Title: Rock Redemption
Author: Nalini Singh
Series: Rock Kiss #
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Kit Devigny could have loved rock guitarist Noah St. John. Their friendship burned with the promise of intense passion and searing tenderness…until the night Noah deliberately shattered her heart.
Noah knows he destroyed something precious the night he chose to betray Kit, but he’d rather she hate him than learn his darkest secret. All he has left is his music. It’s his saving grace, but it doesn’t silence the voices that keep him up at night. Chasing oblivion through endless one-night-stands, he earns a few hours’ sleep and his bad boy reputation.
When a media error sees Noah and Kit dubbed the new “it” couple, Kit discovers her chance at the role of a lifetime hinges on riding the media wave. Wanting—needing—to give Kit this, even if he can’t give her everything, Noah agrees to play the adoring boyfriend. Only the illusion is suddenly too real, too painful, too beautiful…and it may be too late for the redemption of Noah St. John.
Source: ARC via NetGalley
I have a feeling this book is really going to divide opinion. Partly because of Noah’s behaviour – he is very broken and self-medicates his issues with sex, sex and lots more sex, while keeping far away from anything remotely physical with Kit in order not to taint her with his darkness. And I can definitely see why some people won’t enjoy reading a hero like that. This is also less of a high, sweeping, grand romance. Instead what Noah and Kit share is a deep, abiding friendship that allows Noah to be close to her without sex getting involved. It does, of course, get involved in their relationship eventually, but it takes a while and if you’re used to read a hot Nalini romance, this might come as a bit of a shock.
I, however, loved it. Not so much because of Noah, because he really is a beautiful disaster that I wanted to shake as much as I wanted to hug, but because of Kit. I loved Kit, from the way she cut Noah out of her life, to the way she cautiously let him back in, and even called him on his behaviour. I especially loved the moment when she told him that she knew he had issues and troubles and was hurting, but that it didn’t give him the right to hurt her. Beautiful moment.
To be honest I wasn’t sure going into this book how it was going to go, because of the way Noah shattered his and Kit’s friendship by setting things up so she found him having sex with another woman. To be clear, though, he didn’t cheat on her. At least, not in physical sense. They have never slept together, never made any promises, they were just friends – except that their friendship was deep and powerful and Kit wanted more. So, to stop her having any more ideas in that direction, he wrecked everything. Because that’s what he does.
Which all sounds very angsty and whiny, especially when it takes so long for the truth about Noah’s demons to surface. It is pretty obvious from quite early on why he is that way, though, and it’s also equally clear that sex is meaningless to Noah. It really doesn’t mean the same thing to him as to other people and is quite integral to the way he copes with the world. It’s not a particularly nice way to survive, but when compared to the things he’s willing to do in order to keep Kit in his life, it almost became meaningless to me too. Almost.
I loved the friendship between the two of them, even with its cracks and broken moments. Noah is deeply loyal beneath the fucked up mask he presents to the world, and the way he loves Kit is tender and innocent and so lovely. The garden in particular was very touching. As for Kit, she’s so big hearted and forgiving, even when she knows he doesn’t deserve it, but she’s also strong when she needs to be and will do what she must to protect those she loves.
So, this book definitely won’t please everyone. It’s angsty and dark, but also deep and tender without too much obvious heat or even a lot of chemistry. It’s a slow-burn on that side of things, but also really sweet and moving at times. I loved it and enjoyed seeing more of the band and how their lives still fit together, even with Fox and David off the market. I might have been a little nervous before reading this one, but I’m so glad that I did. I really hope there will be more Noah and Kit (even if only in those cute short stories Nalini puts in her newsletters), because their’s is a relationship that can only grow stronger. Speaking of such things… I look forward to seeing how Abe sorts himself out in the next book.
Rock Redemption is Out Now!
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