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Publisher's Summary

He scared me. He thrilled me. And after one touch, all I could think about was getting more . . . Makayla never thought she'd set foot in an elite mixed martial arts club. But if anyone needs a medic on hand, it's these guys. Then again, at her first sight of the club's owner, she's the one feeling breathless.

The man they call Torment is all sleek muscle and restrained power. Whether it's in the ring or in the bedroom, he knows exactly when a soft touch is required and when to launch a full-on assault. He always knows just how far he can push. And he's about to tempt Makayla in ways she never imagined...

©2013 Sarah Castille (P)2013 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Castille's debut is steamy." (Publishers Weekly)

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Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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I’m a sucker for strong Alpha males!

AGAINST THE ROPES is a hot, contemporary, adult romance with intriguing characters and steamy love scenes. It started out really strong and had me hooked, but towards the middle it feel apart for me when it became a bit unrealistic. Nevertheless, it is a fictional book so the author can make it as real as they want. We first meet Makayla (Mac) who is at a crossroads in her life. She doesn’t really know what direction her life is taking, especially in the career department. She’s behind in her student loan and she needs money stat. That’s the reason why we first find her at a seedy fight club selling tickets to an underground fight, though she does have a strong aversion to violence. This is where her life changes. This is where she meets the club’s owner, Torment. Max, aka Torment, is intrigued when he first meets Mac. She’s a bit of a whirlwind to be honest. He wants to find out more about her. When he finds out she was once a medical school student with an EMT background, it presents the perfect opportunity for him to see Mac. So he offers her a part time job as the club’s medic. Mac has a weak stomach for violence which stems from her tragic past. So, she would prefer not to take this job but she is desperate for the cash. It also doesn't hurt how completely sexy Torment is. There is a point when you experience a fifty shades vibe because Torment is much more than he seems. Will just leave it like that. The chemistry between them is HOT HOT HOT! I loved the witty banter between Max and Mckayla and how even when she was being a dork, he was always right there for her. Torment aka Max was just a hot, tattooed, MMA fighting, ALPHA BAD ASS & I loved EVERYTHING about him!!! I definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a fast, steamy MMA-theA heap of MMA, a dash of BDSM and a WHOLE LOTTA HUNKA-HUNKA BURNING HOTTIES... I've died and gone to heaven!


35 of 38 people found this review helpful

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Wow... Such a painful read. DNF!

What disappointed you about Against the Ropes?

The plot was terrible. I pushed through to half way but only because I was on an airplane and had no internet connection to find ANYTHING better. The heroine is scattered, the hero is a meathead/millionaire and by half way through we still don't really understand why. The chapters never really finish and I can see the authors intent to begin the next chapter with a rehash of what was missed however, most of the time there is very little cohesion, let alone a valid reason the story progressed as it did.

Would you ever listen to anything by Sarah Castille again?

Probably not no.

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

The narrator managed to keep me entertained for the most part, except when she put on her man voices. Unfortunately these were painful to listen to. Her female characters were for the most part very good though so that was a relief. Given the story is told from her point of view this means the book is not too hard to listen to.

Any additional comments?

I can see what the author was trying to do here. The story has plenty of potential however, I don't think the editing encouraged a book that flowed well and was easy to read. And the content wasn't that believable either. It has it moments though and I cracked a smile here and there so it's not a complete waste of time but neither am I going to spend another 5 hours finishing it.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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So Sexy and Fun

I never know to go with another book from a series I'm listening to or taking a chance on someting new. So I took a chance and I'm so glad I did. This one has great characters and narration. I find myself grinning in places and also loving the steamy sexy parts. This is a great listen. I will be looking for more books from this author and hopefully more from other characters in this book.

19 of 24 people found this review helpful

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No

I don't mind too much the cliché dominant male when there is sufficient storyline to compensate but when every time the woman thinks to stand up for herself a little bit the guy overpowers her until he has convinced her she actually liked it, that's just terrible

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Oh! Now I remember why I didn't finish this book!

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

It would have been better if there were a real story... I saw this in my library and noticed it was not marked as finished so I figured that I may have purchased it and forgot to listen to it (I often purchase 2 or three books at a time). BUT, after getting listening to the first couple of chapters, I remembered the story. This time, I said to myself, I'm going to finish it this time... Maybe it'll get better... I kept repeating this to myself over and over with each passing chapter. It got a tiny bit better (finally so action!) but it only lasted for a chapter, then it finished. Ugh. What a waste!

What was most disappointing about Sarah Castille’s story?

It was boring. No angst, or catch love story. No good reasons why the characters were the way they are.

What didn’t you like about Lucy Rivers’s performance?

Lucy did a good job. Not much more she could do for the poor book...

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Not really.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • karen
  • Christchurch, New Zealand
  • 12-01-13

Smart, sharp and Sizzling

Any additional comments?

Torment (Max) knocked me down with his very Sexy way's. He is one in the many of the controlling millionaires in the romance genre today but something is a bit different about him. While rich and controlling he is also a down to Earth kind of guy. He has his own demons but he enjoys the way he deals with them. Makayla is funny, sweet and just a average girl with debts and demons of her own. The connection between them is immediate.<br/><br/> Makayla and Torment have a playful relationship, right from the start. They've got this push/pull thing going on with each other. I also liked the secret side to Torment, a twist I wasn’t expecting.<br/>The secondary characters were just as interesting as the leads. Charlie was a fun character. He was absolutely hilarious and some of the things that he said made me laugh so hard. I also like the secondary romance between Amanda and Jake and I look forward to their book. If you love the Highly Erotice romance department you're going to love this book! It 'is totally Sizzling with a very big S. :)

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Were we in high school!!!!!

