Becket's Last Stand
It’s hard to jump into a series at the end. Some authors make it easier than others, but there’s always a bit of confusion, at least in the beginning. Becket’s Last Stand is the last of a seven-book series, none of which I’d read prior to this one, so I felt somewhat disorientated throughout the story. However, for those who have read the rest of the series, or for those whose only concern is the hero and heroine’s relationship, this is a good story.
Though I’m a bit hazy on the background information, I generally managed to gather enough about previous events. Courtland Becket was rescued from an abusive father by Gregory Baskin, a privateer who made a habit of bringing neglected and abused children into his own family. But Gregory’s partner betrayed him, and in one tragic day killed Gregory’s wife and countless other villagers.
Years later, Gregory Baskin, now known as Ainsley Becket, is preparing for an attack. His various foster children have all married and are using their new connections to protect the Becket estate of Romney Marsh – all, that is, except Courtland. He’s tried very hard to deny his feelings for Cassandra Becket for years. Cassandra (also known as Callie), Ainsley’s daughter, was only an infant at the time of the attack. For years, Courtland has been her protector and her affection has grown for him. He, however, tries to push her away, as he is very aware of their 13-year age difference and the fact that she is the daughter of the man he respects most in the world.
However, as the Becket family anticipates and prepares for an attack from the murderer and their longtime foe, Courtland begins to see the independent woman in Callie, and their relationship blooms while the ambush comes ever closer.
I’m afraid that my unfamiliarity with the Beckets dampened my reading experience, so I will try to ignore all the parts where I was confused or lost. I will say this, though: If you’ve not read in this series before, this would not be the book with which to start. That said, though, it is to the author’s credit that despite some disorientation, I enjoyed the book.
Callie and Courtland have a nice relationship. It could have seemed incestuous, but didn’t. Though they grew up as brother and sister, their relationship evolves into much more than that.
Courtland is a good hero and not necessarily an alpha or a beta. While his brothers were off doing heroic deeds, going on adventures, and saving the Becket family, Courtland was standing behind them, inventing tools and weapons for them to use, and planning their quest. He’s a supporter and protector, one who will help save the day and remain content with not being labeled the hero. I thought this was admirable, and maybe smarter and more attractive than being the one to rush into battle without thought. However, the age difference did sometimes show, though I think that was more from Callie being young than Courtland being too old.
Again, I feel a bit inadequate to comment on the plot in depth, but I can say it’s exciting and has some good twists and surprises. The side characters are all great, and the storyline is well developed.
I think this is a good ending to the series. It has a strong plot and a good central relationship. It just isn’t a standalone, so if you pick this book up, you’d better be prepared to tackle the rest.