Hot damn, the Crossing the Line series was awesome overall! I actually binge-listened this series (not in order, mind you) and it was good. Overall, I gave this series 4/5 hearts, but each individual book has a rating range of 3-4 hearts.
The Crossing the Line series has a 60-40 balance between suspense and romance, where romance gets the largest chunk of each of the books. This is exactly what I love! I do wish there was more action in the books, though. Also, I love all the female heroes are unique in their own way, kick-ass and have baggage! It’s refreshing since it’s usually the heroes who have all the angsty backstory (I’m also not saying the men don’t have their own baggage).
This is also Tessa Bailey’s earlier works and you can tell that writing quality has improved immensely in her recent books. The men are still alpha dirty talkers and holy ef, I absolutely dig them! Didn’t know it was my kink, but now, it is!
The series is read by Jill Redfield except for the first book which is read by Alice Chapman. Both are okay narrators, but they aren’t my favorites. Jill Redfield does an awesome job with the different accents but her “orgasm” voice is just too high pitched bordering annoying?
Let me just warn you that all the characters in this series REALLY DO CROSS the line because if this happened in real life, they would probably not be aiding the cops (but then again, what do I know).
This is my skinny reviews for each of the books in this series!
Riskier Business is a sort of prequel for the other books, but it’s actually the second book in the Line of Duty series, titled His Risk to Take. This is Ruby and Troy’s story and it’s actually a novella! Full disclosure, I read Riskier Business LAST and it didn’t ruin my enjoyment of this book. Bowen is the only character introduced here.
But just because it’s a novella doesn’t mean it lacks in plot and story! This book does a great way of introducing the hero in Risking it All (Crossing the Line #2), and I actually empathize with him more.
True to her brand, Tessa Bailey writes another awesome alpha paired with a sassy heroine! Ruby and Troy’s relationship does start with lust at first sight, but ultimately how the two get together was satisfying.
Risking it All is one of my favorites in this series. Best of all, we get to spend more time with Bowen! Blackmailed by the NYPD, Bowen agrees to rescue an undercover cop, get rid of the evidence she finds, and get away scot-free. What he doesn’t count on is Sera, the gorgeous and innocent undercover cop!
I loved that Tessa Bailey chose Bowen as the first antihero in this series! I love getting to know more about his backstory because I could see how he was with Ruby in Riskier Business.
I wasn’t expecting who the villain turned out to be in this series. There was a lot of drama, though because Sera finds out two shocking things about her family.
Did I mention the sexytimes yet? WOW! NSFW and this audio had my ears burning!
The only complaint I have with Risking it All is that I think I missed something in the series. Maybe I needed to read the Line of Duty series? Only because [spoiler]it is revealed in this book that Bowen and Ruby are in fact, siblings. But when I read Ruby’s book, it wasn’t mentioned that they were siblings and Bowen was just Ruby’s best friend.[/spoiler] This is what I thought I missed something.
Up in Smoke officially introduces all the other antiheroes in this series! WOW! That opening scene with Connor and Erin was smoking! Also, the chemistry with this two is off the charts!
Up in Smoke also introduces us to TWO antiheroes – Connor an ex-Navy SEAL, dishonorably discharged, and Erin, an ex-convict. Erin’s backstory is a painful one, though. Erin doesn’t want to be touched at all, but Connor was the person who could overcome her fears – and she does have plenty of fears and PTSD.
This book actually starts Tessa Bailey’s steamier romances because WOW does it get really steamy!
Another thing I loved about Up in Smoke is that our heroine, Erin is one kick-ass female! She is absolutely amazing and I loved how she lowered her guard to let Connor in.
There is a little bit of trigger warning here due to Erin’s PTSD, with recollections of what happened to her when she was younger.
Boiling Point is my favorite in the series and OMG! I absolutely love Polly and Austin! Polly is a hacker, who is also an ex-con and is on a path of revenge! She wants to ruin the con artist who ruined her dad’s and her life. And who does she end up falling for but another con artist as well?
In Up in Smoke, we meet Austin in one of his disguises! He is a con man who uses his charm to get women to do his bidding. But what is surprising is that he is the sub in this relationship! Yes, there is a bit of a dom-sub relationship between Polly and Austin, with Polly taking the lead! Oh, and did I mention that Austin is British?
I personally love Boiling Point because I think there is more plot and more character development as compared to Tessa Bailey’s earlier books.
My only complaint with Boiling Point is that the defeat of the villain was too abrupt and felt too quick. I wanted more action, but unfortunately, there wasn’t.
Raw Redemption is the last book in this series and it does wrap-up the end of the series really well. This is another case, unrelated to the previous books but since the team is now paired off, I assume the series is over.
Our heroine, Ailish is on the run from her father, mob boss. Henrick, who we meet in Boiling Point is a disgraced cop, trying to regain his badge. Unfortunately, he has an uncontrollable attraction to the person and witness he is protecting – Ailish.
I think Raw Redemption is the one with the most suspense. But again, the end felt rushed and was just too perfect. It would have been better to have Ailin and Henrick get caught and suffered a little bit, you know?
Do you love romances with antiheroes? Which ones are your favorite?
Aren’t Tessa Bailey’s books SUPER HOT? Can you recommend any of her books that I should read next?