He was the best; a champion; my father.
I’ve spent my entire life living in his shadow, and it’s slowly killing me.
I need to escape. To live in the light that I so rightly deserve. To show the world that I’m the best in my own right, a champion, and not just my father’s shadow.
Sometimes finding your own way and being the best comes at a cost. I wasn’t prepared to pay the price to live in the light, to be the best. Now I’m learning that being the best doesn’t always mean being the champ. Sometimes it means simply becoming a better man.
“You’re late!” Dad barked as soon as I crossed the threshold.
“By like two minutes.” I rolled my eyes. My alarm didn’t go off, and I’d over- slept this morning. I’d hauled ass to get here, but apparently it didn’t matter.
“Do you want to win this weekend?” Dad’s arms lifted and then dropped to his sides.
I refused to answer as I carried my bag over to the ring. I kicked my shoes off and tossed my shirt, before climbing through the ropes. “I’m ready.” I rolled my eyes. I was in a mood today, and having Dad on my ass was not helping.
I watched as he slipped his gloves on and climbed in. “You keep doing this, and you’re going to flame out.” He shook his head in frustration, I think.
“Doing what? I’m winning,” I mouthed back. I was being an asshole, I knew it, but I didn’t care.
“The staying out all night. The drinking. The fucking anything in a skirt. Did I miss anything?” Dad slammed his gloved hands together. “You’ve worked hard for this, and you’re throwing it away!” His voice boomed through the empty gym.
“I’m winning!” I barked back. He had a point, but I didn’t care. All the things that he complained about, weren’t keeping me from winning. Winning was all that mattered. “What are we working on today?” I mocked as I finished gearing up, and shuffled to the center. I tipped my head to the side and smirked at him. I was being disrespectful, but Dad was in trainer mode, not parent mode, at least that’s what I thought.
Before I could duck out of the way, his right fist connected with my jaw. The padding protected me from the blow, but my entire body rocked to the side. He stepped back and lifted his chin as anger flashed in his eyes.
“What the fuck!” I spit my mouth guard out as I shook off the hit.
“You will not be a little punk to me,” Dad growled. “Do you understand? You show me some respect, or I’ll lay you out right here.” The words were garbled, but the look on his face said he wasn’t playing around.
I flashed a look of understanding in his direction as I picked up my mouth guard and popped it back in. I hit my gloves together and approached center ring. He nodded, tapped his hands against mine, and backed up. For an outsider, one would think that knowing his style would put me at an advantage. The only advantage I had was age. My dad was still in top physical condition, and he made sure I knew it.
He stormed back to the center, and took another swing, but this time spun and raked his leg under me, sending me to the mat. I landed on my ass, and Dad pounced. This was not training; this was me getting a lesson. Dad was showing me that I wasn’t as good as I thought I was.
Review by Twinsie Angie
I was given this book by the author for an honest review.
Easton you little shit!! Yes that is how I am starting my review. If you read his sisters book you know exactly why I am saying it!! LOL If not , maybe ya should.
Easton is a know it all. He seems to think he knows MMA fighting better then his World Class MMA Fighter Dad Wes. He is arrogant and cocky and of course a little shit. So when he does the ultimate stupid kid move and leaves his dad as his trainer, his life begins to spiral out of control. Sure he is fighting and winning and getting money. But hee is also spending and drinking and making idiot decisions that will come back to haunt him and ruin everything.
When Easton hits rock bottom and has to crawl home …ok Riley drove his sorry ass home….he begins to relook at his life. He realizes what he wants and that is to fight and be the best. However he also realizes that helping this captivating woman in self-defense class is something he wants.
Hadleigh …man she puts up with a lot from her abusive boyfriend Josh. She starts to train at the gym for self defense but is also worried about this guy in class who keeps trying to talk to her and now wants to be her friend.
As Hadleigh and Easton find a strange and comforting friendship, it is soon clear they both want a little bit more then they think the other is willing and ready to give. The chemistry soon sizzles, and we see them develop more. When they soon realize more is a possibility Easton’s bad choices come crashing back and the chance of happiness could be lost for all.
I received this book from the author for an honest review.
Easton has always been in his Dads shadow. He is arrogant and knows he can be the best, but he wants to do it his way. He fails to see how his Dad is treating him and training him will get him where he wants to be now. He wants results and he wants them NOW. He knows how to do it and it is not his Dad’s way so he leaves to make his dreams come true and not be in his dads shadow. Others can see the talent that he has but he just cannot seem to keep out of trouble or out of the medias negative eye. After he hits rock bottom his big sister has to come get him and drag him home. Boy does he have some things to overcome and make right.
Easton goes back home and has to assist at his dads gym as punishment. While helping, or should I say being a punching bag, at the gym during self defense classes he finds one of the ladies intriguing.
Hadleigh has had a hard few years and enrolls in the self defense classes at the gym near her home. When she meets Easton she begins to see there is another way of life out there. But can he be the one that takes her away or will his past be too much for Hadleigh.
I enjoyed seeing Easton grow as a person and how he handled Hadleigh. Easton really came into his own when Hadleigh made an appearance. I also liked seeing Hadleigh see there are people out there she can trust. Easton and Hadleigh have a wonderful relationship based on a strong friendship but can that be enough for both of them after everything they had been through in their past.
Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2TyiWv6
Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/3wtgVPE
Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/3wsbYXj
Heather D’Agostino is an avid reader turned Bestselling Author of the Contemporary Romance Series The Broken Series, The Shattered Series, The Second Chances Series, The Cook Brothers Series, and Romantic Suspense series The Witness Series.
She attended the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where she received a Bachelor’s of Arts in Elementary Education with a minor in Mathematics.
She currently lives in Central New York with her husband, two children, her dog, Luna, and two cats. When she’s not writing she can usually be found at the soccer field, or one of the many other places that she plays ‘Supermom’.
Reader Group/ Street Team on Facebook: Heather’s Hotties