Ayden and Anthony have been best friends forever. They did everything together and grew up around The Last Hangman MC. They've stuck together through the good and the bad, realizing that what they feel for each other is so much more than friendship. They confess their feelings and start dating but their happiness is short lived.
Ayden's life is changed in an instant...One minute she thinks everything is perfect, that she found her happily ever after and the next minute her whole world comes crashing down, forcing her to leave New Orleans.
She starts a new life in New York but realize it's not enough. She needs to go back to her roots, even if it means going back where the MC is.
Anthony let Ayden leave six years ago.
He's always regretted it and seeing her again confirms how much he wants her and needs her in his life.
He'll do all he can to have Ayden back and get the truth about why she took off years ago.
What happens when her past catches up with her and starts messing with her life again?
Will she give into the fear of what took place that night might occur again? Or will she trust Anthony and let him help her get through it?
What happens when she finds out who is behind all the bad things she went through in the past? Will she be strong enough to handle the truth? Or will it destroy her beyond repair?
***This book contains adult material intended for mature readers only***
First, many thanks to Muriel Garcia, who provided a copy of Saving Ayden in exchange for an honest review.
I was sitting there at work one afternoon, minding my own business, when Barb gchatted me to tell me that we had been contacted and asked to read and review the Last Hangman series. I knew there were MC romances out there floating around, but I had never read one. So, I pulled up the first book on Goodreads, checked out the synopsis and promptly responded to Barb in shouty capitals something like this: “OMG I WANT IT GIMME GIMME!” As you might have guessed, I miss Sons of Anarchy, and the plot reminded me vaguely of the first season.
Ayden is the daughter of Cabe, the president of the Last Hangman MC. She and Anthony, the son of another member, have been inseparable since they were small. Anthony grows up to to join the MC as well. The story starts out when she and Anthony first begin dating, after a lifetime of friendship. They make plans to have their first night together, but before that can happen Ayden is kidnapped. She is held captive for a week and repeatedly raped. Her captor tells her over and over again that she needs to get away from the MC, threatening the lives of her parents and Anthony if she didn’t. She has some basic knowledge of what goes on within the club, but for the most part is completely innocent of the inner workings of club deals and life. She has no idea why she has been targeted, and her captor doesn’t tell her any specific reason why he has taken her.
We know it’s for revenge, because we are in his head briefly, but he doesn’t communicate this to Ayden. Instead, like the sick puppy he is, he acts like they have some kind of relationship (oh sure, it’s normal for you to keep a girl locked up and tied to a bed, real normal) She manages to escape when he mistakenly leaves her door unlocked. She thumbs a ride home, beaten up, bloody and desperately in need of a doctor. She gets home, and is greeted by her mom, who has been frantic all of this time. Ayden doesn’t waste any time, she packs up her stuff and burns rubber to New York, to a college that she had been accepted to. She had originally planned to stay in town to be near Ant, but has taken her rapist’s words to heart, running as far from the MC and her old life as she can. I don’t buy for one minute that her mom wouldn't have taken one look at her and drug her to a hospital, despite anything Ayden may have said to the contrary. Her dad wouldn’t have just let her run off to New York without some kind of explanation of her absence. Even if she did make it to New York, I have no doubt he would have been right behind her, wanting to know just WTF happened.
The story picks back up with Ayden coming back to town several years later. She has issues stemming from her rape; she’s nervous around men and constantly feels like she is being watched. Her rapist told her that he would be watching her and promised retribution if she returned to the MC. In defiance of that she comes back home to New Orleans trying to live her life on her own out of the shadow of what happened to her. Her dad has recently been framed for embezzlement at an accounting firm, his “straight job”. He’s now in prison. She gets a job with the same accounting firm her dad worked at, hoping to find out who framed him and why. She has a degree in marketing, and before long moves up in the company thanks to her skills. This puts her in the uncomfortable position of having to meet and talk to new people, which is hard for her, but she makes do. She buys her own place when she gets to town, and reunites with her mom and old friends.
Anthony is now the interim president of the MC. As soon as they see each other again it’s obvious that they both still have major feelings for each other. Anthony took Ayden’s disappearance hard, because he thought she was running away from a life with him, not knowing that in her head she was running away to keep him safe. Life has hardened Anthony, and he is now the tough guy MC prez, doing drug deals and gun deals, taking care of business. (and club whores, don’t forget them.) He’s kept a string of girls, but Ayden was his first love, the only one, for him. They’ve both changed a lot. They meet, and clash, and leave both still wanting each other but too proud and afraid to admit it.
Not long after this, Anthony finds himself stepping in to rescue Ayden from an uncomfortable situation between her and a man. He and Ayden finally have a long overdue conversation, and they are reunited as a couple. But Ayden’s painful past soon returns to haunt her and Anthony. It seems that her attacker from years ago wasn’t kidding - he really was watching her. The fact that Ayden has finally started to live her own life has angered him to the point of insanity, and his vengeance is imminent. Can Anthony rescue Ayden before her attacker finishes what he started?
I really enjoyed this book. There is a trigger warning before you start reading, which is necessary, but I like that this author took it that far. It gave it a needed dose of realism, because you and I both know, life around an MC just isn’t pretty, especially for women. It could have had even more of an edge, and I wouldn’t have complained. Anthony came across as a genuinely likeable character, without softening his rough edges too much. And not to spoil anything, but I like that ultimate justice was delivered by the character it was delivered by. (Is that clear as mud? lol) It only seemed fitting to me.
Next up is #2 in this series, Teaching Aleck.
About the Author:
Muriel Garcia was born and raised in Belgium. She started writing a little over a year ago and never thought she would ever publish; reading and writing weren’t her favorite things to do in high school.
After one of her friends gave her a challenge – the next time they would attend a book signing, she would be a signing author (it did happen!) – she started to take writing a lot more seriously and never looked back. She’s enjoyed every second of it and the friends she’s made along the way.
She loves music, tattoos—especially on hot men, traveling, and cooking. She has always had an overly imaginative and creative mind but never thought of putting words to paper. Now she couldn’t imagine not writing stories that are near and dear to her heart.