truly, truly enjoyed!-----If you're a Kristen Ashley addict, or just interested in checking her books, be sure to stop by our Kristen Ashley Addict's Support Group here on Goodreads!

  • Shawna
    2019-06-13 16:16

    5+ stars – Contemporary RomanceThe Gamble is my second Kristen Ashley read, and I enjoyed it as much as Sweet Dreams, mainly because yummy, protective alpha hero Max actually rocked my world more than SD’s Tate. Nina and Max were great together, and the story kept me completely engaged, despite the fact that it’s very lengthy. The Gamble is another winner, and I’m looking forward to reading more from this author. 5 stars!One of my favorite scenes is when Max mops the floor with Nina’s snooty ex-fiancé, Niles, without even delivering a single punch.(view spoiler)[He put the knuckles of his fist to the table, leaned toward Niles and spoke quietly, cuttingly, in his rough, gravelly voice.“Fucked her last night, man, and this morning. Five times. Five. It was like she hadn’t been touched in a decade. So fuckin’ sweet. Damn,” he taunted, his eyes locked on Niles. “You’ve had her, you gotta know, not enough money in the world’s worth that.”“Not one fuckin’ thing gentlemanly about protecting what’s yours. Looks like you’re gonna lose it, you do everything you can to stop that from happening.” Max looked back to Niles. “And you didn’t do that. She was a week away from me, she walked into a room I was in holdin’ another man’s hand, I’d lose my fuckin’ mind. Not at her. Wonderin’ where I lost my way and I’d talk to her about how to find my way back.” (hide spoiler)]Max:Nina["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Baba
    2019-05-19 14:08

    REVIEW COMPLETED SEPTEMBER 6, 2012"You'll get the good stuff, Duchess." Wonder Max. Divine.Admittedly, my Max did change his eye color from grey to brown. Whatever. He is gorgeous."Forgot about carin' about someone so much you would do everything in your power to stop them havin' pain."I should have read The Gamble sooner rather than later. Yes, Sweet Dreams and Tate will always stay above and beyond, however, Max…he is simply another divine KA hero. I was surprised that he had very few jerk-ish moments, and I felt that he was kind of tamer than her other badass alphas."You're being domineering again," I informed him.I felt his mouth grin under mine and watched his eyes do it."Yeah, baby, fair warnin', when we're naked, you better get used to that."I gasped at his words then he kissed me.Without a shadow of a doubt scrumptious, studtastic, yet caring and tender Max is responsible for another unforgettable read. Max challenged Nina. He made her think and kept her on her toes. Max is the opposite of boring, that's for sure, and Wonder Max offered me another wonderful taste of KA sweet. Mmmm…Max is sex on a stick! And while we're on it, the sex was good, however, for such a loooong book I'd've appreciated some more smexy times. Whatever. Despite that The Gamble is not a perfect book, there is always something very specific that I can find in every KA story: a feel of utter contentment after having read one of her novels. Kristen is able to make me want to devour her stories and characters. Yet again, she left me wanting more."I'm not making out with you in a bar.""Why not?""Why?"His face again dipped closer. "Because first I want you to. And second whether you believe it or not, guys are checkin' you out and that'd be me stakin' my claim.""Staking your claim?""It's a guy thing.""It's a Macho Mountain Man thing.""Same thing.""You're impossible.""You gonna kiss me or what?""If I don't you're just going to kiss me anyway, aren't you?"Again, he gave me a grin. "You finally got that?""Impossible," I muttered."Kiss me, Duchess."Where this book did not quite work for me was the heroine. I'm very sorry to say it but Nina has to be one of KA's most annoying heroines. She was simply too neurotic and hysterical for me. That said, she was always so wrapped up in her own drama and neuroses that she never gave enough thought about what Max was going through. I've had my issues with her jumping to conclusions all the freakin' time, and when did she actually ask Max about the stuff that bothered her? I mean why is it so difficult to voice what you'd like to know? Now and then I silently told her "Just spill it already!!" I think Nina has a hearing defect 'cause she did not listen to me. Having said that, she was listening to other people's insights and was jumping to conclusions again. Yeah, and then when Max laid it all out to dear Nina…hell, what did she do, huh? She was (view spoiler)[running away. (hide spoiler)] *pulls hair out* Nina, just get your head sorted! Further, I really didn't appreciate it that she had to tell me what Max was thinking or feeling or how he'd react. Bottom line: she was very exhausting. Now that my Nina rant is over, let me say something positive about this heroine. Nina had some terrific moments. When Mindy tried (view spoiler)[to commit suicide, Nina gave everything she had to save her life.(hide spoiler)] And their conversation after this "incident" was very thoughtful and heartwarming. It really touched me in a major way. Lovely.It was then I wondered if things would have felt differently if Max had been around when (view spoiler)[Charlie died. (hide spoiler)] If I'd have had this, maybe not the view, but his strong arms around me, his cheek to my hair. If I'd had him to hold onto.I really liked Brody, Mindy, Cotton, Nellie and Steve (Nina's mom and stepdad). As always the cast of secondary characters was amazing. Kristen brought them to life and they simply clicked for me.From time to time I had to suspend belief a little bit, especially when Nina (view spoiler)[flew into the windshield and hardly hurt herself. (hide spoiler)] Right, this is fiction and I have to live with it. What grated on my nerves as well was the screeching, shrieking, and crying (shouting). Let's just say that less is more. Then again, I couldn't help but enjoy it and shake my head when the bunch of crazy yet endearing people cracked me up.Kristen writes the very best epilogues--ever. Max was holding (view spoiler)[their super cute baby in his lap. Yeah, Max, I'm going to let you borrow my very own cutie pie 'cause I know you're going to take care of him. <3 <3 <3And then at the end this specific scene...I'm happy for you, honey, Anna said and Max closed his eyes.Then he opened them and pulled Nina closer."I'm happy too," he whispered.I'm going now. If Nina asks where he's gone, tell her I'm taking Charlie with me.Max didn't answer.I love you, Max, and I love the way she loves you.She would love that, Anna would. That was pure Anna."Find peace, Swanee," Max replied.Already did, 'bout three years ago, baby.Max's jaw clenched to fight against his throat getting tight. (hide spoiler)]Yeah, my throat got very tight. Beautiful.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • ♥ℳelody
    2019-06-12 14:08

