FREE (Chaos Series Book 7) by Kristen Ashley
Contemporary Biker Romance. Does not stand alone.
If you have followed me for any length of time, you know that Kristen Ashley is IT for me. The perfect combination of story, description, humor, sexiness, suspense, inner dialog, and just plain badassery, even my least favorite of her books are still books I am totally in love with. Luckily, FREE lived up to my Kristen Ashley expectations, which are pretty damn high. Free was a beautiful and perfect end to the Chaos series (ok, I am tearing up as I type this).
“It’ll be okay,” she whispered.
“How do you know?” he whispered back.
“Because it’s time for you all to be free.”
Bringing in characters from almost every other series, Free was like one big clusterfuck (not the story, the situation) reunion with a ton of fun, scary, sexy, emotional and exciting moments. Rush, who is Tack’s 29-year-old, slightly gentler clone finally gets himself a woman that lives up to Tyra’s example, and he likes redheads just like his dad. Rebel is badass. We met her first in More Than Anything, a novella in Loose Ends that is from the Honey series. I do think it’s a good idea to read that before Free, because it’s a pretty big crossover. Is it absolutely necessary? No, but I think you may be a bit lost during a few great scenes if you don’t.
The final book in the Chaos series revisits three major enemies of the club, the crime kingpin Benito Valenzuela, Chew, a former Chaos member gone bad, and Beck/Throttle, who helped beat his woman Rosalie when she informed on his club. That woman now married to a Chaos brother. In the past few books, the war between the brothers and these various enemies have all been coming to a head with women dying. And Rebel Stapelton has inserted herself right in the thick of it to avenge her best friend’s death.
And as soon as Rush Allen sees Rebel, he knows she’s the ONE.
“A woman who can love that deep, who’s got that kinda steel in her spine, the man who gets it, it’ll feel good to earn that love, keep it and have it. But he’ll have to understand what makes her and that he’ll have a lifetime of puttin’ out fires, dealin’ with emotional fallout, and proppin’ her up when the loads she takes on get too heavy.” ~Tack
Rush knows what he wants.
“It’s just the way, and it’s a good way, and you know what I mean, Dad. I want a handful,” Rush went on. “I wanna wake up and not know what the day is gonna bring, mostly because she’s gonna make it an adventure (…so much more good stuff….) I wanna get pissed and I wanna be challenged and I wanna be surprised and I want my balls busted and I want my mind blown and I wanna laugh a lot. I want it all, Dad. I want what you got, but I want it my way and I want it to be all mine.”
Well Rush, true to his name, doesn’t take his time.
“You can try to distance yourself from me, sweetheart, by using that bullshit. But we both know what’s happening here. I’m Rush. You call me Mr. Allen again, I’m clearing the room and we’re gonna have a different kind of lesson.”
And again, he did not try to disguise his point. And his point did not set my clit to tightening.
Rebel lives with the most awesome hippie, who happens to be one of my favorite Kristen Ashley side characters ever.
She swiveled her hips. “I stay young and supple belly dancing, among other things. I also participated in an orgy at Woodstock.” She leaned up to him. “The Woodstock. I was tripping. Primo LSD. I don’t remember all of it. I do remember elephants watching, though I’m pretty sure they weren’t real. The sex was still rad.”
As more women get dead, we are visited by characters from The Honey Series, Rock Chicks, Dream Man and Unfinished Hero series, so there was a lot to keep straight! We also had a side story about Beck/Throttle and the Bounty MC. I actually loved this story and almost wish it was it’s own novella somehow.
The best part about FREE is the title. There honestly could be no better title for this book.
“It isn’t over,” Rush pointed out. “No, but we’re at the end of that tunnel, Rush. I feel it. That fucker was long, and it got tight along the way, but we’re gonna get there. Intact. Save Black, but at least we got his sons so he’s with us. We reach the end, it’s all sunshine and we got a future that’s bright.”
There were a LOT of points of view in this book, but that seems to be Kristen’s way of ending a series. I think it may have been a bit of overkill to change POVs when there are just so many characters involved. For me, it got a little overwhelming at times, but it made for a great end of series. Some of my favorite moments were the father/son moments between Rush and Tack.
Through the thick stubble he was growing for his girl, Cole “Rush” Allen smiled at his dad. Through the ragged goatee he kept for his woman, Kane “Tack” Allen smiled back.
