Review //\\ The Velvet Collar

The Velvet Collar (Pony Tales #9/Velvet Lies #3)

I don’t think even in my wildest dreams I could have ever imagined such a conclusion to this series. Was it a little OTT? At times yes, but in a wonderful way that just made you smile, or cringe, wince and take panicky breathes. I loved this book, I loved this series, so much so that a little part of me wants to take a few minutes to mourn it’s end.


If you haven’t read this series, and you love a good kinky romantic suspense, with a fair dollop of wit and humour, then I do highly recommend it.  Ms Mandara’s mind is incredibly devious, twisted and sinisterly kinky. I wanted Kyle and Michael to face some retribution, but that??!!! My word it takes the word revenge to a WHOLE new level. They deserved it, maybe, no definitely, but I’m with Mark, someone else can make that decision.


We get some seriously erotic times again, before the story takes a darker turn and we get some breathe play scenes that would have been scorching had it been consensual, or even had it been at Leyland’s hands.  (I missed him sooo much. He really, really needs his own book!)  However since it was Kyle at the helm, things were never going to go well. Yes, I’m starting to think Laurel’s idea’s weren’t so horrific after all.


A part of me would have liked to see some consequences for Albrecht, given that they knowingly had unwilling participants there. Michael being the owner felt like a little bit of a lose end BUT I loved this too much for it to matter, in the end. I know this book has been out a while, but could we have a bonus epilogue of Michael’s downfall, and some tormenting of him and Kyle? Pretty please??? 😉😁


The writing is excellent, the plot rattles along at an almost break neck speed, though not so fast that you get left behind. It slows nicely for all the important parts (yes I do mean the sexy times) so that we can enjoy the delightful torment that Mark inflicts on Jennifer. Whilst the previously mentioned OTT parts of the story enable a somewhat easy resolution – though not easy from Mark and Jenny’s point of view, more from an author side of things – I felt it fitted well with the whole larger than life feel of the book. Anything else would have felt far too tame, boring and uninspired.


I’m hoping the final “Beautiful” book won’t be too much longer because I’m not planning on re-reading #1, reading #2 (which I already own) and I know I’ll be desperate for the ending, once I do.

Title – The Velvet Collar
Author – C.P. Mandara
Genre – BDSM Romantic Suspense
Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44639143-the-velvet-collar

I made a bet with my newlywed submissive wife. I told her that if she could behave herself impeccably for a week, she could wear the trousers for a day. That included being able to dominate me. The bet was almost guaranteed to be impossible to achieve, and yet somehow she did it. It looks like I’m in for a fun night, doesn’t it?
If that wasn’t bad enough, Kyle has been spotted near our home. It scares me. I can feel the net closing in, and I’m still no closer to unravelling the pieces. We need to figure out what Redcliff wants, and fast. In order to do this, I’m going to have to talk to my mother-in-law, who still isn’t speaking to me. I have no idea what her problem is. She tried to kill me, not the other way around…

Release & Review //\\ FRAUD

Fraud (Antihero Inferno #2) by Lily White

Frauds of the world unite, together forever.


If you don’t love Ivy then you’re not welcome on my team. If they didn’t have some incredible issues of their own, I could be quite jealous of Ava and Emily for getting to be her besties. Ivy shines like a star, dazzling those around her and casting light into the shadows, where it’s not always welcome. Where Luca was strong in an almost foolhardy and naive way, Ivy’s strength is in her very ability to hide in the spotlight, keep a gameface, and lie as good as, if not better than, Fraud himself.


Talking of Gabe, he was a worth adversary to Ivy but was never going to beat the Queen of Deception. Oh he liked to think he had the upper hand, in fact he was allowed to believe that for such a long time, but then men always mistakenly believe that females are the weaker sex. This pair are so well matched, so absolutely perfect for one another and so amazing together, despite the lightning strikes and storms that occur when they are in close proximity – literally. You can feel the air crackling with tension and static electricity when they are in the same room. When they’re alone together – well just make sure you read this somewhere ‘safe’ because the word ‘hot’ doesn’t even come close to describing the heat and chemistry between Ivy and Gabe. They weren’t the only ones sweating!


