Legend (Real #6) by Katy Evans
Our heroine, Reese, has the personality of a marionette.
We then switch perspectives to our hero, Maverick, who is damaged somehow but we’re not told how or why. There’s some sort of tattoo on his person which leads other people to believe he’s serious trouble but we’re lead to believe he’s not. He wants to fight (fighting not specified at the time except that it’s Underground, which I think means MMA?) but we don’t know why and why everyone won’t let him.
There’s mysterious openings for the sake of intrigue and then there’s just frustrating openings. I kept staring at the page and wondering who these folks are and why are they both being so melodramatic? It was about halfway through the book before either one of those reveals happened and Maverick’s was the only one who really made sense. I didn’t buy Reese’s backstory at all, but at that point, the book was about how obsessed she was with Maverick’s body so the backstory was not as big of an issue.
A few things: I buy instalove about 1% of the time, and that’s what this is. While I buy it more between young adults because hormones make choices for us sometimes, I also get so so nervous for those young adults because of the same reason. I get antsy about consent and awareness, nervous about understandings of self. I understand that the sexual awakening of a girl through the more experienced dude is the cornerstone of this genre, but I feel like there are times you can do that right and times where it feels sceevers.
Nothing about Reese says to me that she is capable of making her own choices. And while the reveal of her backstory goes a ways to shed some light on why she is treated with kid gloves by everyone, it came too little too late for me to change my opinion about her and if she was really making a decision to choose Maverick or was simply overwhelmed by his animal magnetism.
On Maverick’s part, his emotional journey was more fulfilling. He has some Daddy baggage that was nicely dealt with and the introduction of a tribe into his life is lovely. I just get, and here’s my word again, nervous whenever someone talks about another person as the solution to all their problems. Maverick’s world is built around Reese and thus feels parasitic and not romantic to me.
However, all that rant done, Goodreads tells me that people who a: love NA, b: love this series, and c: love MMA books freaking adore this book. They’re slobbering all over the page talking about how fulfilling and hot and wonderful it is. So, if you’re in the bag for NA MMA books, then ignore me completely! Please! I say that sincerely. For me, I’m going to stick to stories between consenting adults with selfawareness and strong heroines who give as good as they get.