Lifers, by Jane Harvey-Berrick ✰✰✰✰✰+


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After eight years in prison, twenty-four year old Jordan Kane is the man everyone loves to hate.

Forced to return to his hometown while on parole, Jordan soon learns that this small town hasn’t changed since he was carted off to juvie all those years ago. He is the local pariah, shunned by everyone, including his own parents. But their hatred of him doesn’t even come close to the loathing he feels every time he looks in the mirror.

Working odd jobs for the preacher lady, Jordan bides his time before he can leave this backwards town. But can distance erase the memories that haunt him? Trapped in the prison of his own mind Jordan wonders if the pain of living will ever subside?

Torrey Delaney is new in town and certainly doesn’t behave in a way the locals believe a preacher’s daughter should. Her reputation for casual hook-ups and meaningless sex is the talk of the town. Add that to her budding friendship with the hardened ex-con handyman, and the good Reverend is less than thrilled with her estranged daughter’s path.

As friendship forms, is it possible for two damaged people who are afraid to love take their relationship to the next level? Can Torrey live with Jordan’s demons, and can Jordan break through Torrey’s walls? With the disapproval of a small town weighing heavily on them, will they find their place in the world? Can they struggle against the odds, or will their world be viciously shattered?

Is love a life sentence?

My Casting

Oh wow. Where do I start? Jordan Kane is possibly one of the best brooding bad boys I’ve ever read!!

5+ stars for Jordan and Torrey!



I was incredibly fortunate to receive an ARC of this fabulous book and I absolutely can not wait for it’s release (Feb 7th) so that you guys can share in this story. 



Lifers is the story of Jordan Kane and Torrey Delaney. Jordan is twenty three and has just been released from an eight year stretch in prison. He’s on parole and is trying to adjust to the outside world, but with little success, hindered largely by the judgemental, spiteful small town society in which he lives and also his own guilt and insecurities. The community will never allow him to forget the crimes he committed all those years ago, not that he’d allow that of himself anyway, with the memory and guilt etched into his brain as a torturous daily reminder.

One mistake.
That’s all it took.
One fuckin’, stupid, childish, dumb mistake.



Torrey has moved in with her mother, the town’s preacher, whom she hasn’t seen for years, to try and work out what she wants to do with her life, following an awkward situation with her ex-lover/ex-boss at her former work place that ended up costing her her job. She doesn’t really know what she wants to do, but she does know that she isn’t all that impressed with small town life or the people in it, so far. Until she meets the intriguing, deliciously hot Jordan Kane.
When Jordan starts working for Torrey’s mother, the pair form an unlikely friendship. As Jordan stars opening up to Torrey, sparks begin to fly. And it all starts with a cup of coffee…

 

“Here, everyone knows my story and has decided I’m trash.”
“Except me,” she said.

This was one of those books that completely consumed me whilst I was reading it. I couldn’t think about anything else, I didn’t want to do anything else, all I wanted to do was read about Jordan and Torrey. I adored both characters in this book. Completely and equally. 

“Saying that he’d cute is like saying that it’s dark at night.”



Let’s start with Torrey. She is sassy, confident, independent, sarcastic, funny… I loved her. I loved her wit and her sense of humour. She’s such a strong heroine and her strength and confidence was so vital to this story. However, as do most of us, Torrey has her own insecurities and often her sass is part of the self-preserving walls she has erected around her heart to keep her from hurting.

And then there is Jordan. Oh my. If ever there was a bench mark for brooding bad boys, Jordan has just raised and re-set it. He’s gorgeous, tall, ripped, has a sexy Texan accent but he is painfully shy to begin with.

Tall, over six foot, ripped, and with sandy-blond hair that was just a bit too long, tats running down both arms to his elbows, cheekbones you could file your nails on, and lips that were just perfect for biting.



After having spent eight long years in prison, he has become totally dehumanised. He doesn’t know how to function in ordinary every day life. After so many years of conforming and being told how to live, he doesn’t know how to make his own decisions, he’s constantly just agreeing with whatever he’s told and he’s always trying to please. He’s afraid to have his own opinion, he’s afraid of a life without routine and he trusts nobody. He’s so used to living inside his own head, speaking to nobody, keeping his opinions to himself that he doesn’t know how to lead a normal life now that he is out in the real world.

 

A lot can happen in six seconds. 
Your whole life can change in a heartbeat.

