Book Spotlight: The Greatest Risk by Kristen Ashley

The Greatest Risk
(Honey #3)
by Kristen Ashley
Release Date: May 1, 2018

About The Greatest Risk
A woman unable to connect, struggling to hide another part of her.
A man burning to learn her truth, and make her whole.
Through explosive passion and deep exploration, they are about to take the greatest risk of all.
But will they be able to take that leap, and come out on the other side together?

In this next passionate novel in the Honey series, New York Times bestselling author Kristen Ashley delivers a stunningly romantic and intensely sexy novel that will stay with you long after you turn the final page.




Read my five-plus-starred review of The Greatest Risk.

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An Excerpt from The Greatest Risk
“Mistress Sixx,” he said softly. “If she had it her way, they’d be lined up by the score and fucked raw, climaxing at her command at the tip of her whip.”

She stared at him, her stomach feeling like it was cramping, but her voice sounded even when she asked, “You say that like there’s something wrong with it.”

“Of course there isn’t,” he drawled, totally and openly lying.

I’d make you like it, she said in her head. I’d make you beg for it. I’d break my back, sell my soul, do anything I’d need to do to make you come harder than you’ve ever come before, tying you to me, connecting you to me, making you never want to leave.

He held her gaze, his face arrogant and knowing.

Or I’d give it to you, her mind whispered. Anything you wanted, anything you’d want to do to me to give you what you needed in a way that need could never be eased and you’d always come back for more.

He kept holding her gaze, but in the dim light of the bar of the Bee’s Honey, she could swear she saw something in his expression grow soft, like he could read her thoughts.

Before she could get a lock on it, or better, turn from him so he couldn’t read anything further, for once he looked away first, but only because the server was there, placing his lowball of Scotch over ice in front of him.

Sixx picked up her drink, looked to the hunting ground, and took a healthy sip.

“Are you staying?”

Stellan’s question brought her attention again to him.

She put her drink down and asked, “Pardon?”

“In Phoenix,” he explained. “I know you travel for work and it takes you away for long periods of time. But this time, you’ve been back for a while, so it seems like you’re staying.”

She had been intending to stay.

Now she didn’t know.

“For a while,” she replied.

He nodded, sipping his drink, and then stated, “I’ve been meaning to invite you, simply haven’t had the chance. But I’m having a party next weekend. We’ve hit June, and the weather hasn’t yet started baking. I’m taking advantage. We’ll start with a pool party, then everyone can change and we’ll move in for dinner. I’d be delighted if you’d come.”

She hid her reaction to that by throwing back more gin.

“Leigh and Olly will be there,” Stellan went on, back to his gaze set unwavering on her. “Mira and Trey. Felicia’s bringing a couple of her toys. Penn and Shane will be there. Victor has a new slave he’s enjoying so he’s bringing her. In other words, it’s a play party, just to make that clear. Though, depending on how it goes, we’ll make things more sociable and less structured for dinner. That will be up to the Dom.”

When he hesitated, she nodded, indicating she’d heard and taken this in, and he kept speaking.

“Belle’s bringing Tiffany. Talia is bringing Bryan. Aryas will be out of town, as will Evangeline’s partner, but Evangeline will be there in her usual capacity. Observation only.”

It was an unwritten rule when referring to the Honey’s Domme Evangeline’s “partner”—who was really her boyfriend who was essentially living with her—at least in the confines of the walls of the club, people did not use his name.

But he was Branch Dillinger. Her partner. Her boyfriend. Her sub. But he was also the Honey’s new top guy, since Aryas had taken a step back from operations in order to focus on opening his new club in Tahoe, and he needed someone he could trust to pick up the reins.

And if Branch played it that way, wishing things to be private, he got it that way, and would even if the man couldn’t probably snap your neck with his bare hands then walk away and not give that kill a second thought.

It was just the life and everyone obeyed that rule.

Though the threat of having your neck snapped worked too.

Sixx was just relieved Evangeline was back, not to mention ecstatic she had a man in her life like Branch. Especially after what was done to her to make her take a prolonged break, all of this happening when Sixx was away.

