Review – Charged by Jay Crownover

Charged Cover

Karen's Review
Charged
by Jay Crownover

Charged is a powerful and pulse-pounding page turner that hits the heart like a hurricane—fast, feverishly, and full of life. This tale takes you hostage, a deep immersion where fiction bleeds into reality. Charged…this story…this experience…is so raw it feels real. All-consuming. Angst-ridden. Achingly addictive.

Before I even started Charged I knew that if it stayed true to Jay Crownover’s style, it would be a rough rollercoaster of a ride to a happy ending. The best kind of romance: a messy story of hard fought love with characters who are flawed but fierce and fabulous. A tale of trial and tribulation where the players have black hearts on the outside but hearts of gold buried underneath the surface, which is uncovered, piece-by-powerful piece.

I want to devour Charged. I want to savor it, Avett and Quaid. I want to rush. I want to take my time. Charged stormed its way into my heart and soul. A bolt of lightning, striking me hard. Feelings flowing. Pulse pounding. Soul spinning. From the very first page; I was all in. Happy tears. Nostalgic tears. Weary tears. Sad tears. So many tears. So many emotions that cut through me like a knife.

Just two pages into the Introduction and Jay is speaking to me, loud and clear. I didn’t have to dive deeply to uncover the emotions that quickly bubbled up to the surface. Those words…I felt them deep down inside, so profound that they sent me on a trip down memory lane. I saw myself as that teen who had a few dates with trouble, taking risks that reeked of danger.

“So go out there and screw up. Have experiences so that you have stories to tell, and do it without apology.”

Mistakes sometimes make the best memories. Like Jay Crownover. Like me. Like so many of us, Avett Walker and Quaid Jackson have a story to tell and it’s a disaster but oh so devastatingly beautiful.

Avett Walker, the burly and big-hearted Brite’s little girl, has always dangled with danger, attracted to it like a magnet, pulling her in and dragging her down. Trouble finds her, and the innocent-looking pretty young lady with the cotton candy-colored hair has a rap sheet a mile long. Jail serves as a much-needed wake-up call to try to dig herself out of danger that has been her partner in crime for so many years.

“I had needed rescuing for a very long time.”

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I want to hug Avett and give her the ‘mom talk’ about self-sabotage and learning from her past mistakes. I want to hug Brite for being an amazing father who has stood by his baby girl through thick and thin. Unconditional love is the most beautiful gift a parent can give a child.

Quaid Jackson is the beautiful, blond, and blue-eyed attorney who wears expensive suits like they were built for him. Cut-throat in the courtroom, he defends criminals—many of whom are from innocent. Quaid is so skilled and sharp that he makes even the monsters look like Mother Theresa in the end. He is running from a painful past that has plagued him for years.

“I was trying to screw wasted years, wasted money, and a broken heart out of my system.”

Her hope rests on the regal-looking but ruthless Quaid, the skillful attorney who can save Avett from prison due to one terrible mistake.

“The man was a predator, a civilized beast in a designer suit.”

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I love that under Quaid’s beautiful wrapper may be a hidden beast, perhaps some bad ass under there too, and someone not as calm and collected as he appears.

Quaid is Avett’s only chance of digging herself out of this dirty mess she created. Avett is not used to following anyone’s advice, yet alone the direction of the sexiest and most sophisticated man she’s ever seen. She can’t help but want to ignite the fire in this bold and beautiful beast. Poke the lion and see if he growls.

“Getting him to react to me had become a personal challenge, and I was well aware I was pulling on a big, golden lion’s tail.”

This golden lion is chasing his tail as Avett is making his head spin. With Quaid’s new client being the small and sinfully sexy spitfire, personalities clash while sparks ignite. The gorgeous no-nonsense attorney and the colorful and reckless young beauty. Polished meets punk. Cautious meets impulsive. Desire meets desire.

Quaid is having trouble keeping his foreign feelings towards Avett on lock-down.

“I shouldn’t be noticing her curves. It was my job to help her, to keep her out of jail. With this client I wanted to touch my mouth to hers and see if she tasted as wild and rebellious as she seemed.”

