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Thursday, February 6, 2014

Review: TAUT: The Ford Book by J.A. Huss (Blog Tour & Giveaway)

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TAUT: The Ford Book

Rook and Ronin Spinoff Series #1

by J.A. Huss

Publisher: Self-Published (Jan 20, 2014)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Adult, Light Erotica
Format: eARC (Novel Length)
Source: Free book from blog tour for honest review
Find It: Goodreads | Amazon Print | Amazon Kindle | Barnes & Noble
Rating: ★★★☆ (4 stars)
TAUT IS A STANDALONE NOVEL - you do NOT have to read any of the Rook and Ronin books first.

Ford Aston is known for many things. Being an emotionless, messed up bastard, a freakishly smart social outcast, and a cold, domineering master who keeps "pets" instead of girlfriends.

And after Rook broke his heart, he plans to keep it that way.

Ashleigh is known for nothing, and that's exactly what she's got going for her. She's broke, stranded in the mountains with a three month old baby, and Ford Aston is screwing with her head.

Big. Time.

And she plans to mess with his right back.

It's a coy game at first, filled with flirting, and innuendo--but Ford soon realizes something is not quite right with Ashleigh. In fact, something is seriously, seriously wrong and the closer they get to their final destination, the closer Ford gets to the truth.

One night of devastation, self-loathing, and emptiness turns into the best thing that ever happened to Ford Aston. But one day of in-your-face reality threatens Ashleigh's whole existence.

Since A LOT of people have been asking here is the scoop on how this book fits in with my Rook & Ronin series:

Ford first appears in Rook and Ronin #2, Manic. He has a bigger role in Panic, R&R #3, and then he has a novella, called SLACK. This TAUT book is only FORD. It's not really part of the R&R series, as that plot has all been sidelined for this one romance book.
At A Glance
I loved Ford and Ashleigh, and I loved them together, but I do feel like something was missing. I wanted a little more. 

The Good
Who loves Ford? I LOVE FORD. Does it say something about me that I always love the effed up guys in books? Ford is crazy, neurotic, smart, and sexy! And I hate that my tongue is not on his fictional body right now! Obviously, I was super excited to get a book dedicated to him. For those who don't know, Ford is a character from the Rook and Ronin series. He is like the epic mind-f*ck of that series. You never knew what was going to come out of his mouth. And now, with TAUT, we know him a lot better. 

I totally understand Ford now. He actually reminds me of me. I have this weird thing about being touched or people getting in my space, I don't take anyone's crap, and I am insanely smart (okay, the last one is not true but it sounded good, right?) Ford was not in a good state in the beginning of the book. He had just friendship-broke up with Rook, someone he wants but can never have. So he decided to go for a ride...and then kept on going. On the road he meets Ashleigh, a woman with a baby that needs help. And it feels good to have someone needing him. But Ashleigh is so much more complicated than Ford first thought. I loved how Ford felt totally twitterpated with Ashleigh. Ashleigh kept him on his toes and Ford could actually see a future with this girl and her kid. Yeah, you heard right: our crazy, dominant, unemotional Ford is in love. But does Ashleigh want him back? They both have enough emotional baggage to fill a skyscraper, but who cares. They totally work as the effed up couple.

Ashleigh was iffy for me in the beginning. I just didn't get her. She didn't seem like my kind of gal. Then I just loved her. I don't even know how it happened. It was like a sneak attack. Her and her baby just crawled their way into my heart, kind of like they did with Ford. Ashleigh was a mystery for most of the book. So many secrets, so many heartaches. She really gave Ford a run for his money without even trying. She knew when to push his buttons and when to be the submissive. She needed help and she admitted it. Ashleigh was just so real. By the end I totally GOT her.

I loved the mystery behind Ashleigh and her past. I loved Ford's growth. The writing was good and the dialogue was, as always, spot on. TAUT is definitely a character book. You read Huss's books for the characters more than anything. Though I would suggest reading the Rook and Ronin series first, TAUT can be a stand alone book for the most part.

