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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

❤ FOUR SECONDS TO LOSE (Ten Tiny Breaths #3) by K.A. Tucker: A Midnight Fairy Book Review ❤

Hello everyone! I hope everyone is doing great, it's the Midnight Fairy again reporting from the humble quarters of the fairy court. Today I'll give you K.A Tucker's Four Seconds To Lose, the third book from the Ten Tiny Breath series! I know this review is so late already (the book was published on November, 2013), but I never got the chance to read it last year because, IDK, it probably just slipped out of my mind. Anyway, I heard that the 4th book will be published soon. So, I decided to read this one now so that i'll be on time to read and review the next one. =D


When a gorgeous young dancer walks through his door, a strip club owner must decide whether to follow his rules or his heart in the third novel by the author of One Tiny Lie and Ten Tiny Breaths.

Owning a strip club isn’t the fantasy most guys expect it to be. With long hours, a staff with enough issues to keep a psych ward in business, and the police regularly on his case, twenty-nine-year-old Cain is starting to second guess his unspoken mission to save the women he employs. And then blond, brown-eyed Charlie Rourke walks through his door, and things get really complicated. Cain abides by a strict “no sleeping with the staff” rule. But being around Charlie challenges Cain’s self-control…and it’s been a long time since any woman has done that. 

Twenty-two-year-old Charlie Rourke needs a lot of money, really fast, in order to vanish before it’s too late. Taking her clothes off for men makes her stomach curl but Charlie tells herself that at least she’s putting her acting and dancing skills to good use. And though her fellow dancers seem eager to nab their sexy, sophisticated, and genuinely caring boss, she’s not interested. After all, Charlie Rourke doesn’t really exist—and the girl pretending to be her can't get distracted by romance.

Unfortunately, Charlie soon discovers that developing feelings for Cain is inevitable, and that those feelings may not be unrequited—but losing him when he finds out what she’s involved with will be more painful than any other sentence awaiting her.

❤ The Characters:

I have always been intrigued about Cain's character since Ten Tiny Breaths. He is a walking enigma. He owns a strip club which itself already sounds shady yet he is a good employer and a loyal friend. He treats his employees well and gives them a safe environment to live and work in. He will kick an abusive boyfriend's ass for his employee and  will tutor another to get her GED. Four Seconds to Lose delved about Cain's past which tells us how he became who he is. I really liked his character because he is complex. He had a dark past and he is trying to make up for it by helping other people. However, despite how "good" his image is to his employees, there are still remnants of the dark in him--- i mean he is still connected to his dark side. Ugh, I'm not sure if i'm making sense here---but, he is the kind of guy who isn't black and white. I liked how his layers were stripped one at a time. Ms. Tucker showed his "good" side by how he treats his employees and friends and then later on she showed Cain's dark side by how he took matters in his own hands by roughing up an abusive guy or that time when he personally walked in to a druglord's den to rat someone and has him killed.

The first thing that came to my mind when Charlie was introduced in the story is that she is too young to be involved in something so awful (at this time i thought she's really 22 years old). She clearly doesn't want to work as a stripper but she didn't have a choice, she was living a lie and she's tired of it. To claim her freedom, she needs money and she only have very few choices to earn enough in a short period of time. As her story unfold, it appears that she was raised by her step dad to be part of the drug syndicate all along. At a very young age she's been dealing drugs without her complete knowledge about those mysterious errands her step dad made her do. I liked how Ms. Tucker showed how dynamic her character is. She is young and vulnerable one moment and then the next she's fighting her demons and facing the music.

❤ The Story:

This is by far the darkest among the books in the Ten Tiny Breaths series. In the first two books we encountered deaths, drunk driving, psychological problems and suicidal tendencies, in Four Seconds to Lose we are dragged into underground fighting, prostitution, more deaths (brutal ones) and drug dealing. The characters were thrown into a situation where they didn't have choice but cross the lines between the good and the bad to survive. I guess that's what appealed to me here, the story compels you to think outside the box--- that things aren't always black and white, that sometimes, you had to do something wrong to make some things right, or at least a semblance of rightness. I didn't like how the issue was resolved--- they took matters in their own hands by manipulating other people. It was wrong but they had to do it for the greater good, and also for the main characters to finally have a life. Still, I wish the authorities were the ones who initiated the death of the evil character in the story, because this is another piece in the dark deeds list in Cain's book. It's going to stick with him forever. Also, It didn't feel right to me when Charlie's real name was revealed. It was too convenient. It's like she is replacing the old Penny-- I was okay that she moves and looks like the first Penny, but a namesake too? I don't think so. The first Penny had a huge part in making Cain the way he is and I think she deserve to be remembered despite how tragic her life ended. Now, when they meet new people in their lives people will assume that Cain's "Penny" tattoo is for the Penny/Charlie, not the old one, which is kinda sad.

❤ The Romance:

I usually comment about the age difference between the characters in contemporary romance novels but I wasn't really bothered with their 11-year age difference. Despite how young Charlie was, she matured soon enough after being exposed to drug dealing and stripping. Cain is unquestionably hot, top that with an aura of mystery and a kind heart... whew, he's a real catch. However, after his traumatic experience with his first love Penny who was killed in his own bar, he's reluctant to be in that situation again. When Charlie stepped into Penny's Palace, there is an instant connection between the two that they couldn't shake off no matter how hard they try. The two both deserved to be happy, and I'm glad they got their HEA despite how murky the lines they've crossed to get there. Well, this is a NA romance, so prepare yourself for some steamy scenes!

“She’s the woman who stole my heart right out from me before I even realized she had her hands on it.” 

❤ The Writing:

I think Ms. Tucker really did well on this one, thus the 4.5 fairy wings rating. It did dragged a little towards the middle part of the story but it picked right back up towards the end of the book. I already mentioned how I didn't like the resolution of the conflict in the story but I'm satisfied with how the story ended. Four Seconds to Lose is a great read and highly recommended to NA Romance readers. I'm looking forward to read Five Ways to Fall which is going to be Ben's story. 

❤ Rating: 4.5 Fairy Wings!

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