by Ciara Knight
Publication Date: Feb. 20, 2017
Genre: New Adult Romance
All I’ve ever wanted is to fit in.
But no one can ever see past how weird I am. Bright lights? Can’t stand them. Loud noises? Definitely sends me over the edge. And touching? Forget about it.
At least, until I met Drake.
From the moment I walked into that nightclub, I finally felt like I belonged somewhere. And when Drake touched me, it didn’t send me into a tailspin of sensations that I couldn’t stand. It actually felt…nice. Like something I could get used to. And it doesn’t hurt that he’s probably the hottest guy I’ve ever seen.
But now someone wants to close the club down. And since I promised Drake that I’d help him keep it open, I’m going to have to find a way to tap into whatever that inner strength thing is that everyone always talks about. And fast. But what happens if I can’t?
Scarlet is a nineteen year old girl who has known life on the streets. She’s been in an orphanage, two abusive foster homes, and found living on the streets and taking drugs to be the only means of escape for her. However, One day she is saved from that life by a man who is hellbent on helping teens get off the streets and get clean. Scarlet’s been sober for a year now but still has a huge battle to overcome, her Asperger’s. However, she’s dead set on getting out on her own and making it. So she leaves NY and heads out to Atlanta to work as a waitress at a small diner. Except that doesn’t pan out and pretty soon she finds herself living on the streets again. With nowhere to go and no one to turn to, she takes matters into her own hands and decides to sneak into a club and start working behind the bar in the hopes of impressing the owner and securing a job. Which is how Scarlet met Drake, the only man she’s ever been able to get close to, and this is their story.
I wasn’t overly sure what I was going to get when I started to read Scarlet Edge. I’ve never read work from this author before, and I wasn’t sure what kind of nightclub Drake ran. Are we talking your typical drinks and DJ or are we talking about something a bit more on the darker side? As it turns out, Drake’s club is your typical nightclub with booze and tunes. Which I found to be a bit confusing. I mean, Scarlet has Asperger’s and can’t handle bright lights, loud noises, various smells, or being touched, and yet she does well in the club. A place that while dark, has loud music, people cramped so close you touch, and all kinds of funky smells. I just don’t understand the hows and whys behind Scarlet being okay at a nightclub but not being okay at a small diner.
“I wanted to be better. I tried to be better. But I worried I’d never be more than a recovering street rat.”
Speaking of Scarlet, I found her character to be rather interesting. I mean, she’s not your typical nineteen year old. Her sense of fight or flight is to the extreme, her Asperger’s makes her extremely uncomfortable around people she doesn’t know, and she battles drug addiction. Add onto the crappy foster homes she’s lived in, her time on the streets, and all that she had to endure just to make it to the ripe young age of nineteen. Yeah, Scarlet was not your average angst-filled teen. Given the fact that the story is told in her POV, you get a lot of behind-the-scenes thoughts that run through her head throughout the book. I thought the author did a great job with trying to portray all the conflicting thoughts that ran through Scarlet’s head. Between wanting to get high to escape but not wanting to give up her sobriety, to wanting to be touched by Drake but loathing the way being touched usually feels like bugs crawling out of her skin, I felt like the author was really able to capture her internal turmoil.
Drake’s character left me confused though. Maybe it was the love at first sight thing but here’s a guy who was with someone one minute, and then the next is hovering all over Scarlet, someone he’d JUST met. And I don’t mean hovering in the sense of it being sexual but more like a protective nurturing hovering. I just felt like either time jumped ahead too fast in the story line or Drake was a little too over the top when it came to his feelings for Scarlet. I just wish their romance was slowed down a bit and it wasn’t so dramatic with wants, needs, and declarations of love.
Straight Edge is an interesting story about a girl who’s gone through so much and struggles with herself on a daily basis, who’s able to overcome it and rise above it when she meets her other half. I liked that the author took a risk with writing this story. Writing about someone with a disability or condition can’t be easy. I do wish the romance was slowed way down and wasn’t such an instant reaction that seemed to almost solve everything. I think if I had more time with Scarlet and Drake before all the feels came into play I would have connected with them and their story a bit more.
“You’re a good girl. You’ve had a rough life. Take it from me. Don’t waste a minute of right now worrying about yesterday. Life’s too short.”
Meet the author…
Ciara Knight is a USA Today and Amazon Bestselling author who writes ‘A Little Edge and A Lot of Heart; that spans the heat scales. With almost twenty-five full-length stories, she has crossed mountains, blown up spaceships, vacationed in exotic islands, and snuggled up in a mountain cabin with that special someone.