Title: Last Mile
Author: Katie Ashley
Series: Vicious Cycle #3
Release Date: May 3, 2016
After her father was murdered in the line of duty, ATF agent Samantha Vargas is determined to take down the scumbags of the drug trade. When her partner takes on a case to infiltrate the Hells Raiders MC, Samantha agrees to go undercover as his old lady but is surprised to find herself drawn to the very man she is investigating.
Benjamin “Bishop” Malloy has worked hard to carve a place for himself both in and out of the MC world. Working days as a mechanic, he spends his nights rebuilding motorcycles with the hope of one day owning his own shop. After taking one of the club’s new hang-arounds under his wing, Bishop is conflicted over his growing attraction for the man’s girlfriend.
Even though she’s determined to bring down the Raiders, Samantha discovers their world isn’t as black-and-white as she thought. And as the stakes grow higher, she’s in danger of losing more than her heart.
Katie Ashley brings the Vicious Cycle series full circle with Last Mile. I enjoyed the intensity and unexpected emotions of Bishop’s story, reveling in the incredible feeling of family that Katie Ashley has so perfectly captured with her MC world. I was definitely surprised by the direction of Bishop and Sam’s story. There were times when I didn’t know where their journey would take them or how I would feel along the way, but Katie Ashley did a great job assuaging my fears, delivering a fun, feisty, and thrilling tale of overcoming stereotypes, dismissing assumptions, and finding home in the last place you’d ever look. As always, this novel was made whole by the cast of secondary characters that provided lighthearted banter, easy friendships, and additional intrigue to Sam and Bishop’s journey. I loved seeing the couples from the first two books return as well as getting to know some interesting new characters. Katie Ashley expertly captured the heart and soul of this story and delivered it to her readers in a way that was entertaining and memorable. Last Mile is definitely a great addition to this series and easily my favorite book of the bunch.
“While his body was built for being an executioner, his eyes had held such kindness and compassion as we spoke. And that was not at all what I had been expecting or prepared for.”
Bishop and Sam were an unlikely match that somehow just worked. Bishop comes from a family of bikers so his attitude towards the MC world is that of reverence. Sam, on the other hand, loathes the club world for all it had stolen from her. Sam’s assumptions are immediately challenged the moment she meets Bishop and I very much enjoyed watching her beliefs about MC life fall apart. Katie Ashley did a fantastic job developing this character, demonstrating tangible growth as she got to know Bishop and unearthed the reality of the life she hated for so long. It was especially satisfying to see Sam’s fears challenged, allowing her to make peace with the world she really didn’t know and even come to find her own place within it. As Katie Ashley unraveled Bishop over the course of the story, we got to see a different side of him. One that still very much loves the brotherhood he calls home, but reaches for something of his own. The moral compass and good conscience he demonstrates during his time with Sam made him utterly swoon-worthy and I found myself falling hard for this badass biker with a sweet, sensitive side.
“I never intended to fall for Bishop, and when I did, I didn’t want to be an agent investigating him. I just wanted to be a woman in love with him.”
I adored the concept of this storyline. It was fresh, intriguing, and full of surprises. While I’m sure the idea of someone going undercover in a MC isn’t new, having two people enter the world together made for a totally different and definitely enthralling dynamic. I enjoyed the spin this put on Bishop and Sam’s story and I especially liked the added tension that kept me anxiously waiting for the moment when the other shoe would drop. For the most part, the story was well paced. It did seem a little uneven when looking at the big picture. There was a long build-up in terms of Sam’s job and then a fairly quick resolution. I would have liked to know more about Sam’s investigation and the case being built against the MC in order for that component of the plot to hold more weight. Otherwise, I found myself devouring this story, caught up in the MC world Katie Ashley so vibrantly brings to life with her colorful imagery and clever language. Last Mile was well written and full of unexpected emotions. If you like MC romance then you will adore Bishop and Sam’s unconventional and unforgettable story.
Gavin took his beer back from me. “Ready?”
“More than ready. What happened while I was gone?”
“Bishop got me a beer on the house and told me to have a seat. I thought he was coming over to talk, but then he got called away.”
My eyes narrowed in suspicion. “Some backdoor meeting?”
With a chuckle, Gavin replied, “More like some hot piece of ass with her tits hanging out of her top asked him to dance.”
I rolled my eyes in a huff. “Men. Don’t you ever think with anything besides your dicks?”
“Nope,” Gavin replied with a wink.
Turning away from Gavin, I focused my gaze on the dance floor. It only took a second to spot Bishop through the crowd of other bikers. Gavin had adequately described the woman Bishop was with. At the moment, they were bumping and grinding to where they might as well have been having sex on the floor. Out of nowhere a flush of warmth spread over me the same way Bishop’s hands ran over the woman’s body. It seemed to get even hotter when I watched the expert way his hips pumped against hers.
Leaning forward in my chair, I continued to study my target. The pictures the bureau had shown me didn’t quite do Bishop justice. Although it should have been the last thing on my mind, I couldn’t help thinking he was far more good-looking in person. He certainly appeared more built—his muscles more defined, his chest broader, and his thighs thicker. His body exuded power and strength—two things that came in handy for him as a boxer and the sergeant at arms. I couldn’t help snorting at how I felt like an airhead sorority girl with the lustful thoughts running through my mind.
“He’s completely fuckable, isn’t he?” Gavin asked, in a low voice.
Oh hell yes. Very, very fuckable, I thought as I fought the urge to squirm in my seat. Needing to hide my illicit thoughts from Gavin, I said, “Just what the hell are you talking about?”
Gavin waggled his eyebrows. “Don’t think I didn’t notice the way you were just looking at him.”
“I was assessing the target, smart-ass.”
“Bullshit. Your panties were getting wet as you thought about what it would be like if you were that woman.”
What woman wouldn’t? “You’re out of your fucking mind,” I countered.
Leaning in to whisper in my ear, Gavin said, “I may bat for the other team, but I still know when a woman is hot for a man.”
Rolling my eyes, I shoved him away. In a low voice, I growled, “He is the target in our case, not to mention the enemy.”
“Yeah, and hate sex can be hot as hell.”
“You are impossible.”
Gavin grinned wickedly at me. “Even though it’s frowned upon, I see nothing wrong with getting a good fuck or two out of him to gain information.”
“I would slap the hell out of you right now if we weren’t supposed to look like a loving couple.”
After bestowing a kiss on my cheek, Gavin winked at me. “There’s nothing more I love in life than to irritate the hell out of you.”
“Asshole,” I replied, although I smiled in spite of myself.
Nodding at Bishop, Gavin asked, “When he finishes humping that chick, you want me to get the ball rolling and introduce you?”
When I cocked my eyebrows at him, he held up a hand. “I meant the ball rolling for the case, not for you to actually get busy with him. Jeez, Vargas, I can be serious when I have to be.”
“Yeah, and part of you really enjoyed the double meaning in all that.”
Gavin grinned. “Maybe.” The song started to wind down. “So, do we make a move now?”
My gaze once again returned to Bishop. “No. Not yet.”
“You got something in mind?” Gavin questioned.
I finally tore my gaze from Bishop to look at Gavin. “I need to unsettle him a bit before I make my move.”
“Sounds like a good plan.”
“I wouldn’t exactly call it a plan.” Looking back at Bishop, I smiled. “It’s more like a game. One that I know just how to play to win.”
With a wink, Gavin said, “You know your game, Vargas. Go roll the dice.”
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Don’t miss the rest of the Vicious Cycle series:
Vicious Cycle (Vicious Cycle #1)
Redemption Road (Vicious Cycle #2)