Fireworks flare as Quaid tries to focus on remaining professional though it’s hard when Quaid wants to take and mark the woman who is slowly breaking down the wall around his heart, brick by brick, leaving him open and vulnerable. He must remember that a relationship between client and attorney is forbidden. If only fate would get the message as it keeps trying to intervene.

Forbidden love is one of the biggest messes, and I love a story with many loose ends. A book that is as bad as it is good.

“This little slip of a woman could demolish me, waste me, annihilate me, and if I allowed her to do it, I knew that it would feel better than anything in a very long time.”

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Lines blur, boundaries break, and chemistry burns brighter. For Avett, Quaid is heat, heart, and hope wrapped up in one beautiful and bold package.

“I knew kissing Quaid Jackson was going to lead to all kinds of sorry and sorrow. I knew it as much as I knew I didn’t care and that I was going to kiss him and chase this bad idea until it crashed and burned, like they always did.”

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Quaid and Avett are visual opposites but inner kindred spirits. Both are plagued by painful pasts holding them prisoner where they may be the only ones who can free each other. After all, like knows like, and inside, Quaid and Avett are one.
Charged Teaser

The pink-haired hurricane stormed into Quaid’s life and whirled around his emotions. However, with Quaid’s high-profile job on the line and Avett’s past constantly crawling up to the surface, the damage may not be worth the risk. It may be time to cash out before the game gets dicey.

“I don’t know what you thought was happening here, but it was just a job. You are a client, like any other client I represent, Avett. Nothing more, nothing less.”

Avett has always dangled with danger, but who knew her biggest danger could be her heart left in the ashes and possibly burned.

“I was pretty sure when Quaid Jackson was done with me, there would be nothing on earth that could feel as bad or be as painful.”

My soul is spinning as I just finished Charged, and I’m sorry that the story is over. Charged is a bumpy but brilliant and beautiful ride, a ride I did not want to end with twists and turns where tears of sappiness collide with tears of sorrow. You can’t help but love Jay Crownover’s badass boys and gals with big ass hearts. The unlikely and unexpected characters paired together make for a messy but so devastatingly beautiful and brilliant book. Hypnotizing. Heroic. Heartfelt.

Charged stormed it way into my heart and soul, sparking an emotional charge with words that tore at every piece of me, daring my emotions to tangle in this web of wonder. Its messages melted my mind, causing me to step inside my head and heart: Learn from your past mistakes. By finding and forgiving yourself as you learn from the past and let it heal you, only then will your present and future be brighter.

There are a few amazing authors that I can count on my hands whose powerful and poignant words paint a vivid picture, immersing me full throttle where my heart and soul feel everything. I know before even reading that their stories will tear me up, transporting me so deep that I don’t ever want to leave. Their beautiful books are those that remain with me forever. Jay Crownover is one of these heart-hitting authors.

Jay Crownover is a master of the pen, wielding words like swords that pierce straight to the heart. They hit me hard, gutting me every time. There are not enough stars for Jay Crownover’s words. If you haven’t met her raw and real work, JUST DO IT. Like a queen with the Midas touch, anything Jaw Crownover creates is pure gold. Crownover Crack.

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5 ‘but worth more’ sensational and soul-spinning stars

View all my reviews

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From the New York Times bestselling author of the Marked Men books comes the second installment in the Saints of Denver series featuring a bad girl and a by the book attorney who could be her salvation…or her ruin.

Avett Walker and Quaid Jackson’s worlds have no reason to collide. Ever. Quaid is a high powered criminal attorney as slick as he is handsome. Avett is a pink-haired troublemaker with a bad attitude and a history of picking the wrong men.

When Avett lands in a sea of hot water because of one terrible mistake, the only person who can get her out of it is the insanely sexy lawyer. The last thing on earth she wants to do is rely on the no-nonsense attorney who thinks of her as nothing more than a nuisance. He literally has her fate in his hands. Yet there is something about him that makes her want to convince him to loosen his tie and have a little fun…with her.

Quaid never takes on clients like the impulsive young woman with a Technicolor dye job. She could stand to learn a hard lesson or two, but something about her guileless hazel eyes intrigues him. Still, he’s determined to keep their relationship strictly business. But doing so is becoming more impossible with each day he spends with her.

As they work side-by-side, they’ll have to figure out a way to get along and keep their hands off each other—because the chemistry between them is beyond charged.

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