- Title: Last Hit
- Author: Jessica Clare & Jen Frederick
- ISBN 0989247988 (ISBN13: 9780989247986)
- Series: Hitman #1
- Published: December 2nd 2013 by Pear Tree, L.L.C. (first published November 30th 2013)
- Format: eBook
- Genre/s: N/A Contemporary Romance
- Print Length: 290 pages
- Source: Purchased
- Rating: B
Last Hit was a departure from what I have become accustomed to from Jessica Clare, having read two of her Billionaire Boys Club series. A hybrid of Eastern Promises and The Bourne Identity, the premise of the hardened assassin conquered by an innocent runaway intrigued me enough to take a short break from the Downton Abbey marathon I was embarking on.
I have been a contract killer since I was a boy. For years I savored the fear caused by my name, the trembling at the sight of my tattoos. The stars on my knees, the marks on my fingers, the dagger in my neck, all bespoke of danger. If you saw my eyes, it was the last vision you’d have. I have ever been the hunter, never the prey. With her, I am the mark and I am ready to lie down and let her capture me. Opening my small scarred heart to her brings out my enemies. I will carry out one last hit, but if they hurt her, I will bring the world down around their ears.
When following a mark Nikolai’s attention is caught by a neighbor, he watches her through the scope of his rifle going about her daily life. He imagines himself, as a part of it, as her partner and protector. He seizes the opportunity to meet Daisy, as ruthlessly protective of her, as he is dangerous to those he is paid to eliminate.
I’ve been sheltered from the outside world all my life. Homeschooled and farm-raised, I’m so naive that my best friend calls me Pollyanna. I like to believe the best in people. Nikolai is part of this new life, and he’s terrifying to me. Not because his eyes are cold or my friend warns me away from him, but because he’s the only man that has ever seen the real me beneath the awkwardness. With him, my heart is at risk..and also, my life.
After her mother is murdered, Daisy’s father retreats completely from the world living behind boarded windows allowing only the most censored of information from the outside world. Daisy has been planning her escape from her father’s self made prison for years having had only stolen moments of freedom when she would go into town for supplies.
Shortly after her escape she meets Nikolai and is captivated by him, entranced enough that she doesn’t pursue the topics he brushes aside allowing him to have his secrets. Until the life that he thought he had left behind poses a threat to the new one that he is just starting to build with Daisy.
Often when I read New Adult literature I am put off by the unceasing melodrama, when we are expected to believe that two characters with enough baggage between them to fill a 747 and that they can conquer all just with the power of love. Not that I am not a romantic because I am, my favorite genre is romance without question but sometimes N/A requires a suspension of belief that I am just not capable of. Whereas in Last Hit despite the trauma of their pasts both Nikolai and Daisy possessed a strength of character that allowed the reader to easily believe that they could overcome any obstacle that they faced.
Note: This is a standalone novel with no cliffhanger. The next book in the series will feature an entirely different female and male protagonist.
Jill Myles writes under three pen names: Jill Myles, Jessica Sims, and Jessica Clare. She lives in Texas with her husband, cats, and has a day job in finance. Jill spends her time writing, reading, writing, playing video games, and doing even more writing.
Jen Frederick lives with her husband, child, and one rambunctious dog. She’s been reading stories all her life but never imagined writing one of her own. Jen loves to hear from readers so drop her a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.