Eight years ago, Sophie gave her heart – anther virginity – to Zach Barrett on a night that couldn’t have been less romantic or more embarrassing. Zach’s step-brother, a steely-muscled, tattooed biker named Ruger, caught them in the act, getting a peep show of Sophie he’s never forgotten.
She may have lost her dignity that fateful night, but Sophie also gained something precious – her son Noah. Unfortunately, Zach’s a deadbeat dad, leaving Ruger to be Noah’s only male role model. When he discovers Sophie and his nephew living in near poverty, Ruger takes matters into his own hands – with the help of the Reapers Motorcycle Club – to give them a better life.
Living with outlaw bikers wasn’t Sophie’s plan for her son, but Ruger isn’t giving her a choice. He’ll be there for Noah, whether she wants him or not. But Sophie does want him, has always wanted him. Now she’ll learn that taking a biker to bed can get a girl dirty in every way.
Blurb came from the author’s website.
1. Thoughts on the Hero
Lou: Oh Ruger. You’re a sexy beast but a sexist pig to boot. But since the author made no bones about you being a sexist pig, and the heroine knew of all your faults, I can’t be too mad at your character. I love this series that Joanna Wylde created, and while I can never approve of some of the characters actions, I’m totally enthralled by their world and the people. Ruger likes sex. He likes sex and he doesn’t like tying himself down to one woman. But he’s never been able to get Sophie, the mother of his nephew, out of his mind. Ruger was bossy, rude and an asshole. Yet his sexual attraction with Sophie was out of this world and he never lied to her about his intentions. Ruger is not a hero that you can say is a decent guy when it comes to women but he adores his nephew and the love he has for him is in no doubt. Ruger can’t get Sophie out of his mind and I suppose in his MC world, it’s kinda romantic.
E: Once again Wylde has created a hero that I considered a well-meaning crude ass for the majority of the story but that I enjoyed reading. Ruger’s interactions with Sophie were primarily negative with the exception of a few moments but watching him with his nephew Noah was a completely different story. He seemed to make every decision with Noah’s safety and stability in mind regardless of what Sophie thought. Ruger was so invested in the Reaper Motorcycle Club culture, he did not know how to explain things to Sophie, he just expected her to take his word and do what he said. However, there were moment when Ruger could be so sweet and caring. Wherever Sophie moved, he would take the time to set up some sort of home security system and offered on multiple occasions to help them out. It was obvious through his point of view that he really didn’t want to admit to himself what he wanted with Sophie but one thing was for certain, while he was mentally struggling she wasn’t going to find it with anyone else. As annoying as I found him at times, I will admit Ruger melted my heart and pretty well redeemed himself in my favorite scene which I will discuss below.
MinnChica: What to say about Ruger other than he was kinda a dick, a total selfish pig, and a Alphahole that I could totally fall in love with. I really liked the fact that he was so in love with Sophia and Noah, and yet he was so scared to give up something that I think he genuinely considered an everyday aspect of his biker lifestyle. I agree completely with E that Ruger was so wrapped up in his lifestyle, had been with the Club for so long, that he forgot how to talk and communicate with people on the outside. With Ruger, it was his way or the highway, only he wouldn’t let you take the highway if he didn’t want you to. So really, it was just his way. There were times I loved him for it, and other times I thought he was being an insensitive asswipe. But at least he was consistent. 🙂
Has: I love that Joanna Wylde did it again in making me love another sexist, alphaholic hero who you can’t not help like! I love that the MC world she has created is authentic and realistic and she does not have any qualms in the seedier side of things. But I liked that Ruger despite being a man who is unashamedly a womaniser, totally went into alpha possessive mode over Sophie and I loved that she made it hard for him to rail-road over her. I loved how he had to deal with that and that helped to develop his character because he learned what was important and face up to his real feelings for Sophie.
2. Thoughts on the Heroine
Lou: I loved Sophie right from the start. I loved her narrator voice because she was a person with flaws. She wasn’t this perfect picture of motherhood. Sophie had a rough time with her abusive ex, and she’s forced to rely on others because she is a single mum and money simply doesn’t grow on trees. But she loves her son. She loves her son so much that for all these years she’s not allowed him to be around Ruger’s club. She allows Ruger to see Zach because she can see how much they love one another. But she’s not stupid. She sees all the faults in Ruger yet her attraction and crush on him does not wane. There’s incredible sexual tension between them and I loved that Sophie gave into her carnal lust. Coz there was a lot of carnal lusting going on between these two. Sophie made some poor choices in the past but she’s determined to make the right ones this time.
E: Unlike Lou I found Sophie also provided me with mixed feelings. On one hand I admired her drive to be independent and how she tried to minimize the emotional pain of those she cared about but in certain cases I thought she took it to an unhealthy extreme. She wasn’t exactly providing the best living conditions for Noah due to her stubbornness and guilt over a certain event. I did like how she refused to put up with all of Ruger’s nonsense and valued herself enough to force him to come to his senses. I was bothered by her complete almost wilful blindness towards the motorcycle club culture even after discussions with some of the ladies who could have explained things. As I learned more about Sophie’s past and her relationship with Noah’s father I really felt for her and as a result I understood her desperation to get out. I understood her logic in how she was finally able to get support from law enforcement I just wish the end result didn’t taint her views on having a relationship with Ruger.