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The narrator voices for the main male character has no emotion. I could never tell when he wasn't angry or happy.

Any additional comments?

Some of the scenes made no sense. Your man is in the hospital and you go to a party. Her friend Amanda was the most selfish person. Her man, Jake, does not give a secret about the main male character Max and her revenge is to sleep with another man and she has the nerve to be heartbroken when Jake wants nothing to do with her. Here is a thought, stop sleeping around. However, MaKayla's whining and consant back and forward like a child with Max was too much. She graduated college for goodness sakes. It was almost like a father-daughter conversation, versus a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship. He tells her no, she whines, he says no again, she whines. He is mad because she disobeyed him. The fighting at the other club that was not owned by Max, I wanted to asked where in the world that would every take place. Serious, trash cans over faces and keyboards as weapons. Her constant need to ask the injured person in the ring if she can exam him, made me want to scream. A fighter is injured and she goes into her credentials and then asked a question. One of the fighters was on the verge of death and you think he is going to be able to response. Made no sense.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 12-09-13

Great Hot Steamy Listen

Against the Ropes is a GREAT BOOK - An underground MMA fighter that goes by the name of 'Torment' finds himself distracted by Makayla. The blurb goes like this: Makayla never thought she'd set foot in an elite mixed martial arts club. But if anyone needs a medic on hand, it's these guys. Then again, at her first sight of the club's owner, she's the one feeling breathless.
The Sexy Time scenes were awesome! Torment and Makayla have great chemistry. I'm not sure they're such a great match though with Torment's love of fighting and Makayla aversion to violence and blood. The fight scenes were pretty great and, believe it or not, not too gruesome! LOL! The secondary characters were a lot of fun. I had several laugh out loud moments when Makayla was interacting with some of the guys from the gym. So other than Makayla's tendency toward monumental stupidity and immaturity, I enjoyed all of the characters. As I said earlier, this is a blending of two genres and I found it to be absolutely original. I went in thinking I was going to get a hot and steamy MMA story and then it started morphing into a BDSM billionaire tale. For me, it was having the best of both worlds because I felt like both sides of the story were well done.The secondary characters in this story were great...Doctor Drake, cracked me up with his whole seeming over the top on his quest to get Makayla. Amanda is Makayla's best friend, who screws up with Jake by getting caught playing naughty sexual games with Doctor Drake, but I do hope Jake and Amanda get a story, I think there is still a lot that can happen between these two. Sergio, who is the loan officer who is harassing Makayla really makes me angry at the beginning of the book, but come to sympathize with him at the end.

Lucy Rivers was outstanding with the delivery of the story.

13 of 19 people found this review helpful

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Absolute LOVE of a new author!!!

Sarah Castille is a new on for me but I am looking forward to more from here on Audible! This was a great book, laughed and cried! Very deep and great story. So many facets of this couple. This will be a re-listen over and over for me!

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Erin
  • Cornelius, NC, United States
  • 07-05-14

Good God I Wish He Were Mine!

Would you listen to Against the Ropes again? Why?

I have listened to this one twice. It was so good, so sexy and so very BAD!!!

What was one of the most memorable moments of Against the Ropes?

The beginning was pretty funny when she chases Torment inside the ring to collect his ticket. But there are so many little scenes,

Which character – as performed by Lucy Rivers – was your favorite?

I though the doctor was pretty hysterical. Kind of reminded me of a very buff sexy hunk with the personality of Mr. Roper from Three's Company.

Any additional comments?

good listen, the second in the series is out and I have already down loaded for a good listen.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-31-16

Funny Kink!

Nice light hearted, humorous kinky story. lt had a more serious back story but I enjoyed the inner funny dialogue Michaela had. Great supporting characters, I really liked Dr Drake, he should get his own story.

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  • Amanda
  • 06-08-15

hot, funny a must

What made the experience of listening to Against the Ropes the most enjoyable?

never have i ever listened to a audible book that made me laugh out loud so much that i have had to explain to the people round me what i was laughing at but this book made me do that on more than one occasion

What did you like best about this story?

the comedy and attitude of the main characters made this story come to live

What about Lucy Rivers’s performance did you like?

lucy was very expressive and easy to listen to i will look out for her again

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

still smiling while doing this review not just amusing but hot

Any additional comments?

really is a must listen i am already looking for my next title from this author

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  • vicki
  • 02-06-15

"AMAZING"

Would you consider the audio edition of Against the Ropes to be better than the print version?

yes Ive got it in print too

What was one of the most memorable moments of Against the Ropes?

mac learning to fight

What about Lucy Rivers’s performance did you like?

she is an amazing narrator i loved all of it

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

mac told him what happened in her past

Any additional comments?

loved it can't wait for more

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  • theBookGoddess
  • 10-29-16

NO STARS 😑

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A story for starters. There was no story here. <br/>A stronger narrator. The male lead is a boxer, a dominant; he sounded anything but.<br/>A connection between the M/F leads – wasn't there at all for me.

Would you be willing to try another one of Lucy Rivers’s performances?

No! Listening to Rivers was hard work. Little if any voice modulation to distinguish characters. Male voices were excruciatingly painful.

Any additional comments?

Don't waste your time or money in this one; nothing here to enjoy.