The narrative alternates between Torrey and Jordan’s POV, which is fascinating, as we get an insight into what Jordan is thinking re. his lack of communication skills, what makes him nervous, how quickly he gets turned on and more. Jane has executed this perfectly. You really feel like your inside the head of an unsure, shy, horny ex-con. Lol!

“I really want to kiss you right now.”

It’s so painful, yet eye-opening to read. We really do take our freedom for granted and this book made me sit back and think, ‘wow, what would it be like to become accustomed to living without making even the smallest decisions… Like what time you get up in the morning, what you wear, what you have for lunch…’ Jordan is scared and confused, which makes him defensive and suspicious. 



These traits, coupled with his size and physical strength make him quite an intimidating prospect to most people. But not to Torrey, who might be small, but she’s got bigger balls that most men in town. Metaphorically speaking, of course.

“You’ve turned Mikey’s death into a life sentence – for all you – for Paul, for Jordan. You turned them into lifers.”

It’s absolutely fascinating to read how Torrey, with her straight talking, no bullshit questions, yet her kind, gentle coaxing, gradually manages to draw the character and individuality out of Jordan and we start to see the man he would have become if he hadn’t been locked away for eight long years. Throughout this story he goes from a robotic, almost mute, pariah amongst society, to a funny, caring, confident, beautiful person. And at the same time, Torrey’s protective, impenetrable walls are broken down, as a result of how Jordan’s sad story touches her and the feelings she has for him.

 



The build up of sexual tension in this book is scrummy! Jane is great at that. It was the same with The Education books and she’s done it again with Lifers.



Jane seems to have a way with making vulnerable men totally sexy. I usually love a controlling, dominant man, but with both Lifers and The Education of Sebastian Jane Harvey-Berrick has successfully written smoking hot sexual relationships, where the woman is the more assured, confident one, to begin with. I also love that development within the relationship, where he goes from being the nervous, inexperienced one to eventually finding his stride and taking over as the dominant partner, with the encourage from our female lead. There’s such a thrill, reading as the he begins to gain confidence and take control. Their relationship is just perfect.

“I love you, Torrey Delaney. You don’t have to say it back to me, but I love you. I didn’t believe life was worth living until I met you. I’m so, so happy I was wrong.”



This story really tugged on my heart strings. It made me laugh, it made me cry and it made me think. I want to know these characters. I want an epilogue for the epilogue, to see how they are doing in years to come. I want to know what kind of husband and daddy Jordan becomes, after having to endure so many years of guilt, solitude and hardship. Pretty please Jane, can we have a little insight into Jordan and Torrey’s future at some point soon? I just loved everything about this story and these characters. 

Have you read it? Tell us what you thought?

 

‘Lifers’ Statistics
• Steam Rating (out of 5): ♥♥♥♥
• Ending: HEA
• Length: 435 pages
• Narrative: Alternates between Jordan and Torrey’s POV. Past tense.
• Series: ✗ 
• Can this be read as a standalone? Yes
• Themes:
Ex con
Second chance
Grief
Family tragedy
• WARNING. This book includes… 
Sexual content. Violence. 
• Writing: Great

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This entry was posted in Bad Boys, Death, Delicious Sexual Tension, Emotional Reads, Five Stars Plus, Jane Harvey-Berrick, Lifers, Stand Alones, Steamy Reads. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Lifers, by Jane Harvey-Berrick ✰✰✰✰✰+

  1. Sheena Lumsden says:

    Amazing

    Jane will live this xo

    Sent from my iPhone

  2. Mercia says:

    Thank you, Mrs Smitten (my name for you) we have all been waiting, and waiting for this book to be published. It is a winner all the way! You probably came to that conclusion after the first chapter. JHB’s writing is such, that there never seems to be a ‘boring, let’s skim over that bit’ part in any of her books. I will always refer to Jane’s, Power of Words, as seen in The second Education book to explain her ability to make her characters (and their actions) so very real to us all.
    I love your review! And I know Jane will too!

  3. What an amazing review! And I can’t believe I never heard about this book. The blurb itself made me want to add it to my tar but once I finished reading your review I knew it had to be my weekend read. I can’t wait!

  4. Mercia says:

    Now, Lifers is out!! It can also be found on Amazon.ca. For Canadian readers.yup, Lifers is a Winner!!

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