Joint Review – Beyond Jealousy by Kit Rocha

Beyond JealousyPublisher: Self-published
Publish Date: Out Now
How we got this book: eARC from author

When Rachel Riley sacrificed a life in Eden to protect the O’Kanes, she earned her place in the powerful Sector Four gang. But the former crime princess is tired of being everyone’s sweet little sister . It’s time for her to get wild, to embrace her fantasies as only an O’Kane can—with a delicious exiled soldier and the gang’s wickedly sinful tattoo artist.

A saint…

Lorenzo Cruz is a warrior, taught by his commanding officers in Eden that involvement equals distraction. Emotion is a liability, and desire a sin. In Sector Four, he finds decadence, shameless sex—and his own dark urges. No battle strategy prepared him for how Rachel makes his heart race…or the way his rival for her affections sets his blood on fire.

…and a sinner.

Ace Santana has a dirty reputation and a mind to match, especially where his new lovers are concerned. He’s eager to help Cruz embrace his dominant side, and to explore the lines between pleasure and pain with Rachel. But corrupting them quickly becomes an obsession, a need he can’t deny—and a love he never imagined.

Three hearts on the line means a hundred ways their ménage a trois could go wrong. After all, even O’Kanes do forever two-by-two. One of them could be the missing piece that makes them all whole…or a temporary diversion destined for a broken heart.
*Blurb from Goodreads*

MinnChica: I adore the O’Kane clan, so I was desperate to read all about Rachel and Cruz and Ace and the little love triangle they had going on. While this was probably my least favorite in the series, I did enjoy getting to find out what exactly has been holding Ace back all this time, and watching these three work the dynamic between them so that it was beneficial for them all.

E: I couldn’t wait to see the Rachel, Ace, and Cruz work through their tangled knot of emotions and decide to put an end to the O’Kane speculation. While I enjoyed this story I thought it was missing a piece emotionally. Seeing what held both Ace and Cruz back was heartbreaking. Then witnessing the sacrifices each was willing to make when it came to life or death of the other made me see how sometimes actions can speak louder than words. I found it fascinating to watch the disconnect when someone who grew up faking emotion tried to deal with the fear of exposing actual emotion. I also loved Cruz’s internal struggle against his indoctrinated thoughts regarding fraternization and what made him truly happy.

MinnChica: I agree with you that it felt like there was something missing emotionally. I felt like I kept waiting for more depth to the feelings in both Ace and Rachel to come to the forefront, and that never happened for me. That clouded my enjoyment of the story, because I wanted so desperately for all three of them to dig deeper and explore the more emotionally aspects of their relationship, instead of just the physical. Now, don’t get me wrong, I loved the way they were able to work out the nitty gritty details of their relationship. :)

E: Oh yes, I loved how they worked things out. For me, I wanted more Ace/Cruz time without Rachel or anger in the middle. While Cruz did display some public intimacy with Ace it was only when Rachel was in between them so I wasn’t quite sure he had worked through his residual guilt. After thinking about what you said about Ace and Rachel I agree. They had so much hurt from years of rejection I would have loved to see more of that emotion worked through. As it stands I think all three of them have some work to do but I have hope that as this series continues they will get to the level I was looking for and along the way continue to experience some very moving physical encounters.

MinnChica: I am with you on that, I can only hope that as things continue in Sector 4, that we will get to see their relationship progress on a deeper level. Thinking back on the story, I can also see what you mean about Ace and Cruz together, and again, I think that would be another aspect of the story that could have been explained and explored more. For me, this is the weakest romance story of the series.

E: There are a couple things I enjoy about the continuity of this series. The first is revisiting characters I have gotten to know in previous installments and seeing the changes over time that occurred off-page. Those changes provided a sense of three dimensionality and helped me think the characters were not sitting around static until the next installment. The other thing I really enjoy is how the overall world also continues to develop. Eden, the Sectors, and it appears another area are rapidly moving towards a confrontation. The introduction of new characters or an insight into a more familiar character brings some additional definition and also raises new questions. Each action adds to the rising tension and also raises the stakes for Dallas and his O’Kanes.

MinnChica: I love getting to see old characters, especially those in the tight knit Dallas/Lex circle. I think the direction that Rocha is taking the series continues to blow me away, and I am so anxious to figure out where the books are headed next. Whether it’s Eden, one of the other Sectors, or the farms, I never know what to expect, and I absolutely love that about this series! As far as the world building goes, Rocha (and also Moira Rogers) are probably my favorite when it comes to unique and interesting worlds.

E: Rocha has continued to intrigue me with this world. As much as I was looking forward to this installment, I found Beyond Jealousy emotionally flatter than I expected and hoped to see. Rachel, Cruz, and Ace had gone through so much prior to and during this installment I needed more resolution to recover from their angst. Unlike the previous stories I finished their story thinking it was a HFN and hoped that Rocha would provide glimpses as they work towards their HEA. Yes the actions Cruz and Ace took when it was life or death were extremely telling but I needed to see the same devotion during everyday life. I am looking forward to seeing what Rocha comes up with next.
I give Beyond Jealousy a B-

MinnChica: All in all, as much as I was looking forward to this book, it didn’t live up to the huge expectations I had in my mind. Like E, I thought that the emotional aspects of this book weren’t as thought out and resolved as I had hoped, especially considering the history these characters had. But, given the crazy world building and amazing secondary characters, this series remains one of my favorites. I can’t wait to see what happens next.
I give Beyond Jealousy a B-

Comments

  1. Lozza says

    I’m about halfway through, and while I’m enjoying Rachel/Ace/Cruz fine, I think my favorite parts are all the secondary characters. Can you all share your thoughts on who the remaining books will be about? I think I just met the heroine of Beyond Innocence and I was disappointed that it’s someone new, and not an existing character that I wanted to know more about!

    ReplyReply
  2. MinnChica says

    @Lozza: I honestly have no idea who the other books will be about. But I think that as long as they continue to be popular and fans enjoy them, Bree & Donna will probably try and give everyone a happily ever after! :)

    ReplyReply

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