Oct 18 2013 8:30am

First Look: Maya Banks’s Theirs to Keep (October 22, 2013)

Theirs to Keep by Maya BanksMaya Banks
Theirs to Keep
Self-published / October 22, 2013 / $5.99 digital

When Cade Walker and Merrick Sullivan find Elle hiding in the cabinet of a gun store, they know they can’t just walk away from the fragile woman with no memory of who she is or who tried to kill her. Merrick is training for the title shot in the heavyweight division as a mixed martial artist and can’t afford distractions, but neither can he turn his back on the woman who tugs at his heartstrings.

Elle feels safe with her two protectors, and the longer she spends with them, the more she realizes that she has no desire to remember her past. Not when it could compromise her future with Cade and Merrick.

Cade has his own set of issues when it comes to Elle, and it quickly becomes clear to the two men that for the first time in their friendship, a woman is coming between them. But what if they just kept her there? Between them. Where she belongs.

In her latest release, Theirs to Keep, Maya Banks returns to her over-the-top roots telling the story of a ménage romance between the amnesiac Elle and business partners Cade Winslow and Merrick Sullivan. Theirs to Keep does end happily, but it is the first book in a trilogy featuring Elle, Cade, and Merrick as well as the revelation of Elle’s past. This story is very reminiscent of one of the first ménage romances that I ever read, Colters’ Woman. It is highly entertaining, very romantic, a bit crazy, but lots of fun.

Elle is on the run, but from whom or what she has no idea.

There was a gaping hole in her mind. No memory. No past. Only the present. She had no money, no belongings, no place to rest and hide. She only knew that if she stopped, he’d find her. And she didn’t even know who he was, only that a shadowy figure haunted her mind. He’d hurt her. He’d wanted her dead. He’d left her to die in the river, but somehow she’d survived.

Hurt and disoriented, Elle ends up breaking into Cade and Merrick’s place of business. The two men find her hiding in a storage cabinet, and their protective instincts kick in immediately. Elle can’t answer any of their questions, but neither man is willing to abandon her. They get her to a doctor, take her home with them and find themselves caring for the fragile woman.

Once the three are living together, an intense attraction flares. Both men are afraid to make any moves while Elle is healing, especially as she was raped, but quickly realize that they are falling in love with their houseguest. Very early on, Cade and Merrick have a conversation where they both admit their feelings, express their hopes that their feelings won’t get in the way of their friendship, but also reiterate that neither wants to back down. Their solution to their dilemma is unique.

“What if we left things as they are now? I mean with the three of us. Only we’d take things up a notch. But the three of us would remain together. She’d be with … both of us.”

Cade and Merrick don’t agree easily, and the solution is a bit of a shock to Elle even though she is having her own lustful thoughts about both men. But they all decide to give a permanent threesome a shot. Cade and Merrick plan to take it slow with Elle sexually, but their desires eventually overwhelm them all.

As the relationship progresses, Elle’s nightmares about her ordeal grow worse. She begins to remember bits and pieces. And, danger has definitely followed her making it difficult for Cade and Merrick to keep her safe.  The memories do keep coming, but we do not learn all there is to know about Elle’s past or her attack in Theirs to Keep. More will be revealed in the second and third installments of the Tangled Hearts Trilogy.

In addition to Elle’s situation and the conflict over the development of a threesome, there are also issues with Merrick’s career. Merrick is in business with Cade, but is also a professional fighter on the verge of making it big. He has trouble concentrating on his bouts because of his worry about Elle. When Merrick’s fighting leads to bigger opportunities, Cade and Elle have big decisions to make about the future of their polyamorous relationship.

Theirs to Keep by Maya Banks is a delicious read that is filled with heat, some wackiness, suspense and a cracktastic romance. I can only imagine where Maya Banks plans to take Elle, Cade and Merrick next.

Learn more or order a copy of Theirs to Keep by Maya Banks, available October 22, 2013:

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Jennifer Porter, a mild-mannered librarian by day, runs the review site Romance Novel News and is a compulsive romance reader. She has a tendency to live tweet her craziest reads as @JenniferRNN

Subscribe to this conversation (must be logged in):
1. joyofbean
I've read many of Maya's books and they are all great reads. Looking forward to this latest installment.
2. JenniferPorter
It is a fun read!! I can't wait to find out what is next for these three.
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