She doesn’t wear my ring.
We never stood before a preacher.
The only vows exchanged were between our bodies; between our souls.
But she was mine and I was hers until I ruined it. I have to believe that every day, every step, every breath brings me closer to making things right.
To making her mine again.
I’ve seen promises broken.
I know love makes no guarantees.
But things were different for Rhys and me, until he lied, and I walked away. Only there’s a chain between our hearts that I can’t break. Even if I forgive him, a shadow from my past hangs over us; over this love that reaches all the way down to my soul.
Book 2 – Down to My Soul
Book 1 – My Soul to Keep
Goodreads ➔ bit.ly/1OrzB3r
E X C E R P T
His name rushes from my mouth on a breath, and I’m off the bed, hurling myself at him top speed. Somehow my legs wrap around his waist and my arms tangle behind his neck. I couldn’t hold back and play this cool if I wanted to. Every part of me that’s been fighting to stay focused, to keep working, to be on, collapses against him. Surrenders to the feel of him in my arms and the smell of him. My fingers lace through his hair. I scatter kisses across his face, the sharp angles and taut skin warm beneath my lips.
“So I take it you’re happy to see me?” He chuckles, pressing his forehead to mine, hands squeezing my thighs.
“Happy?” I release something that’s half a sob, half a laugh, pulling back a few centimeters to let him breathe. “What gave you that idea?”
We stop grinning at the same time, laughter dissolving, our bodies exchanging sensual information. My breasts flattened to his chest. His erection growing and hardening against my core. Our breaths mingling and hearts tattooing beats through our clothes and into the other’s skin.
I move first, leaning in to capture his bottom lip between mine, sucking and pulling between my teeth. Licking into his mouth like there’s honey hidden inside. He groans into the kiss, walking backward until we reach the bed and dropping me so I bounce a little, his eyes roving over me head to toe.
“Pep, what the hell are you wearing?” Humor and desire tussle in his eyes.
I look down, laughing when I see the young Jackson brothers emblazoned across my chest, my legs ending in the footed bottoms.
“If I’d known you were coming, I could have made sexier arrangements.”
“Arrangements?” He quirks a dark brow, placing a knee on either side of my legs, hovering over me like a promise. “Lingerie would have been nice. Other rock stars have girlfriends who wear lingerie.”
“Oh, are you referring to yourself as a rock star now?” I grin up at him, feeling whole for the first time since he kissed me goodbye a week ago. “That’s not egomaniacal at all. Is there a club? You guys have rock star meetings? Does one of you take rock star minutes?”
“You are sitting in here listening to my music in the dark.” He leans forward to tug at the zipper beneath my chin. “Maybe you’re actually one of my crazed fans. Or a groupie. I might even find a Mrs. Rhyson Gray t-shirt around here somewhere. My girlfriend doesn’t like those.”
“No, she doesn’t.” I shake my head, eyes never straying from his.
A small frown jerks his brows together. He tugs again at the zipper, but it doesn’t budge.
“Pep, it’s stuck,” he says.
“Sometimes it does that,” I answer easily, enjoying the frustration spreading over his expression as he keeps pulling and it keeps staying.
He places my hand over his cock, hard and poking through his jeans.
“Well, it’s not exactly a good time for it to do that.”
I laugh, grasping my zipper and tugging. Wow, it really is stuck. These are vintage PJs, older than I am and threadbare in places. I’m surprised the zipper hasn’t rusted before now. I sit up, bringing our bodies closer as I jiggle the little hook a few times. Nothing.
“Just how attached are you to this Jackson Five onesie?” His glance burns hot across my subtle curves visible through the thin flannel, telegraphing his intentions.
“Well this is Michael’s original nose.” I release a fake exasperated sigh. “But I do have my sewing kit.”
“All I needed to hear.”
He grabs the two ends of the collar separated by the zip line and pulls until there’s a ripping sound, the panels falling back to reveal my naked breasts and my panties. A wicked grin spreads across lips.
“You naughty girl.” He runs a finger over the writing on the front of my calendar panties, carrying a current that simultaneously hitches my breath and gets me wet. “Wearing Monday panties on a Thursday. My little rebel.”
“Somewhere along the way I failed you…Somehow, I wasn’t clear. I haven’t made it abundantly clear that this–what I feel for you–goes nowhere…You once told me there are at least two categories of forgiveness…What was that second category?”
“It’s that kind of forgiveness where you just love the person so much, you can’t stand being apart from them. You have to forgive them because you’d do whatever it takes to restore the relationship.”
“That’s the one.”
There are those books that touch you so deeply that it takes a while to process them. The ones that leave you with a book hangover, that continue to make their way into your thoughts even days or weeks after you’ve finished them. DOWN TO MY SOUL by author Kennedy Ryan is one of these for me.
Kennedy’s writing draws me in completely. Her stories are full of passion, emotion, and angst, but, most of all, they are truly love stories. And, although I am still fairly new to her books, I know that a) I will not be disappointed, ever, and b) they will stay with me for a very long time.
After I inhaled MY SOUL TO KEEP, the first book in the Soul series, I jumped right into DOWN TO MY SOUL, completely in love with Kai and Rhyson, and captivated by their story. This second book picks up immediately following the emotional cliffhanger in MY SOUL TO KEEP, and is just as angsty, just as passionate, just as consuming as the first book.
Kai and Rhyson are still figuring out how to navigate their relationship. Still reeling after finding out about Rhyson’s betrayal, Kai is intent on making a name for herself based on her own merits. Even distance and time can’t dull her feelings for Rhyson, though, and, when Kai needs him the most, he’s there by her side to help her find her way. But Rhyson isn’t the only one that’s been keeping secrets, and when Kai’s threaten to become public, she has no choice but to tell Rhyson, knowing that it could mean the end of them.
Kennedy has once again written a deeply touching, completely engrossing book that I could not put down. The path of Kai’s and Rhyson’s love is complicated, but worth the read in every way, and I cannot recommend this book any more highly. 5+ stars for DOWN TO MY SOUL. I have high hopes that Kennedy will give us more books in this series. Add this one (and, please, if you haven’t read the first one, do it) to your TBR; you will not be sorry.
***ARC generously provided by the author for an honest review.***
About Kennedy Ryan
I just can’t write about myself in third person for one more bio! I’m a wife, a mom, a writer, an advocate for families living with autism. That’s me in a nutshell. Crack the nut, and you’ll find a Southern girl gone Southern California who loves pizza and Diet Coke, and wishes she got to watch a lot more television. You can usually catch me up too late, on social media too much, or FINALLY putting a dent in my ever-growing To Be Read list! I love to hear from readers at firstname.lastname@example.org.