    DNF @ 45% I give up. My first Kristen Ashley read and most likely my last. I've heard so much about her books, I finally got around to trying one and unfortunately the experience was not so great. Rather miserable to be honest. Just gonna get straight to the problems...THE WRITINGDear gawd. There is absolutely no structure or editing in this. It's a looooong-winded mess with no direction. I needed to re-read a Lisa Kleypas book to flush this out of my system. Gah.-Use of parenthesis"Charlie, as ever (if he'd been there but, unfortunately, he was not), was right"What is the point of this?! Someone explain this to me because I really don’t understand this superfluous writing approach. It's totally unnecessary. Stating the obvious is one thing but doing it constantly and in such a manner is super annoying and very disruptive. It breaks up sentences that are already fragmented or ridiculously long so it's hard to follow along. The writing does not flow well because of this. -Emphasis on wrong words. KA has this strange tendency of italicizing words that do not need emphasizing and only manages to make the characters sound strangely juvenile."He cracked two eggs into the side of the skillet with the bacon and the bacon grease and I stared." Just...WTH?-Fragment and Run-on sentences. They wreaked havoc throughout the book. The inner dialogue is riddled with endless rambling sentences that have no end and are hard to follow. Words are missing in some places, incomplete sentences that just hang there and make no sense in other places. "And, I also had to admit, no matter where I went and what I did, Niles didn't seem bothered with whether I arrived safe and sound. He didn't check in, even if I was traveling for work and would be away for a few days. And when I checked in, he didn't seem bothered with the fact that I was checking in. Or, lately (because I tested it a couple times), when I didn't check in and then arrived home safely, sometimes days later, he didn't seem bothered by the fact that I hadn't checked in." -Summarizing and repetition of words."After doing that, I cleaned up my face. Then I threw another log on the fire. Then I stared at the log burning, trying to sort out my head. Then I failed at sorting out my head. Then when it got late, I made dinner for one and ate cookies for dessert. Then I read until it got later."WHAT'S WITH ALL THE LISTS??! Stop stop stop it. -Shitty grammar: 'the further fact', contentish, nice-ish, fuckeva, a-fuckin-gain.-Flat characters. There is no substance or dimension to the characters in this story. All the men talk the same. And it doesn’t help that the entire story is being told in first person by the heroine, so readers are already at a disadvantage. But the bizarre dialogue and over the top reactions and mannerisms does not fit the characters KA tries to bring to life. A nineteen year old girl who was raped 3 weeks prior and is in an abusive relationship does not skip-dance everywhere she goes and cry for joy so easily. Very cartoonish and inaccurate. Which brings me to my next major bone to pick...MAIN CHARACTERSNina- Our heroine is one inconsistent spineless stuttering mess with zero personality. She’s a 37 year old British-American lawyer who’s supposedly confident, independent and has had years of experience with men—- 8 relationships to be exact. Yes EIGHT. Bwaha! Yeah...ok. Yet she comes across as oblivious, stammering, huffy, frigid, defensive and unbelievably dense to certain things. It’s obscene how every little thing needs to be pointed out to this woman. Whenever she’s around Max, the 'Hunky Colorado Mountain Man’ she’s reduced to this:She's a stammering mono-syllable confused idiot who parrots and repeats everyone else’s simple questions. The countless ‘I-...Um...Sorry?’ DROVE ME FUCKING NUTS! She’s confused when someone asks a question, when someone changes the subject, when someone tries to pay her a compliment. How is this woman a lawyer? For someone who's apparently so smart she seemed to be the last one to buy a clue or would point out the obvious to everyone like she's sherlock and solved a mystery. RME. Good grief. Am I seriously supposed to relate to someone like her? It just made no sense and was unreal. Make it a drinking game, take a shot every time this woman says I’m sorry? in this book and I promise you will be knocked off your butt after just 50 pages.Here are some examples of our brilliant attorney:She shook her head and announced, “Damon did this.”“Did what?” I asked stupidly, feeling my heart start beating faster and my palms start itching.“Your car, honey,” Max answered, and I looked at him. “My car?” I repeated..He tipped his head to the rental and his arm slid around my shoulder. “Damon, he did that to your car.” ***************"Hello? Nina?"My body jolted and I asked "What?" He grinned and asked back, "Baby, you awake?""Um...""Sit down.""But-""Sit down.""All right." I muttered.*************“So, Nina, you come back with Max?" Harry asked me.“Back?” I asked him.“Yeah,” Harry said grinning a somewhat goofy grin.“Um….” I replied, answering his confusing question the only way I could. “No”I just….can’t. Max- He’s the most cardboard-like hero I think I’ve read in a Contemporary setting. Nothing about him impressed me. He’s a walking cheesy overly-sentimental extremely macho stereotype. Like..where did you get this guy?He’s a rugged alpha man in his 40s but doesn’t talk like one at all. The endless slang, excessive swearing with words like ‘fuckeva’ and ‘a-fuckin-gain’ made it worse. Get serious. I found none of it attractive or realistic. And I had a hard time understanding what Max saw in Nina that had him so quickly enamored with her. He’s calling her cutesy names like ‘Duchess’ ‘baby’ and ‘babe’ just after 2 days of meeting her and taking liberties like they are in a full fledged relationship. Very odd. Apparently to him she’s the cutest thing in the world when she gets angry and he goes from not caring at all to being wildly attracted to her because she’s a big softy when she's passed out unconscious with the flu. -__- Yeah...nope. There was absolutely zero build-up or momentum with these two. I only read up to page 259 and the only thing I got was them ‘making out’ constantly and Nina waffling and finding endless excuses to leave Max. Didn't even manage to get to the first love scene. This was a book that had no business being 688 pages long when all you have is endless droning on and chewing scenery. Nothing happens.Clearly this wasn’t a winner for me. I have a few other works by KA on my TR list but I’m not sure if I can sit through another round of this. She’s not for everyone that’s for sure. I have quite a few GR friends who’ve given her work high ratings but even so, the overall issue people have is with her writing--which I'm honestly surprised could ever be overlooked. Unfortunately for me the writing is the deal breaker and something I could not ignore. There was no way for me to even get into the story, what little there was of it, with all the ridiculous bizarre hiccups I kept encountering. Sorry Kristen Ashley is not for me.

  • ღFloღ the coffee addict
    2019-06-03 19:58

    4 the definition of guilty pleasure STARSAnd another Kristen Ashley book for me. I simply can't stop with this woman. I'm guessing it has something to do with my current mood and my need to read something lovely that makes me feel coming home, or eating comfort food in grandma's kitchen.Anyway...why did I put 'the definition of guilty pleasure' up there in my rating? Because it's one of those chick flicks where you have to suspend your disbelieve and just go with the flow.“I looked to the ceiling and told God, “God, next time I want an adventure, strike me with lightning. You have my permission.”Thirty-six year old Nina Sheridan needs a timeout from her job and her life, but most importantly from her neglecting fiancé. So naturally she hops on a plane from England to America, drives into the Colorado Mountains where she booked a beautiful A-Frame for two weeks.Turns out the idyllic get-away is occupied by the owner and her booking was made by mistake. Said owner, Holden "Max" Maxwell makes her turn around in a snow storm to find a hotel room in town. What could possibly go wrong, right?“When I met you, my first thought was you were very pretty, great fuckin' eyes, but not my type. High-class which means high maintenance. Then you got pissed and that was it. Even if you hadn't been in that ditch, now you'd still be in my bed. So if you think this attitude is a turn off, baby you're wrong.” Just a minor accident. Nina lands in a ditch and wakes up in the A-Frame...rescued by Max. *sigh*The moment she hit that snow bank I jumped up and down and screamed...OMG she's about to be rescued by someone tall, dark and handsome...See where I'm going with the whole cliché, guilty pleasure, suspend your disbelieve thing?No?Well, I'll give you one more thing. Turns out Nina gets sick...honest to god...fever and not being able to walk sick. Max takes care of her and after she is better he won't let her leave...o.O I mean he is sweet about it and there is a spark there and they go into town and do stuff and have guests over and all that, but common sense says ...RUN, girl...RUN!Remember? Suspend your disbelieve!“You think to slide back, settle for something that made you run away because you think it's safe, because it's familiar, because your scare of taking a GAMBLE on me, I'm warning you now, Duchess, I'm not gonna allow that.”If you just go with the flow, this is one hell of an entertaining book. The whole town is involved and is cheering for Max and Nina and there are a lot of crazy mountain town people shenanigans going on and oh...there's a murder. Didn't expect that, did you?Then there is also the matter of the fiancé and family is always a bad thing and thank god for pretty mountain would be really hard otherwise. ;P“Babe,” he replied, grinning then said no more. Still being helpful, I explained, “I know you think that word speaks volumes but, I have to tell you, it actually doesn’t.” My biggest problem was Nina. She is a smart woman, a lawyer, and she is very independent and self sufficient and all that. But for some reason she doesn't talk in whole sentences. Here are her favourite words: 'Um...' 'Max.' and my personal favourite...'Sorry?'I think she has some hearing problems. Nina doesn't get what you're saying the first time around, which is odd since she is a smart girl. But in the end it leads to people always repeating their sentences to her...Ugh and that's just not cool.But Max on the other hand is AWSOME!! He's all -mountain man, no bullshit, I take what I want and I take care of what I own- fabulous. It's pretty neat, in a romance book kind of way.“You’re being domineering again,” I informed him.I felt his mouth grin under mine and watched his eyes do it. “Yeah, baby, fair warnin’, when we’re naked, you better get used to that.”I gasped at his words then he kissed me.” So, Max the local poster boy who everyone loves and the American girl who lived too long in England and who speaks in an English accent. They're the best. OMG, they fight...mostly because Nina is a hell cat and Max is a stubborn mountain man and they bicker and they are made for each other. From the moment they met there was no other way but for them to be a couple...fate really. ;DI'm going to read the first book in The ‘Burg series next...just hopping around and checking out all of KA's books and different scenarios. I'll be back to the Colorado Mountains in no time.See you then. ;D

