Last Breath by Jessica Clare and Jen Frederick: Blog Tour and Review


I never really knew what misery was until the day I was kidnapped and sold for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Two months later, I'm at a brothel in Rio when I meet Daniel Hays. He says he's here to save me, but can I trust him? All I know of him is his sarcastic retorts and his tendency to solve every dispute with his gun. He's also the only safe thing in my world, and I know it's wrong to fall in love with him, but I can't seem to help myself. He says he’ll protect me until his last breath but I don’t know if I should believe him or even if I can.


For the last eighteen months, I’ve had one goal that has dictated every action I’ve taken. I’ve left the Army, turned paid hit man, and have befriended criminals all across the globe to find my kidnapped sister. In every brothel I raid or every human trafficking truck I stop, I hope the next face I find is my sister’s. In a hidden brothel in Rio, I find Regan Porter, bruised by not broken and still sane despite her weeks in captivity. I should leave her behind or send her home because the last thing either of us needs right now is to get involved. But with every passing minute, I find I can’t let her go.

Please note: this contains some scenes that sensitive readers may find upsetting or triggering.

Last Breath is book two in the Hitman Series by Jessica Clare and Jen Frederick. Please note, I do my best not to give spoilers of the book that I’m reviewing, but when the book is in a series, I can’t promise that I won’t give away spoilers from the previous books in the series. So, if you haven’t read book one, Last Hit, please beware when you are reading this review. 

We were introduced to Regan in Last Hit. She was Daisy’s roommate, and because of her association with Daisy, she was kidnapped by members of the Russian mob and sold into sexual slavery. I won’t go into a lot of details, but that scene was really horrible, because you actually liked Regan, and it was heartbreaking to see what was happening to her. In my opinion, Nic totally let what happened to Regan happen in order to save Daisy. 

Daniel is another Hitman, really an associate of Nic’s that is trying to befriend him. We really don’t know anything about him from Hit Man, other than his name, and that he seems like an Okay guy. 

That is pretty much what we get from Hit Man, when I found out the next book would be about Regan, I was a little hesitant. The broken, sex slave captive has been done several times in the past. It isn’t one of my favorite things to read about. It isn’t conducive to a happy romance novel. My extreme love of Jen Frederick had me begging for the book anyway. 

I have to admit, this book was amazing! It was way better than Hit Man, in my opinion. The action parts, which consisted of trying to get Regan back to the US safely, were so much more interesting. I was riveted trying to decide what was going on and who was the “real” bad guy in the situation. 

Daniel has an ulterior motive for looking for sex traffickers and that makes for another interesting story, and sets us up for, what I’m sure will be, another amazing book in this series. Daniel is attracted to Regan from the start, and he is so appalled by the attraction to someone that has been suffering as she has been. He is determined to stay away from her. Regan has been hurt so badly, but she isn’t broken. I love how her views on sex is so different than the totally broken view we usually get. She has this really crazy manipulative view that intrigued me. Her ability to survive was just amazing (Although a little different from the impression you got from her in Last Hit)

I loved this book, and I can’t wait for the third book in the series. I’d give it five stars. 

She’s a biter. That’s the warning given when I point to the blonde with the glazed green eyes in Senhor Gomes’ book of whores. He shakes his head and says that he has access to dozens of others that are better and all willing to engage in whatever perverse activity I want. He brags that there isn’t a sick sex act I can think of that Gomes can’t fulfill. I like home cooking, I tell him. A Texan in Rio sees a lot of beautiful Brazilian women, but sometimes you want a little star-spangled banner in the rotation.
He nods as if this makes sense to him, but I think it’s the money that I’m flashing that he understands. We walk up to the second floor and down a narrow hall toward the back, a windowless part of this brick and metal building. I can’t call it a home or even a brothel. It’s a dingy place where men with deep perversions but shallow wallets can get their rocks off.
I don’t want to have sex here, I’ve explained to Gomes. I have a thing against hellholes and having sex in them. I wave around a lot of cash, and Gomes nodded and asks no more questions.
We’re a strange parade—Gomes, me, and some house mom trailing behind. He stops at the second to last door and removes a key.
I’ve seen pictures of Regan Porter before, and not in Gomes’ look book, but nothing prepares me for her full-fledged, magazine-quality beauty. She hasn’t been eating well; her delicate bones are beginning to look sharp in places—at her shoulders, ribs, and hips. But there’s no denying her breathtaking looks. Her blonde hair is damp and small strands stick to her perfect skull. Her oval face, with its pink cheekbones and lush lips and eyebrows that look like wings, stands out like a piece of fine china at a flea market. Though she’s thin, there’s a delicious curviness in the slope of her side as it dips into the waist and flares back out to form a cuppable roundness at the hip. And those endlessly long legs.
Shit. I close my eyes and swallow. No decent man would be standing here thinking about those legs wrapped around his waist. But then again, I’m not decent. I’m no longer army sniper, Special Forces Daniel Hays who may have once been lauded as a hero for killing insurgents in Afghanistan. Now I’m Daniel Hays, mercenary who kills people for money and spends all his spare time in brothels and flesh dens like this one. Decency is a word I don’t even know the meaning to anymore.
It’s been too long since I’ve had a woman. That’s my only excuse. That and I’m becoming the monster that I’m hunting. I focus on the bruises on her knees that are scraped red and raw from time on the floor and the manacle around her ankle. Any feelings of arousal are jettisoned by the obvious signs of abuse.
Glancing sharply at Gomes, I wonder how he’s come to possess a beauty like Regan Porter. Gomes is a small-time flesh peddler, stuck up here in the slums, with a house full of females—half of which are missing their teeth or are too old or too broken.
He usually gets what the market calls second-hand goods, the girls that no other house wants. But Regan Porter is gorgeous, and while she looks a little rundown, she’s still model beautiful with big pink lips and wide green eyes.
“Nice tits,” I smirk for Gomes’ sake and her shudder of disgust only feeds into my growing belief that I’m as dirty as the flesh trader beside me. The dark edges of the world that I now inhabit are seeping into my skin like an oil slick covering an ocean. I shouldn’t want to touch her. And if I have to fuck her in front of Gomes to get her out of here—I don’t even let myself finish that thought.
There’s still life in her eyes. If she’s biting and spitting out acerbic insults, there’s spirit left in her, and I don’t want to be the one to snuff out that last flame. Her eyes convey her hate, and if she had a knife, I’d be sliced from my throat to my belly. I stare back, not because she’s fucking beautiful, but because she’s still standing. I’m not sure I would’ve been as strong. I don’t know if she sees my admiration or whether she can only interpret varying degrees of lust and degradation, but she sees something. An invisible string spools out between us and her eyes widen when it hits her like an electrical shock.
For months I’ve swum in a pool of blood and death and ugly deeds, and to hold onto my sanity and maybe my soul, I’ve told myself that saving these doves balances the scale.  For every life I take, if I save one then it’s all a wash in the end. Don’t think it’s tallied that way at St. Peter’s Gate, but that’s the lie I tell myself so I can sleep at night and look at myself in the mirror the next day. Regan Porter will either be part of my attempt at salvation or the bloody stone that etches out the words He Failed on my headstone.  

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