Thanks to the publisher & Netgalley for the complimentary e-ARC and the publisher for the complimentary hard copy. All opinions provided are my own.
Sarah MacLean gave me what I wanted with Detective Inspector Tommy Peck: thick thighs, a nice beard, a strong sense of honor, & a stern & stoic way of presenting himself.
Then comes Lady Imogen Loveless like a wreckinggggg ball.
She leads him on a merry chase, all while she & the Belles are investigating the series of explosions that have been set at places of refuge / help in the East End. All the while she is captivating Tommy though he is very aware of the class difference between them.
The “cat & cat” dynamic between Imogen & Tommy is too good. He sees her as an equal & as someone who is endlessly resourceful & who can find answers. His confidence in her is hot.
As is his possessiveness about who can see Imogen in moments of dishevelment following smooching & more. “He doesn’t get to see this.” Freaking swoon.
Imogen—like the other Hell’s Belles we’ve met—is a total bada** & I wish I had her bag filled with tricks.
Their story has weight & twists & the Belles manipulating events in an attempt to help others.
But I think my expectations were a bit off the mark for this one. Based off of impressions from earlier books I thought this one might be more fun, more madcap, & while I enjoyed seeing what lies beneath Imogen’s chaos I also kinda wanted more chaos. More explosions set by Imogen. More like Bringing Up Baby but with explosives ;) .
Still, Knockout is hot & sensual & romantic & I really adore the gravity of SM’s writing. It’s provocative but there’s also a seriousness in tone & scope that compels. I don’t know if that makes sense?
Either way, this reviewer is looking forward to the next book because this one left off on a real moment.
4⭐️. Out 08/22.
CWs: Explosions targeting places of refuge; misogynist remarks; cruel remarks; attempted murder; references to murder; violence.
Give me that HEA, please.
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