• King's Checkmate

  • Road to Redemption, Book 3
  • By: Aiden Bates, Ali Lyda
  • Narrated by: Austin Jay
  • Length: 7 hrs and 17 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (22 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Can this bad boy live happily ever after?

King is the bad boy who stole my heart. It’s his, and I don’t want it back. All I want is to put the past behind us, so we can build a life together in Chicago.

Then King’s brother turns up on our doorstep, threatening to pull King back into the gangster world he’s turned his back on. If his brother succeeds, it could destroy everything we’ve worked so hard for, and I’m not going down without a fight....

Will my demons destroy us or set us free?

I can’t ignore my past anymore. Not if I ever want a chance at redemption and a life with Rory. But it means bringing down my own brother and in the process becoming someone I vowed never to be again. Someone who Rory wouldn’t recognize.

But if I don’t? Neither of us may live to tell the story....

©2021 Special Fiction Books (P)2021 Special Fiction Books

What listeners say about King's Checkmate

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved this

I absolutely loved this steamy opposites attract romance.

Such a great book with a solid storyline and great characters.

I eagerly look forward to reading more from this author.

A definite recommend!

3 people found this helpful

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Austin Jay finishes the series in fine fashion! 😍

This series is awesome and I love the consistencies that existed all over the place especially with the narrator. Austin Jay did his part with vocal consistencies for all the characters in the series. That is exceptional work for a reader especially for those of us who value/prefer the audio format! But the writers deserve a big pat on the back, too! It would have been easy for them to forget the aspect of King's gang life instead of doing what they did--tackle it head-on with the gang strengthening their position in Chicago with the might of the police department and expect to reinsert themselves in King's life. Dang, they handled that aspect of the narrative beautifully but consistently. With King's overriding expectation to always manage the tough stuff to keep everyone else safe. How glorious it was when everyone else wanted to, needed to join in to save King who was always trying to save everyone else. The writers were righteous in maintaining the characters' behaviors while showing characters' development and growth and this can be seen with several of the secondary characters. Awesome to expend the effort (in terms of words that add to the story) on more than just the principal players! The pacing was strong in that the writers continue to keep the readers engaged from scene to scene. Then the balance that allows readers a peek into the kinder, gentler moments of the characters' lives--the self-think/talk, sex scenes, dialog with secondary or tertiary players... All just beautifully done. This is one of the best series I've had the pleasure of experiencing! Yay, authors!

1 person found this helpful

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Great conclusion

I have enjoyed this series so much! It was so much fun to listen to and get to experience the development of the characters and their relationships. King and Rory were such fleshed out characters and felt so real. I wanted their relationship to go so well and I also wanted to hug them at times. The ending made me really happy. I really love their chosen family and hope we get to see more of these characters in the future.

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An lovely new addition

Let me just say that I went Gaga for the narrator, he’s voice is lovely and made the story much more enjoyable. As always Bates and Lyda did an amazing job on another addition to the series.

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A Final Showdown & Satisfying End to Series

This conclusion to the Road to Redemption trilogy is a test of King and Rory's ever-deepening (and steamy and surprisingly sweet) relationship, with the couple facing external threats from the Jackals, led by King's older brother. The whole King's Gambit crew goes on the offensive, as what's been building for three books comes to a final showdown and satisfying conclusion.

It has been a little while since I listened to Books 1 & 2, and I'd suggest listening to all three in short order for maximum enjoyment since it's basically one continuous storyline. And here's to hoping King's younger brother Elias and ex-con Thomas get their own HEA spin-off story.

I can't claim to be the biggest fan of this narrator, as I never feel (or hear) much emotion in his performances, but he has a pleasant enough voice and provides fairly distinct character voices here. I received this free review copy audio book by request and have left this honest review voluntarily.

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King and Rory's Romance Trilogy Concludes

‘King’s Checkmate’ wraps up a trilogy of books that follow former gang member King and ersatz Irish mafia heir Rory as they fall in love and face their pasts in order to create their happy ending. Books 1 & 2 should be read before this one in order to enjoy the full experience.

