Book Review

#BookReview #TheSacrifice #KittyThomas

A dark captive arranged marriage romance

Kitty Thomas captured my attention from the very get-go, leaving me panting for more, desperate with the need and desire to know what would happen next. It’s not sweet, it’s not pretty but if you want a wonderful, distinctive and provocative story then you need to read this now.

I think I may have sacrificed a part of my soul reading this. It feels somewhat wrong to have enjoyed this depraved tale, though like Macy perhaps that is me bearing the pressure of society’s expectations.

Slow-burn, lethal and twisted, The Sacrifice got darker as this couple became more ensnared in one another. What began as an aberrant form of consensual non-consent, and was only that because it was the path Macy wanted to travel regardless of (lack of) choice, morphed into fulfilling her deepest, most secret, desires.

If you’re looking for romantic love with cheesy sappy ever afters you are best to step away right now. This is a much more believable ending for a man with no soul and a woman who needs to live in the shadow of his darkness. Macy and her Master are utterly perfect for one another, their unconventional relationship and unorthodox choices create a far stronger, truer bond than ‘mere’ love ever would have done.

I caught the bouquet at my best friend’s wedding. I wasn’t even dating anyone, so I was sure I wouldn’t be next.

Until someone from the past came back. We’d promised if neither of us were married by the time we were thirty we’d marry each other.

But then I’m taken captive by someone else and told I am the sacrifice, that I’m now property. A payment for a debt that has nothing to do with me.

Now I wish I could go back to that boring, safe life. Because this can’t possibly be my fairy tale.


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Soren crosses the room to me and sits in a chair near the bed. “I’m afraid we’re in a bit of a situation, and you’ve become the sacrifice.”

“Are you going to throw me into a volcano?” It’s meant to sound sarcastic and angry, but it comes out small and weak as though I think that might be what’s really about to happen here. And honestly I’m not sure because who talks like this? You’ve become the sacrifice? What sacrifice? And suddenly I’m back inside my fantasy again, except this time it’s a nightmare. 

This feels like some kind of punishment for fantasizing about my best friend’s husband.

He chuckles. “No, Macy. Though you’d be an appropriate candidate for a volcano god.”

My eyes widen at this remark. Does he know I’m a virgin? How could he possibly know that? That’s private. Would Livia have told him? She wouldn’t. Or is it just that obvious how innocent I am? He’s so perceptive he can probably smell the purity on me. I wonder what purity smells like. Gardenias? Crisp fresh sheets? A mountain spring?

Soren must read the betrayal on my face because he says, “Don’t worry, Livia didn’t tell me, but I know everything that happens in my home.”

I wonder briefly if he’s got the place wired up so he can spy on her, and once again I’m worried about my best friend’s safety and once again wanting to disconnect this guy’s balls from his body. Not only am I a sex fiend in my imaginary world, but quite violent as well.

I’m grateful the room is so dark because I don’t want him to see me blushing again. I wish I had the kind of skin that could conceal embarrassment instead of blooming out in bright pink for all the world to see.

“Why am I here?” I rattle the handcuff impatiently. I want to add and why am I naked? But I don’t want to draw attention to this vulnerability even though I know he knows about it because he’s probably the one who took my clothes off. 

I want to beg him to let me go, but I’m not quite there yet. I don’t want to be so pathetic so quickly—especially since it’s still hard for me to believe this has happened. And there’s a part of me still convinced he wouldn’t hurt me because of Livia even though I’m now not sure if he’d hurt Livia.

But wouldn’t he? Maybe he’s a secret serial killer. I saw a six-part series on TV about killers who lived normal lives and nobody suspected until they had a big body count and were in handcuffs in a courtroom with cold dead-eyed stares which nobody seemed to notice before that exact moment. Their wives all thought they were wonderful. 

After that I went down an internet rabbit trail about it and couldn’t sleep properly for a month. It also didn’t do my dating life any favors. On the one hand I was afraid I might date a serial killer, and on the other I was afraid I might be the girl who gets serial-killed while the clueless wife sits at home thinking he’s amazing. So maybe Soren is that kind of crazy.

