Thursday, June 4, 2015

Book Review: Vicious Cycle (Vicious Cycle #1) by Katie Ashley

Vicious Cycle
Vicious Cycle #1

Katie Ashley

June 2, 2015

NAL Trade

Add to Goodreads

eARC from publisher for a honest review

GR's Summary:

New York Times bestselling author Katie Ashley revs up the danger and sexual tension in her brand-new Vicious Cycle romance series. 

Deacon Malloy’s life is dedicated to the Hell’s Raiders motorcycle club. Tough, hard, and fast with his fists, he serves the group as sergeant at arms. But his devil-may-care approach to life is thrown for a loop when the five-year-old daughter he never knew existed lands on the club steps. 

Alexandra Evans is devoted to all her students—but there’s always been something about Willow Malloy that tugs at her heart. There’s an aura of sadness about her, a girl in need of all the love Alexandra can give. When Willow stops coming to school, Alexandra’s search leads to a clubhouse full of bikers…and a father hell-bent on keeping his daughter always within sight. 

The moment Deacon sees Alexandra, he has to have her in his bed—and he’s never met a woman yet who couldn’t be persuaded. No matter how attracted she is to Deacon, Alexandra refuses to be just another conquest. But it’s Deacon himself who could be seduced—into a brighter future for himself, his daughter, and the woman he’s falling for against all odds.

Lindy's Thoughts:

Vicious Cycle is the first book that I've read by Katie Ashley.  I've heard many great things about her books, and was excited to finally get to read a book that she wrote.  Also, I am a huge fan of MC Club romances, and can't get enough of these type of stories!  My favorites are the Reapers MC series by Joanna Wylde and the Chaos series by Kristen Ashley!

Vicious Cycle is about Deacon Malloy and Alexandra Evans.  Deacon is the Sergeant at Arms in his MC Club, the Hell's Raiders.  One day he is shocked to find out that he has a five year old daughter, Willow.  Willow's mother Lacey was murdered, and now he must assume full responsibility for her care.  

Deacon pulls Willow out of school when he learns that she is in danger.  A long-term enemy of the club is out of prison, and is the person responsible for Lacey's death (the only woman Deacon has ever loved).  After missing too much school, and repeatedly trying to get a hold of Deacon, Miss Alexandra Evans, Willow's Kindergarten teacher, decides to visit Willow's home to check on her.  Imagine Alexandra's surprise when she meets Deacon, a dangerous, rough around the edges, outlaw biker.  

Deacon let's her know that Willow is in danger and will not be returning to school.  Alexandra and Deacon come to an arrangement that includes Miss Evans teaching Willow at home.  As these two begin to interact on a daily basis, Deacon becomes hot for teacher, and Alexandra can't resist the sexy bad boy.  However, danger lurks around every corner, and Alexandra has to learn how to function in the MC club world if her and Deacon are to be together.

There were aspects of Vicious Cycle that did not work for me as well as aspects that I enjoyed.  I had a difficult time liking Deacon, and found it extremely difficult to relate or be attracted to his character.  I love a bad boy, but he must have a good heart.  This isn't to say that Deacon didn't have a good heart, but he came off as extremely harsh, cold at times, and even when layers where peeled back, there just wasn't enough warmth in his character to win me over.  At the beginning of the story, he left a bad taste in my mouth, when he said some truly despicable things to a man he was torturing.  I understand that he was bluffing, but what he said was so abhorrent, twisted, and truly made me sick to my stomach.

I loved Alexandra at the beginning of the story.  She came off as very sweet, nurturing, compassionate, and patient with little Willow.  However, her personality changed drastically as the story went on.  I didn't recognize the character that I had once loved.  She revealed a secret that made me look at her differently, and some of her actions in the story didn't match up.  It was like she was two different characters.