Rory’s Irish mob troubles are behind him, but now the entire found family at King’s Gambit nightclub face danger from King’s gang leader brother, Drake. What will it take to break free from King’s past and live out a happily ever after?

While I feel the suspense elements of the story are a little implausible, I do enjoy Rory and King’s relationship. There’s light angst sprinkled in at times, but it resolves itself quickly when it tries to rear its ugly head. The ending leaves the reader satisfied with the outcome (including for Elias and Thomas).

This 3rd book is my favorite of the series in terms of the narration by Austin Jay. The various character voices are distinct and the interpretations match Bates and Lyda’s storytelling.

I received a complementary copy of this audiobook at my request. This review represents my voluntary opinion of it.

Recommended.

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One of my favorite series

I was unsure when I started this series as it’s not my normal genre but I am SO glad I did. I could not get enough and was so sad when it was over. Rory snd King are the very definition of opposites attract and both have more baggage that any one person should. The narrator of this series makes you feel like you are sitting in the room with the characters making this a completely immersive experience. Aiden and Ali hit another one out of the park!!!

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Chosen Family and Learning The Hard Way

What I have loved about this series and this book most was the way life lessons are expertly woven though the gritty plot. King and Rory show tremendous growth as individuals and a couple. On top of the real life aspects of the story is plenty of steam/sexy times and a few laughs. Austin Jay does a good job with the narration but I would like to see his character range grow as many of the characters in this series sounded the same.

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Good Finish

This is not a stand alone it's a continuing series featuring 1 main couple but has a great cast of characters. I reall loved how it progressed and the ending was perfect for the series. Jay does a good job giving life to these characters and it has a nice solid narration that made it a pleasant listen.

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End of Trilogy - Good ending :)

This is the 3rd book in the trilogy. I had to go back and listen to the first two to make sure I understood what was going on here. I’m happy to say Rory and King finally get their HEA. :) Rory and King have an issue with King’s brother that they must deal with to be together. King tries to handle everything on his own, but he learns he must seek help from others to be successful. This books ends with the much needed HEA that Rory and King deserve. The narrator made this story come to life. :D I voluntarily reviewed a gifted copy of this audio book.

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  • Amelia
  • 10-20-21

A satisfying conclusion

Despite how much King and Rory had already been through, I'm glad the authors chose to go back and tie up the last loose ends of their story. This audio definitively settled the question of whether or not King had grown past his self-sacrificing ways, and finally after finishing this book I can say I'm confident that he and Rory can weather anything life throws at them next. With plenty of sweet romantic moments, tense situations with the Jackals, and an action-packed fight for justice at the end, there was a lot to love about the way this series ended. I was secretly hoping Elias and Thomas would get their own book, but even without that it was adorable to see glimpses of their happiness through King and Rory's eyes.

If the last book was all about Rory overcoming his fear of settling down, this book was a redemption story for King. After falling back into old coping mechanisms again and again, King started to seem like the kind of guy who wan't capable of changing his ways. That's part of why it was so satisfying to see the lightbulb turn on in his brain, though I wish it hadn't taken such a devastating series of events as a catalyst. It's not that King will ever stop being a protector, because that's part of who he is, but seeing him learn how to balance that with trusting his friends and family to have his back was a huge breakthrough. I thought the storyline involving the Jackals was really engaging, and despite having some idea of how cruel they were I never imagined them going to such lengths to seek revenge on King. It was really cool to see the way Rory and the rest of the club family banded together to rescue King for once, and I was proud of the way they handled the Jackals when it would have been easy to let the heat of the moment influence their actions.

Between the threat of the Jackals being eliminated and closure about what King and Rory's future careers looked like, I couldn't have been happier with the ways things left off for these guys. I was thrilled to get a tiny peek at the next chapter of their life together, and though I could have easily read another hundred pages of their happily-ever-after, I'm content in the knowledge that no new threat is on the horizon.