  • Ana
    2019-05-27 13:08

    Nina Sheridan desperately needed a timeout from her life (especially her fiancee). So spending a week in a rented A-Frame in the Colorado mountains sounds like haven.Unfortunately, when she gets there she has a nasty surprise. The owner changed his mind and is staying in the house.And to top it all, her car went into a ditch and she has a nasty flu. A great start, no? And that's just the beginning.Nina was an OK heroine, I liked her. She's feisty, argumentative, has a pretty bad temper, and she's hell on wheels when upset. But she's also sweet and kind, and incredibly helpful to those she likes. Her life so far has been one trial after another, and her vacation is no exception:...but I don’t know why you want me. It’s mad.”“Nina –”“I mean, I go on a vacation to try to figure out my life and here I am, my leg’s scraped up, my ribs are bruised, I’ve been backhanded and punched, I’ve been to a hospital once and a Police Station three times and I’ve been into it with practically everyone in town and, if you take out the time I’ve been sick, I’ve only been here a week!”“Duchess, let me –”“What is it with me?” I asked over him then again didn’t wait for an answer, just kept blathering. “I need a timeout to deal with my timeout! That’s how messed up I am. And you’re a good guy, the best, you take care of people, everyone respects you, you’re nice and you’re handsome and you’re generous and smart and you don’t need all that is messed up me messing up you.”Luckily, coming to Gnaw Bone (that's the name of the town, I'm not kidding), seems to be one of the best decision's she made in her life.Max, what to say about Max. He's a great guy. Generous, steady, willing to help anyone and everyone. His personal life took a hit 10 years ago, but he didn't get out of rails (except when it comes to women). And now there's Nina (AKA Duchess). She's irresistible. He can be a Neanderthal (actually he is one most of the time), and autocratic as well, but he means well, so I can forgive him that.I like how their relationship developed. The flirting, bantering - it was incredibly amusing. But they shared the painful stuff as well. And mostly they opened up to each other as well.The setting as well, the Colorado MountainsI like the people of Gnaw Bone, they are so unique. And Nina's mother is incredible. Love that woman.There were some problems with the editing. I noticed some mistakes, and there were sentences that I simply didn't get even after rereading them. It's not that bad, but if you can't stand them, this may not be the book for you.The reason for the 4 star rating is mostly Nina. Her behavior towards the end started to irritate me. I understand her issues and fears, but she was sabotaging their relationship, simply kept waiting for a reason to leave. And the book was long. I even think too long. There's so much stuff crammed in, that it became a bit ridiculous at times.All in all, I liked the book and I will be reading the sequel Sweet Dreams.Rating:4.5 stars

  • Pearl Angeli
    2019-05-21 12:48

    "You think to slide back, settle for something that made you run away because you think it's safe, because it's familiar, because you're scared of takin' a gamble on me, I'm warnin' you now, Duchess, I'm not gonna allow that."4 Holden Maxwell Stars!Be still my heart. This book was all kinds of sweet and adorable and wonderful!The Gamble may be wordy but it was so worthy. 670+ pages and I regret nothing! Perhaps it has something to do with the way the author made me feel so ooey and gooey inside all throughout the book and how she provided such an atmospheric depiction of Colorado Mountain.The story started when English heroine Nina Sheridan went to Colorado Mountain for a vacation-slash-timeout. She was confused with what's going on with her relationship with her fiancé and she needed a moment to think. In order to do that, she has to go somewhere far and cozy and Colorado Mountain was perfect for it. The moment she stepped into the beautiful mansion she's supposed to stay, she met the handsome (or should I say, perfect) owner named Max. While staying there they were able to get to know each other and well, eventually developed attraction and fell in love. Of course it wasn't that perfect and easy since Nina's already engaged and Max has a complicated past that she has to find out.I found this book quite a guilty-pleasure. I'm a first-time Kristen Ashley reader and I couldn't help but admire her delicious writing. She has this way of engaging her readers through her entertaining characters and romantic, sexy innuendos. Max was literal Alpha-Male. He was a jealous and possessive caveman but I couldn't help but fall in love with his character. While Max was sometimes a jerk, Nina was the exact opposite. She was soft but she's a tough one. Not to mention she was cute and funny. The two of them totally made a great couple and yes, they're now my favorite sweethearts.There were lots of conflicts in this book and while I found some of them quite unnecessary, such as Mindy's personal dilemmas, I think they added a little bit of spice to the story. There were also lots of misunderstandings between Max and Nina but they were resolved and I was happy with that. One thing that made me appreciate this book was Nina and Max's relationship which felt real to me. They both have imperfections but they've willingly accept them. They also made some mistakes but they corrected them and didn't let them become a reason to let each other fall apart. The give and take relationship amazed me.And now here's my favorite line from Max to Niles:"Fucked her last night, man, and this morning. Five times. Five. It was like she hadn’t been touched in a decade. So fuckin’ sweet. Damn,” he taunted, his eyes locked on Niles. “You’ve had her, you gotta know, not enough money in the world’s worth that." Yes. Be still my heart...The Gamble, as a whole, was a beautiful start to the series. After reading it, I decided to read more books written by Kristen Ashley. She has so many novels that were recommended to me by my lovely friends. Do you fancy winter romance books? Then put this on your tbr. :)

  • Christy
    2019-06-10 14:17

    Loved this book... The main reason I loved it? Max!Nina is tired of her life. Living in England, engaged to a boring man who never listens to her, she decides she needs a time out. This brings her to the Colorado mountains for a two week get away. She arrives to the house she's rented, only to find there had been a mix up. The owner Max is in town. After getting in an argument, Nina decides to leave for a hotel. But its storming. And she is really ill. She ends up in a ditch and none other than Alpha Mountain Man Max <3 nurses her back to health. "Duchess, remind me never to get you that riled. You're a handful when you're angry but you're hell on wheels when you're seriously pissed."Now there is a lot of drama going on in this little mountain town right now. Nina meets a lot of new people who she falls in love with right away. You will love these supporting characters! I know I did! Mindy, Brody, Jeff, Cotton, Arlene, Nina's mom and Steve- but no one could hold a candle to Max. What a man! He could be overprotective and a little possesive, but he was also incredibly sweet(Oh I loved the nicknames: Duchess, honey, baby, darlin'...) Couldn't get enough of Max!"You're being domineering again.""Yeah, baby, fair warnin', when we're naked, you better get used to that." I actually really loved Nina as well. She was funny and cute, but she also didn't take any crap. She stood up for her self and other people. I loved her interaction with Mindy and some of the other characters. She had tragedy in her life with past relationships and her brother Charlie, but she used her past to help others which is an admirable thing to do. This was a really good read, loved the characters and the writing. The book was a little long, but it didn't feel that way. There was just a lot of story and it really gave you time to get to know the characters- it wasn't at all rushed. The ending was great, nothing better than an epilogue that leaves a huge smile on your face! "There was a time in my life where I used to roll the dice. I did it a lot and I always lost. Every time, I lost and when I lost, I lost everything. So I got scared of rolling the dice. Thank you for showing me it was worth taking a gamble again, darling. It feels good to finally win and win huge."

