Top critical review
Extremely disturbing....just couldn't finish it.
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on April 12, 2019
I can enjoy a good bdsm romance even the dark ones, but this one is just too much. First, The h was abused physically, sexually and emotionally as a child...used to make kiddie porn since before she was six. She was rescued at the age of 13 and grew up in foster care. After several years of psychological therapy she's managed to put her life together, though she still has some triggers. This is where the story starts, when she's in her 20's and she meets the h, who just happens to be a Dom. (Hard to believe that someone with her history would enjoy rough sex and even some pain, but..that's not what was so disturbing about this story.
What was disturbing is that you're not just told about her past (simlilar to how I explained it above) so you know her history ... no it's spoon fed to you in her nightmares. Her nightmares are described in detail as if it is happening in the moment only for her to awaken so you realize it was a nightmare. As such, you live her past like you live the story in the present time. And with each nightmare, each reveal of her past is more horrendous.
And still I kept reading because the story in the present was good. I was interested in seeing her progress in a relationship for the first time in her life, learning to trust someone finally and feeling safe. I loved how patient the H was with her, knowing she was abused, but never pushing her to give details until she's ready; always making sure she's okay with anything they do sexually before he proceeds, ready to stop when she says.
The H's half sister and best friend, who didn't like her, would have provided enough protagonists for this story, but Nooooo ... That wasn't enough for this author...not enough shock factor. No, instead, at 27% into the story, you discover that the H's admin assistant, a male who has supposedly had a crush on the h (who also works there), is a sicko who watched and bought kiddie porn (of her) since he was 12 and became obsessed with her and has broken into her apartment with a gun and one of the old videos when she wax six and talks to her like they did in the video ("naughty little girls get punished", etc., ) and expects her to watch it with him and answer his questions. It was bad enough she/we had to relive it in her nightmares, but this.....? To bring it all back and make her relive it not, just in nightmares, but reality ... It's to much! Hard enough to believe that anyone who suffered the 13 yrs she had could be anything but broken already, but add this....?
It was too much and I just couldn't read any more... don't know if I can ever finish this book. I'm torn between wanting to know (hoping) the H or someone comes in to stop it before anything happens and being relieved; and fearing that it's not stopped and goes to it's inevitable conclusion (the sicko re-enacts the movie) in which case I'll end up even more disturbed and angry than I am right now. The only way to know either is continue reading and either be relieved (it's stopped) or extremely disturbed and angry (it's not stopped). Or I don't read and remain just mildly disturbed.
Maybe eventually, I'll just skip ahead a couple of pages to see, but for now, think I'll just read another good story to get rid of this disturbing awful taste! I'll let you know if I change my mind.