Title: Worth the Risk
Author: Claudia Connor
My Rating: A
Narrator: Johanna Parker
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: McKinney Brothers #2
Main Characters: Hannah and Stephen
Release Date: January 2015 (audiobook)
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot
Two hearts locked away . . . Hannah Walker spends her days coaching children through injury and trauma, one therapeutic horseback ride at a time. She knows all too well how violence can change a child and leave scars that never heal. It’s easy for her to relate to the kids; what isn’t easy is the thought of facing her own harrowing past.
Millionaire playboy Stephen McKinney could use a little coaching himself. Five years ago he encountered his most horrible nightmare—and the nightmare won. No matter what he achieves, nothing can make up for that awful night . . . or so he believes.
Both desperate for a second chance . . . Stephen is used to getting what he wants. And he wants Hannah. So when she turns him down, he’s intrigued. What he doesn’t know is that her secrets will lead him to a place he never wanted to go again . . . to a side of himself he’s tried to forget . . . a side that would scare Hannah away from ever loving him. Now his only chance to win her trust is to bare his soul, risking everything he tried so hard to protect.
At this point, I've read all four books in this series (3 books in the McKinney series, 1 book in the Walker series, but they all tie into this story, too), but I read them completely out of order, so I knew a lot about Hannah and Stephen's story. I just hadn't actually read the details from their point of views yet. Needless to say, I adored this book...so, so, so much! It was worth the wait (and the minor spoilers) to read it last.
Everything about this book was good. I listened to the entire book within a single day simply because I couldn't walk away from the story.
After her kidnapping at the age of 16 that left her imprisoned and tortured for 42 days, Hannah had more than just physical scars. Her mental ones were deep, too. She doesn't connect with people, because she simply doesn't trust herself or judgment anymore. That all changes when she meets Stephen in the grocery store.
Stephen is a playboy with a capital P, but he's intrigued by Hannah. Her beauty combined with her fragile naivety has him spellbound. She's completely unlike anyone else that he's ever known before and he wants to know more about her. He has no idea what her backstory is. He just knows that he wants to spend time with her, even if that means moving slow. He understands that she doesn't have a whole lot of experience, he just doesn't understand the why's of it all.
I love how strong Hannah is. Anyone else that would have gone through what she did, would have been left broken by it. Hannah isn't broken. In fact, she's probably stronger in all the ways that really count. But now she's in her mid 20's and hasn't had half the experiences of most girls her age. Until she meets Stephen, she's okay with that. But he makes her want more.
Hannah found strength through her horses and eventually her farm where she provides riding therapy for children. I loved that aspect of the story. There were also some really well done twists and turns at the end with Stephen's business. While I foresaw some of them coming, I was surprised by a lot of the details of what happened. I love it when an author takes me by surprise like that.
In the last few weeks, I've devoured three of the four books that make up all these story lines that tie together. I can officially say that Claudia Connor has made it onto my auto-buy list. I love the way she writes, and this was another incredible example of her writing skills.