Whilst I liked Tanner and loved Luca, their story didn’t draw me in the way Gabe and Ivy’s did. I could, and did, step away from that one. This book I couldn’t put down, well I did at 1 am but only because I had to be up at 7 for work. It felt as though Lily might have taken on board comments made about Treachery, though perhaps she already had those explanations planned. It doesn’t matter the how or why, just the fact that in this book I believed in the circle, their fight and their reasons more. I also really enjoyed seeing Tanner get his ass handed to him, that guy still rubs me wrong at times, though he does help Ivy so he’s forgiven, maybe.


This story felt as though it continually moved forward, little secrets and truths slowly revealed, new mysteries unearthed. Just the right speed to keep the tension humming, to drive the pace onwards, to hold me spellbound. We kept hearing about the ‘event’ that caused Ivy to ask Tanner for a favour. I’ll be honest and say that I almost expected to be disappointed by it. Just what could have been so bad but also ‘fixable’. Too many times other authors have set up the same premise of a secret, have built the anticipation and have fallen flat at the last hurdle by revealing a ridiculous, an unbelievable and/or a secret so pathetic it ruins the book. I should never have doubted Lily White‘s ability to pull this off. She is, after all, the Queen of the Messed Up, F’d up, Plot Twist, surprising us at every turn, pulling the rug out from under out feet and twisting the twist. Just remember this book isn’t called Fraud for Gabe alone. it takes a liar to know a liar and to fool a liar. 

Title: Fraud 

Series: Antihero Inferno #2

Author: Lily White

Release Date: June 24, 2020

Genre: Romantic Suspense (standalone)

Goodreads: https://bit.ly/2X3OF6F

Blurb: 
Eighth Circle.
Fraud.
Also known as Gabriel Dane.

He is a ray of sunshine that warms your heart with kind eyes and a dazzling smile.
Don’t let him fool you with that silver tongue or lure you in with a body that draws every woman’s eye. This man is fluent in deception and a devil who only offers pretty lies.
Gabriel is my old nemesis.
I’m the girl that always fought back.
He has every reason to hate me as much as I hate him.
Now that he found me, he’s determined to make me pay for our past.
Except, there are two small details Gabriel doesn’t know that will be his ultimate downfall:

There are no rules when it comes to our war.
And I’ve learned to lie just as good as him.


***Each novel in the series depicts a unique romance, but the plots through each book connect in one world. For the best experience, read the series in order.


Nine Standalone novels. Nine dangerous men. Nine unrepentant sinners you’ll hate to love.

Buy Links (Kindle Unlimited):
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2Nxxvcp
Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/31a4ZW3
Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2zUwnw1
Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2V680D9



Giveaway: $15 Amazon GC (Post goes live 6/24 at 12:00 a.m.) – https://www.facebook.com/authorlilywhite/posts/4083929394982979

In The Series: 

Treachery (Antihero Inferno Book 1)

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2Txmb39

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2Twhyqa

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2ytP216

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2A4aGct

Teaser: attached/in drive

Author Bio:

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.

Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorlilywhite/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/lilywhitebooks

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lilywhiteauthor/

Website: www.lilywhitebooks.com

Review //\\ The Velvet Caress

The Velvet Caress by C.P. Mandara

I’m currently re-reading/completing the Pony Tales series and I don’t know why I only gave this four stars last time because I adored every moment of this book. It’s a lot less steamy and erotic than the previous books though we do get one heck of a sensuous scene towards the end. The reason for the cooler feel is because this book really allows us to know and fall totally in lust love with Mark. Oh my word he totally and utterly earned his redemption here. I would have loved being a fly on the wall of Sophia’s dungeon!


The story moves on at a good pace, with more intrigue thrown into the mix, more peril, a life-threatening danger for Mark, and an unexpected visitor. I adored Leyland, he wasn’t quite the butt-hole I judged him to be in The Ties That Bind. We saw glimpses of a less bad man in The Velvet Chair but in this we see a man who is as devious as Mark, but who doesn’t take himself as seriously. The scenes of him with Marianna were delightful and one day I’d rather like Ms Mandara to consider giving them a book of their own.


I utterly enjoyed every single word, line, paragraph and chapter. Totally recommend this series to those who enjoy BDSM accompanied by a good story and can’t wait to read The Velvet Collar, though will be sad to have to say goodbye to Mark and Jennifer.

Title – The Velvet Caress
Author – C.P. Mandara
Genre – Erotic Romantic Suspense
Goodreads –
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36115207-the-velvet-caress

When one lie is shattered, another begins.
My wife is on her deathbed and I’ve barely been married a day. The poison she took was meant for me. I should be the one lying in a hospital bed looking as though each moment might be my last. The guilt I feel is indescribable.

