The story follows Isabelle/Iz/Izzy West as she begins to rebuild her life after leaving her horrible ex-husband. Izzy is 30 and kinda broken. As the story unfolds, we learn more of her backstory and I completely understood why she was so depressed; she's had a pretty crappy time of it over the past 12 years! The most noticeable thing about Izzy is her strength, she's a fighter, who although she considered herself broken, she never gives up.
Holt Reid aka Axel is a bad ass ex soldier. He's a protector and an all round alpha male. Combined with his physical prowess he's got one hell of a potty mouth and a certain swagger. I loved him! What I liked was no matter how fierce and traumatised he was, he's really thoughtful.
There are a lot of misunderstandings and miscommunications in the story and most of their problems could have been fixed by the characters opening up to each other or being a bit more forthcoming. It has to be said a lot of this was outside of their control, and certain characters definitely deserved a smack or two.
The secondary characters were all intriguing and I'm uber glad Axel is the first in a series, as these ex-marines all deserve their own story. I loved Cage (I did think he was in love with her in a non-brotherly way). Plus Beck and Coop, although Maddox was by far my fav of Axel's guys. Maddox just seems so broken; he needs a nice girl to come along and save him... Right, onto Dee. All gals need a great bestie and Dee is all kinds of awesome! Dee is sassy, sweet, funny and a fab friend to Izzy. She kinda reminded me of Tina's best friend in Friend-zoned.
Be warned! Axel covers some pretty serious issues and the topics may not be for everybody. BUT amongst the heartache and drama there are some really sweet friendships, romantic scenes and some brilliant one-liners. Axel is actually really funny in places. It's also REALLY FREAKING HOT! This one's definitely not for younger readers as there are a lot of smexy moments and bad language, but don't worry these all fit with the story *fans self and swoons*!