It was good it happened when she was away. If she was close, retaliation would have been much different than what Aryas had ordered, and even much different than the vastly more thorough way in which Branch had handled it.

But it was handled. So at Aryas’s firm request, she’d let it be.

She was relieved and ecstatic for Leenie … and also jealous.

Jealous because she wondered what it would feel like to have a miracle happen after the world as you knew it turned to complete shit and then one day … you might not be healed, but you were again whole.

“And if you like, I’ll have a couple of male slaves available for your use. Fresh meat. I know a few who’d volunteer that I’m sure you’d like,” Stellan continued.

And that stomach cramp got worse.

He’d provide her “a few volunteers.”

Thoughtful.

And damned disappointing.

She wondered who he’d have there.

And how many.

“I’ll think about it,” she told him.

“Please do,” he said before taking another sip of his Scotch.

She followed suit with her gin, practically willing her phone to vibrate against her leg to give her a reason to get away from him.

Stellan spoke again.

“So you’re not in the mood, will you allow me to offer you something that might strike a different mood? One I’d wager you’d enjoy a great deal.”

At this proposal that came out of nowhere, Sixx almost choked on her gin.

But of course she didn’t, and again her voice was clear and cool when she asked, “What’s that?”

He shook his head. “I’m afraid it has to be a surprise. But I will say it will be a surprise you’ll like. I also have to say, you shouldn’t wait to make your decision or things will culminate and we’ll miss our chance.”

Things will culminate?

Oh no.

She was intrigued.

Damn it!

“Can you give me a hint?” she pressed.

He made a tsking noise that she felt tap against her clit, and as was his usual, he didn’t lose contact with her gaze.

But he wasn’t looking aloof anymore.

This was both an invitation and a challenge.

She just didn’t know to what.

And with Stellan—this sudden Stellan who was vastly different than the Stellan she’d been getting (or not, as the case was) for the last too-many-months—she wasn’t sure how to handle it.

“Don’t disappoint me, Sixx,” he said quietly. “The Honey’s Ice Princess, cool and composed in every situation, shying away from an adventure?”

“I simply need to know how long it would take,” she lied. “I have something I need to do tonight,” she didn’t lie.

“As soon as you need to go, I’ll bring you back.”

He’d bring her back?

He was going to take her somewhere?

“What’s it going to be, Sixx?” he pushed. “In truth, I should have asked you the minute I joined you in this booth. We risk missing the grand finale the longer we wait.”

“Stellan—” she started, wondering how to get out of it at the same time how not to appear like she was jumping on it by accepting too quickly.

She needed time to assess this change, plan, strategize, prepare, fashion a brand-new Sixx. One who could deal with the likes of Stellan Lange and come out the other side of whatever became of whatever was happening unscathed.

And more importantly, make certain he did.

Or time to find a place to hide. Or escape, her mind taunted. Coward.

“I’ve bought you a present,” he shocked her by announcing. “I did this some time ago. I’ve been wishing to give it to you but haven’t had the opportunity. Now’s the opportunity.” The movement was almost not there, but yet it was when he leaned slightly her way and warned in a low voice, “Don’t waste it.”

Again, eye contact, unrelenting.

Challenge.

Invitation.

Finally.

And a gift?

She lifted her drink, took another healthy swallow, put it on the table and then dropped her hand to her thigh to curl her fingers around the phone there while grabbing her clutch off the table with her other hand.

She looked back to him and said, “Let’s go.”

When she did, all vestiges of her stomach cramps disappeared.

Because when she said that, Stellan Lange smiled a wicked, roguish, beautiful smile.

Right at her.

Copyright © 2018 by Kristen Ashley in The Greatest Risk and reprinted with permission from St. Martin’s Griffin.




About Kristen Ashley
Kristen Ashley is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over fifty novels, including Mystery Man, The Gamble, and Own the Wind. She grew up in Indiana, but has lived in Colorado and the West Country of England.

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