  • Stacey is Sassy
    2019-06-12 12:06

    The Gamble definitely paid off.I've decided that my re-reads will be done on audio. With my busy schedule and real life, I don't have time to enjoy my re-reads anymore. The beauty of audiobooks is that you can listen to them anytime. I listen to them when I'm exercising, baking, doing school pick-ups (obviously not when my little munchkin is in the car) and when I'm mucking around on Pinterest. As these are re-reads, I don't need to worry that I'll miss something important or need clarification on a plot point, it's just a nice and relaxing way to keep reading while I'm doing stuff.The Gamble was one of the first books I read by Kristen Ashley and I have a signed paperback that sits on my shelf and never gets touched. If I want to see the message inside...I look at the photos I took. I want it to stay in mint condition. I wasn't sure how the audio would go, to be honest. Nina's character is an American who has spent a lot of time in England and has a "bit" of an accent. The narrator managed Nina's English accent perfectly while also giving Max a fantastic slow and smooth drawl. I always knew when the characters were changing as there was a slight difference in the accents and the way they talked which made it easy to distinguish them.Max and Nina's story is still one of my favourites. Nina comes to America from England to have a break from her fiancé and to decide if she really wants to stay with him. They had been having difficulties in the relationship leaving Nina concerned she was making the wrong decision. Unfortunately, Niles, the fiancé, wasn't listening when Nina voiced her concerns and didn't really see any problems with the way things were. It doesn't take Nina long to realise that she doesn't really matter to Niles and his work was a lot more important to him than she was. Even when she finally explains this all to him, he can't be bothered or is too busy to "deal" with it. I was glad to see the back end of Niles.Max has faced heartache and managed to keep going even though he's not happy. When Nina rocks up to his house for her holiday, they realise a mistake had happened and Nina's holiday destination will need relocation. Stuff happens, Nina's sick, the plans are a mess and Max ends up having to nurse Nina back to health. It doesn't take Max long to realise that Nina is awakening feelings in him that he hasn't had for a very long time. He knows he wants more with Nina and doesn't want to see her return to England. When Niles eventually comes out to see what the problem is, Max explains to Niles where he went wrong and why he doesn't get to keep Nina.The Gamble is at times funny and at times so sad you can't help but shed a tear. All of these emotions are hard to hold back as you're sitting in your car out the front of your kid's school. The squirming at the set of lights when Max is speaking all husky and smooth, demanding that Nina "tell him" (while he's deep inside her) the words he wants to hear. The crying when your heart is breaking for the woman who feels dirty and unclean. The laughing out loud when Nina turns into Zombie Nina in the mornings. But generally, this book just leaves me with a smile on my face.I still love The Gamble and the audio just reinforces my love.To buy The Gamble from Amazon - buy the audio of The Gamble from Amazon -’m an Aussie chick who loves to read and review romance, drink coffee, be a Style Setter and stalk David Gandy. To see more of my reviews, fashion, food and pervathons -

  • * Meli Mel *
    2019-06-08 14:48

    ♥♥♥ 5 'Macho Mountain Man' Stars ♥♥♥The Gamble takes place in a small town named Gnaw Bone, Colorado. This is the place Nina Sheridan goes to for a "timeout" from her fiancé Niles. When she arrives at the cabin she rented, she meets Max, the owner of the Cabin. Max only rents out the cabin when he isn't home, so there has been a mix up. He pretty much kicks her out of the cabin and tells her to go to a hotel. Nina gets pissed off then storms away only to get stuck in the snow and fall sick. Max finds her and takes care of her during her illness. He agrees to have her stay, and as time goes by, they start to fall for each other. But their lives are disturbed by the events that are occuring in town. One being a murder of man Max knew, and him being a suspect.●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●“You just need to know, I gotta fight to keep what we got so we can build on it, I will. Him, your Dad, you, I don’t give a fuck. In my life, I’ve learned when to let shit go and when to fight. This, babe, what we got, I’ll fight for.”●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●My sweet, sweet Holden 'Max' Maxwell... how I LOVED him. I want to be sick just so I can have him take care of me.... *sigh*. I melted with the way he cared for Nina while she was ill. He was domineering and very much an Alpha but it was never overbearing. He was super loving and I just wanted to kiss him for it. He took care of almost everyone in that town in some way. I loved the kisses to the forhead, him calling Nina "Duchess" and just pretty much anything he would do. And he does what every girl wants from her man... HE FREAKING LISTENS!! He made me swoon at how he remembered all the small things that had to do with Nina. He had a tragic past though, and still, he was kind and didn't stay bitter about what happened. I loved that he showed Nina how it's like to be in a relationship where she matters. He was just perfect... *dreamy smile* LOVED HIM!!●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●"There was a time in my life where I used to roll the dice. I did it a lot and I always lost. Every time, I lost and when I lost, I lost everything. So I got scared of rolling the dice. Thank you for showing me it was worth taking a gamble again, darling. It feels good to finally win and win huge."●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●I really liked Nina 'Duchess' Sheridan. She was definitely a feisty nut but I loved that she had some backbone. This girl can really stand up for herself, even when she's facing someone bigger and scarier. She will defend those she cares about. She leaves England and her dumbass fiancé to find herself, to figure out her wants. I loved that even though her past was not a walk in the park either, she remained strong. Yes she had a shield, but she was still very loving to those around her. I'm so glad Max was able to breakdown her barrier because together they were so freaking adorable. I love how independent she was and how she supportive she was of Mindy. She was an amazing friend. I just loved her.Their romance was definitely what had me glued to this book. But I was also quite interested with what was going on with the case of the murder of Curtis. I wanted to know who did it. It was like freaking clue, and I love that game. I suspected a person and then I was SO shocked to find out who the killer really was. I had quickly dismissed this person and that person ended up being it. What also had me interested was the story with Mindy and Jeff. I was so happy for her, she's been through so much and all I wanted was for her to be blissfully happy. I'm glad she found that with Jeff. Niles... He was a friggin' idiot!...Nuff said. Damon... I just wanted to castrate him... Nuff said. Shauna... I hated the bitch... Nuff said. Kami was a bitch in the beginning, and in a way, I'm glad she had to go through all that she did in order for her to see the light. She may not be 100% bitch free, but she became better. I loved Nina's family, especially her mom, she was a hoot. I also love how Kristen Ashley incorporated Nina's brother, Charles into the story, that was awesome!●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●“You know, I do too,” I heard his gravelly voice rumble quietly.“What?” I asked his throat.He didn’t answer and when his silence lasted a long time, I lifted my head and looked down at his face to see he looked sated and serious.“What do I know?” I queried.His fingers stopped their roaming, one arm locked around my waist, the other hand slid up my spine and into my hair. His amazing gray eyes didn’t leave mine when he answered gently, “I do too. I said it the other day and I meant it.” His fingers tensed against my scalp. “I’m in love with you, Duchess.” ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●  ●The ending was great. I liked how everything was resolved. But what I absolutely LOVED, was the epilogue. It was so adorably sweet. I had the hugest smile and a few tears. I loved it! I actually wanted to know more about Mindy and Jeff. But I am so happy with the HEA. I LOVED Max, I was surprised I really liked the heroine and the story was really entertaining. The only thing I could complain about would be the length. It was so long! But still, I really enjoyed it.

