Review: Free by Kristen Ashley
Is this the end of Chaos books? I am not sure but this is a crazy fast ending with Rush as our main character. Rush is the "new generation" in the Chaos MC. His old man is Tack. Rush is looking to take on the leadership role and continue with his father's direction. One little glitch. They have an issue with Benito who is a thug that wants to peddle flesh and drugs.
Whilst I do give this a 4 star because I enjoyed the story for the most part and I really liked Rush with Rebel, I have issues with how BDSM was presented here. It is why this book is flagged as BDSM hostile.
First, Rebel is a nutcase with a single-minded goal. I have no idea how the cops let her do what she did. I am really glad that Rush and the Chaos guys were brought in to give her a reality check. Rebel's life is out of control in the most dangerous of ways. Her personal life is a bit messed up with her dysfunctional parents and brother. Luckily she does have a second brother who seems to be pretty cool. I want to read the story of his life because it has to be in there somewhere.
I enjoyed the drama and the craziness of this book. I know Ms. Ashley isn't for everyone. For me, she brings a certain fun and zaniness that is reminiscent of Lexi Blake. It's the camaraderie and relationships that really bring me into this story. Rush and Rebel together are kick butt and I love how they interact with each other. Even in the most serious and dire situation, Ms. Ashley brings a sense of irrelevance that lightens the mood.
Now for the part that bugged me. Benito's treatment at the hands of a Pro-Domme is abhorrent and not cool. Consent violated is a bad thing, even if Benito is a bad guy. I am not down with this. Benito does pay her back. I'm not saying 2 wrongs make a right. What I'm saying is that Ms. Ashley totally let it go that this paid for Domme sexually violates her client and thinks it is okay. I want to be very clear. IT IS NOT OKAY. Then to pile on the shit, apparently, some more "dominants" in the scene set up a takedown for Benito. By FILMING HIS PRIVATE sessions and then sending it to others because they need him humble. Okay, back up. This is a total second violation of outing someone, just because they don't like him and find him to be a criminal. I am completely disgusted with the author making this "okay". I am here to tell you it is NOT OKAY. If something bad is going on, the cops need to be involved. It is not okay to sweep under the rug a dominant violating consent. It's not okay to out a person in a private session. This is all abhorrent to me and I am pissed that the author makes it look justified and right. It is not right. Lastly, this has a ripple effect that causes things to happen to Benito. Seriously, Benito is a bad guy. Yes, yes, we all know it. But how it all ended, left me feeling really not good about it. Because this could have easily happened to someone that is a good person and had the same end result. So if there is anything I want readers to take away in this book, is that the BDSM shown in this book is wrong, unacceptable, and demonstrates severe and plausible consequences.
This book is a wild ride and for the most part, I enjoyed it. Recommended to romance readers who love motorcycle club themes and women who are determined to right wrongs.