Title: A Lighter Shade Of Blue
Author: Shyla Colt
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Suspense
Publication Date: July 27, 2015
Assigned the role of keeper of her older sister, Calla, Bluebell Strong has spent her life cleaning up messes. Frustrated, unappreciated, and repressed, Blue drifts away from her family. Suddenly, a jail sentence lands Calla in prison. She then becomes her nephew, Bolton’s guardian. Pulled headfirst back into the life of the Kings of Chaos M.C. she struggles to find a balance between who she must be and who she’s always wanted to be. Bolton’s father, Shadow, the man she crushed on since she was a teen, returns from prison. These back to back events forces her to choose between duty and happiness.
After serving three years in jail for a brother, Kings of Chaos enforcer, Shadow is done denying himself. The silent man, known for making problems dissapear spent years holding onto a secret that kept him from the one thing he wants most, Blue. Beneath the hardened exterior of this Warrior, rests a heart that beats for one woman. Laying all his cards on the table, he risks upsetting the balance among the Strongs and the club to complete the family he always wanted.
“Why are you here?” “To let you know what’s going to happen to Bolt. Your son. You do remember him, right?” “Fuck you, bitch. You’ve always been jealous that I have a son. Maybe if you weren’t so damn stuck up, you’d have a man by now and child of your own.” I count to ten to keep from losing my cool. “Like I was saying, this is about Bolt. Now that you’re here and Shadow has six more months, it leaves Bolt in the wind. We need to tie up loose ends until Shadow gets out.” “Let Dad take him,” she says. “You know he won’t, not on paper, and you know why.” I glare at her. She huffs. “So what? You just want me to sign him off to you? That’s rich. You’ve been trying to steal him from me since the minute he was born.” “What are you talking about, Calla? All I ever did was help you. When you needed a babysitter, when he was sick, and you had to work. Whatever you needed, I’ve been there.” “Right, ’cause you’re the perfect one.” She rolls her eyes. “No one’s ever said that.” “They didn’t have to. We’ve both had our roles and played them well.” I scowl. I want to cut her down to size. It’s been a long time coming. The resentment in me is boiling up inside. I swallow it down. My beautiful nephew deserves the very best I can do for him. “I’m sorry you feel that way. I have the paperwork here. They’ll bring it to you to sign. I can’t tell you what to do. But we both know Bolt needs to be covered.” 44 “And you’ll what? Move him into your swanky apartment, and keep him away from the family?” “No, I’ll move into your place, and give up my swanky apartment.” “But you love that place.” I shrug. “Family first.” A wicked laugh erupts from her lips. “Give me the papers, I’ll sign them.” It’s more to spite me than anything else. But it’s a means to an end, so I take it. I’ll be the whipping girl if it gets me what I want. “How will it feel to be in my home with my son and my ex, and know neither of them will ever be yours?” she asks, taunting me. I clench my jaw. Times like this I know one-hundred percent that she knew about my forever crush on Shadow. The slick smile on her lips makes me want to slam her face into the metal table she’s seated in front of. Calla has always had the magical ability to pull out the worst in me. I bite my tongue so hard I taste the unmistakable metallic tinge of blood. Gripping the edge of my chair I take deep breaths. Silence falls as the papers are delivered. She signs and my tension eases. Once the papers reach my desk, I let out a sigh of relief. “You want to know how it’ll feel, Calla?” I whisper. She nods. “About the same way it’ll feel for you to be in here while I help Bolt grow, watch him graduate, and send him off to adulthood. All while living with the one man you procreated with who hates your guts.” Her jaw drops. I smirk. “We’re done here. Oh, and you’re welcome for the clean up on aisle Calla. If anything good can come out of this, it’s the fact you’ll be forced to get clean and hopefully, get your shit straight. I don’t feel competition, how could I? You’re a child in an adult’s body doing a piss poor job of managing her life. I don’t know where we went wrong, but I know it’s not on me. I think you woke up one day and decided to hate me. It used to bother me. Now, I’m just numb.” I push away, wave the paper at her, and stalk out with my head high. It feels good to be the one with the last word for once. A weight lifts off my shoulders. I can’t worry about Calla, tiptoe around her feelings, take her abuse, and run a household with an angry teenager. It was time to let this go. When doubt creeps in, I remember what’s at stake and wrap Shadow’s words around me like a shield. I had at least one person behind me. Maybe that was all I ever needed. This was my chance to fix all the things not working in my life. I deserve to be happy. Maybe if I tell myself that enough, I’ll begin to believe it. I welcome the sunshine on my face as I step from the beige building, inhaling the fragrant air and rejoicing in my freedom. The thing most of us take for granted, others pray for. I walk to my car with an extra sway to my step. I’m going to rock this moment, because I feel like a superhero walking into the sunset after winning a battle.