  • Lana ❇✾Dirty Girl Romance❇✾
    2019-05-18 18:06

    4 Please stop saying you're sorry before I hit you stars"You lose anyone, there’s no replacing them. What you need to get is that's precious. You get to keep that. You don't want to replace it. That doesn't mean you can't find something else just as good."Welcome to Gnaw Bone, Colorado. I'm not sure why I spent my time searching through pictures to find my perfect Max and Nina, where really, I could have just gone with (Did I just age myself?) I love, and I mean LOVE Kristen Ashley books. I have no idea how I managed to read every book in the Colorado Man series BUT this one. Really. I'm still trying to figure that out. Obviously I've been a bad bad girl, and Max need to punish me...thoroughly... But I digress. After reading a few of KA's recent books, my first thought when I started reading The Gamble? THIS! This is KA at her finest. Damn but I missed her. Don't get me wrong, I've enjoyed her recent books, but it always felt a little off. So it was so great to get my KA fix with Max and Nina. What did I love the most about The Gamble? Max The man was perfect! No seriously friggin perfect! He said things like thisLearned some things in my life, Duchess, one of the most important, you find a good woman, you take care of her." "Please." "This happens between us, Duchess, I'd take care of you." "Don't." "Die doin' it," he vowed.He was growly and possessive and I just wanted to lick him! What? It's this thing I get with growly and possessive heroes. You don't? Huh. But then there was NinaNow I know I tend to have a short fuse when it comes to irritating heroines...but FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT'S HOLY she worked my last damn nerve. Here we have a 36 year old woman, a professional lawyer, and most of the time she acts like a teenager. Yes she was sassy when it came to standing up for herself and I liked that. But when it came to Max? GAH!I mean here we have a situation that can easily be resolved by talking it through. Max is willing to talk it out with her. Max even pretty much begs to talk things out with her. Yet every single time instead of talking it out, she just jumps to her own stupid conclusions. The other times she stews on it, gets mad and takes it out on Max, or just runs.Here you have this amazing, sexy, growling man that for some god unknown reason wants your crazy ass. Yet all you do is give him shit, more shit, and then dish up shit some more. I ask you Though to be fair, I would have been fine with all that. If I could give Nina just one handy dandy little thing. Please, for the sake of my sanity, Nina, look up the word "sorry". I'm sure there will be something in there. It felt like most of her vocabularly when it came to Max consisted of: "I'm sorry", "Um", and "Uh". GAH! The story itself was fantastic. I loved the mystery, suspense, and full out drama. All the side characters and their stories were great too. I love how KA can include a few side character plots without it getting muddy or confusing. The who-done-it ending caught me by complete and utter surprise. I did not see it coming at all. Then there was the epilogue. *GUSHING* No one and I mean NO ONE can write an epilogue quite like KA. And this one was no exception. Nina was definitely not a favorite heroine of mine, but luckily the book was still THAT good that I was able to more or less tolerate her. So that is all the heroine bashing you will be getting from me. And I thank you Though now I'm feeling the sudden urge to re-read this entire amazing series. *dreamy sigh*For more reviews visit:Dirty Girl Romance Book Blog

  • Rachel Reads Ravenously
    2019-05-31 20:05

    4 stars “In my life, I’ve learned when to let shit go and when to fight. This, babe, what we got, I’ll fight for.”The Gamble was my second ever Kristen Ashley novel. I think I discovered it on a random listopia list here on Goodreads. This is the book where I fell in love with her as an author, and I devoured the Mountain Man series. I've never read another series like this one, and I don't think I ever will.I love Max and his Duchess. Such a wonderful story of a lost woman who found herself with the help of the right man. The plot is a little crazy yeah, but just fall into it and the fantasy and you'll love it.My only criticism and why it's a 4 and not a 5 even after a reread is it's way too long. But otherwise it's wonderful.“Learned some things in my life, Duchess, one of the most important, you find a good woman, you take care of her.” “Please”“This happens between us, Duchess, I’d take care of you.”“Don’t”“Die doin’ it,” he vowed.”Follow me on ♥ Facebook ♥ Blog ♥ Instagram ♥ Twitter ♥

  • Jilly
    2019-05-23 19:50

    I've never actually watched one of those Lifetime movies that are dramatic and sappy, but I imagine that this is what they are like. Along with an improbable romance, there are kidnappings, suicide attempts, bar fights, abusive men, murders, and alien babies. (okay, maybe not the alien babies. Too bad because that would have been awesome! oh, oh, how about alien twin babies and one of them is an evil twin? Yes! I love evil twins!)This book is about Nina, an American girl who has spent most of her life in England and is engaged to a boring guy who doesn't care about her, and Max, an alpha Colorado mountain man who owns the cabin that Nina rented to get away from it all and decide if she really wants to marry Mr. Boring Dud. (I'm guessing "no".)Nina shows up at her rental cabin and finds out that there was a mistake and the owner, Max, is at home. He's a dick, she leaves, and promptly crashes her car into a ditch. Thanks a lot for making us women drivers look bad, Nina!!I bet she makes a great sandwich, though...Max saves her, and immediately she gets sick, so he keeps her at the cabin and nurses her back to health.Okay, that's really sweet, BUT, he also decides to undress her - including her bra, while she is asleep, to help. Ummm, dude, are you a nurse? Is my bra being on life-threatening? No? Then, hands-off motherfucker! No verbal consent means no touchy the goodies!Interestingly enough, Max has many young female friends that he considers like sisters to him. Why didn't he call one of them over to undress a woman he doesn't know who is definitely wearing an engagement ring? Hmmmm, good question. I don't want to call him Chester the Molester or anything, but... well, I just did. I can live with myself.Max must have liked the merchandise that he so creepily leered at while Nina was unconscious because when she is well, he tells her that he has taken the keys to her rental car and will not allow her to leave. He also called the only taxi service in town and told them not to pick her up if she called for help a ride. And, as I mentioned, this cabin is in a remote area of the woods....Director: this is the perfect setting for a cutesy rom-com!Isn't this romantic? Don't answer that. Because, you see, Max is hot, so this is all good. If he were old or ugly, this would be horrible and terrifying. But, he's hot. So,,,,, you know. It's cute and sweet - not a felony kidnapping and sexual molestation charge.Okay, but this is Kristen Ashley. All of her books have this kind of thing going on. It's fiction. I just have to keep reminding myself of this and then I can enjoy her books. Because, the woman sure does write some great characters, funny dialogue, and hilarious situations. If you can get past the almost criminally pushy main male characters, you will have a blast reading her books.Will I keep reading her books? Probably. Will I keep complaining about the overbearing alpha males that she writes? Definitely. What can I say? I apparently like to complain. Who knew? (Don't answer that!)

  • Kellie Maddox-Ward
    2019-06-11 16:08

    Dear GR Friends, After reading the 3 books in this series I am packing up my shit and moving to Colorado. I'm going to get me a Mountain man! Anyone with me? We shall leave on the red eye. Sincerly Kellie. Ok Seriously after reading the Rock Chick series and falling for most of them but Luke took top spot, and then the Dream Man series and falling head over heels for Tack and Hawk I didn't think I had much more in me. Until I met Max, Ty and Tate!GOOD DDAAYYMMNNNN My hoo ha was quivering!I loved this story. Leaving your stuck up Fiancee for a timeout only to meet the man of your dreams by staying in his house! Only that shit happens in fiction books! but what a great story it was, Amazing man, amazing woman, witty dialogue, great secondary characters, good laughs It has everything you could want! Get on this series! Seriously!

  • Jen
    2019-06-05 15:00

    This was another great Kristen Ashley read.. I did however find it somewhat long. In fact, I am thinking it was over 600 pages...I felt that some of the story could have been shaved down a bit; but even so I did enjoy this read over all! I am looking forward to the rest of the Colorado series, and of course; more of the gruff Alpha men that KA gives us in her stories!!! If you are a reader who enjoys Ms. Ahsley's style of writing; then this will be a book you will highly enjoy. A great addition to her many wonderful stories!!!

