Reni's Review! Raising Ryann by Alyssa Rae Taylor (Bad Boy Reformed #1)

Raising Ryann

 By Alyssa Rae Taylor

Published: August 2013
When I read it: August 2013
Genre: New Adult Contemporary
Series/Stand Alone: Series
      *Raising Ryann
      *Resisting Ryann
Pages: 277
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Twenty-year-old Reese Johnson can finally leave her troublesome past behind. She enters college with her best friend, Gia, and spends her time doing what she loves—working as a self-defense instructor at a local gym. Then Luke Ryann enters the picture. He’s the tall, dark, and tattooed MMA fighter her boss hires to privately train her. One minute, he captivates her with his piercing brown eyes and boyish dimples. The next, he infuriates her with his relentless banter and cocky bad boy behavior. He’s the last thing she wants or needs, and she never expects to fall in love with him.

Luke’s jaded past has him keeping a safe distance. Despite what he feels, some things are better left alone. He has a dangerous secret—one that has the potential to risk their lives. As he fights the attraction between them, can he resist the growing tension and protect the woman he’ll never be able to have?

Recommended for mature audiences due to situations of abuse, violence, strong language and sexual content.

Raising Ryann, the first book in the Bad Boy Reformed series, isn't just a story about first love. It's filled with action, suspense, mystery, and a touch of humor.

I can’t … I … I’m having a very ‘Ron Burgundy’ Moment. I feel like shouting nonsense about being stuck in glass case of emotion. What an emotional roller coaster ride. Ugh. The thing is, secretly, I LOVE roller coasters. The rush of it all. The twists and turns. The moments that make you feel like your stomach has dropped out of your body. I love them all! Raising Ryann is an intensely emotional read that will leave you craving more.

Reese Johnson has not exactly lived the fairy tale life. She’s been through more than you or I could begin to comprehend, and she’s strong – so strong. Working as a self-defense instructor at a local gym, Reese is living her dream. She gets to share her knowledge with young women while helping to empower them, ensuring they won’t become victims. She’s amazing at her job and doesn’t fear replacement until Luke Ryann shows up … Now she fears that she may lose more than her job.

He waves me off, as if my previous comment was a joke. That’s when I get offended. He didn’t even allow me to defend myself, earlier, and now I know it’s because he thinks I’m weak, which makes me want to choke him. Literally.

The chemistry between Reese and Luke is off the charts. I don’t think I’ve ever been so frustrated with a potential couple. Okay, that can’t be true but they come darn close. For someone who’s used to getting what he wants, Luke is sure good at passing up on Reese…over and over again. There were points in this novel where I could literally feel my heart crack a little in my chest. Especially since Reese is not your typical 20 year old woman. She’s a survivor. I fell in love with her from the moment I cracked this book open. She’s incredible! I can’t even pin point exactly what I loved so darn much about her. Maybe it’s her tough facade or the loyalty and love she holds for her mother (even though the woman is a waste of an oxygen breathing organism), or maybe it’s the strength she has deep down inside that she doesn’t even know exists until she’s pushed to the breaking point. Whatever the reason, I absolutely adore Reese Johnson. Oh, and Luke is okay too. You know … a sexy MMA fighter with tattoos and a killer personality… he’s just alright. HA!

He smiles, actually smiles at me, which makes me angrier. “I have news for you, buddy!” I poke him hard. “I’m not one of those women. I’m not going to do what you say, and I don’t need you to do me any favors. I’m twenty years old. I’m not a child, and I don’t appreciate being treated like one.”

I’ll admit, when presented with the book I figured it would just be a quick read, pretty cut and dry and straight to the point. Err, I was wrong. I think that when the book wrapped up, I was left with more questions than answers. Luke’s past is still mostly a mystery. What is that boy hiding? There’s so much I want to share about the story – about Reese and Luke as individuals and as a couple, but I can’t. If I do I’ll ruin all the fun. Let’s just say that Raising Ryann is more than a boy-meets-girl-tries-to-stay-away-and-fails love story. It’s a story you shouldn’t miss. Oh, and the writing? Well, let’s just say that Alyssa Rae Taylor is doing something right. The flow and tempo of the book was spot on. I didn’t lose interest once. In fact, I would have probably read the whole thing in one sitting if it weren’t for that pesky little thing called life. *sigh*

If you haven’t guessed yet, this is another cliff hanger. We all know how much I love them … I guess it’s more of a love/hate relationship. I usually want everything to wrap up and fit into a nice, neat little box; in this case, I’m glad it “ended” the way it did. You would have laughed if you saw me while reading. I kept checking the percentage read on my kindle and shaking my head. By 95% I was convinced I’d be holding on by the skin of my teeth until book two … and I was right. That being said, READ Raising Ryann. It’s worth it. I promise.


Contemporary Romance Author, Alyssa Rae Taylor. When I'm not writing, I'm reading about love, bad boys and everything in-between. I tend to prefer books that include a whole lot of angst, twist, turns and surprises. I love when they have my emotions tied up in knots. I'm a sucker for alpha males, tattoos and muscles, and am happily married to a man who fits that description to a T.
I'm a wife, mother of three, loyal fan of Supernatural, the Walking Dead, Bates Motel, and Sons of Anarchy. Thank God for Netflix and the DVR or I wouldn't be able to watch any of them. I live in Phoenix, Arizona with my husband, three daughters, two English bulldogs, two Holland Lops bunnies, & a fish.

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