Beyond Shame: Noelle Cunningham and Jasper McCray
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All Noelle Cunningham has ever wanted is a life beyond–beyond the walls of Eden, where only the righteous are allowed to remain, and beyond her stiflingly restrictive existence as a councilman’s daughter. But only ruins lie outside the City, remnants of a society destroyed by solar storms decades earlier.
The sectors surrounding Eden house the corrupt, the criminal–men like Jasper McCray, bootlegger and cage fighter. Jas clawed his way up from nothing to stand at the right hand of Sector Four’s ruthless leader, and he’ll defend the O’Kane gang with his life. But no fight ever prepared him for the exiled City girl who falls at his feet.
Her innocence is undeniable, but so is their intense sexual attraction, and soon they’re crossing every boundary Noelle barely knew she had. But if she wants to belong to Jas, first she’ll have to open herself to the gang, to a dangerous world of sex, lust and violence. A world where passion is power, and freedom is found in submission
Kit Roche is actually the pen name of two best friends that are more popularly known as Moira Rogers.
So originally I had given this book a 4 star review but as the days passed, I realized just how much my mind returned to the story. It definitely captured my attention and held on. I read, a LOT, over 175 titles already this year, so when a title sticks out in my memory there is something extra with that book, something that deserves to be considered when rating or reviewing. It is so easy to like or love a book right after you finish it and you want to give it a 5 star, but so often that book fades and is mostly forgotten within a week or less or as soon as you pick up the next title. So when a book actually sticks out and lingers on the mind that’s something special not often found.
So at first I wasn’t sure if I’d like the erotica genre going dystopian, but I have to admit; I loved it! Having the dystopian angle I think added an edge to this book and allowed the authors to really build a whole new world where anything goes. Life in the sectors is nothing like life in the city. In the sectors survival is their way of life. The more carnal of pleasures can be found and the people live their lives to the fullest. Alcohol, touch, ink and your clan family (For Sector four it’s the O’Kane’s) are the cornerstones of life which is everything the City stands against. Noelle is from Eden which is the City, in Eden basically anything that is considered morally corrupt is a crime. There is no drinking, drugs, premarital sex and even looking up pre-flare content is illegal. People do not show affection, they barely even touch each other. They have basically made anything pleasurable illegal.
Noelle is STARVING for pleasure, she wants to touch and be touched, she wants to enjoy life, but her family is one of the elite and perfection is expected of her. She finds herself rebelling which gets her thrown out of Eden, it is in Sector Four where she finds her redemption in the arms of the man that caught her just as she fell. This book is mostly about Noelle finding herself as a person as well as her sexuality. Growing up so restricted she has no idea who she really is, but she wants to know and every day in Sector Four with the O’Kane’s she finds meaning to her life and a little more of who she is. She knows that there is no way she could have gone on in Eden, life there was slowly suffocating her. Her innate innocence is what draws Jasper to her, even when she is participating in the most carnal of pleasures; she still maintains her wide eyed innocence. As a newly minted member of the O’Kane’s she finds that she can become more then she ever thought possible, she knows her new family will have her back and will not judge her. More and more Noelle spreads her wings, but her teachings in Eden are hard to let go and even as her new feelings are wonderful to her there is still a sense of shame lingering. Watching Noelle blossom into her new life is an amazing thing. With Jasper she starts to think that maybe a new life is possible, but outside forces may take her new found freedom or worse, her very life.
Jasper, is one of the most trusted members of the O’Kane clan. He has stood beside its leader Dallas from the beginning. When Jasper catches the fallen Noelle he brings her into the clan, after they find out who she is they know that she could be trouble, but Lex and Jasper take her under their wing despite the possible ramifications. I enjoyed Jasper; he is an alpha male at its finest. He is a protector, dominate and is loyal to his family. When he takes in Noelle he accepts responsibility for her including helping her find herself, he pushes Noelle further then she has ever been taken before. He knows where to take her more then she knows herself, in his arms she is safe and protected. I don’t feel like I knew Jasper as well as I should have by the end of the book, however, he was still utterly delicious and I didn’t mind so much. As the violence in the sector increases, Jaspers protective instincts rear their head and he realizes that he may have to give up what he most wants in the world if he wants to keep it safe.
In this book the O’Kane family is everything, each member is featured in this book and plays a part in Noelle’s transformation. Each member also had a clear personality and you came to care about each member as much as the leading characters Noelle and Jasper. You are fully immersed in their lives and I for one can’t wait until the next book comes out. I am already awaiting it anxiously.
This book was provided to me through NetGalley for an honest review, no other compensation was provided.
Rating: 5 Orchids