It’s a bit too late to realise I’m in love with Jennifer. I’ve screwed the poor girl over so many times she can barely stand to look at me. Every time I come near her she flinches, and I can hardly blame her. All I know is that I need to make this right. I owe her that much.
I used to be good at delivering the impossible, but this time I’m not so sure. The odds are not stacked in my favour.
Losing isn’t going to be an option, though. If I lose her, I lose everything…

REVIEW //\\ Something Twisted


Something Twisted by Ace Gray




“The world will eventually end in brimstone and fire, but I’ll still love you, Drea. You’re heaven and the religion I’ll worship to get there.”
“I love you, Niall,” she said from her spot at my feet. “Whether you’re my salvation or damnation, I don’t care as long as you’re mine.”


This was my first book by the author, and it’s now my firm intention to read more work by her!


I read this in order to lead a Book Of The Month discussion, in the Dark Erotica group. I have to say, well done to Dana for suggesting the book and to those who voted for it because this was a huge, huge hit for me. Trying a new author, especially in the dark realm of romance, always feels like a risk. I’m sure for every one book I’ve enjoyed there are a dozen that have missed the mark by a country mile. This one ticked every box for me and I found myself not wanting to put it down. It was also second-chance, which is hands down my favourite tropes ever.


The authors voice, the plot, pace and characterisation were all top notch. There was no effort involved in reading this book, well other than putting it down when it got VERY late into the night and my alarm was set for less than 6 hours later! Though I did have to forgive the use of ‘drug’ instead of ‘dragged’, but hey, no biggie. This really is an addictive read that wraps you up in it’s dark and depraved world, draws you into the lives of the damaged folk that exist there (because it could never be called living) and will keep you enthralled from the very first to the very last line.


Drea and Niall had so much history to overcome, had so much pain and sorrow weighing them down, needing to forgive and to receive forgiveness. There were moments in this story that made my heart melt, moments that shattered it into a thousand pieces, moments that made me gasp, or laugh, or cry, or swoon, sometimes more than one at the same time. This pair were never destined for a nice easy love story, and boy does the author drag us all through the depths of hell before we see any glimpses of light at the end of the tunnel.


This kiss was different than our others. Niall usually kissed me with fire enough to feel the burn but this was slow and smoldering, a little sad. The tears I’d been keeping at bay knotted in my throat. This kiss said goodbye.


The book starts off right in the deepest end of the dark pool. There are scenes of non-consensual sex and physical violence perpetrated on the heroine, some of which are witnessed, but not prevented, by the eventual hero. These were not easy to read, though Drea had been living this hell for so long that she was almost immune to it now. So it didn’t feel as emotionally harrowing as it could have. The author saved that for later when we learnt more of Drea’s reasons for leaving Niall. There were times when I disliked Niall, but he had his reasons, he suffered through his conflicted feelings and he earned his redemption at least twice. Why twice? Because this man was an insufferable idiot at times!


Whilst the second half of the book didn’t feel as dark, it was still gritty and, at times, violent. It’s difficult to go into details without giving away spoilers, but I felt that the consequences and events that followed Mac Ulster’s final manipulation of Niall were believable and hard won. There is no single handedly bringing down a whole mob family, no miraculous deal, just a whole world of misery and pain to endure. I could understand Niall’s struggle, his wanting to do right by his friends, even if it did mean he wasn’t thinking clearly on who to do right by Drea. That moment in the motel room was a huge wake up call for him and the future Drea could have faced.


This story didn’t follow the paths one would expect, right to the very end it defied expectations and gave something refreshingly different to a genre that is sometimes tired and cliched. I loved how this book didn’t pull any punches at the same time it gave us an epic story of endless love.


“I don’t thing you get to choose, Drea,” I softened.
“But I get to fight.” She smiled that same small, sorrowful smile. “And I want to fight for you.”






Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/53109226-something-twisted
Genre – Dark Romantic Suspense

I’d spent my life as a plaything. A toy to be used by powerful and deadly men in whatever way they pleased. So I was just as surprised as anyone else that I had feelings left. Feelings that lead me to fight for true love while damning myself.
And that’s just where this story begins.
Desperate and alone I turned back to my childhood home. The first wicked place I’d known with the darkest villain among them. My stepfather. But I could weather his storm in exchange for safety. I had to.
What I didn’t expect to find was Niall McDonough. The only man I’d ever really loved had reappeared only to become one of them. Someone ruthless and cruel. He wants to ruin me. As my stepfather’s savage soldier he might just do it.
But then again, twelve years ago a fortune teller predicted I’d need just such a soldier to save both my heart and soul.


