Talk about a dark and delicious ride! I’ve been meaning to check out this author’s work for a while now and this was the perfect place to start. The first half of a duet (ending in one major CLIFFHANGER), it’s intense and sexy with a storyline that’s complex and interesting. Atlas is no one’s hero but he’s got a side to him that will draw you in, making it easy to forget that he’s the same man who kidnapped (and contemplated murdering) our heroine at the start. These two opposites definitely attract, and it’s a wild journey from start to finish. With an unpredictable storyline and compelling characters, you’ll be hooked on this dark romance.
The story follows Thea, a woman who is kidnapped and forced to pay off her sister’s debt. She comes to an agreement with her captor, Atlas, who assigns her tasks to work off the debt. As the two begin spending time together, Thea is both drawn to and repulsed by Atlas, while he is fascinated with this good girl. She’s nothing like he expected; meek one minute then temperamental the next. Neither one wants to want the other, but that’s not how things work so it’s a tension-filled dance from foes to allies.
I’ve heard great things about this author’s writing but I’ll admit to being hesitant to read such a dark romance. While I do enjoy a complicated read, there are lines that I don’t like crossed, so I was pleased that the author didn’t hit on anything that was a dealbreaker for me. Yes, Atlas is a twisted killer who runs drugs and deals in women, but he’s also strangely appealing. He’s mean but not cruel and obviously comes to care for Thea more than he’d like. It’s the kind of storyline where you’ll need to suspend reality a little bit, but the writing is engrossing so it’s easy to get pulled in. I devoured this in one sitting and cannot wait for the second half, even if there were a few fumbles in the last act that hold me back from calling this a 5-star read. I’m wholly invested in seeing where the relationship goes next, how these two could possibly find a happy ever after, and if Atlas has any more goodness buried beneath his dark exterior. I received an ARC via Wildfire Marketing and am voluntarily leaving a review of this twisted romance.
He kidnapped me. That was how I met Atlas Hyde. A man known by many names and admired by all. But most didn’t know he was ruthless, conniving, and always got what he wanted. No matter the cost. I was a good girl.
Never in trouble with the law.
Never took drugs. Always did precisely what was expected of me. Even with his hand around my throat and words that cut sharper than knives, I couldn’t help but wonder what happened to this beautiful man to make him that way. That wonder disappeared when he threatened to kill my sister if I didn’t follow his dark demands. The good girl I once knew had now been buried alive beneath this game of hatred and lust. And I had a feeling Atlas Hyde never lost.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
USA Today Best Selling Author T.L. Smith loves to write her characters with flaws so beautiful and dark you can’t turn away. Her books have been translated into several languages. If you don’t catch up with her in her home state of Queensland, Australia you can usually find her travelling the world, either sitting on a beach in Bali or exploring Alcatraz in San Francisco or walking the streets of New York.
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