Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Review: Checkmate: This is War (Travis & Viola, #1) by Kennedy Fox

Checkmate: This is War (Travis & Viola, #1 of the Checkmate Duet Series) by Kennedy Fox 

Publishing Date: September 18, 2016
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Pages: 414
Contemporary Romance

The Premise from the Author: "*An enemies to lovers romance* Travis King is the worst kind of asshole. He taunts me for being a good girl and mocks my high standards. He’s cruel, crass, and has enough confidence to last two lifetimes. And I hate him. It wouldn’t matter so much if he were avoidable. But considering he’s my older brother’s best friend and roommate, I see him more than I’d ever want to. His sculpted abs and gorgeous eyes are a waste on such an egotistical man, which makes me hate him even more. Even though I’ve had a crush on him since I was ten, the feelings weren’t mutual and he’s always made that very clear. He’s always loved getting under my skin and one night against my better judgment, I let him in my bed.  I’ve succumbed to his manwhore ways, but that doesn’t change a thing. Because the King is about to get played at his own game—and lose. Checkmate" (Fox).

*Recommend for ages 18+ due to sexual content and adult language.*

My overall thoughts and review: I kept seeing Kennedy Fox books all over my instagram feed and fellow blogger Amanda at Brains, Books, and Brawn is a big fan of the books so I decided to check them out. Kennedy Fox is a writing duo and this is their debut series. I love how close they are in terms of publication date so you don't have to wait incredibly long for the next book in the series. And similar to Christina Lauren, the characters have a group of friends and that is explored in the other books in the series. This duet of Travis & Viola has the premise of a enemies to lover romance, so hate to love trope. I'm sometimes into that and I'm sometimes not. If they can convince me by the end of the book that the guy is redeemable, I'm all for it. So that's what happened in this case ;) When you first meet Travis, he is hooking up with the daughter of the CEO of his company, so immediately, he feels like a player and just the way he spoke about women in general was a bit of a turn off. We learn that Travis & Viola have a history, and Travis is Drew's (Viola's older brother) bestfriend. So obviously them getting together would be problematic. They hate each other and they are known to spew hate at one another, but there's clearly some underlying sexual tension between the two of them. In flashbacks, we learn that Travis befriended Viola when they were younger until something happens that makes Viola hate him. They are forced to spend a week together at Travis & Drew's home and things start to heat up. Of course a hookup isn't simply a hookup and there's years of pent-up emotions and feelings. Things get complicated when they don't properly communicate with one another, and Drew's girlfriend, Mia, is an absolutely train-wreck that complicates things even further. The first book ends on a major cliffhanger but what I really enjoyed was how much I grew to really like Travis towards the end of the book. I loved both characters. Viola is a strong and independent character who puts her career first, and can definitely hold her own against Travis, but we also see Travis be more than the persona he gives off, as he comes to terms with his feelings for Viola, and seeing him handle his work life. Travis King truly treats Viola like his queen, and you can really see how much he loves her. This book has some pretty sexy and swoony moments and there were so many Harry Potter references that made my heart happy. I immediately jumped into the next book after this (review to come shortly). If you are a fan of swoony and steamy romance with strong and sassy female leads, this is definitely the series for you!

My rating of the book: ✮✮✮✮ (4/5 stars)

Available for purchase at:
KennedyFoxBooksKobo Books, Amazon, Kindle, and Book Depository (Free Worldwide Shipping)

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