Review & Release //\\ Treachery


Treachery (Antihero Inferno #1)

by Lily White


Release: May 27, 2020

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/TreacheryonGoodreads

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.





Blurb:

Ninth Circle.

Treachery.

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.)


Buy Links (Kindle Unlimited):
US: https://amzn.to/2ZhCu7Y
CA: https://amzn.to/2ARqlwq
UK: https://amzn.to/2TtbIGa
AU: https://amzn.to/2WVnsTX


Giveaway: https://bit.ly/3gigkZi


Excerpt:
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. 
Too ordinary. 
Other men are monsters. 
Lesser men are monsters. 
Not Tanner.
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.


Author Bio:

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.



Social Media Links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorlilywhite/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/lilywhitebooks
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lilywhiteauthor/
Website: www.lilywhitebooks.com

REVIEW //\\ Jaded


Jaded by Shane Starrett



Four and a half weeks into a lockdown, still trying to get my head around working from home (a surreal situation when you’re a 1 to 1 home ed teacher who can’t video call students because of safeguarding). Rapidly loosing track of the days along with my sanity, I’ve struggled to read anything other than lightweight stories or fantasy books, things that take no brain power or are so far removed from real life that I can sink into them.  The last thing my head thought it could cope with was a gritty romantic suspense.  Yet not only did Jaded prove me wrong, it damn well hooked me tight and reeled me in.


Mason was a substantial side character in the book Jasmine, Trish held a much smaller role.  However fantastic writing means that you don’t need to have read ANY of that story to both understand and enjoy this one.  I adored Mason, really grew to understand him and, yes, my heart broke for him when we got the 10 years ago prologue.  Trish was strong, smart and so, so sassy and I loved her.  She set her sights on Mason Jones and was not going to let her quarry escape. 


The suspense element was very convincingly executed, the various threads weaving together into a fast paced, engaging, fleshed out and convincing tale.  The balance between the romance, character building, story development and plot was perfect, I mean *maybe* we could have had another steamy scene between Trish and Mason, but I loved that what there was felt like an organic development of the storyline, rather than being shoe-horned in to tick a box.  And boy do that pair have some scorching hot chemistry!


To summarise – Jaded is well written, captivating and just an all round wonderful read.




Blurb:
One broken FBI agent.
One sassy, sarcastic journalist.
Brought together by one set of circumstances, there’s another—a threat which could destroy them both—that may push them even closer.
But he’ll need to bring down the walls he’s built so carefully and let her in.
And she’ll need to trust a man so jaded…

He might be incapable of the very thing she’s looking for.




Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B087R4VVP3

Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B087R4VVP3

Goodreads – TBA


Photo by Digital Buggu on Pexels.com



BLOG TOUR // The Vanity of Roses



The Vanity of Roses
by Lily White



Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: March 25, 2020

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50731598-the-vanity-of-roses







The Vanity of Roses is a fast-paced, twisty and totally captivating read.


With a Lily White book I know I’m always guaranteed a great read, yet no two books ever seem to be the same. The Vanity of Roses is a dark tinged romantic suspense, packed full of intrigue, secrets and lies. Manipulation is rife and this enemies-to-lovers romance kept me on the edge of my seat unable to put the book down.


Whilst Lisbeth should have been a dislikable character, she wasn’t, so her childhood behaviour was a little puzzling. Of course as the many complex layers of this story were slowly revealed, we began to get a better picture of just what had happened in the past and why. Callan was much easier to like, though there were times when his treatment of Lisbeth made him seem quite cruel. Though again there were reasons.


It’s a dual pov book, clearly labelled so you know who’s “voice” you are hearing and is written first person. This enabled me to really connect with and understand both main characters. There is a lot of foreshadowing and I did guess one twist in advance, but it didn’t spoil my enjoyment in any way. I loved how you weren’t sure who to trust and who was telling what lies, you really need your wits about you when reading this one! The suspense, at times, was nerve shredding.