He sighs. “As I said, you’re unfortunately the sacrifice. You see, I have a… what do you girls call it? A frenemy? Apparently some things I said caused some problems for him, and he believes I owe him. He’s threatened to tell the world the truth about my unconventional marriage. This would also spill out onto Dayne and Griffin. And of course it would affect Livia. So you are the sacrifice that stops all that unpleasantness and keeps all our stock prices up.”

He keeps saying that word: sacrifice. And I don’t quite know what it means, but I know it can’t be good.

KITTY THOMAS writes dark stories that play with power and have unconventional HEAs. She began publishing in early 2010 with her bestselling COMFORT FOOD and is considered one of the original authors of the dark romance subgenre.

To find out FIRST when a new book comes out, subscribe to Kitty’s New Release List: KITTYTHOMAS.COM

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Book Review

#BookReview #RomanticSuspense #UN-breakable

by S.K. Lessner

Dark? Well, the heroine is kidnapped to be trained as a sex slave but nearly all of this is off-page. She is also beaten in one scene so there is that to bear in mind, but the vast majority of the book didn’t have that sense of imminent danger, or of psychological trauma, or of non-consensual acts that make a book feel dark to me.

My personal description would be that this story is a gritty, romantic suspense similar to the more realistic mafia and M.C. romances on the market. There is a major focus on character and relationship development, so even though it didn’t give me the thrill of anxiety I get from a very dark book, I soon became captivated by this story. Gwen and Nick were likeable, believable individuals who captured my heart long with my attention. Whilst Nick is a man who does bad things, he has a good heart underneath it all and towards the end of the book, we learn just how he became tangled in this spider’s web of evil and corruption. In many ways he is just as much a victim as Gwen, both of them renewed and improved by the healing power of their love.

So, not a book I’d recommend as a dark read, but certainly one I’d recommend for the romance between the two protagonists.

Overall Rating

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Plot ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ 🤍
Characters ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
World Building ❤ ❤ ❤ 🤍 🤍
Writing ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
Heat Level 🔥 🔥 🔥

Contemporary Romance


Kidnapped, tortured, and now a slave, Gwen focused on ways to survive while she waited for an opportunity to escape. She’d planned on being in New York after graduating, starting a new life, and making her dreams come true. But all that was stolen from her one fateful night. With another scratch on the wall to signify the number of days, she knew her time was running out. She would either leave this place alive or die
She’d planned on being in New York after graduating, starting a new life, and making her dreams come true. But all that was stolen from her one fateful night. With another scratch on the wall to signify the number of days, she knew her time was running out. She would either leave this place alive or die trying.
Nick’s debt to an infamous drug lord had finally been paid off. He had plans to move away, start over, and live a peaceful life. But when he comes face to face with an imprisoned sex slave, everything changes. No longer concerned with his own welfare, Nick makes a deal with his boss that’ll change everyone’s life.

But will it be in time to save the girl?

Un-Breakable. The story of two tormented souls who find comfort and healing in one another only to have it ripped away once again.

Book Review

#BookReview #EroticRomance #JoeyWHill

Ice Queen / Demons
Nature of Desire #3 / #4
by Joey W. Hill

Ice Queen
This book has completely stolen my heart and I would not, could not put it down until I reached The End. The storytelling is so strong, the characters utterly captivating, the emotion soul-tearing. On reaching the last few pages, I felt as though I’d been caught up by a tsunami, tumbled around and tossed furiously by the raging waters, pummelled, battered and bruised by its deadly power. I can’t find adequate words to explain why exactly this spoke to my very soul in the way it did, all I can tell you is that when I got to the end and realised there was a part two to the story I one-clicked it immediately and without hesitation.

Some moments didn’t quite sit right with me, though somehow the author always led me eventually to a place of acceptance for them all. Tyler, a very respected and experienced Dom, ignored an agreed-upon rule, didn’t give Marguerite a way to safeword in one scene and relentlessly pushed someone who was unquestionably damaged. Each time I felt the author had let me down, had ignored the very tenets of SSC and RACK, sometimes he, but more often she (Marguerite) explained why that was the very thing needed at that moment.

