Feb 23 2016 1:00pm

First Look: Kit Rocha’s Beyond Ruin (February 23, 2016)

Beyond Ruin by Kit Rocha

Kit Rocha
Beyond Ruin (Beyond #7)
Kit Rocha / February 23, 2016 / $14.99 print, $4.99 digital

Adrian Maddox fled his royal life—and tragic past—in Sector One, choosing instead to join up with the O’Kanes. For years, he’s lived by one rule: love fast, love hard, and always be willing to walk away. He’s managed to guard his heart, keep it whole and untouched—until now.

They couldn’t be more different—Dylan, the brilliant, burned-out doctor from Eden who drowns his pain with drugs and self-destruction. Scarlet, the sensuous, sexy rocker from Three, a woman unafraid to embrace the world. And Jade, the whore turned spy from Sector Two, who battled addiction and came out stronger than anyone he’s ever met.

Separately, they make Mad long to open his heart, to tumble head-first into a sea of possibilities and wild love. Together, they make him burn, inside and out, with lust and unbearable, unimaginable pleasure.

Then one fateful moment shakes their world to its foundations—and leaves the sectors on the verge of all-out war with Eden. It’s the biggest fight the O’Kanes have ever faced, and Mad and his lovers are at the dead center of it. They could end up with everything they never knew they wanted—or lose it all. Including their lives.

Kit Rocha’s Beyond novels have an underlying theme of balance. The blend of harshness and beauty is woven through the pages of each erotic romance set in Sector Four. Beyond Ruin encapsulates this juxtaposition on the grandest scale yet.

The seventh full-length novel featuring the O’Kanes has more moving parts than ever, more unintentional head games, and really drives every character to think about who they are, who they want to be, and how they fit into the post-Flare world. That’s a lot to pack into a story, and the writing duo known as Kit Rocha does it flawlessly.

At the heart of Beyond Ruin are four people battling their baggage. It’s hard to escape your past, even when you can take O’Kane ink. Joining that gang—that family—doesn’t erase who you were. Jade and Scarlett were already a couple when this book begins. Scarlett is the tough one—she’s my favorite lady other than Six—who can embrace pleasure but usually on her own terms. Jade on the other hand constantly questions if she truly wants something or if her training from Sector Two is just making her think she wants it. She knows being with Scarlett works for her, but it also isn’t enough.

Mad and the Doc (we get to call him Dylan from now on) have a thing. They would had said their thing was mostly talking about their fantasies of Scarlett and Jade joining them in the bedroom, but it runs deeper than that. Mad can’t deal with being “Saint Adrian” in Sector One, and the weight of his family expectations and grief over the way his mother is remembered there makes him wonder if he can truly be someone else. Dylan only feels real when he’s with his lovers. The memories of what he used to do in Eden eat at him.

Naturally, these four come together into one relationship—requiring really big beds. There is a lovely duality of Mad and Scarlett being alike and Jade and Dylan understanding one another similarly. When the four connect, though, everyone takes a different part of the emotional balance. It’s far more than meeting the sexual needs, which we knew was going to happen in a Kit Rocha book. No, what this quad achieves is more than bedroom acrobatics; they find a way to help the others accept their ability to determine who they are.

The backdrop for these personal, philosophical changes is revolution. We have reasons to revisit the other sectors, the ones that link each character to their past. Secrets are revealed, and it has to be determined if those truths can bring everyone closer together. No more hiding for anyone. Using their pasts will help everyone move forward.

If there's one thing that's clear, O'Kane for Life isn't just something the characters in the Beyond books say. They mean it. It's time to hold on tight, because change is coming.


Learn more about or order a copy of Beyond Ruin by Kit Rocha, out now: 

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Chelsea Mueller runs Vampire Book Club and writes SF/F novels. Her appreciation of Alexander Skarsgard is well documented. Bother her on Twitter — @ChelseaVBC — she likes it.


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