Blog Tour, Review & #Giveaway: ✩Flawed✩ by @FrancettePhal

Title: Flawed
Series: The Butcher (bk 1)
Author: Francette Phal
Genre: Dark, Erotica

Blood.

That’s the only memory he carries from a childhood he does not remember. And now it is all he knows. Blood is his life.

Knox Bishop has done a lot of horrible things, all at the command of the man who holds his leash. It’s a matter of loyalty for him. Allegiance to the man who saved his life when he was a child. So he goes where he is needed and does what he is told. He tortures. He kills. He kills. He tortures. It is an unrelenting cycle that he constantly craves and can never quite satisfy.

Until her.

Eighteen year old Lacey Barnes distributes her assets to fund her dreams. Medical school is the end game and she is determined to get there by any means necessary. But a family member’s careless mistake derails her plans and now she must pay a price in order to save him.

She goes to Knox willingly offering him the only valuable thing she has. Herself. In doing so he allows her into his world, a world filled with darkness but rather than being scared it intrigues her. It lures her, calls to something in her that she hadn’t known existed until he awakened it.

Every bit of his flaws is reflected in her and Knox will do anything to keep her in the darkness with him.

Knox

I’m not what you would call normal. The word has no meaning to me. But I’ve been pretending to act normal. It’s something I’ve been practicing since I’ve been aware of the thrum and its significance in my life. I was seven when I first heard the lullaby. Second grade, just before recess. It happened in a squall. Nothing and then all at once. I remember everything about that day. The bell rang and the other children went to play. Not me. Never me. I always stayed behind, mostly by choice, but never contested because the other children thought I was weird. I think maybe they unconsciously knew that I was lacking something fundamental. Something they all had and I didn’t, and maybe even never had at all. Whatever it was, I was alienated, excluded from their games. But I couldn’t say it bothered me. I was indifferent to it. Katia would sometimes play with me. Yuri’s youngest daughter, my adoptive sister, kept me company when she wasn’t with her own friends. But she’d been home sick that day.

In the small classroom with its oversized, rainbow-colored letters hanging over the chalkboard and tiled number blocks littering the carpeted floor, I sat in the beanbag chair staring fixatedly at the class pet. Sweet Ms. Devon always stayed with me but she’d left for a moment. A moment to heat her lunch. A moment to speak to a fellow staff member in the teachers’ lounge. But it’d been a moment too long for me. The noise in my head had been too loud. The urge too strong. The pink-eyed little rabbit, Mr. Apples, and the yellow pair of scissors sitting blades down in Ms. Devon’s “Best Teacher” mug had been too much of a temptation for me to resist.

The pounding of my heart. The lullaby and the thrum. The latch had given way beneath my shaking fingers, soaked with apprehension and anticipation. The struggle. The frantic movement of something living, something warm, with the same accelerated heartbeat as mine grappling for life. Desperate for freedom even while knowing the inevitable hand of death loomed was intoxicating. The thrill, the excitement, the sweet seductive power. I swam in it. Like too much candy on Halloween. Too much ice cream in the summer. It had been a quick death for Mr. Apples. It had been crude. Amateurish. But ever so effective in quieting the discord of my mind.

Poor, sweet Ms. Devon came to find me on the floor of the overly-bright classroom. Huddled on the floor, covered in Mr. Apples. She’d been one to smile a lot. But I stole her smile that day and replaced it with horror instead. Her pretty features contorted like a Kabuki mask.

4.5 I Want My Mama Now Stars

Have you ever looked at something so beautiful, so utterly alluring that you just wanted to destroy it? That’s what you are to me. You are this beautiful thing I want to destroy.

Do you like dark romance that have a redeemable hero that slowly succumbs to his inevitable love for the heroine? Perhaps an anti-hero that has what you’d like to think is a semblance of a conscience? Well fuck that and your delicate sensibilities! Because you sure as fuck won’t find it here!