A gripping story where I didn’t really ever want to like Tyler, I am #TeamMarguerite all the way. He needed to earn my approval, my trust, my regard and damn if his utter devotion to our Ice Queen Domme didn’t do just that. This is a substantial book, it had several detailed and well-described BDSM scenes to slake the thirst and fire the loins of any fellow smut lover. However, it also had a great plot and fantastic writing that took the book to another level. I really can’t recommend this one enough.

Mirror of my Soul
Having been utterly mesmerised by Marguerite and Tyler in Ice Queen I jumped straight into this book to finish their story. I loved Mirror of My Soul even more than Ice Queen, with its powerful storytelling and excellent character growth.

There were so many times the author eschewed the clichés other similar books fall into. I found myself surprised by the direction the story took on more than one occasion, the author kept her characters steady and honest in a way many others do not. My heart sang when Komal made it clear where her loyalties lay and she wasn’t immediately bowled over by Tyler. There were so many times the book danced to the beat of its own drum rather than brainlessly following the herd. That fearlessness by the author produced an amazing tale that I lived and breathed with the protagonists.

I was gladdened that Tyler accepted, explored and encouraged Marguerite’s Dominant side, that the author didn’t have this strong, independent woman become weak and simpering over a man. It made this story feel so much more realistic, so much more tenable and so much stronger as a result. Marguerite’s battles with her past, her fears and her ongoing issues held more than a ring of truth, again drawing me into the story and making me feel one with the characters.

The paranormal/”religious” aspect at the end was a little out of character with the rest of the book, but it wasn’t enough to dim my enjoyment of this wonderfully written story.

Overall Rating

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Plot ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
Characters ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
World Building ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
Writing ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
Heat Level 🔥 🔥 🔥 🔥

BDSM Romance


“Hill always brings you the beauty of the human heart, and I love her for it. She writes hope.”
They call her the Ice Queen. At the exclusive BDSM club known as The Zone, Mistress Marguerite is a legend. Tyler Winterman is her male counterpart, one of the club’s most powerful Masters. Though he respects the hell out of Dommes, he’s convinced Marguerite is a “switch,” her soul aching to submit to the right Master.
Uncovering the truth will strip their souls, revealing needs deeper than either expected. But Tyler will risk body and soul to give his troubled angel everything she needs.

Contemporary Erotic Romance


“…a heart wrenching look into the soul…mind blowingly awesome…”
Tyler has pushed past Marguerite’s shields, and now he faces the terrible secrets behind them. When the dangerous truth brings peril into their lives, Marguerite proves she possesses a terrifying courage that surpasses anything he’s ever witnessed.
However, her soul is far more fragile.To keep it from being shattered forever, she’ll need a Master whose strength and courage matches her own.

[Note: Mirror of My Soul is the Part Two conclusion of Tyler and Marguerite’s story, so Ice Queen is recommended as prior reading.]

Book Review

#BookReview #Contemporary Romance // Six Days by Dani Atkins

I truly wasn’t expecting to love this story as much as I did. Nor did I expect it to become one of the few books I have read in one sitting, especially as it had extended flashback scenes woven throughout. I tend to get antsy during chapters set in the past, but that’s just me wanting to find out what is happening in the now – I’m just too impatient 😂. Those scenes proved to be utterly necessary, allowing us to witness the development of Gemma and Finn’s relationship, as well as their character growth. There was even a point in the book where I very much disliked Finn but all of it, all of it, is relevant to the plot and leads us to a point where eventually everything makes sense.

I loved how during the story the author made our perspective of Finn mirror Gemma’s mindset. The story launches with Finn never arriving at the church, for his wedding with Gemma. As an outside observer who doesn’t yet know their story, we jump to the same conclusion as her friends, family and other guests… Finn has deliberately disappeared. Gemma is sure something has happened and as we get to know Finn, via the flashbacks, we get to see a kind man who clearly adores Gemma. As the days progress more worrying evidence comes to light, raising questions as to exactly where Finn has gone.

