Published by SmashWords on July 9th 2015
Genres: New Adult, Violence, Suspense, Thrillers
Pages: 368 Pages
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks
The only sure way to destroy a man is to take what he cannot live without.
Three years ago, I had everything.
A beautiful wife.
A reason for living.
Until a ruthless task force, assembled under Mayor Michael Culling, with a brutal strategy to make the streets of Detroit ‘safe’, ripped away everything I loved in a deadly hunt called The Culling.
They tried to kill me, too. I wish they had. Now I'm cursed by the memories of that night, and the words I whispered to my dying wife.
A promise—to avenge the wrong and set it right.
I’m no longer Nick Ryder. I’m a masked vigilante. Faceless. Loveless. Fearless. A man with nothing left to lose—one who's seen the dark and violent truth behind the city’s flawless veneer.
Michael Culling doesn’t know who I am. Or what I want. All he knows is that I’ve kidnapped his beautiful wife.
An eye for an eye—isn’t that how the saying goes? And Aubree Culling is the perfect pawn to destroy him.
If she doesn’t destroy me first.
Keri Lake’s Ricochet is an exciting revenge thriller that I found to be quite addicting. Nick Ryder is a man seeking revenge against the men who brutally murdered his wife and son. His main enemy is Michael Culling, the corrupt mayor of the city of Detroit. To get the ultimate revenge against Culling, Nick decides to take what Culling loves most in the world – his beautiful wife, Aubree. Of course, this being a dark romance, things don’t necessarily work out the way Nick originally planned.
I really liked the characters in this book. Nick is a vigilante, taking out the scum in Detroit’s underbelly. Not only is he avenging his family, but he’s also saving other innocent people from falling victim to these thieves, rapist, drug dealers and murderers. Despite the horrible things Nick does in the effort to reach his goal, Lake has constructed the perfect anti-hero to root for. Aubree Culling is also worth rooting for, both as a kidnap victim, and as a woman with demons of her own. She’s strong, feisty, and smart. The perfect heroine to go toe-to-toe with Nick. Lastly, Michael Culling is a terrifying villain. He’s veneer of respectability protects him, and make him the perfect criminal mastermind. I enjoyed seeing these two men playing a dangerous chess match in which Aubree was the pawn. Smart and dangerous, Nick and Culling were the perfect adversaries.
This book was very dark. There are elements of torture, self-harm, rape, human trafficking, and pedophilia. While these elements allow readers to root for Nick despite the horrible acts he inflicts on his enemies, I thought the toll they had on the characters should have been better resolved. I can definitely see Ricochet as the first in a series featuring Nick, but I don’t believe that’s the plan. Sadly, these means that I wasn’t satisfied with how the novel ended in terms of character development. I would have liked to see the characters struggle more mentally with the aftereffects of the story’s events.
Ricochet didn’t just have graphic torture scenes, but also had some very steamy sex scenes. This book is definitely for the under 18 years old crowd. I won’t deny that I thoroughly enjoyed them, but I’m not a fan of romance/sex as a band-aid writing. The problems characters dealt with in this book needed therapy, and can’t be solved with true love or great sex. The way their problems seemed to be tied up with a bow made their issues seem trivial. I also thought the self-harm situation with one of the characters should have been dealt with, but instead felt like the issue was swept under the rug like it was no big deal. The characters in the book are suffering from very weighty mental health issues, and trivializing them is harmful to people who actually suffer from these same problems.
Do I Recommend?
It depends. My initial reaction to the book, despite the character resolution, was that I enjoyed it for what it was – a gritty crime drama set in Detroit. Being from Michigan, I loved reading about familiar places. However, I like gritty dramas, so the violence didn’t bother me. If you are someone bothered by extreme violence, then this is not the book for you. You’ll even know this from the fact the publisher themselves stress “WARNING: **Not recommended for readers under the age of 18 due to graphic violence, sex and strong language. Trigger warning for self harm.” If you’re looking for a hot, steam crime novel, then you’ll probably enjoy Ricochet. Just be warned that the torture scenes are straight out of a Saw film.