10/27/15

REVIEW + EXCERPT + GIVEAWAY: SURVIVING ICE BY K.A. TUCKER!!

Title: Surviving Ice
Author: K.A. Tucker. 
Release Date: OCTOBER 27, 2015!!

SYNOPSIS:
The USA TODAY bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths series and Burying Water—which Kirkus Reviews called “a sexy, romantic, gangster-tinged page-turner”—returns with a new novel packed with romance, plot twists, and psychological suspense.
Ivy Lee, a talented tattoo artist who spent the early part of her twenties on the move, is looking for a place to call home. She thinks she might have finally found it working in her uncle’s tattoo shop in San Francisco. But all that changes when a robbery turns deadly, compelling her to pack up her things yet again.
When they need the best, they call him. That’s why Sebastian Riker is back in California, cleaning up the mess made after a tattoo shop owner with a penchant for blackmail got himself shot. But it’s impossible to get the answers he needs from a dead body, leaving him to look elsewhere. Namely, to the twenty-something-year-old niece who believes this was a random attack. Who needs to keep believing that until Sebastian finds what he’s searching for.
Ivy has one foot out of San Francisco when a chance encounter with a stranger stalls her departure. She’s always been drawn to intense men, so it’s no wonder that she now finds a reason to stay after all, quickly intoxicated by his dark smile, his intimidating strength, and his quiet control.
That is, until Ivy discovers that their encounter was no accident—and that their attraction could be her undoing.
PURCHASE HERE:
I feel like it was just yesterday that I found out KA Tucker was beginning the first book in a new series, that series being Burying Water. How it can be that I just finished reading the LAST book in that series, I don't know!! I'm sad. This series is my absolute favorite from this author, weaving together crime and unpredictability, danger and love. But what a way to go, Ms Tucker. Surviving Ice was so great, rife with complex characters navigating an even more complex storyline. I loved it. LOVED it!

Ivy and Sebastian feel doomed from the start, their relationship born out of deceit and fear. But through the lies, there's no denying a true blue attraction exists. The chemistry and sexual tension between the two keeps this ill-fated romance on a precarious line between sweet and sexy and dark and doomed.

Ivy is an artist. She draws, she tattoos, she tags walls with graffiti in the middle of the night. She's unlike any of the female characters in previous books in this series. She's a wanderer. And now she's trying to pick up the pieces after a traumatic event before taking off once again. Sebastian is a liar. Well... more accurately, he's lying by omission. He walks into Ivy's life under the pretense of merely wanting some ink, when in reality, he's on a job, targeting Ivy to see what she knows about the events that lead to the death of her uncle. The situation is dangerous, the chemistry is on fire, and the uncertainty and unpredictability of the future of these characters kept me on the edge of my seat.

Sebastian is "Ice," cold and hardened and determined. Ivy is the perfect counterpart to this stone-faced ex-navy Seal. Just like her name, she's wild and free and untamed. He's closed off, impenetrable, she's stubborn and fierce. They're polar opposites in many ways, yet they fit. He grounds her, she adds color to his life. And as beautiful and perfectly imperfect as their dynamic is, there's no way this can end well.

Despite the serious tone of this story, despite the fact that Ivy's life is in peril and she has no idea, despite the likelihood of Sebastian's lies coming to light and demolishing any romantic possibility between he and Ivy, this story is peppered with humor and lightness. Secondary characters like Dakota, Fez and homeless Jono bring laugh out loud one-liners to an otherwise ominous story. They lighten up the heavy with their witty banter and refreshing dialogue. Ivy and Sebastian too, despite their grave circumstances, have a lightness between them, a fun, sexy, flirty attraction that one can only hope has a chance of surviving after everything comes crashing down. Through their sarcastic, sexy exchanges and the undeniable pull between them, the reader along with these characters, is granted brief reprieves from the gravity of this story to bask in the hope and romance of it before they're quickly reminded of the danger lurking once again.

I love this series so much, love the way Tucker has woven together these storylines surrounding interconnected characters while ensuring each book feels original and unexpected and new. Tucker's writing in this book is just delicious. Ivy and Sebastian consumed me in a way that I did not see coming. I have loved this entire series, some books standing out more than others. Well I'll say it now, Surviving Ice stands out. These characters are so perfectly developed, so thoroughly fleshed out. Artistic Ivy with her shaved hair and her sharp tongue, protective Sebastian with his chiseled body and his dangerous nature, together they are fireworks. They're magnetic. They are pent up aggression, lit fuses, saturated clouds, brimming volcanoes, and you just know that when they let go it's going to be extraordinary. This story was exactly what I was in the mood to read and I didn't even know it. It satisfied a craving I didn't know I was hungry for and now I just want more and more and more. Danger. Lust. Fear. Betrayal. Sensuality. Deceit. It's all here, woven together behind stunning prose, enigmatic characters and an unputdownable storyline. You know when you open a KA Tucker book, you're getting something good, but Surviving Ice wasn't just good. It was phenomenal.

Jessica's Rating:

It’s just a regular ringtone. For me, though, it’s the wail of a war siren, and I’m immediately alert. There is only one person who has this number, and I didn’t expect him to use it again so soon.

The tile is cool against my bare feet as I roll out of bed. I collect the phone from the nightstand with one fluid movement, unhindered by sheets or the morning sluggishness that an average person might face. Stepping through the propped-open patio doors and onto the balcony, I answer with a low, curt “Yeah.” The sky is just beginning to lighten over the quiet bay. Dozens of boats sit moored below, their passengers lulled into deep sleep by the ocean air and rhythmic waves. I’m high enough up that I’m not likely to offend anyone with my lack of clothing, especially at this hour. Not that I’m truly concerned by it.

“Ice.”

The code name is a sharp contrast to the warm breeze skating across my bare skin. My adrenaline begins to spike, all the same. Hearing it means that I will be forced to leave this haven soon. Sooner than I had hoped.

“How is recovery going?”

I instinctively peer down at the angry red scar on the outside of my thigh, where a bullet drilled into my flesh and muscle just three weeks ago, outside of Kabul. I nearly bled out before I made it to the doc. He patched me up on a makeshift operating table, buried deep in a maze of rooms, and charged me a hefty price.

“Like new,” I lie.

“Good.” Bentley’s voice is rich and smooth, a welcome sound in a sea of strangers. “Where are you now?”

I peer out over the beautiful vista of crystal blue water and whitewashed stone buildings, the volcanic rock cliffs in the distance, reluctant to divulge my location. I sank a good chunk of my last payout on renting this one-bedroom villa for the month. It’s my private sanctuary, where I can revel in anonymity and peace for a while, before finding somewhere else to drift to.

Bentley has never asked before.

But he also has the technical capabilities to trace this call. If he really wants to find out, then he will. In fact, the second I picked up, he probably already had his answer. “Where do I need to be?” I say instead.

“San Francisco.”

Born in small-town Ontario, K.A. Tucker published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.



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