(There I go, crying again).
- Really wrapped up the series well.
- I loved how crazy accepting everyone was of D and Mad.
- Okay, so it was kind of cheesy at times, but it was a perfect way to end the series. The cheesiness brought me to tears.
- Could Rush be any more perfect?
- Rebel is one of my favorite KA heroines yet.
- Non-stop action.
- Essence is a top 3 KA side character for me.
- We got two love stories in one.
- All the crossovers from so many different series.
- Tack and Rush’s relationship.
- Rush & Rebel had such an amazing, mature relationship.
“No guesswork. Free and easy. We hit a snag, we work on it.”
- I kind of feel like I was a little bit lost half the time. Not on the main storyline, but there are, at this point, SO MANY side characters to keep track of, and they have both biker and real names, and I am not good at remembering details like that, I found myself re-reading a lot of scenes to work out what was going on and who everyone was.
- There were a lot of points of view, as well as a secondary romance going on (that I loved and wanted more of). But I wanted more of Rush and Rebel. I almost feel like there could have been another novella before this came out to cover some of the other stuff happening in the other club, because I loved that, but it took away from Chaos, and more importantly Rush and Rebel a bit.
- For me it was fine, because I read it, but I think it’s pretty important to read More Than Everything, Rebel’s brother’s story in Loose Ends before reading this to get the full experience, but that series really isn’t for all of Kit’s readers.
The Down & Dirty:
Rating: 4.25 Stars, 4.5 Heat
Purchase Free (Chaos Series Book 7) by Kristen Ashley
In this manner, they guided me onto 6th Avenue and all the way down that long, heavily trafficked, three-lane bastard into the foothills. I lost my side bikes on the small mountain town roads that led to back country roads, the guy to the left going forward to lead the pack, the guy to the right falling back.
It did not make me feel cozy and happy when we hit a gravel road, in the middle of nowhere, that was winding and ended at a remote cabin that did not look like it was set up to play its role as a vacation relaxation station.
More like where Jason might show with an ax.
The bikes stopped.
I stopped, cut the ignition to my Subaru, tossed open my door, hauled myself out, slammed my door and advanced fast on who I was guessing was the leader of the pack.
The guy who’d rode to my left.
He was off his bike when I got there.
He was also taller than I’d have guessed.
He definitely rocked that leather jacket.
And he had a great head of thick, dark hair that was overlong. So long one side of the front was tucked behind his ear and it was flippy messy in the back in a way that practically begged a woman to grab hold.
I did not grab hold.
I got up to the toes of my boots and shouted in his face, “You could have killed yourself, asshole!”
“Calm down,” he growled.
His voice was deep and gravelly, rumbling up his chest and out his mouth in a way I could almost trace that shit.
I ignored this additional nugget of awesomeness that made this biker and yelled, “Calm down? Calm down? Are you insane?” I took a step back and threw out both arms. “I’m in the middle of nowhere at Jason’s Lodge o’ Ax Murdering Fun with a pack of bikers when I should right now be home, meditating or some shit.”
His head tipped to the side. “You meditate?”
I didn’t answer that.
I said, “Newsflash. When a bunch of dudes on bikes wearing leather jackets with patches surrounds a woman’s car, she’s not gonna go Thelma and Louise on their asses on the exit ramp off Speer Boulevard to I-25, which is right in the heart of the city, which means right in the heart of Denver traffic. She might hurt them. More, she might hurt herself. But most, she might hurt some unsuspecting single mom on her way home from work to feed her kids and later, lament her choice of their deadbeat dad who’s off banging his secretary.”
“It gonna sink in we’re here safe, so you can be done yelling at me?” he asked.
“Am I safe?” I asked back.
“You gotta ask that, you don’t know Chaos,” he retorted.
“Well, another newsflash, stud, I don’t know Chaos,” I shot back.
He leaned into me.
I smelled leather, fresh air, and the remnants of some sharp, tangy aftershave that I kid you not, actually tightened my clit.
“Well, you’re about to know Chaos, so let’s get on to that,” he rumbled at me. “Get inside.”
“I want your promise right here you’re not gonna ax murder me when I go inside that cabin,” I snapped.
From around us, I heard a deep chuckle, actually a few of them.
“We’re not gonna ax murder you.” He sounded beleaguered.
He sounded beleaguered.