Published on March 9th, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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The Circus Spektakulär is proud to present Jack McCabe: Fire-breather, knife-thrower, risk-taker.
My house burned down when I was just a boy, robbing me of both my parents.
Now I breathe fire, eat the poison that almost killed me.
Crowds come to see me night after night. Men for the spectacle, women for the thrill. I’m an oddity to be stared at and desired. With each flame I spit, I risk my life.
I wear scars on my body that will never go away, but the scars inside my head are far more difficult to overlook.
My brother doesn’t know me, and if I have it my way he never will.
Life was going exactly the way I’d planned until Lille came along. She wanted to run away with the circus, have an adventure, but this world was never meant for her.
I try to keep her safe, because she doesn’t know the dangers that are out here on the road. She doesn’t know the monsters that lurk behind the bright lights of the ring. In truth, I could be considered one of them.
We were fashioned from different cloths, never intended to mix. So I watch her. I try not to touch, even when her eyes invite me.
Join us in the Spiegeltent and let us give you a show. Allow my Lille to draw a picture for you in paint and sweat and skin.
The truest love is always the hardest to let in.
This is a standalone romance that tells the story of Jack McCabe, Jay Fields’ long lost, presumed dead brother. It is not necessary to have read Six of Hearts in order to enjoy Hearts of Fire.
4 magical stars
Sweet, smart, romantic and sexy, and all set against a distinctive and exciting backdrop of the Circus Spektakulär. This book is actually very character driven, and Lille and Jack’s story is beautifully told. The whole book is a bit of an experience, and I loved it!
Although this is technically a standalone, it does follow on from Six of Hearts, so I would suggest reading that one first – firstly because it’s a great book, and secondly because it will make this book all the more sweeter.
Lille is 21 years old. She lives at home with her controlling mother, living a boring life that makes her miserable. But she dreams of adventure, and wants desperately to experience everything that life has to offer. So when she is handed the opportunity to literally run away with the circus, she jumps all over it. Joining the Circus Spektakulär on their tour of Europe, Lille puts her passion for art to work for her, making money by painting the faces of circus guests, and enjoying freedom for the first time in her life.
Jack McCabe is one of the circus bad boys. A firebreather and knife thrower, he is gorgeous, dangerous, mysterious and intensely broody. Of course, Lille is smitten, but the reclusive man is not easy to get to know. He keeps to himself, not letting others in. But slowly, as Lille opens up to him, he starts to reciprocate and a friendship starts to develop. It’s sweet but meaningful, and there’s a bit of push and pull, but it’s only a matter of time before the chemistry between them becomes too much for them to ignore.
“You’ve got me under your skin now, Lille.”
OMG, Jack is so sexy. His dirty mouth, his dirtier moves, and the way he wants Lille are all incredibly steamy, and together they are absolutely sizzling!
“Kiss me, Jack,” I begged, forcing myself to ask for what I truly wanted for once.
“I can’t,” he replied with a sigh of frustration.
“Please,” I whimpered desperately.
“When I kiss you, it will be everywhere. When I kiss you, I won’t stop there. If I taste you, I’ll want to taste everything.”
Their romance is absolutely beautiful, and I loved every moment of their time together. But their lives are anything but ‘normal’, and while Lille is escaping hers, Jack’s past still haunts him, and he carries a lot of pain from all that he has been through. Add to that, life in the circus is not an easy one, and dealing with the personalities that exist in their little circus community is funny, heartbreaking, dangerous, and a little bit frightening. I loved watching Lille and Jack find their way through the turmoil, dealing with their own issues, as well as all that is happening around them. L.H. Cosway has painted a beautiful world for her characters, and I love experiencing it all through Lille’s eyes. And it becomes all the more magical as and Jack fall in love.
“Why do you call me flower?”
… “Because when I touch you, you fucking bloom.”
I love these characters. Lille’s innocence about the world, and Jack’s anger and cynicism contrast beautifully as the two of them come together, and I particularly enjoyed watching Jack’s walls come down for Lille. These characters aren’t perfect, they are both flawed in their own way but there is so much development for them both throughout the story as they open up to each other, and I thought it was really realistically done.
I think breathing fire makes you feel alive, and I think you take the risk because it’s your choice and no one else’s. You’re the master of your fate, and whether or not you get hurt is all down to whether or not you fuck up.
The whole cast of characters is fantastic, they each add so much to the story and I genuinely cared about pretty much all of them (except psycho Julie of course). And the highlight of the book for me came from a very welcome cameo… View Spoiler »
If you’ve read Six of Hearts you will know that Jack is Jay’s younger brother, and Jay has long though him dead. Jack knows his brother is alive, and is full of anger, hurt and hatred that he has scorned him his whole life. The resolution of this storyline, and the reunion between the brothers is absolutely amazing! Definitely the highlight of the book for me, the scene where they come together again had me in tears! It was absolute perfection!
“If I thought there was even a single shred of a chance you’d still be alive, then I would have destroyed the entire world to find you. You’re my brother. I love you. Please understand that none of what happened was within either of our power to change.”
WAAAAAAAAAAAAIL! « Hide Spoiler.
There is a lot going on in the story, and I actually thought that some aspects of it really weren’t necessary – the mystery/crime storyline was interesting, but I honestly thought it wasn’t needed – the main part of the story was more than enough to carry the book.
But nevertheless, this is a beautifully written book that had me hooked from the very beginning. I couldn’t put it down and devoured every little moment. Lille and Jack’s story is intense but realistic, sweet, romantic, and passionately hot. I love the tease about the next book, and am so intrigued! Can’t wait to get my grabby little hands on that one.
I loved it – 4 stars
Somebody swore profusely from behind me, and I turned to find Jack trying to light a cigarette. The wind wasn’t doing him any favours, and he couldn’t get the flame to stay lit. Not wanting him to see me, I began walking swiftly in the opposite direction. I didn’t get far when he was suddenly behind me. He looped his finger through my belt and practically dragged me to the corner he’d been standing in.
“What the fu….”
“Stay still,” he ordered. “I need you to block the wind.”
I didn’t have any snappy comebacks, so I simply stood there, amazed by his gruffness. Hadn’t anyone ever taught him simple manners? When I looked at him, I thought that maybe they hadn’t. I could easily imagine him as a little Mowgli type, being raised by animals in the jungle.
He flicked the lighter and finally got the smoke lit. Inhaling deeply, then exhaling, he watched me all the while. I shivered, and not from the cold. I felt like there was an atmosphere between us, but it was more than likely all on my end. I was good at imagining things, especially sexual tension. And I was well-acquainted with the one-sided kind.
“Are my services required further, sir?” I asked with a hint of sass. I mean, I’d been his wind-blocker, and he hadn’t even said thanks.
Just like last night, he almost smiled, and I hated that it was wondrous. I could have painted an entire mural of his jaw line alone. He flicked off the ash and leaned back against the wall behind him.
“So, you’re staying with Lola?”
“Yes, and Violet.”
“That’ll be fun.”
“Are you being sarcastic?”
He took a step forward and stared down at me, teeth flashing as he spoke. “And I bet I could make you like it.”