Devil's GameBy: Joanna Wylde
I live in terror of leaving out someone important at the beginning of every book, because so many people have worked together to make Devil’s Game possible. Special thanks to Cindy Hwang, my editor, and Amy Tannenbaum, my agent, for all your ongoing support. I am also very appreciative of the entire team at Berkley, especially Jessica Brock, who has worked so hard to help me achieve success.
I want to thank my writing friends and beta readers, who give me daily encouragement. These include Kylie Scott, Kim Jones, Renee Carlino, Kim Karr, Katy Evans, Kristin Ashley, Cara Carnes, Raelene, Sali, Hang, and Lori. You ladies are amazing.
Without the support of reading groups, bloggers and super readers (you know who you are), no author would ever reach her audience. I love you Maryse, Jenny, Gitte, Lisa, Giselle, the ladies of the Triple M, the ladies of Kristen Ashley Anonymous, and all the incredible women in my Junkies group. I also want to give a special shout-out to the girls I originally met on Maryse’s Facebook page—I’m so honored to have your support as I’ve built my writing career. I hope you know how much I treasure you in my life!
Finally, I need to thank my family for their endless support. My husband, my kids, my parents, and my brother kick ass. I love you guys so much!
Devil’s Game covers some of the same time period and events in Reaper’s Legacy, but if you’ve read other books in the series you’ll note that this book is slightly different in tone. I’ve had several people ask me why, and the only explanation I can offer is that the characters are younger and this is how their story played out. In many ways this is a New Adult book, and the structure reflects that.
A note on motorcycle club culture: One of the most common questions I hear from readers is, “How real is the Reapers MC?” It’s difficult to answer because my books are romantic fantasies, and aren’t intended to delve into the inner workings of a club or explore the ethical implications of club life. They’re meant to entertain, and have been sensationalized to make that happen.
Having said that, as a former journalist, I started the series determined to make it as realistic as possible in terms of culture and language. To that end, Devil’s Game has been reviewed for accuracy by a woman currently attached to an outlaw club, and the club details are relatively true to life (with a few minor exceptions, where I allowed myself some artistic license). MC culture is diverse and the lives of women living in clubs are relatively undocumented. It has been my privilege to get to know many of these women through my research, and I have come to believe that stereotypes about their existence are often inaccurate and even damaging. Their input on this story has been extremely valuable, and I am deeply appreciative of their ongoing support.
EIGHT YEARS AGO
COEUR D’ALENE, IDAHO
“For fuck’s sake . . . they’re like weasels in heat. I’m gonna puke.”
I nodded, agreeing with my sister one hundred percent.
Barfing was the only reasonable response to this shit.
We stood in our dining room, which connected to the kitchen through a pair of pocket doors. Dad had Mom up on the counter, legs wrapped around his waist, his tongue so far down her throat it should’ve triggered her gag reflex.
“You do realize we’re watching you, right?” Kit asked loudly. Dad pulled away and turned his head to glare at us. Mom winked, but she didn’t have the grace to blush.
“Take another ten minutes to fix your hair or something,” he said. “Then come back down for breakfast.”
Kit growled next to me. She had Dad’s temper. I wish I did. I always followed the rules, and it kind of sucked. Kit called me a daddy’s girl and maybe she was right. But I just really hated pissing him off.