**I voluntarily listened to a free copy of this book. This review expresses my honest thoughts and opinions.

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  • Susie Umphers
  • 10-19-21

Great series conclusion

I am completely satisfied with the way this series ended and seeing King and Rory finally get their HEA. It doesn't happen easily, though. I loved seeing King in full-on bada** mode dealing with the gang and his brother to get the life he wants. Austin Jay continues his great performance here. We hear all the different sides of King in his voice and the stress and strain Rory is under.

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  • Tanya
  • 10-19-21

what an ending

what a way to end this trilogy. I wasn't disappointed in how their story came to an end. I'm just sad that we don't get a series for secondary characters because their story plays out in the background and epilogue.

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  • sarah mitcham
  • 10-18-21

Trouble Finds Them Again.

MM, Romance. Needs to be listened/read in series order for full understanding and maximum enjoyment due to a complex and ongoing plot. A great third part of the series although it took awhile for anything much to happen..but from then on it was non stop action. Great characters that have been through so much in their lives. HEA.

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  • Magnus
  • 10-18-21

Great ending

A great ending to the story by Aiden Bates and Ali Lyda. King and Rory are amazing to follow. Austin Jay did a good job keeping the story flowing.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

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  • alias11
  • 10-18-21

Stronger together

This is the final book in the Road to Redemption series. After facing down, and coming to terms with Rory's father. you would think King and Rory would have earned their HEA. Alas, not yet. King's brother, Drake, and the Jackals want to pull King back into his old life. Rory and the rest of the gang are ready to stand by King, but will he let them, or will he try to weather the storm by himself? Is this the end of King's Gambit and the new life he's made...or a new beginning? Fast-paced, exciting, emotional story with plenty of tension, suspense, and drama. I love these characters, both the MCs, and all their friends.

Austin Jay's narration is solid, and he really brings these characters to life.

I received a free copy of this audiobook at my request and am voluntarily leaving this honest review.

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  • Donna Hirsch
  • 10-17-21

King and Rory

This is the third and final in the Road to Redemption series. King and Rory have no fear from the Irish Mob, but Drake Kings brother and leader of the Jackals, wants to use King's club for illegal purposes. King goes alone after planning to go in a group, where his brother and his goons jump him and Rory and their friends have to save King. Great to see their HEA as well as Elias and Thomas.

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  • HelenMK69
  • 10-17-21

Wow, what an ending

I thoroughly enjoyed not just this book but the whole series, well written with a lot of drama and a lot of love.

King faces his brother after a threat against him, Rory and Rory's mother, but things don't go to plan.

I love these characters so much. But Austin Jay brought these characters to life with excellent narration.

Well narrated, clean and clear. Austin Jay was a joy to listen to. I sped up to 1.50 on Audible, which is typical for me.


King's Checkmate
Road to Redemption, Book 3
By: Aiden Bates, Ali Lyda
Narrated by: Austin Jay
Series: Road to Redemption, Book 3
Length: 7 hrs and 17 mins

❤❤❤❤ Overall
🎧🎧🎧🎧🎧 Narration
📚📚📚📚 Story
Read at 1.40 speed on Audible

I received this audiobook for free from GRR at my request. My review is my opinion and an honest review - neither the author nor GRR influenced my opinion.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Macbandit
  • 10-12-21

Will miss these characters

Let me start by saying I really enjoyed Austin Jay’s narration. He definitely brought the characters to life. This is the end of Road to Redemption and I’m going to miss these characters. It is fitting that King and Rory go through the intense situations that make each reexamine their life. I am glad the author’s handled Drake as they did. I am happy for the way King’s bar is running. Now I can’t wait to see what’s next from these two.

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Profile Image for Vanessa Leighton
  • Vanessa Leighton
  • 10-07-21

Wow

This was such a good book with amazing narration. The narrator gave such depth to the emotions and the characters that I was not expecting when I started this book. I was left desperate for the end of the book but pausing it so many times because i did not want to finish it. This has been such a good series. Aiden and Ali certainly know how to write a book together.