Jagged by Kristen Ashley
Series: Colorado Mountains #5
Also in this series: Kaleidoscope, Sweet Dreams
Publication Date: September 30th 2014
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
The next novel in Kristen Ashley's sizzling Colorado Mountain series introduces a new electrifying relationship that turns Carnal, Colorado into a hotbed of action, romance, and suspense. An old flame rekindled
. . . Zara Cinders always knew Ham Reece was the one, but he wasn't interested in settling down. When she found someone who was, Ham walked out of her life. Three years later, Zara's lost her business, her marriage, and she's barely getting by in a tiny apartment on the wrong side of the tracks. As soon as Ham hears about Zara's plight, he's on her doorstep offering her a lifeline. Now, it will take every ounce of will power she possesses to resist all that he offers.
Ham was always a traveling man, never one to settle down in one town, with one woman, for more time than absolutely necessary. But Ham's faced his own demons, and he's learned a lot. About himself, and about the life he knows he's meant to live. So when he hears that Zara's having a rough time, he wants to be the one to help. In fact, he wants to do more than that for Zara. A lot more. But first, he must prove to Zara that he's a changed man.
Two of my favorite Ashley books are from the Colorado Mountain series. I had high hopes for this one. Unfortunately, Jagged fell far short of my expectations.
Zara and Ham had a fling that lasted several years. He traveled a lot but when he was around they were bed partners. When she meets a man she thinks she wants to marry, she breaks things off with him permanently. Several years later things fell apart for her. She lost her business, was in the process of losing her home and left her husband. Now she’s living in a crappy one bedroom apartment and struggling to get by.
When Ham finds out what happened to Zara he offers to help her get back on her feet. She wants none of it. He didn’t want to commit to her before, so why now? She’s sorry to hear that things have been kind of rough for him since she broke things off, but she wants nothing to do with him. Until he realizes her apartment isn’t safe and doesn’t give her a choice about accepting his help.
Zara got on my nerves with her stupidity and refusal to accept help in any form. She acted immature throughout the book. If there had been some growth along the way I could have moved past it. Sadly, that wasn’t the case. When her ex-husband offers her money in the divorce she refuses. She refuses to take any of their possessions in the divorce. He’s a wealthy engineer who lacks for nothing and she ends up in a dumpy one bedroom apartment in a bad neighborhood because she refuses to take a dime in their divorce? That’s just plain stupid. Same for her decision to refuse help from Reece (I cannot think of him as Ham. That’s the most unsexy nickname I’ve ever heard). Why cut off your nose to spite your face? I understand independence, but there’s a fine line there and Zara crossed over into stupidity.
Reece was frustrating, as well. For an older man he certainly had his maturity problems. Supposedly he fell in love with Zara long before he came to her, but I didn’t really buy that. His actions spoke otherwise. We first met him in For You, where he was in love with February Owens. That she chose another and he then went back to Zara was a mark against him. Though the details of For You are hazy for me, I wondered if Zara was like a consolation prize. Plus, I had a hard time accepting that he was so obsessed with her when she acted the fool so often.
Beyond all that, the two of them were venomous to each other. I don’t understand how a couple can be so angry and mean to each other, and yet still stay together. The things they said to each other were things enemies would hesitate to say. If this had happened once, I could have moved past it, but it was a recurring theme through the book.
The plot featuring Zara’s family was strange and didn’t make a lot of sense to me. I kept getting the feeling I’d missed something, like perhaps she had been mentioned in a previous book and I should gotten the backstory there.
Though this started well, it quickly went down hill. This is one of my least favorite Ashley novels.
2 out of 5