Six Days packs a very powerful emotional punch, from moments that make your heart ache with their promise of love forever to other scenes that make your heart break from hurt and despair. Whilst the ending was a little fantastical it brought a sense of completion, hope and total happiness.

Overall Rating

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Plot ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ 🤍
Characters ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
World Building ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
Writing ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ 🤍
Heat Level 🔥 🔥

Contemporary Romance/ Romantic Suspense


Two people. One love story. Six days.
He loves me… He loves me not… He loves me…

Gemma knows that she and Finn are destined to be together. They are soulmates. But then, on their wedding day, he never arrives at the church.
Gemma is convinced Finn wouldn’t abandon her like this, even though he has disappeared once before. But back then he had a reason. She feels sure something terrible has happened, but no one else is convinced. Even the police aren’t concerned, telling Gemma most people who disappear usually turn up in a week… assuming they want to be found, that is.
For the next six days Gemma frantically searches for Finn, even though every shocking revelation is telling her to give up on him. Before long, even she begins to doubt her own memories of their love.

How long can she hold on to her faith in Finn if everyone is telling her to let him go?

Book Review

#BookReview #DarkRomance // Lethal Retaliation by C.P. Mandara

Lethal Retaliation
Twisted, Dark and Deadly #5
by C.P. Mandara

Oh my word Ms Mandara you have done it again – and on so many levels, lol! This book ricocheted me between sniggering at the dreadful puns and humour to feeling all hot and bothered at the very, very, VERY, NSFW happenings. Thrown into that mix was yet another edge of the seat cliff-hanger and I’m not sure whether to hug the author or hit her.

This book is high-octane, fast-paced, furiously filthy and utterly mesmerising. I was addicted to it from the very first page and I didn’t even really care that the plot didn’t move forward all that much. A good half of this book must either be Adie and Mel arguing or – what’s a polite expression I can use that won’t bother Amazon? – scenes of them of a more *ahem* personal nature 😉. Yet it never once got boring, tired or repetitive.

Adie, if you’ve never met him, is a super hot, super-naughty, very Spanish version of James Bond. If James Bond was also from a criminal family and didn’t have any morals whatsoever. He is conceited, arrogant and entitled but also incredibly sexy and I personally love him. Mel is the ultimate badass heroine, she never gives up or gives in – well not unless orgasms are involved – not even when the odds are stacked heavily against her. Adie certainly doesn’t deserve Mel – but I’m sure he will at some point.

Without giving away spoilers some events are very dubious in consent. They not only cross the line but trample all over it after having first jumped up and down, then scuffed it a bit lot, before kicking huge divots out of it too. Despite this, and probably because of Adie’s unacknowledged affections AND the fact that Mel is tough enough not to be genuinely at risk, not to mention she rather enjoys his attentions, the book didn’t push my boundaries too much.

My only problem now is how on earth I will cope until the author releases the next book!

Overall Rating

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Plot ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤🤍
Characters ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
World Building ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤🤍
Writing ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
Heat Level 🔥 🔥 🔥 🔥 🔥

Romantic Suspense


Melinda Leader is in BIG trouble. There have been a lot of ladies who’ve tried to manhandle my balls in the past, but none who have actually tried to cut them off. I don’t think many blokes would be amused, and most would probably retaliate by putting a bullet in her brain. There’s just one problem. I can’t. I promised Lois I wouldn’t. Now I’ve got to make this problem go away. How in hell do I do that? Marriage. The first suspect is nearly always the wife, right?

I need to find Adrien and finish what I started. This time I’ll settle for a quick kill, or at least, I tell myself I will. Unfortunately, the man is proving almost impossible to find. I thought this would be over in a week, but when Adrien wants to lie low, he virtually disappears. Thankfully, James helps out and lets me in on a little secret. The price of this information is high, though. I’m not allowed to kill him. Hmm. There are worse things than death.