Review: Blood To Dust by L.J. Shen

blood to dust-reviewBLOOD TO DUST
Genre: Dark Romance
Author: L.J. Shen
Release Date: July 17, 2016add-to-goodreads-button-2

blood to dust
His name is Beat, and I should hate him.

Bound, blindfolded and bruised, I’m tied in his basement, waiting for the men who stripped me from clothes and humanity to collect his debt to them. Me.

His name is Nate and I should hate him, but I don’t.

I’m not supposed to know his real name, even worse, I’m not supposed to care. He is nothing to me but means to an end. The plan is simple: break free, collect the pieces of my broken soul, kill the bastards and run away.

His name is Nathaniel Thomas Vela, and I’ve never seen his face, though I hear that it’s beautiful.

Behind the rugged and handsome exterior, there’s a quiet murderer, a killer who thinks guns are for pussies and ends people with his bare hands.

His name doesn’t matter, neither does his face, but what does matter is my heart. And right now, sadly, it’s his.

Blood to Dust is a standalone, full-length novel. It contains graphic violence and adult situations some may find offensive.

Buy LinksAMAZONReview-DGR4.5 starsBlood To Dust-DGR teaser

I look like the perfect victim. Scared. Beautiful. Innocent…Though, I’m anything but the latter.

Well slap my ass and call me Sally, what in the ever hell did I just read?
This.
Book.
Was.
Brilliant!

OK. OK. Allow me to get my thoughts together here
*deep breath*
*another deep breath*

Holy hell, people!

I already knew after reading Sparrow that L.J. Shen was a talented author, but after reading this book? She blew everything I thought I knew away! The woman is a genius. Everything, from the characters, the writing style, the chapter formation, the story, all of it I can describe in two words; brilliantly intense.

I’m picky with my dark romance. Some of it has become entirely formulaic for me; bad guy meets somewhat naive girl, some mundane detail, plot twist for shock value, and BAM! HEA! This book? This book was nothing like that. Not even close. It was unpredictable, violent, brutal, dark and twisted. You won’t have a book hangover after, you’ll have PTSD and you’ll love every depraved moment of it!

She’s hurt and broken in her own, fancy-ass country club way. And I’m hurt and broken in my own, broke-ass ghetto way.

Any other woman that finds herself bloodied, tied and locked in a dark basement waiting on certain death at the hands of men intent on collecting their debt from her, may be shaken. But not Prescott. Every minute in her captivity is another minute for her to plot and scheme and plan her escape. Because she will escape. Even if she has to use her unwilling captor to do it…

She’s going to ruin me…and I’m going to let her.

Beat is a nameless, faceless man in a mask. He’s a man that owes a debt himself. He’s the man with a price on his head and his own survival as his main concern. A prissy little princess tied up in his basement for some unknown debt of her own shouldn’t concern him. Yet there’s something about her that calls to his primal side and tempts his inner beast…

She’s aiming straight for my fucking heart, this chick. Shot after shot in the dark.
And sooner or later, I know, even in the pitch black, she’s going to hit her target.”

Blood To Dust-DGRThe story packs a hell of a one two punch. It’s deliciously dirty and anxiety inducing gritty. The characters are incredibly well developed, multi-layered, and impossible not to like. Prescott was one kick-ass chick. She’s a survivor and she never stops fighting. She maintains an almost morbid sense of humor even during the most dire of times which gives her this incredibly endearing quality.

As for Nate Vela aka “Beat”? Oh man. Man oh man. I loved him! I loved his inner struggle in protecting himself or doing the right thing. I loved his inner struggle in his attraction to Prescott. There was so much depth to him that you can’t help but connect with right away.

The chemistry between the two of them was deliciously depraved. This is no cookie cutter romance. Nate Vela is one vile, dirty, dirty man and I loved him for it. Both of them are survivors in their own right, and together they’re a force to be reckoned with. It was perfectly balanced with two incredibly strong characters and for this reader it was perfection! There’s nothing better for me than a heroine that can save herself, and Prescott was no damsel in distress.

There were parts of it that I spent laughing. There were parts of it I spent with a knot in my stomach and hands shaking. It was unlike anything I’ve read and I loved every twisted part of it!

I love her like a slave, I kneel in front of her like a subject, I crawl back to her at night like a drunk and I worship her like a believer. She’s my truth, my lie, my storm and my peace.

There was one particular detail at the end that confused me a little because I don’t remember it being explained. It could have been something I overlooked, but after re-reading the part several times, I’m still not sure. I’m not expecting everything wrapped in a pretty little bow, but given the detail was a pivotal one that set the plot in motion, I suppose I just wanted slightly more explanation on it. But that’s just one minor quibble in what was a truly amazing book, so I really can’t bother myself to complain about it much. If you’re looking for a dark read with strong characters and an unpredictable plot, READ THIS BOOK.

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