Ryan Kendall is broken. He understands pain. He knows the hand of violence and the ache of loss. He knows what it means to fail those who need you. Being broken doesn’t stop him wanting the one thing he can’t have; Finlay Tanner. Her smile is sweet and her future bright. She’s the girl he grew up with, the girl he loves, the girl he protects from the world, and from himself.
At nineteen, Ryan leaves to join the Australian Army. After years of training he becomes an elite SAS soldier and deploys to the Afghanistan war. His patrol undertakes the most dangerous missions a soldier can face. But no matter how far he runs, or how hard he fights, his need for Finlay won’t let go.
Returning home after six years, one look is all it takes to know he can’t live without her. But sometimes love isn’t enough to heal what hurts. Sometimes people like him can’t be fixed, and sometimes people like Finlay deserve more than what’s left.
This is a story about war and the cost of sacrifice. Where bonds are formed, and friendships found. Where those who are strong, fall hard. Where love is let go, heartache is born, and heroes are made. Where one man learns that the hardest fight of all, is the fight to save himself.
To me, a testament of a really great book is when there’s an emotional sneak attack. I started reading the book on my flight home for Thanksgiving. As I’m reading Fighting Redemption I have in my mind various scenarios that could happen. All of a sudden, I’m trying to conceal myself in the corner of my window seat so the completely packed plane and especially my seat mates don’t notice that I’m crying my eyes out trying so hard to hold in sobs. Once I landed and had cell service, I immediately emailed Kate and told her she should have given a warning not to read in public! Well there, you have my warning.
This is such a sweet love story but completely heart breaking at the same time. Ryan grew up with parents that were horrible to him..but it wasn’t always this way. He knew his whole life what it felt like to have his parents love him and treat him well and then one day things completely change. He survived his childhood and teenage years all because of his friendship with Jake Tanner, Finlay’s older brother. As Ryan and Jake are the same age they quickly became best friends and did everything together. Jake and Finlay’s parents always had their door wide open for Ryan whenever he needed it. Through the childhood and teenage years Ryan and Finlay were constantly around each other. It was easy for them to grow feelings for each other but Ryan would never act on his feelings, he had one path and one path only; the Australian Army where he would become and SAS soldier.
I absolutely loved Finlay’s relationship with her brother. They had such an amazing bond that I wish more sibling relationships were like. He encouraged Finlay to pursue every dream she ever had and supported her through her ups and downs. Throughout the years, Jake and Ryan are able to continue an amazingly beautiful friendship. Even though Jake and Ryan remained friends, Finlay and Ryan go years without even speaking. That is until Ryan decides to come home for the first time while on leave.
Finlay and Ryan, I really don’t know what to say. I kept fighting for them to be together, for Ryan to realize that the only way for him to live is to act on his love for her. They have such a deep understanding of each other and such a powerful need to be together. I completely and utterly feel in love with Ryan and desperately needed them to be together!
This is a must read, but definitely do not read in public!!
The call disconnected before she could reply, and she tossed the phone beside her with a sigh. Pushing up off the bed, she walked towards her wardrobe. Catching movement from the corner of her eye, she turned her head and jolted. Ryan was leaning casually against the doorframe, his arms folded. Licking his lips, he stepped into the room and shut the door behind him.
“Ryan. You scared me.” She reached for the top she’d tossed on her corner chair a few minutes ago and gave him her back.
Fin felt him come up behind her and she shivered. He reached around, grabbed the shirt from her hands and tossed it on the floor. Suddenly breathless, she looked at it, then at his hands where they came to rest on her stomach.
He was an asshole for doing this to her, but her door was ajar. When Ryan heard her voice and saw her lying on her bed in nothing but lacy pink underwear, he couldn’t stop himself. How did she manage to look so innocent and so sexy all at the same time?
His lids lowered as he looked down over her shoulder, watching his hands as they skimmed up the smooth, taut skin of her belly to cup her breasts firmly.
Her body trembled as he rubbed his thumbs across her nipples. He felt them harden beneath the flimsy lace of her bra.
“Fin,” he breathed, running one hand down along the inner edges of her tanned thigh. Fuck. Her legs were smooth and warm, and he wanted them wrapped around him as he sank himself deep inside her.
Burying his head in her neck, Ryan shifted his hand to cup the pretty lace panties between her thighs and took a deep, shuddering breath. God, he shook with the need to taste her.
“Ryan,” she moaned.
With his other hand, he fisted the soft strands of her hair and yanked her head back, exposing the line of her throat, and he fell on it—sucking and biting the sweet skin until he was unbearably hard.
A tap came at the bedroom door and they both froze. “Fin? Are you heading out soon or eating here first?” Jake called out.
“I-I’ll be right out,” she stammered and took a step forward out of Ryan’s arms. She turned around, meeting his eyes.
“Okay,” Jake called back.
Ryan’s blood pulsed so hard it was a roar in his ears as they stared at each other wordlessly. After a beat of silence, she tore her eyes away and opened the wardrobe door.
“Are you happy now?” she hissed as she grabbed a pair of jeans from the shelves.
His eyes on her ass, he muttered, “What?”
She threw the jeans at him and he caught them when they hit him square in the chest. “This. Us. Yes, okay? I want you. Is that what you want to hear? That I dream of you too?” she choked out. “Your hands on me, inside of me, and I ache too.”
Ryan took a step towards her.
“Don’t.” She snatched the jeans out of his hands and tugged them on.
“I’m sorry,” he murmured.
Fin turned, rummaging for a top. She pulled one off a hanger and tugged it on furiously. “You’re sorry. I’m sorry. Everybody’s sorry. Well it’s just one sad, fucking sorry situation, isn’t it?
Christ, Fin was a fiery inferno when she was mad, and it had his dick swelling even harder. “Fin, I—”
“Enough!” She jabbed a finger in his chest. “There’s hurt in there. I know it. You know it, but you’re not going to move on from it until you let that shit out. Whatever you’re doing now isn’t working. Own it, Ryan. Stop letting it own you.” With that she brushed passed him and opened the bedroom door. She looked at him over her shoulder before stalking away.
About the Author
Kate McCarthy grew up in a small town outside of Port Macquarie, Australia. Raised in a house just a short walk to the beach, Kate enjoyed the peaceful, relaxed atmosphere and friendships that come from being raised in a friendly, small town area.
She now resides in Brisbane, Australia, a city in the state of Queensland where she works as an accountant, along with a sideline wedding cake business and her writing.
She is married with two children, has two dogs and house in the suburbs, and a pile of friends and family dotted all over the country that help keep her sane.
When she’s not busy running after naughty kids, filthy dogs, crunching numbers, piping buttercream and writing books, you can find her curled up in bed in the early hours of the morning reading new books and re-reading old favourites. Her favourite books are the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward in which she longs to eventually join the brotherhood and change her name to Phierce Mutha.