“The time has come.”
Undefeated is the first book in Scott Hildreth’s Fighter Erotic Romance Series. Being a fan of both Mr. Hildreth’s work and the”fighting romance” genre picking up this read was a no brainer!
“It’s not a contest, babe. It’s life. There’s no time limit.”-Shane
Shane Decker is a fighter. A transplant from Compton, California he ventures to Austin, TX in order to train and find success as a professional fighter. Dressed in his hoodie and worn out boots, Shane keeps a tight hold on his dog tags and proudly pursues his mission to be a fighter and a “protector”.
“A woman needs to feel wanted. Even if she didn’t feel loved, she should feel as if someone desired her.”-Kace
Kace is living with an abusive boyfriend. She faces physical, emotional, and sexual abuse everyday. When Kace’s abusive boyfriend causes a scene at the local drugstore they are not alone. Shane witnesses the event and doesn’t hesitate to get involved.
“He slapped me until he was tired of slapping me, or until I learned my lessons.”-Kace
Although Kace isn’t ready to walk away from her abuser yet, a “second chance” meeting with Shane changes everything. Shane and Kace begin to have lunch together and a friendship sparks. Kace is rather shy and struggles vocalizing sometimes. Shane has an unusual attachment to his hoodie and dog tags and yet, these two mismatched individuals come together quite easily. Shane is desperate to get Kace away from her abuser but he wants for her to make the choice to leave him on her own. It doesn’t take long for the abuser, “Buster”, to do some serious damage on Kace. She finally finds the courage to walk away.
“My grandfather always told me God puts people in our lives for a reason. It’s our responsibility to recognize them for what he intends them to be to us.”-Shane
“You’re beautiful, Kace. When you’re lying in bed tonight, remember that. You’re beautiful.”-Shane
The sincerity in the characters and the natural flow of the plot development made Undefeated an enjoyable read. Told in dual POV, we experience both Shane and Kace’s perspective on abuse and the after effects they cause. One element that drew me to this read is my love for Mr. Hildreth’s honest and straight forward writing style. In fact,Undefeated was inspired by a true story. You can read that story here: Hildreth.
“Shane Dekkar, to me, is perfect. I could spend a lifetime exposing myself to the offerings of life, and this would not change. It is not an opinion, it is a fact.”-Kace
“In life, we need to pay the closest attention when we aren’t paying attention at all.”-Shane
What I sincerely appreciated about Shane and Kace is that although they had an “insta connection”, Shane was adamant about giving Kace time to heal and grow into her own person. Watching her character transform into a confidant independent woman was empowering as a reader. It was a gentle reminder that although there is evil in the world, good perseveres over all.
“What we try to remember and what we prefer to forget. Our mind doesn’t always have an understanding of how we want to sort things.”
To tackle a story with abuse as the driving force in a read takes guts and must be handled delicately. Overall, I felt likeUndefeated was successful on both counts. The plot was well developed, the action was entertaining, and the sarcastic banter between Shane and his best friend Ripp (yummy) had me smiling throughout the read. This was a strong start to what promises to be another wining series for me to devour and enjoy!
“I had clearly won at the game of life.”