Title: Black Sheep
Author: Zara Cox
Series: Dark Desires
Release Date: 03-14-2017
Genre(s): Erotica, Dark Erotic Romance
Page Count: 320
Heat Level: 5 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
In a family of cold-hearted black sheep,
I, Axel Rutherford, am the blackest.
My father has hated me since the day I was born. The feeling was mutual. In the shady underworld that was my legacy, Cleo McCarthy became my light. She was beautiful, passionate, and my whole world. So naturally my father had to destroy us. First he sent me away. Next he claimed Cleo as his own. But now I’ve returned, and nothing will stop me from taking back everything that is rightfully mine.
He was the love of my life – when my life was still my own.
We were young enough to believe we would last forever, Axel and I. But neither of us realized how cruel life – and our families – could be. Now I’m trapped in a gilded cage: desired by Axel, who must never know the full truth, and controlled by his father, who would sooner see me dead than free. And I wouldn’t even care, except that it’s no longer only my life at stake.
Because what’s the point of having a black soul, of making choices that leave your hands permanently soiled in evil, if you don’t fucking own it?
This novel is all about temptation and obsession. Add in a little mafia and danger, and this was one intense read!
Axel Rutherford calls himself the Black Sheep of his family. He’s no longer willing to play his father’s power games. So, when his father tries to use Axel’s past to bring him to heel, his father has another think coming. Axel’s end goal is in sight, and he’s ready to take what’s his.
Cleo McCarthy is knee deep in the Rutherford family. The last thing she wants is Axel in her life again, but she doesn’t have much choice. The pawn in their family dynamics, Cleo finds herself captive to the man who broke her heart and her trust. But what if there’s something she doesn’t know? And will it change anything if there is?
She never needed a gentle knight in shining armor. So I become her marauder.
Dang, was this romance a dark mass of gray areas. I mean that in the best possible way! Axel holds a billion dollar empire of nightclubs. As such, he’s very self-possessed, but he’s mysterious and secretive. He also believes he deserves punishment. It’s all a devastating combination that captured and kept my attention. Axel has layer upon layer upon layer. Heck, even his layers have layers! I was turning the pages much too quickly. I wanted to know what makes this man tick.
But his one weakness? Our lovely, but haunted Cleo. Axel hates her, but he’s drawn to her nonetheless. His whole family is steeped in addiction of all kinds, but Axel’s poison is his rampant obsession with Cleo. He straddles the line of being too far gone, but that’s what makes this such an intriguing read. How far is too far?
Cleo finds herself as the trophy, the tug in the tug of war between father and son. This girl isn’t weak; she’s been bred not to be. I admired her strength because dang if these men haven’t tried their best to break her. She has as many secrets as Axel, and there’s so much pain in her feelings for him. And yet, Cleo just can’t stay away. Her soft heart simply won’t allow it. I loved seeing her challenge Axel.
The sex is often and burning hot, I’m pleased to say. It did become rather repetitive, and I ended up skimming over some. Black Sheep has such a dangerous bent, however, and with the imminent collision between Axel and Cleo, I was drawn in again and again.
This was a super quick read for me! The chemistry is crazy hot, the characters are damaged but redeemable, and the plot twists and turns until the last page. A good, escapist novel.