|ALL ROMANCE | RIPTIDE|
Heat: N/A - Very dark subject matter.
*This is a serial series, part one of six installments. Part two releases in November!
This story contains explicit violence, forced incest, and non-consent.
I knew, from the synopsis, that this is considered a pyschosexual thriller... and I knew, since my review partner Paula read it before me, that it was going to be a white-knuckle read... but, oh my god, this was one helluva mindfuck. Mind... fuck.
It is written so honestly, almost frenetic in its flow, that it engages all your senses. I'd say my heart raced, but it felt more like it slowed down. Like it was afraid to beat because then I'd really have to feel. Because you’re pretty much forced to feel what Mat and Dougie are feeling. Not the least of which is overwhelmed, disgusted, distraught, pissed off, and... scared.
Because the authors, they don't mince words and they don't hold back. The details, they are horrendous. They turn your stomach. And this is just the beginning! I’m almost afraid to find out what happens next. I’d say it can’t get much worse... but I really think it can. And will.
The thing that makes it all bearable, that drove me to keep reading, is the brothers themselves. Their bond and commitment to one another. Their love. It’s powerful stuff. And, in this extreme situation that would send most people into an ‘every man for himself’ mind set—Mat and Dougie are more concerned for each other.
Mat is the fighter of the two. For him there is no flight option, there is only fight. Mat is combative and unthinking, his every response is instinctual. Almost like a mother’s blind rage while protecting her cub. And he definitely sees his younger brother as his cub. Mat will do anything to protect Dougie.
Dougie is more intellectual. He isn’t weak by any means, but he is malleable. And, in order to survive, he decides to try the path of least resistance. Attempts to pacify his captors. At times he seems like he could be a strong candidate for Stockholm’s syndrome, but I believe he is too smart for that. And, in his own way, he is also doing anything to protect Mat.
I know it’s only going to get harder for Mat and Dougie, and their character will be tested over and over, but... at least they have each other. Hopefully that’s enough.
Since I’ve been sitting here, thinking about this story, I swear my body’s reaction might have gotten worse now that the initial shock has gone. I have a terrible churning in my gut... and I kind of want to cry. Or hug my husband and my furry baby.
The Flesh Cartel is definitely not for the squeamish or for those easily offended by dark and, yes, vile subject matter. This story isn’t pretty. Or romantic. But it is gripping and terrifying and... forceful. The author’s basically have me by the throat, compelling me to keep reading. And I will.
Thoughts While Reading:
0.0% - "Nervous & anxious to start this tonight!"
58.0% - "Oh, god. *gag*"
100.0% - "My stomach hurts now..."
Paula’s Review: Click here for another take on The Flesh Cartel #1: Capture!