Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Dirty Angels (Dirty Angels #1) by Karina Halle

Publication: June 15, 2014

Publisher: Metal Blonde Books

Source:  Bought

From the USA Today Bestselling author of Love, in English and The Artists Trilogy, comes a dark romance about a good girl and a very, very bad man. It’s a deliciously twisted take on forbidden love, set among the drug cartels of hot, steamy Mexico and is not for the faint of heart. It contains explicit sex, violence, abuse, drug use, bad language and sexy Mexicans. You have been warned…

For Luisa Chavez, a twenty-three year old former beauty queen, a better life has always been just out of her reach. Sure, she’s had men at her feet since she was a young teenager but she’s never had the one thing she’s craved – security. Having grown up in near poverty, her waitressing job in Cabo San Lucas can barely let her take care of herself, let alone her ailing parents. Every day is another unwanted advance, every day is a struggle to survive.

When Salvador Reyes, the depraved leader of a major Mexican cartel, takes an interest in her, Luisa is presented with an opportunity she can’t afford to pass up. She’ll become Salvador’s wife and exchange her freedom and body for a life of riches – riches she can bestow upon her deserving parents. But Luisa quickly finds out that even the finest wines and jewels can’t undo the ugliness in her marriage, nor the never-ending violence that threatens her every move.

Soon, Luisa is looking for an escape, a way out of the carefully controlled life she’s leading. She finally gets her wish in the worst way possible.

As it is, being the wife of Salvador makes her an ideal target for rival cartels and there’s one particular man who needs Luisa as part of his cartel’s expansion. One particular man whose quest for power has destroyed lives, slit throats and gotten him out of an American   prison. One particular man who will stop at nothing until he gets what he wants.

That man is Javier Bernal. And he wants Luisa. He wants to take her, keep her, ruin her.

Unless she ruins him first.

Some men were born to create empires, some women were meant to be queen.

**Dirty Angels is the first standalone novel in the Dirty Angels Trilogy, in which all books feature or involve different characters. The character of Javier Bernal is from The Artists Trilogy, and while reading TAT is recommended if you want additional insight into this twisted character, it is not required.**

This story is not one of those sugary sweet romances. It is dark and gritty. It's not afraid to grab you by the shoulders and refuse to let go. And I loved every single minute of it.

“It was better to be dirty. It was better to take what you could. It was better to embrace your lustful, needful, animalistic side because that was the side that lived.”

So what did I not like? Pretty much nothing. Well nothing except that Luisa's selflessness was a little frustrating at times. I agree with Javier when he said no one likes a martyr. But she's a strong and very tough woman. Javier is one bad-ass dude.

Separately these two are fine. But together...together they are one great team. She is the ying to his yang. I could not see either one of them with anyone else. Their relationship began under abnormal circumstances, but their feelings for each other turned into something intoxicating and addictive.

This is the first book I've read by Karina Halle, but it for sure will not be the last. This is a darker read than I am normally used to, but one I am glad I took a chance on. It was one of those reads that when I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about. It's dark, disturbing, yet beautiful.  Like I said earlier, I loved it.

RATING: 5 out of 5.


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