The story itself was extremely fast-paced.  I was entertained, and there was a lot of action and suspense.  I loved the secondary characters in the story.  Willow was a doll, and I felt so badly for all that this little girl had to endure.  I liked Deacon's adoptive brothers Rev and Bishop.  Rev stole the show for me!  He was sexy and sweet, protective and nurturing.  This big man had an even bigger heart, and I can't wait to get his story!  I want him to find a good woman to love.            

My Rating:

I give, Vicious Cycle, by Katie Ashley, 3.5 MC Club Life, Dangerous Enemies, Passionate, Learning to Love Filled Stars!  I am looking forward to the next book in the series, Redemption Road, because it is Rev's story, and I already love his character so much!

Mikki's Review:

Vicious Cycle, by Katie Ashley, is the first book in her new MC series. I was really excited to read this book since I absolutely loved the Proposition and Runaway series! I love her writing style and her characters are simply irresistible! I knew going into this book that this story was going to be different. It's always more darker, intense and suspenseful in the MC world.

Deacon Malloy is surprised find out that he has a five-year old daughter. When Willow shows up on his doorstep, he is left speechless. It takes him some time to get used to the idea. Alexandra Evans connected with Willow Malloy from the first moment that they met. When Willow misses school for a few days, Alexandra goes looking for her. When she visits Willow's home she is surprised to find out who her dad is and where she lives. Deacon is the sergeant at arms of the Hell's Raider MC and because danger is lurking close by he decided to keep Willow at home. Alexandra and Deacon come to an agreement that she will come every day after school to teach Willow. As days go by, Alexandra gets closer to Deacon and his family. Deacon never expected to fall for his daughter's teacher, but when an enemy from his past comes back to cause trouble, Deacon will do whatever it takes to keep his daughter, his family and Alexandra safe.

I really enjoyed this book. The story kept me interested from beginning to end, but I had a hard time connecting with the main characters in some scenes. Their reactions in some situations left me speechless. I really liked Alex and how she handled the difficult situation Willow was in. What I did not like was how Alexandra's character changed. She was an interesting heroine to follow at the beginning of this journey.  The things she did to catch Deacon's attention were just all over the place and that is when I lost my connection with her.

With Deacon I never felt a connection. His first scene in the book turned my stomach upside down. I did not like what he said and how he acted. It was hard for me to connect with him after that. I can't deny that the chemistry between Alexandra and Deacon was hot, but it fell a little bit short in the romance department.  We also got a few scenes between him and Willow, but I wanted to see more. What I did love were his scenes with his family and friends. I could really feel the love he had for them.

The plot was good and the author included a few twists that I did not see coming.  Even if I found a few problems along my reading journey of Vicious Cycle, I am looking forward to Redemption Road. This will be Rev's book. He was my favorite in Vicious Cycle. I connected more to his character than I did with his brother Deacon. He deserves an amazing HEA and I can't wait to meet the lady that will steal his heart. He's such a wonderful person!

My Rating:

I give Vicious Cycle, by Katie Ashley, 3.5 enjoyable, fast-paced, intense stars!

Book Teasers:

Purchase At:

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo

About Katie Ashley:

Katie Ashley is the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Best-Selling author of The Proposition Series, Runaway Train Series, as well as several New Adult and Young Adult titles. Her latest series, Vicious Cycle, has been picked up for publication by Penguin Books. 

She lives outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her two very spoiled dogs. She has a slight obsession with Pinterest, The Golden Girls, Harry Potter, Shakespeare, Supernatural, Sons of Anarchy, Downton Abbey, Designing Women, and Scooby-Doo. 

With a BA in English, a BS in Secondary English Education, and a Masters in English Education, she spent 11 1/2 years educating the Youth of America aka teaching MS and HS English until she left to write full time in December 2012. 

She is represented by Jane Dystel of Dystel and Goderich Literary Management.


  1. Welp, you gals reacted pretty much the way I did. I was curious to read your reviews to see if others thought differently. Apparently not! LOL.

    I want Rev's story, too, Lindy!

  2. I'm not sure I'd like Deacon that much either. Hmmmm...perhaps I'll pass.


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