I’m serious. This book is like the love child that would result if Seduced In The Dark and Dexter ever had wild monkey sex and then had a baby that was seriously fucked in the head. Holy mother this was all sorts of fucked up. It was also Francette Phal’s best book to date. If you’re like me and have read every other book that this author has written, then you know she leans towards the super angsty, a little gritty, a lot dark, and seriously fucked up stories. Well, this is her most dark and fucked up yet.

If you’re looking for an anti-hero that is unapologetically flawed (pun intended), meet Knox. A serial killer, a cold and brutal borderline sociopath. This is not a man that will make your happy place tingle. This is a man that will have you quivering in fear and questioning your sanity because you find yourself liking it…and then finding that your happy place tingles. (Just don’t expect that till pretty much the very end of the book)

Lacey is a product of her circumstances. A high school senior who has all the skills to get into the best universities…if only she wasn’t constantly taking care of her junky mother and a brother that she’s constantly bailing out of trouble.

I know I am the constant in this never ending cycle of fuckery. I don’t know who I killed in my past life, but it seems I’m paying for it in this one.

Your heart will break for this girl and everything that she goes through. The author spares no gritty or painful detail when it comes to what she deals with on a daily basis.

But then her life takes an unimaginable turn when she meets him.

If you’re looking for a book that is dark but has this undercurrent of a budding romance, this is NOT that. Not at all. At least not yet. There is nothing soft or even redeeming about Knox in this book. He is a cold and ruthless bastard. There are scenes of borderline non-consent. There are also scenes of extremely graphic violence. Knox doesn’t look at the Lacey and all of a sudden become a different person. Fuck no! He’s just as cold and ruthless with her…

I will treat you like a favorite toy and break you simply because I can. In this room, you are an object, my object. You have no voice. You have no opinion. Your wants, your needs, are inconsequential to the pleasure that I will reap from your pain.

Yeah. Exactly.

This book takes you deep into the underbelly of a Boston crime family. It’s depraved, and dark, and violent. It spares no details and makes no excuses. There’s murder, rape, human trafficking, and then there’s the beautiful faces with the ruthless hearts that run it all. It’s fucked up is what I’m trying to tell you here. Don’t expect any moments of light or any dose of happy.

It’s a truth you will never say aloud. A want you will never admit to, even to yourself, but i can see your sweet, dark truth. I can smell how badly you want to be controlled. And rest assured, Lacey, there will only ever be one man who pulls your leash. Me.

Through all this the author manages to build an inexplicable connection between a predator and his prey. This truly goes to show you Francette’s talent as a writer because as depraved as it was, you’ll believe it, you’ll actually find yourself rooting for this couple at the end and yet you won’t have the slightest idea why.

He seduces me with his words, lays a path of pleasure-laced agony for me to follow and I do. Stupidly, I follow him down the blinding darkness of this euphoric hell. Shame can’t touch the girl he wants me to be, the girl who needs his absolutely mastery.

I can honestly tell you that this is one of the darkest books I’ve read to date. When I finished it I wanted a hug, a shot, and my mama…maybe not in that exact order. I can also tell you that it was a book I couldn’t put down for even a second. If the second book was already out, I’d be diving straight into it because it was THAT good.

Notice that I barely gave you any details about the plot? That’s because it’s best that way. Trust me when I say you don’t want to read any reviews before reading this one because you’ll just ruin the entire effect. You want to experience it along with the characters; the surprises, the secrets, the revelations, everything.

This is part 1 of a 2 book series and it does end with a cliffy. A big one in my opinion. A cliffy so bad that I’m practically foaming at the mouth for the next book. But I recommend you read this right away anyway, if anything just to experience the crazy along with me. As a matter of fact I’m still trying to find my sanity after finishing this and loving it as much as I did.


Francette lives in Massachusetts with her amazingly supportive husband of ten years and her darling two year old son. Reading amazing books has led her to writing and she’s dabbled in fan-fiction before self-publishing her own works. She’s constantly thinking up new stories to write and does her best work when music is playing in the background. Romance is where she’s most comfortable but she hopes to one day venture in mystery novels. She has a weakness for coffee ice cream, tropical fruits and a good glass of wine.

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