Title: A Lighter Shade Of Blue
Author: Shyla Colt
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Suspense
Series or Standalone: Standalone Series (Kings Of Chaos #2)
What a delightful treat this book turned out to be.
Not only was this an MC book (which I have to admit lately, I have a serious hankering for), but it was also a pretty epic second chance romance on top of it. Two things that were made that much sweeter by the characters whose lives we become a part of as the book begins.
Blue (Bluebell) has always been the level-headed sister. The one that does what needs to be done and believes that family always comes first. The lady that when her sisters life hits the skids, for what feels like the millionth time, steps in and does what needs to be done in order to take care of her son.
What you don’t quite get right away about Blue is that while she’s been doing this for a long time, she’s more of a mother to the kid in question (16 year old Bolton) than his actual mother ever was. And if that wasn’t enough, she should have been the biological mother to the boy had circumstances from the past gone down a whole lot differently than they did.
I enjoyed Blue from the start. She did right by her family but she wasn’t a doormat. Even when it earned her the ire of her mother and father, she didn’t back down on her opinions where her sister and her mistakes were concerned. For that matter, there wasn’t too many times throughout where she backed down at all.
Until Shadow (Holt).
Years before, Shadow had been tasked with keeping watch over the younger Strong sister and in doing so, found himself falling for her, much the same way that she was falling for him. Things seemed to be headed in the right direction for these two despite the way Blue was viewed within the Club. At least it appeared that way until Calla.
The older and much more vindictive sister (or for this reader, the piece of crap train wreck) put something in motion when Blue was just seventeen years old and in doing so, changed the course of Shadow and Blue’s love story forever. Pulling them apart and down two different paths before they really had the chance to begin.
Needless to say, I didn’t like Calla at all and I do believe that was the point. You’re not supposed to like her and at no point at all does she ever redeem herself to me or to anyone else from the club or her family. In fact near the end, she is the cause for something far more serious than just the splitting apart of two people that were primed for an epic love story and it’s those actions that served to make me hate her even more, yet feel so much more for Blue than I ever thought I could.
But I’m jumping ahead of myself.
One of my favorite parts of this story was Shadow. I enjoyed Blue too of course. They were both equally beloved by me throughout, but there was just something about this rough and tumble guy that melted my heart. He was rough around the edges and he oozed sexual appeal, but it was his determination where Blue was concerned—how he never backed down—that spoke to me most. Gone were the years of denying his feeling and his wants and in its place was a man that was fierce in his love, desire, respect and adoration of all things Bluebell.
What a refreshing change of pace from a lot of the books I’ve been reading. Normally I’m so used to the men backing away, or denying themselves what they clearly want that Shadow was a breath of fresh air for me and in the end, his perseverance paid off and it was a beautiful thing.
Both Blue and Shadow in the end getting what they wanted most out of life. Even if they had to go through some pretty heavy emotional stuff to get there. (Grrr, don’t even get me started on Jamie and what he did to this couple).
Now, truth be told, Bolton accepting things so easily may come across a little unbelievable to some readers, but for this reader, it read realistically. This young man had been through years of the way life had been with his mom and he knew what life was also like when it was his dad, and also his Aunt Blue. So his acceptance of everything read so sweet to me that it even brought a tear to my eye the further in the story went.
With a lot of MC books, they’re very quick reads and this was no exception. Some people may find that the speed at which this moves is a bit much, but it worked here for me. The author in pacing this story did so in a way where I was being fed information (especially the details about MC’s in general) and I didn’t feel bogged down. The conversations between characters flowed easily and each scene moved easily from point A to point Z.
In addition to everything mentioned, I would be remiss if I didn’t at least make mention of the secondary characters here. The ones from both the club and outside of it. They all played their parts well here and I even found myself endeared to a couple of them throughout. It’s my hope moving forward in this series we get to see more of them all. Another little unexpected treat.
If you’re a fan of second chance romances, MC stories, steamy reads (of which this was one) then you’re gonna love this. If you like a bit of added suspense with your romance, again, this one’s for you. Most of all though, if you like a hero that knows what he wants and goes for it without reservation, then you’re gonna love this.
Shadow, you rocked my world babe!
My thanks to the author and all others involved in letting me read an ARC of this book. I’m so glad that I did.
Shyla Colt grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio, but has lived a variety of different places thanks to her wanderlust, interesting careers, and marriage to a United States Marine. She's always loved books and wrote her very first novel at the age of fifteen. She keeps a copy of her first submission letter on her desk for inspiration.
After a lifetime of traveling, she settled down and knew her time had come to write. Diving into her new career like she does everything else, with enthusiasm, research and a lot of prayers, she had her first book published in June of 2011. As a full-time writer, stay at home mother, and wife, there's never a dull moment in her household.
She weaves her tales in spare moments and the evenings with a cup of coffee or tea at her side and the characters in her head for company. A self-professed rebel with a pen. Her goal is to diversify romance as she continues to genre hop, and offer up strong female characters.