The writing is so eloquent and poetic, creating striking visuals and eliciting a myriad of emotions. Lily White doesn’t just write a story, she constructs a living, breathing creation that absorbs your soul and challenges all your perceptions. There were secondary and even tertiary characters who had more depth and personality than some authors imbue in their main characters. Along with a complex plot, this ensures a rich tapestry of a story.


Whilst I enjoyed every single word I did feel that, at times, as though the pace slowed a little. Every scene was well written, but just a couple of times I felt as though they were not adding anything more to the story.


I massively enjoyed the book and definitely recommend it.




Blurb: 

Callan Rose.

That hadn’t always been his name.

When we were children, he was nothing more than a servant boy in my family.

He was an amusement to me. 

A nobody. 

A weak soul who refused to fight back.

It was so easy to take advantage. 

But then my father died, and I was stolen. The family moved on without me. Until I was penniless with no place to go.

I returned to the Rose Estate not knowing Callan was the head of it.

He’d honed his body and temper in the underground fighting ring. The scars only made him more beautiful. 

Now I’m trapped by a seductively dark man who has nothing but vengeance running through his veins.

I’d always wanted him to fight back, but you know what they say:

Be careful what you wish for.






Kindle Unlimited
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2UA0f7a
Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/39fpYav
Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/33Ev1Qq
Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2UCmj1g




Praise:

It has my 3 D’s….. DARK, DIRTY & DELICIOUS!!!

~ Tricia, Goodreads Reviewer


Wow! Talk about gut wrenching! This book tore through me in every way possible!

~ Carvanz, Goodreads Reviewer


Totally consuming! I got lost in Callan and Lisbeths twisted love story. Callan is the ultimate bully worth fighting (or submitting) for.

~Keri Loves Books


The Vanity of Roses does not disappoint. It is everything I needed. It’s dark and violent, sexy and suspenseful.

~ S.M., Wicked Reads





Giveaway:   $15.00 Amazon Gift Card ~~~ https://bit.ly/39geQdx.



Author Bio:

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.



Social Media Links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorlilywhite/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/lilywhitebooks
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lilywhiteauthor/
Website: www.lilywhitebooks.com


REVIEW//\\ The Vanity of Roses





The Vanity of Roses
by Lily White



Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: March 25, 2020

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50731598-the-vanity-of-roses






He wasn’t just beautiful in the traditional sense, he was exquisite. As if a sculptor had spent months chiseling marble to create the perfect masculine form, but then a painter came in to sweep deep shadows across him.



The Vanity of Roses is a fast-paced, twisty and totally captivating read.



With a Lily White book I know I’m always guaranteed a great read, yet no two books ever seem to be the same. The Vanity of Roses is a dark tinged romantic suspense, packed full of intrigue, secrets and lies. Manipulation is rife and this enemies-to-lovers romance kept me on the edge of my seat unable to put the book down.


Whilst Lisbeth should have been a dislikable character, she wasn’t, so her childhood behaviour was a little puzzling. Of course as the many complex layers of this story were slowly revealed, we began to get a better picture of just what had happened in the past and why. Callan was much easier to like, though there were times when his treatment of Lisbeth made him seem quite cruel. Though again there were reasons.



“What have I done to deserve that?”
Hating the genuine fear I could hear in my voice, I refused to move away from him as his dangerous energy consumed the space around us.

Lisbeth, The Vanity of Roses



It’s a dual pov book, clearly labelled so you know who’s “voice” you are hearing and is written first person. This enabled me to really connect with and understand both main characters. There is a lot of foreshadowing and I did guess one twist in advance, but it didn’t spoil my enjoyment. I loved how you weren’t sure who to trust and who was telling what lies, you really need your wits about you when reading this one! The suspense, at times, was nerve shredding.



My nerves were live wires, the frayed ends dancing and arcing on the ground, a constant snap of electric fear bolting through me the farther into the desert we drove.



The writing is so eloquent and poetic, creating striking visuals and eliciting a myriad of emotions. Lily White doesn’t just write a story, she constructs a living, breathing creation that absorbs your soul and challenges all your perceptions. There were secondary and even tertiary characters who had more depth and personality than some authors imbue in their main characters. Along with a complex plot, this ensures a rich tapestry of a story.


Whilst I enjoyed every single word I did feel that, at times, as though the pace slowed a little. Every scene was well written, but just a couple of times I felt as though they were not adding anything more to the story.


Overall, I massively enjoyed the book and definitely recommend it.