  • ♥Rachel♥
    2019-06-07 16:53

    Re-read (on audio) April 22nd 2015Just as good if not better the second time around. This is classic Kristen Ashley with all the rambling and crazy, fun friends. Of course wouldn't be KA without a delicious Alpha male who won't let go or take no for an answer. Emma Taylor does an excellent job with Nina's English accent. Max calling Nina "Duchess" made even more sense hearing her accent. December 25th 2012Well, this was a lot of fun! Can I have my own Colorado Macho Mountain Man?!! Max was a typical Kristen Ashley Alph-Male, but isn't that what we love about her writing? Domineering, possessive, growly, and of course, 100% HOT!! Nina was a cutie and I loved her big heart. This poor girl got knocked around a fair amount. I would say Daemon paid dearly, though. The secondary characters were loads of fun and provided extra entertainment throughout. This story was long but I never felt it lost my attention. KA definitely knows how to write an addictive story that will have you clicking through pages, oblivious to all that surrounds you. Favorite quote:"I lucked out, baby," Max went on. "When I was young life handed me somethin' beautiful. Then it took it away. Ten years down the road, somethin' different, but no less beautiful, showed up right at my front door. I knew it almost the minute I saw it and nothin' has happened since to shake that. You think, findin' that in you, I'm gonna let you change my password, write me some f&%ked up note and walk away?" A copy was provided by Grand Central Publishing through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.

  • Smitten's Book Blog
    2019-06-11 19:00

    As usual, Kristen Ashley doing what she does best! Hot, sexy, dominant, protective alpha males. 5 stars for Nina and Max!This book is long. To be honest, this was a bad week for me to read it as I had lots going on outside of my 'reading world'... but it's been sitting on my Kindle for ages and I just really felt the need for a good KA hero. And despite the length of this book, it does not drag. At all! It's fast paced, action packed and I wouldn't have wanted it to be any shorter.The story is that Nina Sheridan has escaped to the Colorado Mountains for a time out from her inattentive, unexciting fiancée, Niles. She intends to give herself time to think and work out whether marrying Niles is what she really wants or not, whether she wants the safe, monotonous life she was built for herself after a history of bad relationships, or whether there is more to life. But before she can get any thinking time done, Nina meets Max. Macho Mountain Man MaxHolden Maxwell owns the A-frame that Nina has rented for her little getaway. There's been a mistake and Max is home, so the A-frame shouldn't have been rented at all. Within minutes of meeting Nina and the gorgeous, but moody Max are arguing and Nina storms out into the snowstorm, heading for the nearest hotel. A series of events lead to Nina ending up back at the A-frame with Max and that is where she stays.But this is a KA book, so obviously, that isn't all that happens. The town of Gnaw Bone is thrown when the local bad-guy is murdered and everybody becomes a suspect. On top of that, Max's friends and family all have their own issues to deal with and before she knows it, Nina is embroiled in the lives of these people that she barely knows. Of course, as time goes on, Max decides that despite their initial spat, he rather likes Nina and tries to convince her to stay. So amongst all of the drama, Nina has to decide whether she wants to return to her humdrum life in England or take a gamble on Holden Maxwell and his mountain!"You think yo slide back, settle for something that made you run away because you think it's safe, because it's familiar, because you're scared of takin' a gamble on me, I'm warnin' you now, Duchess, I'm not gonna allow that."Phew... that's a long story short...As you'd expect from a KA book, The Gamble is laced with murder, kidnapping, villains, punch-ups and mystery. So much happens in this book. I love Kristen's writing. She's so clever, the way she builds a story, develops all of the surrounding characters, keeps the mystery flowing throughout the book to create a fantastic, frantic, 'I'd-never-have-predicted-that' climax. Obviously, with all Kristen Ashley's books, the drama is all completely over the top. Completely nuts. But completely great! It's kind of almost comical, how far fetched KA's story lines, but it just works with the whole feel of her writing, the characters, etc.Amongst all the shootings, betrayal and crime fighting, there's a deliciously sexy romance. Nina and Max's chemistry is off the charts hot. It isn't all that graphic and it is most definitely secondary to everything else that is going on this book, but there were times when I thought my Kindle might start smoking. Max is a dirty-talker, ladies. *fans self* He's so sensual and confident, so determined and sure of what he wants, and that in itself is so scrummy.And then Max really kissed me and I became so lost, I never wanted to be found.Nina is brilliant. She's sassy and ballsy. But she's also incredibly defensive. She's been through some terrible relationships. She's been cheated on, lied to, beaten and she's lost people she loved. She's erected high, impenetrable walls to keep herself safe from any more hurt and Max struggles to break these down. "Maybe she thinks she's not worthy. You want her, man, your job is to convince her she's wrong."However, she's hilariously confrontational. In the week she is at Gnaw Bone she has it out with just about everybody living there. It's brilliant when her mouth runs away with her and her hackles are raised. And I loved Max's reaction to this, too.So, Max. Gorgeous. Absolutely, one percent, gorgeous hunk of man meat. Like most of KA's heroes, he's completely and utterly everything that defines 'Alpha male'. He's a little bit moody, a whole lot controlling, very over protective, has a sexy, gravelly voice, cuts her off in the middle of sentences, calls her babe, honey, sweetheart and Duchess, melts her with a hand on the back of her neck... he's ripped, sexy as hell, spends a lot of time brooding and I luuuuurve him! He's the perfect mix of strong and sensitive. And who doesn't love a man who can admit when he's wrong? ;) I loved that Max was always so in control. Even when he was mad, he was still mostly uber cool and calm. His fierce protectiveness is swoonworthy and overall, he was impossible not to fall in love with."This happens between us, Duchess, I'd take care of you.""Don't.""Die doin' it," he vowed.If you've read Kristen Ashley books before, you'll know exactly the type of book boyfriend I'm talking about. You can spot a KA book hero a country mile off... and they're just as delicious every single time. If you haven't read KA books and you like yourself some super sexy Alpha man-candy... you need to get on it! She writes her characters so well. You can really feel the body language, the tone of voice, the facial expressions. She brings her characters to life in every single book. And each one has their own little defining features, little ways about them, catch phrases, words or nicknames they use, habits in the way they move... she individualises each of them so skilfully. Her writing is so easy to read, it just rolls right off the page. She writes as you would speak and it makes the book so relatable. You really feel like you are inside the head of the character. She's a storyteller through and through."Babe," he replies, grinning then said no more.Still being helpful, I explained, "I know you think that word speaks volumes but, I have to tell you, it actually doesn't."And then there are her epilogues. KA executes an epilogue like nobody else. They are lengthy and heart warming. And this was no different."Thank you for showing me it was worth taking a gamble again, darling." I dropped my head until my lips were against his and finished, "It feels good finally to win and win huge."The Gamble StatisticsSteam Rating (out of 5): ♥♥♥♥Ending: HEASeries: ✓ Reading Order: Book #1 - The Gamble (Colorado Mountain, #1) Book #2 - Sweet Dreams (Colorado Mountain, #2) Book #3 - Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain, #3) Book #4 - Breathe (Colorado Mountain, #4) Book #5 - Jagged (Colorado Mountain, #5) Book #6 - Kaleidoscope (Colorado Mountain, #6)Can this be read as a standalone? YesThemes:Escape from realityDark pastsAction/dramaMurder mysteryWarning. This book includes... Sexual content. History of rape. Violence.Writing: FantasticLike this review and want to keep up to date with more book news…?Follow me at the links below…My blog:

  • Blacky *Romance Addict*
    2019-05-20 18:08

    I'm starting to wonder if I'll ever read a KA epilogue and won't have tears in my eyes <3 This was a re-read, and as much as I remembered how great this book was, I actually didn't remember enough, because this was absolutelyfreakingamazinglyfabulous! It just confirms Colorado Mountain as my favorite KA series <3The story - I loved the beginning, Nina rents a house in the middle of nowhere, during winter, she gets there, meets Max who essentially throws her out, she gets pissed and ends up with a dead car in the middle of a snowstorm XD Max finds her and nurses her through her cold (oh my that was so adorable <3 <3 <3 ). They hit it off really fast, or should I say, Max forbids her to leave town so she's stuck with him XD And so it goes, they have their ups and downs, fall in love, get kidnapped several times, deal with relatives and former fiancees and girlfriends and so on and so on :) Max - *sigh* oh God he was so sweet and adorable, I just loved him <3 <3 <3 He's not a commando or a badass, just a normal guy, well normal alpha controling guy XD It doesn't take him long to know that Nina is "the one", and he does everything he can to get past her defences and to make them work. That scene when he took her to the bluff *swoons* just beautiful. His part of the epilogue made me cry <3Here's my favorite Max quote, and it sums him up perfectly:“You just need to know, I gotta fight to keep what we got so we can build on it, I will.Him, your Dad, you, I don’t give a fuck. In my life, I’ve learned when to let shit go and when to fight. This, babe, what we got, I’ll fight for.” Nina - I really liked her :) She goes to America for a timeout from her fiancee who's an idiot if I might say so. Max is great to her, and she reeealy doesn't want to have anything with him, but hey, he's too persuasive XD She's feisty, doesn't let anyone walk all over her, or Max, and she fights with his ex girlfriend and sister (hilarious!!!) It gets ugly for her when she finds out about (view spoiler)[ Anna, Max's dead wife who he adored.(hide spoiler)] I felt bad for her, it's always tough to be in someone's shadow, and that was a major one.All in all, I loved all their moments, some of them were great, some of them beautiful, some very sexy XD some extremely sad :(((A 10+++ rating for this one :)

  • Lady Heather
    2019-05-19 12:15

    First read: Feb 7-10. 2012The book's synopsis basically says it all..... but there is SO MUCH intensity to this book. It was a none stop roller-coaster ride throughout the whole story.The characters are brilliantly written. The story is AMAZING!There was so much going on all the time, and yet it wasn't 'busy'. I loved the author's style of writing. The characters became real and were extremely likeable.This book is not a quick read, so if you want to put the time into a really good read. I highly recommend this book!Re-read: August 29-31, 2013 Once again a 5 star rating!GAWD! I forgot how friggin good this story was!So, this is me (and my husband) moving 'our last daughter' (we have 4) on this fine Labor Day weekend to Ottawa University into residence (because we live 4 hours away). My husbands driving, my daughters listening to her I-pod, and I'm reading this bloody book's epilogue and bawling my eyes out. My husband just looks at me and shakes his head (because I've been reading a lot of books lately that have had me in tears... {thank you very much KA!}). I finished this book with such a warm-fuzzy feeling because I TOTALLY forgot how friggin HOT Holden Maxwell was, and how much I liked Nina character! These two characters chemistry was off the charts!I LOVED the characters, the story, and the writing, but most of all I ADORED the second chance these two characters got in the story! AMAZING! AMAZING! AMAZING!Third re-read: Finished July 26, 2014Still one of my favourites!Fourth re-read: September 16-18, 2017Wow! I hadn't realized it had been 3 years since I last read this book.This is the book where it all starts. Where we (the readers) are introduced to these incredibly strong, mountainous, domineering, protective, smart Colorado Mountain Men.Loved this re-read!Once again the characters were amazing to read and get to know all over again.It's funny, I just re-read this whole series over the last month and I was saving this book (the first book in the series) for the last because it was the first book I ever read by Kristen Ashley, the one that got me hook, and it's still one my favourites.

  • Dee Montoya
    2019-06-13 17:54

    *****6+++++ Very Lucky Stars****I really wish The Gamble was like those soap opera TV shows that last for ten years or more, I would happily read about Max and Nina forever and now I'm terribly sad because is over. I must say that Kristen Ashley never does me wrong, this novel was absolute perfection to me.Nina is an American girl living en England; she has a great job and a beautiful home that was built by her dear brother but her relationship with her fiancé is anything but ideal. He rarely pays any attention to her and their lives together lacks passion and communication , so before they marry she decides that she needs a time-out and travels back to America in search of a relaxing vacation in the Colorado mountains. When she arrives all odds are against her; there's a snow storm, she's feeling sick with a cold and it turns out the rental she had booked is not really available, but she temporarily forgets all that when she encounters the owner of the cabin, a really big and sexy mountain man named Holden Maxwell, AKA Max.Five minutes into the fight with the very fancy and beautiful Nina, Max knew he wanted to get to know this woman and keep her near. Next Nina falls really ill and Max takes her of her for days.They will form a strong bond created by the attraction and the strong feelings neither of them can deny. Max is almost like a the town's hero and Nina's awesome personality will make all the citizens fall in love with her. The romance, the adventure, and the crazy shenanigans will keep Nina and Max together but are they willing to forget the pain from the past and put all their chips down and take a gamble? Let me tell you that the idea of going on vacation and finding a man as amazing and sexy as Max, makes it for a fantastic plot. Every single time I read a KA novel I get this incredible urge to fly away to Colorado in search of a delicious Alpha Male. I really loved every minute of this novel, the characters had such loyal and unique qualities and this had me feeling all kinds of warm and fuzzy. I know I've said this before but this time I'm dead serious, Max is my #1 book boyfriend and I'm willing to fight anybody for my sexy mountain man...Playlist:*There is only one song that I think is perfect for this book:~Be My Forever by Christina Perry Feat. Ed Sheeran.

  • Lisa
    2019-05-27 19:04

    This is the second book I've read by Kristen Ashley. I'm beginning to think I am developing an addiction to her male characters.

  • Wendy
    2019-06-11 12:57

    I enjoyed that. Great story and a great hero by the name of Max. Some may be put off by him, with his controlling and domineering way, but I wasn't, I liked him. The heroine Nina, is no wallflower, she's great and she doesn't take crap from anyone if she knows you're in the wrong.The story itself took, lots of twists and turns and the ending took by surprise. Great HEA too.My Max.

  • SamJ ★Needs a HEA★
    2019-05-28 12:52

    Re read - love it as much as the first time.I loved Nina and Max, even with their flaws and issues. Even when they were being daft or doing something I did not agree with, it was obvious it was borne out of a sense of fear. Great cast of secondary characters (and as I thought the first time, Brody needs a story!)Great exciting plot with characters you care about. The writing gives a very real sense of what is happening, and how something is, so you have a very clear picture in your head.As usual with KA an awesome epilogue!

  • Karla
    2019-05-22 12:55

    If taking a timeout leads me to my own Mountain Man Max, I’m as good as on it right now. Wow, he just blew me away, foul mouth and all. He brash, arrogant, demanding, possessive, and I just loved him. I adored Nina, and she was at her best when she went toe-toe with Max. Of course, she rarely won, because well, Max is Max, and he gets what he wants, and I for one would agree to anything he said. He could “Babe”, “Baby”, “Honey”, “Darlin’” me right into submission. Every time he said, “Kiss me Duchess” it had me gasping. Sweet Jesus, I felt like he was talking to me and nearly smooched my Kindle. Okay, okay, I admit it, I did! I got carried away! While I wouldn’t consider the book erotic, Max is the master at dirty talk…he tells Nina what he wants, and those visions alone had me squirming in my seat. The build-up to their first sexual encounter, and that took some doing to get to, was well worth the wait. Max did not disappoint, and it was good for Nina, and me! The man likes to talk his way right through sex and, Hoo Wee, I was all ears, and boy did they get singed!! The secondary characters were as much a part of the story as Max and Nina, which made the book that much more enjoyable. The dialogue is plentiful, laugh-out-loud funny, and downright superb. Some might consider it harsh, but it fit the personalities of the characters, and for me it’s where Kristen Ashley shines. I couldn’t get enough of the interaction not only between Max and Nina, but all the characters. You become so absorbed in the story, you feel like you’re a part of it. I did feel the book was a little too long, and had a very melodramatic ending that had me rolling my eyes. The “stalker” plot was played out one too many times. I don’t know, it just got a little crazy there towards the end. However, it had one the most heartwarming, beautiful epilogues I’ve ever read. Wonderful!I love Kristen Ashley’s style of writing. She's all the “buzz” here at GR, and after reading The Gamble, I can see why. I fully intend to read all she has to offer. I want to give a special shout-out, and thanks to Wendy for posting the picture of “her Max”, which sorry girl, has now become “my Max” too!! Having that fine visual in my head while reading this book, well let’s just say, what’s in my head, stays in my head!!

