Author: April Kelley
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Pages/Word Count: 101 Pages
At a Glance: There’s humor and love among the drama in A Tarnished Strength.
Reviewed By: Maryann
Blurb: Brad Flynn had a rough start to life. With an abusive father and an addiction problem, his life hasn’t been easy. He has always been the resident bad ass and the town drunk. Even when he gets sober and becomes an upstanding member of the community, it doesn’t seem to change the town’s mind about him. If it weren’t for his two brothers, he would have no one.
His past doesn’t make having a love life easy either, but when he meets Kendrick Ashby, the local bar owner, he wants to give it a try. The only problem is Kendrick has his own problems, ones that make having a violent boyfriend impossible. Both have to decide if dating is even worth a try.
Review: Brad Flynn lived a hard life in Pickleville. He lost his mother to cancer and was left in the hands of an abusive alcoholic father. When Brad comes home to find his younger brother Luis has been attacked by their father, he takes Luis, along with their brother Caden, and builds a new life with them, becoming their caretaker and protector. Brad was not without his share of problems as he grew up, though: he was hateful and an alcoholic and then found himself in jail for a few years. But, it was the best thing that could have happened to him. He got the therapy he needed to be a better person; though in this small town, he still has the reputation of being a drunk and a troublemaker to overcome.
Kendrick Ashby owns TJ’s bar. He was in a relationship that had become abusive, and eventually ended up in the hospital for three days. All is not well with Kendrick. It’s bad enough that he still has flashbacks of the violence in his life, but he also has a leaking roof at the club and knows he has to call Brad to have it fixed. Even though Kendrick is nervous around Brad, they make a date to have dinner. When Kendrick realizes he needs to go grocery shopping, he starts to have a panic attack and calls Brad to go with him. As they spend more time together and learn about each other’s lives, Brad tells Kendrick why he went to jail, leading Kendrick to the decision that he needs time to think about what he’s learned. When Brad returns to the bar to finish the roof repairs, he tries to talk with Kendrick with less than perfect results. Once Brad gets home, he receives a call from Kendrick, and, in the end, comes to the conclusion he’s not good enough for Kendrick.
A Tarnished Strength is the fourth installment in April Kelley’s Pickleville series. I like the way the author brought humor and love to this novel, in the relationship between the brothers. The support from their friends also gives the story a nice feel. I, for one, am interested to see how Luis’s story turns out.
You can buy A Tarnished Strength here: