Apr 5, 2014

Giving In by Maya Banks *Review*

Kylie sees the way Jensen looks at her. The dark promise in his eyes. That rough edge of dominance she knows he possesses. But dominance is the one thing that frightens her above all else. She and her brother barely survived a childhood steeped in violence and abuse. She could never give up total control and submit to a man. Especially a man like Jensen. Could she?

Jensen sees the shadows in Kylie’s eyes. Knows he has to tread very carefully or risk losing any chance he has with her. All he wants is the opportunity to show her that dominance doesn’t equal pain, bondage or discipline. That emotional surrender is the most powerful of all, and that to submit—fully to him—will fulfill the aching void in her heart in a way nothing else ever will.

I received a copy of this story for an honest review. Pictures used as part of this review are used for fun and do not belong to me. 

Kylie Breckenridge is alone and intends to keep it that way. As a child she faced the ultimate betrayal from a violent and abusive father. As an adult she suffered the tragic loss of her hero brother, the one who rescued her from a living childhood nightmare. Kylie is broken and won’t risk opening herself to more pain from anyone, let alone the man that now sits in the top spot of the company her brother built. 

Jensen Tucker sees something in Kylie that no one else does. He sees a strong fighter that needs encouragement instead of the constant coddling her friends give her. If he can only get her to stop looking at him like he was the devil incarnate, he may be able to convince her that he lost his heart to her the moment he laid eyes on her. He’d do anything, even suppress his Dominant nature, to make her happy.

“You’re going to have to work a hell of a lot harder than that to scare me away. You and I are inevitable, Kylie. I’ve accepted that. Now you have to as well.” 

After the release of Letting Go, book one of The Surrender Trilogy, I heard a few complaints from other readers that they didn’t like it because it was not as hardcore as some of author Maya Banks other works. To me this isn’t an issue – it’s actually part of the reason I love Banks as a writer. In one series she can write stories so insanely hot I feel like my face is melting because I’m blushing so hard. In other series, much like The Surrender Trilogy, Banks focuses on strong emotions and character growth that quickly invests me in her characters and makes me care about them on a personal level. 

Giving In is a touching love story of two people who were horribly damaged as children, two people who find the strength to embrace who they’ve become and what actually makes them happy. Giving In is the kind of romance that doesn’t need a love scene every other page, it wouldn’t make sense for the characters. That said, the loves scenes Banks wrote in Giving In are still pretty stellar. 

“I trust you. I love you. Don’t hold back. Not with me. Show me who you really are. Because that’s the person I love.” 

Overall Giving In was a solid read. The one small issue I had with the story (and it is super small) is that even though a couple of characters mentioned that Kylie should seek help from a mental health professional, the suggestion was repeatedly blown off. I would have loved to have seen the character seek help and understand that doing so wasn’t a weakness.

“It only stands to reason that since we’re both such fucked-up individuals that we stick together and be fucked-up together.” 

The Surrender Trilogy will conclude this summer with Taking It All, the story of Joss (the heroine from Letting Go) and Kylie’s best friend Chessy and her husband Tate. Author Banks has laid some solid ground work for this troubled pair and I’m psyched to see a romance focusing on a married couple that have already found love with each other but struggle to maintain it. Also, Chessy has been such as strong, loving, and supportive character in Letting Go and Giving In that I’m really excited for a story that focuses on her wants and needs. 

Giving In should not be read as a stand-alone. If you haven’t already checked out Letting Go, you’ll need to read that first. This trilogy is definitely worth checking out.

Happy reading.

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