Road to Redemption #1
At the beginning of this story, I wasn't certain whether I was going to like it, because Jackson is a self-centered hero only looking out after himself. But once the murder occurs, and the hero realizes that the blame could possibly be placed on him, I really started to enjoy this story. However, it was the growing relationship between Emma and Jackson that had me hooked, because she's the one person that might be able to help him uncover the truth.
The dialogue was intense due to the main characters back stories, especially that of the hero. He doesn't have the best relationship with his family, and his father is a real piece of work, so I couldn't help but empathize with his need to stay away. How could the man continue to blame Jackson for a death that was nothing more than a tragic accident? It wasn't fair, and I could understand why he was so driven to find the person responsible for murdering his skip. The guilt of not being able to save someone he could have possibly saved rode him hard.
I really liked both Emma and Jackson. Emma misjudged Jackson when she wrote her article on him, but she realizes while she's helping him how much of a mistake she made. Really, Emma is strong, brave, persistent and I liked how determined she is to help Jackson, even though she's in an impossible situation due to her own back story. She has some tough decisions to make, and is torn between being blackmailed by someone while finally coming to trust Jackson, so I was glad she made the right choices when it came to their lives being in jeopardy.
While Jackson, he likes to do things alone, and it isn't easy for him to work with Emma. Yet, the heroine is good for him. She gets him to open up about his past, and helps him to work through it. Moreover, the surprise Jackson's brother had for him during a family dinner had me laughing, as Jackson was so not expecting it. Then again, he and Emma were in a relationship -- fake or not. However, what I liked most about Jackson is that he was persistent to do the right thing by the victim. That he wasn't about to let the bad guys win, especially when the bad guys were supposed to be the good guys.
Overall, Ms. Richardson has penned a very good novel to start off this series, of which the growing relationship between Emma and Jackson was intense. Neither know whether they can trust the other, but they're going to have to, if they're to succeed in finding the truth. The way this story ended definitely sets things up for the next book in the series. Will Jackson return to the police force, or will he continue being a PI? Will Jackson continue to work with Emma to solve his cases since she's just as determined to see justice served as he is? I would recommend Jackson Stiles: Road to Redemption, if you enjoy romantic suspense, the fake relationship trope or a story with an intense storyline and characters willing to do the right thing to see justice served.
Jackson Stiles is used to having bad days, but they’ve been especially bad since a certain tabloid reporter seems to have it out for him.
Not that I’ve thought about it.