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I'm an avid reader and reviewer of romance books, especially m-m and erotica. You can find me on http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4669232-baba-marcus-tyler-tate-dan-ty-hunter 

Forged in Steele - Maya Banks

2 stars.
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It was better than Shades of Gray. Still, it saddens me to say that Forged in Steele could never hold my interest. It’s a bit embarrassing but I can hardly remember why I actually enjoyed the first two books in the series (book 3 was a bit ‘meh’ already). Hence, I assume either my reading preferences did change drastically in the meantime or the series did a serious nosedive into very unpleasant waters. I suspect it’s both. All things considered I’m proud of myself that I finished Forged in Steele because it was a pain in the ass. Besides, nobody can accuse me of not giving the book (and Steele) a fair chance. In the end though, it just didn’t do it for me.
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As usual we have the common clichés such as the scowling, muttering, growling and the widening eyes etc. I was actually waiting for Steele to beat his chest. You know, something like“Me Tarzan, you Jane.”
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And since you can never have enough growling human beings, Maren had to join the wildlife.

"Impossible, stubborn man," Maren growled.

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I love my alpha males but when they (meaning Steele and the other KGI members) come across as an over exaggerated joke then it isn’t even funny anymore.  I get somewhat tired of this type of “hero.” Besides, I can’t take the OTT caveman acts and speech seriously anymore. As a result, this story made me roll my eyes over and over again. And what really irritated me immensely was the (view spoiler)What about variety?Honestly, like the caveman act, the (view spoiler) is getting very old. Very fast.
Since I started to read the KGI series I always wanted to read Steele’s story. Steele intrigued me from the first book and he was one of my favorite KGI characters. Let’s see, he is supposed to be the ice man. Though I must say that being an ice man doesn’t equal with being an asshat. Having said this he was an über asshole when he wanted to hook up with Maren and he did lose a lot of points right then and there. Don’t get me wrong. I was aware of the fact that Steele wasn’t a charmer. But. Who talks to his future lay like that?

"You kissed me and then you ask me what's wrong?"
He frowned. "Was it that bad?"
This time she did laugh. "I think you know it wasn't bad. Why did you kiss me, Steele? What the hell is going on here?"
"I want us to have sex," he said bluntly.
"You drive me crazy. You're under my skin. Stuck deep. I don't need you there. You're a distraction, and I can't afford distractions. So we'll have sex and then I'll stop fantasizing about what it's like."
"I have to say that's about the worst proposition I've ever heard in my life."

Baba: I couldn't agree more, Maren.
Steele shrugged. "So I'm not a sensitive guy. You want to f@ck or what?"

And then get this…Steele tells her…

"You're an idiot," he repeated (Yep, he said it twice) She frowned. "Okay, I'm really not liking that word."
Friendly advice, Maren, if I'd been in your shoes I would have slapped his face.
He sighed. "Okay, you're clueless then. Completely and utterly clueless.

Duh. Good ole Steele is toning it down.
Steele said, "As a rule, I hate people." How charming. That's kinda crass, don't you think? Newsflash, you jerk, maybe it would be good to change your ideology, Steele. You know it could facilitate the interaction between you and other people.
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Having said this, I found it absolutely mind boggling how Steele did a U-turn and underwent a radical personality change in the blink of an eye. He got mushy and incredibly touchy-feely after he had sex with Maren. It made it very hard for me to actually recognize the man’s personality. Simply put, he transformed from asshole Steele to sappy Steele. Yeah, no more ice man, baby! You see, there is my dilemma coz there was not much of an explanation  why he got the nickname ice man in the first place. I got it that he isn’t a big talker, he is distant and standoffish and in charge of every situation (most of the time at least), and he leads his team stoically etc., but I really didn’t get enough background story that would have explained why he became the man he is today and I didn’t buy his miraculous transformation either. To top everything off I found all those gushy ILYs…um… slightly exaggerated to say the least. That happened too quickly for my taste.
There was nothing memorable about the heroine. She is one among many others and easily forgotten. What I will remember, however, are the waterworks and the sappiness.  Granted, (view spoiler) there was so much excessive crying, sobbing and sniffling in this story, it somewhat made me roll my eyes even more.
The way they talked, acted and their countenance did not appeal to me. Also, the conversations were odd at times. Who asks for permission to fall in love with your “lover” (view spoiler)

"I could so see myself falling in love with you," she whispered. "But you need to tell me, Steele. Tell me if that's not something I should let happen. I'm making myself vulnerable to you and you swore to protect me. I know that means physically, but I've exposed something to you I've never exposed to anyone else. My heart. And you have to swear to protect that too."

And then two Kindle pages later…

"Oh God, Steele, I think I love you too."

Now that was fast.
The final highlight happened around the 89 % mark. It’s so incredibly ridiculous it bears repeating.
The stunt she pulled there was so unbelievable I had to laugh out loud. I mean a physically (view spoiler)
Of course I'm fine…
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Are you freaking kidding me? Seriously? There are (view spoiler)I knew for sure there were more vital problems at hand. Hey, it's all about priorities, right? Oh, and the false modesty…again, who talks and acts like that in real life?
At this stage the book was a total let down already and the icing on the cake were the final 10 % that have been drowned in sappiness, and the cheese factor was at its highest. There is no denying it, the whole book was too sweet and gooey for me.
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In conclusion, Forged in Steele put me into a sugar induced coma and I’m glad that I escaped Sapsville alive and kicking. Again, this is my opinion and what does not suit me might suit you. However, after having read five books in the KGI series I can honestly say that I’m done with this adventure, and I might as well be done with this author’s work in general because I don’t see Baba enjoying another book written by Ms. Banks anytime soon. Good luck and happy reading!
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Source: http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/468308221