Review: Conquering by Ryan Michele (Vipers Creed MC #2)

Note: This ARC was provided by InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review.

Conquering is the second full-length novel and third story in the Vipers Creed MC series from author Ryan Michele. Thirty-two-year-old Wes Collins, known by his road name of Stiff, has been a part of the Vipers Creed MC since he was eighteen. Outside of his younger brother Xander, the club is the only family Stiff has, having long given up any hope that his mother would care more about him and Xander than the drugs that she would snort up her nose or inject into her veins. When word reaches the club that his mother that she's using Stiff's name and claiming that she has the protection of the Vipers Creed, Stiff realizes that it needs to be made clear to the drug dealer his mother is involved with that she has neither the club's consent or their protection. He knows doing so may endanger her, but she's left Stiff no choice.

Twenty-nine-year-old Chelsea Miller knows all about having a parent you can't count on. Not only did her father nearly destroy her credit history, but he hasn't done anything to help her, her sister, or their mother for years. Chelsea has been working long and hard at the diner where she's been employed since she was sixteen. She wants nothing more than to be there for the women in her life: Grams, her mom, and her younger sister Jenn. When Jenn is suddenly brought to the diner bruised and bleeding, accompanied by the two men who did the beating, she's beyond livid, but Stiff and other members of the Vipers Creed MC step in. Chelsea's no-good father owing money to the very same drug dealer Stiff's mother is involved with and the club has been looking for. From then on, Stiff's and Chelsea's worlds collide and intertwine...

This was a really good sequel, one that can be read separately from the series starter, Challenged. Stiff and Chelsea are familiar with each other, having gone to the same high school, albeit a few years apart, and living in the same town. There's no insta-love that happens but there it's as if something clicks for Stiff when he sees how much grief and anger Chelsea feels with her sister's situation. They're both strong-willed and independent individuals, both having had at least one parent who abandoned them, whether physically or emotionally or both. They're also very protective of their siblings and those they care about most. There's a lot of push and pull between the two, and while I did like how capable Chelsea was, it was nice to see how her character finally evolved upon opening herself up to the help and care of other people.

One of my favorite things about the story was seeing how Chelsea was with her younger sister Jennifer and how Stiff was with his younger brother Xander. I had already read Xander's story in the multi-authored Honor anthology, entitled Courageous, so I knew that Xander and Jenn getting together was never going to happen. That said story is included in Conquering and while it may be a short read, it's one that's full of substance. Xander being a newly discharged Marine is trying to find his place and with both his girlfriend Gabby and Stiff by his side to give him the support that they can see he needs. I gave the story an individual rating of five stars when I read the anthology, and I was happy to see how Xander and Gabby's relationship progressed in Conquering, which was such a good follow-up to Challenged and gets 4.5 stars. ♥


Read my reviews for the Vipers Creed MC series:

Challenged (book one) - 4.5 stars - My Review

Courageous (short story) - five stars - My Review

Conquering (book two) - 4.5 stars - My Review (posted above)


Date Read: 03 July 2016

Learn more about Ryan Michele.

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