The Hardest Hit by Jennifer Fusco
Series: Ringside #3
Published by Intermix
Publication Date: September 20th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Trevor Redding has two families: the boxers at Stamina Gym boxers and the dancers at The Gentlemen’s Club, where he works as a bouncer. So when one of the dancers is attacked, he is quick to protect her, and winds up landing in the hospital himself. Being his own boss, he’s not interested in what Dr. Chelsea Fox has to say, no matter how stunningly beautiful she is. Concussion or no, he has the biggest fight of his career coming up. Everyone at Stamina is counting on him. But when Chelsea discovers that he’ll do anything to fight, including hiding his diagnosis, she decides to show her roguishly handsome patient just how tough she can be—and just how rewarding it is to follow this doctor’s orders.
Trevor has two jobs. He boxes at Stamina Gym where his dream is to become a famous boxer. His second job is at a strip club where he’s worked for years. He thinks of the girls as his family and doesn’t want to leave them high and dry by quitting. One night he protects one of the girls from getting beat on by a bookie and ends up severely beaten himself and in the hospital.
His manager, Daniella, calls in a friend who is a doctor and she ends up taking his case. Trevor falls in love in a half a heartbeat with the beautiful doctor and tries from minute one to get her to go out with him. Chelsea Fox is so tempted by Trevor but knows she can’t get involved with a patient. Especially as he’s not really happy with her when she doesn’t clear him to box. His MRI’s show that this latest beating did some significant damage to his brain that started years ago when he was beaten as a kid in the foster system. Trevor’s not thrilled with the news but finally agrees to take it easy and follow her advice. He finds himself coaching boxing in the interim and actually ends up really loving it as well.
Chelsea knows that Trevor is amazing and finally gives his case over to her ex-boyfriend so that she can finally make the move that Trevor’s been hoping for. They’re so good together and they fall quickly in love. That all comes to a screeching halt, however, when a secret that Chelsea had been keeping from Trevor becomes known and he feels nothing but betrayed.
Not having read the first two books in this series I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to follow along in this story but I was happy to find out that I didn’t need to read them. THH is can definitely be read as a standalone.
I really liked Trevor and his determination. He really had one goal in mind and that was to be a boxing champion. When Chelsea puts him on the sidelines he’s not happy at all but he follows her advice. He was good to her after they started dating and I saw him for the good guy he truly was. I was sad for him that he found out that the strippers he fought so hard for didn’t care about him the way he cared about them. He’d been pushed aside his whole life and then they did that too – heart-wrenching.
Chelsea was a woman who had been following her parents plan for her life – all her life. Being with Trevor made her see who she was inside and move to bring that person to the forefront. Yes, she messed up pretty badly there and I felt that Trevor really reacted especially hard but I understood his POV somewhat. I was happy when he finally decided to give Chelsea a chance again – although their reunion happened so fast at the end and then the book ended I was a bit stunned. I definitely wanted there to be a bit more resolution between the two so that they could work out their issues instead of going straight for the HEA – but that’s just me.
Overall a good story that I enjoyed reading.
Rating: 3 out of 5