MinnChica: I think I fall in between E and Lou on the scale of Sophie. I loved that she was so independent, so devoted to her sun, and although she was stubborn and pigheaded, I liked that about her. It showed a strength of character that she obviously needed to have in order to go head to head with Ruger. However, like E said, her unwillingness to learn more about Club culture was a little ridiculous, especially once she became such good and close friends with some of the other women. I would have expected her to be grilling the ladies on any and all nuances within the club to get a better understanding of Ruger and his way of life.
Has: I am with MinnChica, I found Sophie likeable even if she was too stubborn for her own good at times. And even though the hand she was dealt with her crappy ex and job – I liked how determined and loving she was towards her son. I also thought this helped her stand up against Ruger, who would have have just overpowered her and that helped her make a stand against him. Although I definitely agree, it got silly when she didn’t want to know anything about the MC culture which is something that will always touch her and he son because Ruger is his uncle. Even though there were aspects of the Club’s life may not be appealing, she could have learned a lot from it to help understand and tackle Ruger better when they had conflict later in the book.
3. Favorite Scene
Lou: I don’t have a particular favourite scene but I did find where she gets payback on Ruger by falling asleep and not giving him any mercy where her son chats non-stop to him in the car about his favourite show. It was funny and kinda cute.
Oh. And the sex scenes were pretty darn good.
And the scenes with Em, Marie, Kimber, Dancer and Mags were hilarious.
E: I am sitting here giggling over the scenes Lou mentioned and those were quite enjoyable, but my favorite scene is a different one. I absolutely loved the scene in which Ruger explains the mysterious tattoos on his shoulder and upper back area. This was the scene when he became a complete romance hero to me despite his tendency towards assholeness. When I read that scene, my perception of everything he said or did previously fell into place and I saw him through a new light. No, I didn’t accept his behavior but I could understand the romance, persistence, and tangled web that existed between the two of them.
MinnChica: For me, I think the scene that sticks out the most for me is a little gruesome and dark. I don’t know that I’d classify it as my favorite, because the girls all drinking together were some of the funnest, but for me, this spoke to the true devotion between Sophie and Ruger. When Sophie called Ruger to help her clean up a little problem with Noah’s father, that really stood out to me. Not just because Sophie took her life by the horns and did what she thought was right (although her decision is questionable), but also because right or wrong, Ruger was one hundred percent there for her. No questions asked, he cleaned up her mess and told her he still wanted her. That really spoke volumes to me about just how far they were willing to go in life for themselves and each other.
Has: I also loved that scene when Sophie had her own back with her son talking incessantly about the toy characters and the scenes with the other cast of characters especially the other ladies of MC Club world was full of great chemistry. I agree with MinnChica again with the ending when Sophie asks for Ruger’s help and her realisation about the path that led to her decisions in her life was my favourite. It was a dark and quiet scene, but showed how willing Ruger was dedicated towards to keeping Sophie safe and that cemented their romance for me.
4. Dislike about book
Lou: There’s no real dislike in this book. At times I thought Ruger was an insensitive ass that needed a slap around the head but Sophie never gave into him.
E: I dislike the overall attitude towards women and the combination of belief and expectation that if a woman is not identified a certain way that woman was automatically fair game for whatever. I also did not enjoy the use of treasured women targeted in threats and actions but unfortunately that is a theme throughout history. With that said I understand this is fiction and I do enjoy reading the story. I also loved how strong and determined the women could be when they were pushed.
MinnChica: While I agree with E to some extent, I can also appreciate that right or wrong, that is just the way of the MC culture. There were times when I definitely wanted the women in this book to stick up for themselves more, but I got it and understood it.
Has: I agree, this is not going to be a series that will appeal to people who won’t be able to get past the sexism of MC culture. And Joanna Wylde reflects this realistically, but it is balanced with humour, and wonderful fleshed out characters even if they can be sexist prigs. I may not want to be married to a MC hero, but they’re fleshed out and likable characters here and that makes the romance work for me.
5. Any other misc. thoughts
Lou: I loved this installment because we see how characters are growing and how Wylde is building story threads along the way. I’m so excited for Em and Hunter’s book, and I loved that Em can be just as wild as her father.
All in all, I give Reaper’s Legacy a B+.
E: Overall despite my mixed feelings about the characters I enjoyed reading this and continue to look forward to future installments in the Reaper world. It was fun to see Marie and Horse again and I loved the give and take between Sophie and Ruger. Like Lou, I appreciated the building story threads and I really hope Em gives a certain individual hell after his actions in this story.
I give Reaper’s Legacy a B.
MinnChica: All in all I thought this was a very enjoyable MC romance read. I love all the secondary female characters, and can’t wait to see more and more of them. I thought the romance was well done between Sophie and Ruger, despite the fact that it was an up and down roller coaster ride the whole time! I think Wylde has created a wonderful romance series that both stays true to the real-world influence of MC clubs, but also creates wonderful characters that you can really rally behind and cheer for.
I give Reaper’s Legacy a B
Has: I think this is my favourite MC romance series. Joanna Wylde is just fantastic in creating a great cast of colourful and vibrant people and I especially love the female characters who help to balance out the over the top alphahole MC bikers. I love how dark and gritty this series can be but at the same time, the humour and sparkling dialogue just shines through and adds a fabulous dimension into the story, especially the romance.
I give Reaper’s Legacy a B+