The Bad
There was nothing obviously wrong with this book but I just turned the last page and felt I wanted more. More could have happened. There could have been more excitement but about half the time Ford and Ashleigh were either sleeping or staying in. Kind of boring. 

The Snuggly
At first I didn't see how Ashleigh and Ford could work. They don't seem like the perfect couple. But they truly grow together with each page. It was like watching magic. There were a lot of bumps along the road but I think Ford found his soul-mate. 

I think this book is suppose to be new adult but it feels very adult to me, especially with the sex. We are almost hitting erotica territory. It's all super steamy and sexy though. I loved Ford and his bad boy teasing ways!

Final Thoughts
Huss's books are never perfect but they are always amazing. TAUT was another great addition. Finally getting Ford's HEA was so satisfying. I want more already though. These books are freaking addicting. Very recommended.
“So you think I'm a hot serial killer?”

“Sphere of privacy, people.”

“I’m hurting you right now. And it feels good. Because you’ve been hurting me since the day we met. You’re selfish. You take. That’s all you do—take. You’re a Taker, Rook. And I’ve got nothing left to give you. You took it all.”

“If you don’t know what you want, and you won’t tell me specifics, then I’ll tell you what I think you need. You’re mine now, Ashleigh. I’m claiming you. I’m claiming Kate too. If you want to be with me then I call the shots. And I’ve made my first decision.”

“You’re like crazy sexy, Ford. And all this weird shit you do, that just adds to it. I’m not sure why, but I like your strangeness. It’s real. And it drives me a little wild.”

“I can pull you taut, Ashleigh. Like the poems. I can bring you back together. You are so f*cking delicious, Ashleigh. So f*cking perfect. I wish I could take this pain away from you, really, I swear I feel your sadness and it makes me crazy. Do I ask for more information and risk the tears? Do I pretend it’s not happening and risk you feeling ignored? Tell me what to do.”
Author Bio
J. A. Huss likes to write new adult books that make you think and keep you guessing. Her favorite genre to read is space opera, but since practically no one reads those books, she writes new adult science fiction, paranormal romance, contemporary romance, urban fantasy, and books about Junco (who refuses to be saddled with a label).

She has an undergraduate degree in horses, (yes, really–Thank you, Colorado State University) and a master’s degree in forensic toxicology from the University of Florida. She used to have a job driving around Colorado doing pretty much nothing but shooting the breeze with farmers, but now she just writes, runs the New Adult Addiction and Clean Teen Reads Book Blogs, and runs an online science classroom for homeschoolers.
Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

This is a tour wide giveaway


  1. I loved this too and I agree about the feel of the book. Very adult, not like the Rook and Ronin series, but I guess that was part of Ford persona, and the way he was when it came to the sex. Definitely on the erotic side. Glad you enjoyed this one! Awesome review.

    1. Happy you agree with me. I was shocked it was labeled new adult. Didn't feel like that at all.

  2. GAH this is the second glowing review I have read for this one just this morning! I really need to give this author a read. Great to see that even though it could have used a bit more action you were able to enjoy it so much. Great review!

    1. This author is unique. Her books aren't perfect but they are addicting if you love the characters. I hope you give her a try.

  3. I need to check this author out! Great review.

  4. I did read book 1 of this series and it was really good I can't wait to see where it goes from there. I love that every character seems to be getting their own companion novel, too! It sounds like this one is very romance oriented but I like those, too! :)

    1. Do you mean you read the first novella of the spinoff or the rook an ronin series? How was it?

  5. Ford sounds great and like a character I would really enjoy, but sorry to hear you felt something was missing

  6. Thanks a bunch for the review, Jennifer! :) <3

  7. Oh I am going to have to go and start at the beginning and try these books. Thank you!

    1. I think you would love these, even them being contemp.

  8. Great review, Jennifer! I am completely in love with Ford, too, and since I can't have him ;) I'm glad he found Ashleigh. I loved that we got a better understanding of Ford. And Ford and Ashleigh together is just perfect. *sigh*

    1. I agree, if we can't have him, I am happy Ash got him. :)

  9. I have book one of the series this is based on, but cannot wait to read this one as well..eep!

    1. Oooh, so excited for you to get started on this series.


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