Hard Knocks by Lori FosterHard Knocks by Lori Foster
Series: Ultimate #.5
Published by HQN on August 4, 2014
Genres: Contemp Romance
Pages: 61
Format: eBook
Source: Advance Reader Copy
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In the stunning prequel novella to her new mixed martial arts series, New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster brings together an elite fighter and the woman he’s determined to win.

Power. Brute strength. Unforgettable moves. It’s no wonder Harper Gates hasn’t been able to get her fling with Gage “Savage” Ringer out of her head. Months have passed since she laid eyes—or any other body parts—on him. Months without a word of contact… until, sidelined by injury, he comes back to town.

Staying focused on his training seemed like a smart move to Gage, even if he thought about Harper every day. Seeing her again only makes it clear how much is at stake. He’s got one night to earn back her trust. One night to show her that behind his breathtaking skill and ripped body is a man who’ll give her everything she needs.

Lori Foster is one of those authors who is really hit or miss for me. She wrote the Love Undercover series and the connected Men Who Walk the Egde of Honor series, and I loved every book! But the novella that kicks off her Ultimate series (also connected)  sort of sucked. Novellas are just not her strong suit. I guess it’s supposed to be sweet, but it came off like a couple of horny teenagers who couldn’t keep their hands off each other. We have very little backstory, but since they have a history together, it would have helped.

The beginning of this very short novella confused me. The heroine Harper is blatantly ignoring the hero, a fighter who she’s been in love with since high school.But then five seconds later, Harper is smiling and patting him on the butt. He’s not the only one who was confused.

Gage is moping since he took a hit that required stitches, and it was too close to his eye to allow him to fight in the big fight. Coming home from training, he realizes Harper is mad at him (because they were dating, he leaped at the chance to train, but never called Harper. His girl. For several months).

Basically this entire novella is the two of them making out at the rec center, and trying to find a dark room to make out more in. Then Gage says I love you, and Harper begs for more sexytimes. Like seriously. Any other author, and I’d be out, but I’m really hoping the full length book that follows this is back to the Romantic Suspense that I like from her.


***ARC courtesy of Harlequin HQN