Guest Reviewed by Ami
Title: Lawless in Leather
Author: Melanie Scott
Series: New York Saints #3
Heroine/Hero: Reina Easton/Malachi Coulter
Genre: MF Contemporary Romance
Length: 320 Pages
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Release Date: May 5, 2015
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Reina Easton never expected to be training a cheerleading squad for a baseball team. But the owner of the building where her burlesque club is housed is threatening to sell, and she needs to get a deposit together.
Malachi Coulter can’t believe that Alex Winters wants cheerleaders for their team. When he meets Reina, he can’t deny his attraction… He’s just not sure that Reina’s wild ways are what he’s looking for. Reina isn’t thrilled about finding herself attracted to a guy like Mal, ex-army, motorcycle, security, tough guy.
When a crazed fan starts causing trouble, Mal is pulled in two directions. He wants to shut the squad down but Reina wants the money. Can a former bad boy and a former bad girl team up to win the day or are they just destined to strike out?
Review: Raina, an experienced dancer and burlesque club owner, is hired by Alex Winters to coach the cheerleading squad for the New York Saints, the Fallen Angels. Malachi is one of the three owners who deals mostly with ensuring security for the team and the stadium. Apparently, Raina finds herself and her club being target for some misdemeanors, including graffiti and fireworks at her club, as well slashed tires on her personal car. Malachi takes protecting others very seriously – with Raina as one of the new employees for the Saints, and his own growing attraction towards her, Malachi is determined to look after the rest of the Fallen Angels squad, most especially Raina – while maybe having a little pleasure in between.
The third installment of Scott’s New York Saints series (after Angel in Armani and Devil in Denim) is definitely my favorite to date. The key factor that made it so was that this time around I loved BOTH Raina and Malachi as characters – individually and together. In the previous two books, I tended to like one character more than the other. Not this time …
Raina is feisty and independent but at the same time quite alluring – she is a burlesque dancer after all! Imagine that if you will, with her red-hair and red satin dress. Done? Yeah, now you know what I mean *LOL*. I loved how she challenged Mal’s protective nature. Raina had a previously bad experience of being with a controlling ex-boyfriend. She refuses to fall into a similar situation with Mal. She understands Mal’s take on things but she also doesn’t want to just submit to all of his rules. She pushes him to compromise on things and I loved how she did that.
“Okay, so no location shoots. Studio only. Unless they want to come here and shoot something to play later. How about that? That way you can vet everyone to your little dark security lord heart’s content and control the whole shebang.”
“You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?” he said.
“My parents always taught me to use my words. And my gran said life was too short to spend wheedling folks to do what you want with the indirect approach. She was more the face things head-on and just say what the hell you want type.”
Malachi might show the usual attitude of being ‘Alpha’ – how he wants to barge in to take control of the situation, including Raina’s safety. However, what makes him different – and why I loved him so MUCH for it, is that Mal prepares to listen. He respects Raina’s wishes and he doesn’t just steamroll over her decisions.
Seriously, when these two go head to head, the scenes are filled with snappy, witty, and quite humorous banter. They match perfectly, even if at first Raina refuses to be with another ‘bad boy’, while Mal wants someone who is more laid-back this time around (after the heartbreak over losing his ex-girlfriend who lived for adrenaline). While at first, Raina and Mal are looking for opposite things, it is clear that instead they find that they can push each other to be better. I loved that – I love a couple that complements one another. It’s a bonus point that their sexy times are also, well, sexy . 🙂
On top of that, Scott instills the contemporary romance with a dash of troublesome situation – namely someone targeting Raina and most possibly the Fallen Angels as well. The conclusion of the mystery was rather rushed though, in my opinion, and I sort of missed the ‘AHA’ moment when Mal puts clues together and comes up with an action plan to deal with it. I guess the mystery-lover in me was not as satisfied as the romance-lover counterpart.
I really hope that Scott continues with this entertaining series. I can’t wait to read more updates from the New York Saints – they are just starting their new adventure after all, with the romance from the players and/or any other people involved with this team.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*