FicCentral received a free copy of this book from Random House LLC (via NetGalley).
Series: Kavanagh Legends #1
Publisher: Loveswept on September 29, 2015
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance (Adult)
As one of the big names at his family’s gym, Legends, MMA star Rory Kavanagh is used to being in the spotlight—until a gruesome leg injury knocks him out of the cage. Rory is left feeling sidelined in more ways than one, battling the inner demons that come with losing the one shot at his dreams. Then Clare walks into his life and gives him a new dream: winning her heart. There aren’t many new faces in Woodlawn these days, but this tough, beautiful stranger makes Rory want to get his life back into fighting shape.
Clare Ivers doesn’t think she’ll be able to tell anyone what really brought her to the close-knit Bronx neighborhood where she just started bartending. But her life’s on pause and her past is catching up fast, try as she might to move on—with new friends, steady work, and a chiseled alpha male trying to get her attention. Even though Rory’s more than a little intense, she can’t deny that her heart beats faster when he looks at her with those soulful silver eyes. Clare thought she was done with love, but Rory might just be man enough to show her she thought wrong.
This book includes mature subject matter that may not be appropriate for readers under the age of 18.
Rory Kavanagh’s career fell apart when his leg was severely injured in a bout, and he’s been drifting through life ever since. While his family is there to support him in any way he needs, and a new career as a trainer is guaranteed, he can’t seem to cope with the changes. Alcohol and pain meds are his only constant, but then a plucky little waitress catches his eye.
Clare’s past isn’t pretty, but she’s doing her best to start over. Between the abuse of her ex and the criminal activity in which she landed, a clean break is just what the doctor ordered, and setting up house in Brooklyn, where no one can judge her, seems to be the right step. The last thing she needs is a man to complicate things, especially a man whose very identity is tied up in violence — sanctioned though it may be in the MMA world. But she can’t seem to get Rory off her mind.
I have to say I’m not convinced. While I did enjoy the story, and I imagine the full cast of characters will be lots of fun as the series continues, some realism was missing. For one, Rory went cold turkey and ditched the booze and pills, and yet he never showed any real signs of withdrawal. Sure, some addictions are more psychological than anything, but the substances he was abusing for quite some time don’t fall into that gray area. Narcotics and alcohol are physically addictive, and at the rate he was downing them, there’s no way his body wouldn’t have been screaming for more.
Likewise, Clare seemed to have little issue with falling into a relationship with Rory. Someone who had been abused and taken advantage of would generally have been more skittish about picking up with another man, especially one who clearly had some issues and was known for beating the hell out of people. While she was a strong character and certainly able to bounce back from her past, it was too instantaneous to be believed.
Despite the pretty brush that painted over any real problems these two had, Breaking a Legend was a really fun read. The banter between Clare and Rory was awesome, as were all the witticisms that flew when he came in range of his large family. I don’t think there’s a single character I didn’t like, except for Clare’s jerk of a boss, but clearly we weren’t supposed to like him.
The chemistry between these two was just sizzling, as one would hope when picking up an MMA romance. It made the quick pace of their relationship a bit more understandable and also brought out the more sensitive side of Rory — even as he tried to keep his man card up. Of course, there was the psycho ex to deal with, not to mention all the feminine eyes tracking Rory, but while it followed a somewhat standard romance pattern, it didn’t venture into annoying cliché territory.
All in all, Breaking a Legend is a fun, hot start to what’s sure to be an incredibly entertaining series, and after falling in love with pretty much everyone in the book, I can’t wait to see whose story we get next.
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|Overall Rating||4 star rating|