  • Tammy Walton Grant
    2019-05-31 15:53

    I did it. I FINALLY read a Kristen Ashley book. I wasn't going to, because I really didn't want to, but underneath it all I sort of wanted to and therefore it made it all super hard not to, even though if you were to have asked my GR friends, of which there are many and some of them don't even like KA but some of them are super obsessed with her and they would all say to go ahead and read her except for my friends Karla and Catherine who I don't think will give her a try. Whereas, I sat down the other night and what can I say, I really liked this even though I told myself all the way through that I couldn't believe I liked it, which I did, and I had trouble putting this down. Had to get that out of my system.So I thought the writing was, how do I say it, idiosyncratic. Particular to Kristen Ashley, particular to a self-published author, specific to a story that hasn't had an editor within 100 miles of it. (Yikes! And I thought 50 Shades was bad; KA's need for an editor is DIRE.) As my GR friend Karla (Mossy Love Grotto) said, "it's like all syntax was put into a blender." Oh, you betcha. KA's style seems to be like a free-form stream of consciousness thought parade from the 1st person POV of the heroine, occasionally switched up with a standard third-person narration from the Hero's perspective. I don't like to think what it says about ME that I could follow all that verbal diarrhea and garbled syntax without much of a problem. Or that I completely understood the thought processes.But...This type of story is one of my favourites: a miscommunication throws 2 complete opposites into close quarters, some smoking chemistry and another favourite trope that I like to call "sponge bath and fever". Throw in a bit of a murder mystery and what you've got is an earthier, steamier, (more crudely written) Nora Roberts/Karen Robards contemporary romance.The Hero of The Gamble, Holden Maxwell, is gruff, cranky, just a BIT chauvinistic, bossy, sarcastic and pretty old-fashioned under a super hot exterior. Finally, I got to meet one of the sources of all the screaming, sighing and posting man-candy on my GR feeds. I liked a lot of things about him - especially his habit of hooking his fingers in NIna's belt loops and pulling her into him.(Here's an observation: About 17 years ago I moved from a city of about 200,000 to a much smaller one with a population of about 15,000. It's a mostly rural population, farming, ranching and oil and gas are the main industries and there are tons of really small towns surrounding this city. The first thing I noticed on moving here was the difference in the men ('cause I was single and trust me, I was paying attention). I hate to perpetuate a stereotype but small town men can be WAY more charming than those from a "big" city. They smile, they wink, they're friendly, they can be bit chauvinistic and old-fashioned, they do sometimes wear Henleys with jeans and boots, drink beer, and call you darlin' and babe. They smell good, they slow dance, they swear lots, they all know how to fix your car AND build you a deck and they can charm your pants off without you even realizing they're trying. There's a lot to be said for some of those boys. ;D )And I've actually met guys that would have talked like this:"If you told me you needed a timeout, first, I wouldn’t fuckin’ let you have one, second, I wouldn’t give you reason to fuckin’ want one, last, you took off anyway, I’d fuckin’ phone."That, in a nutshell, are my thoughts after reading The Gamble. Of course, this is a trilogy, so I guess I'm going to have to read 'em all. I'm also curious to see if her characters are the same types from book to book, as I have a sneaking suspicion they are.4 stars. Liked the story, the setting, the characters. Not so much the writing. I couldn't put it down once I started, and I can't for the life of me figure out why.

  • NMmomof4
    2019-05-18 16:18

    4 Stars (Originally Read 1/2/2014) 3.5 Stars (Re-Read 2/8/2017)Overall Opinion:I'm not feeling like I liked this as much as I did the first go-round, so I'm dropping my rating from 4 stars to 3.5. It might just be that I had read it before, so the mystery of what was going to happen wasn't there -- but who knows. I was a little disappointed in the H not being upfront with the h about his past, and I was really disappointed how he acted when he found out that she knew some of it. I have to say because of that whole thing I don't think of him as one of my favorite KA heroes. This does have a theme that I know many readers have issues with (view spoiler)[the dead wife (hide spoiler)], and while I normally don't get bothered by it -- this bugged me a little here. I understood all of the h's hesitations and inner thoughts regarding the H's past so it made me sympathize with her, and maybe that was why I wanted a better reaction from the H regarding the whole situation.Brief Summary of the Storyline:This is Nina and Max's story. Nina is taking a "time-out" from her neglectful fiancé and leaves England to stay in a cabin in the Colorado mountains. She is shocked when she arrives and there is a grumpy mountain man telling her she has to leave. Max owns the house she rented, and there was a mistake made to where he is home. After a not-so-great introduction, they part ways only for Max to save Nina and nurse her back to health after a nasty flu. Nina then finds herself in an awkward situation where Max won't let her leave. She gets sucked into lots of town drama, some family drama, and the sexy Max...and they do eventually fall in love and get a HEA ending.POV: This was told in Nina's POV (with a section of the epilogue in Max's POV).Overall Pace of Story:Ok. I found the end oddly abrupt where the rest is kind-of drawn out. I never skimmed, but was a little tempted to at times (maybe partially because I've read this before).Instalove: Kind of. They know each other a short period of time (a week!) before those stronger feelings are developed, but I still found it believable.H rating: 3 stars. Max. He was ok. I wish that he was more upfront with Nina.h rating: 4 stars. Nina. I liked her. She was kind of crazy, but I think that's part of why I did like her.Sadness level: Low, no tissues needed this time around -- I do remember shedding a few tears the first time I read it though.Push/Pull: Yes (view spoiler)[ They both push away at times. I would say that the H is the main pursuer of the relationship.(hide spoiler)]Heat level: Good. They have some good chemistry and scenes, but not so much it takes away from the story.Descriptive sex: YesSafe sex: Not really (view spoiler)[They do discuss birth control, but the h mentions in her inner dialogue that she didn't take them properly (but doesn't share that with the H). They don't use condoms, and I don't remember any mention of previous practices or std statuses.(hide spoiler)]OW/OM drama: Yes (view spoiler)[There is both an ex of the H and an ex of the h that cause some drama for the h and H(hide spoiler)]Sex scene with OW or OM: No Cheating: Not with mcs (view spoiler)[ Mentions of side character being cheated on. (hide spoiler)]Separation: Kind of, but extremely short (hours). (view spoiler)[There was no mention or suggestion of other partners during this time.(hide spoiler)]Possible Triggers: Yes (view spoiler)[Rape (side character off page), suicide of loved one (h's brother off page), domestic violence (h with ex off page), loss of a spouse and miscarriages (H off page), violence/kidnapping/murder (on page), and suicide attempt by loved one (side character on page).(hide spoiler)]Closure:This had a little bit of an abrupt ending with a jump ahead epilogue and a HEA. I would've liked more time experiencing them working through some of their logistical issues, maybe Max's proposal, pregnancy, etc. We all know I'm greedy ;)How I got it: I bought it from Amazon for $3.71 back in 2014.Safety: This one should beSafeOr Safe with exception for most readers depending on personal preferences.(view spoiler)[- Does Not have cheating- Does Not have a descriptive sex scene with OW/OM-Does have both the h and H pushing away-Does have a very short separation (hours) between the h and H-Doeshave abuse (not by mcs)-Does Not have OTT sad parts- Doeshave a HEA ending (hide spoiler)]