Blurb: 

Callan Rose.
That hadn’t always been his name.
He was an amusement to me. 
A nobody. 
A weak soul who refused to fight back.
It was so easy to take advantage. 
But then my father died, and I was stolen. The family moved on without me. Until I was penniless with no place to go.
I returned to the Rose Estate not knowing Callan was the head of it.
He’d honed his body and temper in the underground fighting ring. The scars only made him more beautiful. 
Now I’m trapped by a seductively dark man who has nothing but vengeance running through his veins.
I’d always wanted him to fight back, but you know what they say:

Be careful what you wish for.









Buy Links (kindle unlimited): 
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2UA0f7a
Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/39fpYav
Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/33Ev1Qq
Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2UCmj1g




Giveaway:   

$15.00 Amazon Gift Card – https://bit.ly/39geQdx.








Social Media Links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorlilywhite/
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Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lilywhiteauthor/
Website: www.lilywhitebooks.com




Excerpt:

“Me,” she laughed, “jealous of you?”

Her gaze dragged down me with disgust I hadn’t seen since we were kids. “You don’t have to worry about that, Callan, you don’t have a single thing that I want. You’re nothing more than a pathetic excuse for a man, a Rose in name and nothing-“

I was across the room and on her before she could finish the thought, a surprised shriek muffled behind the hand I clapped over her mouth while my boots ground the broken glass into the floor. 

Lifting her with just my palm against her chin, I grinned when her bare feet kicked, her heels thudding against the wall.

Mouth to her ear, my words came out on a dark hiss. 

“Keep talking, brat. I haven’t seen you like this since we were kids. What were you going to say to me? That I’m worthless? That you’re somehow better than me?”

The scruff of my jaw scratched her skin, my free hand sliding up the inside of her thigh.

“Please say those things,” I crooned, my voice so deep I knew it vibrated against her bones. “I’ve always wanted to take this pretty little body while you’re abusing me with your words.”

Releasing her chin, I caught her and spun her toward the wall, my body trapping hers, my hand flipping her skirt above her waist.

My mouth was to her ear again, my heart thumping in time with the angry beat of her breath. 

“And what’s messed up is you like this. I should have done it a long time ago.”





Author Bio:

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.

Review//\\ Dolly by Measha Stone





Dolly by Measha Stone






Oh my word, Measha Stone does Dark incredibly well.


Dolly throws you into the dark end deep end right from the start. It’s fairly harrowing at times, particularly because we experience the suffering, rather than just impassively observing. What I really enjoyed was how the story moved forward and how we got to really know Dolly and Ken.


It’s really difficult to discuss the book without revealing spoilers, so I’m just going to say that the plot totally and utterly held my attention throughout. I’ve read vaguely similar plotlines previously, but this was not a weak or carbon copy of them. Instead it far surpassed those previous reads, due in no small part to the quality of writing and the amazing characterisation of its protagonists.


The symbiotic relationship between Dolly and Ken, the self-reflection, self-understanding demonstrated by the both of them, the incredibly believable love and connection they shared just took this book to another level. With all the difficulties and stress of the current world situation, a dark book felt like the last thing I wanted to read. However the darkness here was filled with such strength, it transformed to such power that, instead of dragging me down, instead it lifted me up in a way I hadn’t expected.


I massively recommend Dolly and am hoping Ms Stone dips her toes into dark waters again.


















He’s promised me sunlight.
Hope for a better future.
Freedom from this horror.
A life that doesn’t end in a dark cellar.


But, we’re trapped together.
Forced to live for the worst kind of people.
Desperate to survive for each other.


I crave his touch with every breath I take.
My heart aches for him.
He’s my hope for survival.
The man I want a future with.
I can have it all again, if only I trust him.
Even if that’s the only thing I can’t do.













Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0854GM87D/

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0854GM87D/

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/51076103-dolly



Ratings
5 stars – This is a book I will not forget and would definitely read again.


4 stars – I really enjoyed this book, I might not read it again but I would definitely recommend it to others.


3 stars – This story was good but either forgettable or just very typical of its genre.


2 stars – Whilst the book was readable I either didn’t enjoy parts of the plot or just could not connect to the main characters.


1 star – This is a book I simply could not finish for reasons listed in the review.

Book Review ~~~ Surrender Series #1

THE GUILDED CUFF by Lauren Smith

Every passion has its price . . .

