by K.A. Tucker
Publisher: Atria Books (Nov 2013)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Format: eARC (369 pages)
Source: Free book from publisher (Edelweiss) for honest review
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Rating: ★★★★½ (4.5 stars)
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.
At A Glance
This was such a strong story with strong characters but I did find some parts boring.
Wow, how does Tucker do it? She has a way with creating powerful stories that make you want to curl up and enjoy and at the same time pull out your hair from anxiety. And each one of the characters have such a wealth of personality and backstory, it’s amazing. Four Seconds to Lose felt even more heavy and dark compared to the other books, and those other books were pretty heavy. You can’t go into Four Seconds to Lose looking for a light read. This book will make you feel all the feels one can feel.
I loved Charlie. Her story was truly terrifying but so damn exhilarating to read about. She wants to run away from her life because the life she is forced to live is full of criminals, lies, and the constant possibility of death. So she needs money. Stripping seems like the most logical job to make money fast. But Charlie never expected to fall for Cain, the up standing strip club owner who has more to him than meets the eye. I admired Charlie and her motivation to fix her life, no matter the consequences. I would be scared sh*tless if I were in her position, but Charlie handled herself well. I loved how she tucked her feelings way down to get through each day and put her acting skills to the test to seem like the average 20-something girl trying to make a living. She was good at her cover, but not good enough to fool Cain.
I’m not sure, but I might have loved Cain even more than Charlie. His backstory is effing heartbreaking, but I loved how he turned his tragedy into a triumph. He may be a strip club owner, but he really is helping these girl make new lives for themselves, providing them with anything they would ever need to become the people they want to be, not the people their circumstances would make them into. Cain’s morals drove me crazy, I mean, come on, how goody-goody can one person be without going insane? He needed to let loose and take chances. And when he finally did take the plunge, with our lovely Charlie no less, I was so proud of him. I understood his reluctance but he made the right decision in the end and fought for what he wanted.
The loved Charlie and Cain’s story so much. It may have stressed me out, but it was worth all the nail biting for that kind of ending. The writing, as always, was amazing. The characterization was outstanding and the story pulled me in right away. I want the next book NOW!!
There were a few too many boring parts for me. I went all skim mode with a few chapters. This might have been my fault though. I was super stressed because of outside reasons while reading this book so I might have been impatient to get to the action and the end of the story. That’s why I only took off half a star.
Tucker has never been a huge sex scene writer. She tends to skip those parts, but this time around she got her steam on. There was one or two full sex scenes and other sexually playful scenes and it was a perfect amount for me.
I loved Charlie and Cain’s chemistry. They lite the pages on fire as they outrageously flirted with, more often than not, just their eyes. It was HOT. Charlie and Cain just felt perfect for each other.
For a new adult/adult audience.
Each book in this series has been a 4.5 star read for me. They are amazing books but there is always something holding me back from rating them on perfection level. But I always recommend these book to everyone. They all hit you right in the heart. So many feels! And Four Seconds to Lose is another great addition to the series. Very recommended.
“I believe some people are inherently evil.
I believe guilt is a powerful motivator.
I believe redemption is something you can strive for but never fully achieve.
I believe second chances exist only in dreams, never in reality.
I believe you don’t have years, or months, or weeks to impact a person’s life.
You have seconds.
Seconds to win them over, And seconds to lose them.”
“She’s the woman who stole my heart right out from me before I even realized she had her hands on it.”
“I’m hanging from a pendulum as it swings back and forth between a nightmare and a dream. Only the nightmare is real!”
“I’m living a life where safety is a luxury… Yet it took this man – a stranger – mere seconds to decide he would protect me.”