Treachery (Antihero Inferno #1)
by Lily White
Release: May 27, 2020
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Photographer: Michelle Lancaster
Cover Designer: Lori Jackson Designs
Boy was this something else, not perfect, but still an amazing read.
I had already read and reviewed the first quarter of the book, which was originally released as a prequel. This time I skimmed over that part but my thoughts on it can be found here Treachery Prequel.
I’m also going to point you towards this review here Ꮗ€♫◗☿ ❤️ ilikebooksbest.com ❤️’s Review as it perfectly captures how I felt about this book. When I was struggling to connect to Tanner, when his arrogance was almost too much and I was considering DNF’ing Treachery (yep, I went from that point to giving it 4 stars!!!!) I read this review, which not only resonated with me but gave me the impetus to complete the book. Thank you Ꮗ€♫◗☿, not only did it enable me to finish the story but I LOVED this book by the end.
So how does a book go from being an almost DNF to almost 5 stars? Well in the case of this it has the brilliant writing of Lily White. It has characters that, love the or hate them, have personality. It has a twisty plot filled with scorching passion and devious manipulations. The last third of this was, without doubt at least a 5 star read but in all honesty and fairness I couldn’t give it that rating given my initial feelings.
Firstly it took me a long, long time to like Tanner. A very long time. Too long. He was just too much of an arrogant ass, too self-centred, too uncaring. The ‘excuse’ that he has been raised to be manipulative, that he hadn’t had loving parents, didn’t wash with me. Plenty of people use that experience to become a better person, to not repeat the sins of their fathers.
Tanner hated everything about his Dad but I couldn’t see how he was any different, in the long run. He was selfish to an extreme with, at one point, no redeemable qualities. I really wasn’t sure how the author would ever turn my dislike of him around, but my god she did, and then some. That alone indicates just how amazing her writing is.
The story starts with our protagonists at Yale, where they are all completing graduate courses. First of all I suffered from having to suspend my disbelief at how powerful these nine men supposedly were. At how everybody other than Luca succumbed to that power, became ensnared within the web these guys had spun. Nope, just not buying that, not for one minute. There was an over emphasis on how different Luca was in her behaviour, and I get that maybe it was to make her stand out, but it was another thing that was hard for me to believe.
Then there was the number of times Tanner mentally threatened that their fathers’ days were numbered. At Yale they were toeing the line because daddy was paying their way. Yet three years later, and financially independent, they still hadn’t cut those ties. How they built this multi-million (billion?) dollar business so quickly wasn’t explained, nor how it continued to thrive when none of them seemed to spend much time there. Tanner even bragged about letting others do all the work, if only running a business really was that easy!
Finally, whilst a lot of their manipulation, and lies, felt possible, there were instances when far too many stars needed to align in the right order, at the right time, for their plans to work. The thing is these plans relied on people choosing one particular action where that outcome was not guaranteed. Where independent thoughts and actions could have thrown all those careful plans awry. And let’s face it Luca never follows the expected path. The repeated need to suspend disbelief is where my biggest issues occurred, the thing that made me want to close the book and leave it behind. BUT I didn’t do that, and thank goodness because boy did this turn out to be one heck of a ride. I couldn’t read the last third, or so, quickly enough. There were red herrings and twists galore and I don’t think I managed to call even one of them.
Luca kept me in this for quite a while, her strength, her fight, her determination not to be manipulated, her ability to throw a spanner in the works and to ruffle Tanner’s feathers. She learns from her mistakes and whilst she plays a dangerous game, she doesn’t have many options. If Tanner wanted her help, her support and ultimately her love then he needed to earn it. Not by manipulating her, not by backing her into a corner and demanding it, forcing it, but by opening up, showing her the truth and letting her choose.
It takes a long time, and Gabriel’s intervention, for Tanner to realise his lies, his tricks and his manouverings would not work on Luca. To give her the FULL respect she deserved and to allow her the freedom of deciding her own fate and future. And my oh my, when Tanner decides to do something he puts everything into it. He 100% earned her trust and loyalty. He worked for and deserved her forgiveness. He laboured for her love and there was nothing else to do but forgive him and accept him. Best of all was that in many ways he didn’t change, he was still the same arrogant, full of himself, manipulative bastard, but not with Luca. In fact I’m fairly certain he would kill for her, literally.
So in summary TL;DR after suspending some of your disbelief and ignoring what an annoying arse Tanner is, this is a cracking read with a fantastic heroine and a hero who does eventually earn her forgiveness.
Also known as Tanner Caine.
He is a temptation with cold, dark eyes.
A man with a seductive smirk and a body built for pure sin.
The linchpin of a group of wealthy bad boys known as the Inferno.
A dark presence that repels as much as he attracts, Tanner is the poisoned apple I want to bite even when I know it will destroy me.
Our story started in college, but I ran from him so far I believed I was safe.
I should have known he’d find me eventually.
I should have known that nobody escapes.
He has me in his sights again with an offer I can’t pass up.
I know better than to make a deal with the Devil.
Not unless I’m willing to pay his sensual price…
(Treachery is Book One of the Antihero Inferno Series. Nine Standalone novels. Nine dangerous men. Nine unrepentant sinners you’ll hate to love.)
Some monsters are frightening because they kill and maim without remorse. Some are scary because they get in your head and make you doubt everything you believe you know about the world around you.
Tanner is terrifying because it takes nothing at all for him to set his sights on you, to ignite his anger and draw his attention. And instead of simply destroying you physically or mentally, he is the type of monster who will alter your entire world and leave you struggling to breathe while watching it all come tumbling down.
He leaves you alive to witness the chaos. He leaves you drowning while he storms off, satisfied that there isn’t so much as a shred of what you once had left for you to cling onto.
Maybe monster is the wrong word.
It’s too simple.
Other men are monsters.
Lesser men are monsters.
Tanner is a maelstrom.
He frightens me now even more than he had at Yale. I try to lie to myself and swear the fear has everything to do with the money I will lose.
But there’s something else, something deeper, something shadowed and burning with fierce carnal desire that lingers like a fog within my core.
Memories collide with the present, the aching I feel every time Tanner is nearby.
Because it hadn’t been easy to avoid him so many years ago.
It had been a fight, a war, a bloody battle occurring inside me.
Lily White is a romance writer who likes to dabble on the taboo side of eroticism. She is most known for her Masters Series, Target This, Wishing Well, and Asylum. In addition to dark romance Lily writes contemporary romance, taboo romance, and psychological thrillers. Lily enjoys stretching her writing muscles by continuing to challenge herself with each book she publishes.
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