Journalist Sophie Ryder has been following Emery Lockwood’s story since she was a little girl. There has always been something in his haunted eyes that she couldn’t resist and now, when she’s certain he holds the key to solving a string of kidnappings, she’ll do anything to speak to him. Even if it means venturing deep into the seductive world of the Gilded Cuff, a luxurious BDSM club on Long Island’s Gold Coast and Emery’s personal playground.

From the moment Sophie enters his shadowy, sensual domain, Emery Lockwood knows this tantalizing new little sub was meant to belong to him. However, Sophie wants more from Emery than just pleasure . . . she wants his past. And that is something he isn’t willing to give—no matter who is asking. But every moment he spends with Sophie, Emery feels his control slipping and he knows it’s only a matter of time before he surrenders to her heart, body, and soul.

Review – 3.25 stars

I won a copy of this, and book 2, a long time ago in a FB party. However the last few years I have seen me sign up for far too many arc books/teams, to the point that I wasn’t getting chance to read anything else. This year I’ve cut right back, and am determined that the majority of books will be ones I choose to read, rather than arc commitments.


So, on to what I thought of the book. Overall I enjoyed this, there were a few plot holes, a couple of continuity errors and this could never be considered BDSM in a month of Sundays, but it was still entertaining and good enough that I read it through to the end. This is a review that will probably focus on what stopped this being a 5 star read (and it had the right elements to get there) and will seem quite negative. So I will repeat again, this is between liked and really liked for me. It was a positive reading experience and I will continue with the series when time allows.


First of all, a very short spanking and set of cuffs does not a Dom make, I’ve read less vanilla sex scenes in pure contemporary romances. Emery was more of a Top than a Dom, the sheer fact that (quote) “He always gave her what she asked for” and he said “We’ll talk about this later. I want to know what’s upset you, but we’re running late”, said it all. The first quote makes me think of him more like a Daddy Dom, spoiling his Little sub something rotten. However no Dom worth his salt would EVER not want to know what was upsetting his sub immediately he was aware of her distress. I wish the author had not tried to go down the ‘kink’ road, the book would have worked so much better if he’s just been a man that liked to be more dominant/in control in the bedroom rather than keep saying he was a Dom but showing very little evidence.


The timeline is very short and left everything feeling far too “insta” for my tastes. However I went with the flow on it, especially given that I did feel the connection between Sophie and Emery. The chemistry between them allowed me to buy into them being swept away and indulging in unusual behaviour due to the tide of passion that they were caught up on. I’m not a huge fan of insta-love but strangely, despite my preference for a longer time line, I did buy into the depth of their feelings. It also helped that Sophie and Emery were both incredibly easy to like characters, not to mention that the plot was very interesting and easily held my attention.


Thankfully the majority of things that didn’t really work were so minor it didn’t throw me out of the story. For instance Sophie reminisces on how her heart was broken 5 years earlier, by a guy who didn’t respect her job as an investigative journalist. That would have made her 19, which seems very young for such a job – don’t most journalists need a degree first? At 24 she still barely had the life experience for the job, at 19 I’m sure she’d have just been making the coffee! There was a slight paranormal/sixth sense explanation for some of her work success, which personally I didn’t mind and, for me, it did strengthen the story line.


For someone as security paranoid as Emery, with a tech firm that had some amazing gadgets, somehow the bad guy managed to plant a bug in the property? He couldn’t get into the property to finish Emery off but he could get in to plant a bug? Hmmm, plot hole. There were also a couple of continuity type things – a soaking wet T-shirt being described as pyjama’s (though she had slept in them so perhaps in the US that term might be used), a set of leather cuffs morphing into gilded cuffs before being replaced with – yep – leather cuffs, and a reference to Sophie being 11 when her friend was abducted, when every other reference said 7.


However despite that I still liked this book. As a romantic suspense it does a good job, it wasn’t too far fetched or too predictable.


Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/Gilded-Cuff-Surrender-Book-ebook/dp/B00SMCO8GA

Ratings
5 stars – This is a book I will not forget and would definitely read again.


4 stars – I really enjoyed this book, I might not read it again but I would definitely recommend it to others.


3 stars – This story was good but either forgettable or just very typical of its genre.


2 stars – Whilst the book was readable I either didn’t enjoy parts of the plot or just could not connect to the main characters.


1 star – This is a book I simply could not finish for reasons listed in the review.