Series: Pure Corruption #1
Published by Hachette Book Group on July 7th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
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"We met in a nightmare. The in-between world where time had no power over reason. We fell in love. We fell hard. But then we woke up. And it was over . . ."
RUIN & RULE
She is a woman divided. Her past, present, and future are as twisted as the lies she's lived for the past eight years. Desperate to get the truth, she must turn to the one man who may also be her greatest enemy . . .
He is the president of Pure Corruption MC. A heartless biker and retribution-deliverer. He accepts no rules, obeys no one, and lives only to reap revenge on those who wronged him. And now he has stolen her, body and soul.
Can a woman plagued by mystery fall in love with the man who refuses to face the truth? And can a man drenched in darkness forgo his quest for vengeance-and finally find redemption?
Warning – There will be spoilers in this review.
I guess I’m a little confused by this book and all the love it receives. I mean, are we really supposed to root for this couple? They meet, or re-meet, technically, when Arthur Killian’s motorcycle club kidnaps Cleo/Sarah and five other women in order to sell them as sex slaves. They do sell all six of the women, though Cleo/Sarah’s sale is canceled at the last second when Arthur finally realizes that she is who she’s been saying she is and not the lying whore he’s been accusing her of being. The sale was going forward until the buyer had her stripped down so he could inspect her and Arthur saw something in her tattoo that finally convinced him. If that hadn’t happened, the sale would have gone through.
I kept reading, thinking we were going to find out that Arthur is actually an undercover agent of some kind and the women weren’t really sold, but that’s not the case. He’s not an undercover agent, he’s just a piece of shit who had a group of women kidnapped and sold them into sex slavery. By the time he finally deigns to believe Cleo/Sarah, he’s already slapped her in the face and kicked her in the ribs while she was down on the ground. I mean, really – is this a couple we’re supposed to root for? Any time Cleo/Sarah commented on the women he sold, Arthur would make vague comments about “It’s not what you think” and “You don’t understand”, which is partially what made me think there was more to the story. But, no. There wasn’t. All he meant was that the women deserved to be kidnapped and sold into sex slavery because they were sleeping with the leader of a rival motorcycle gang. Cleo/Sarah wonders (internally, not aloud) when having bad taste in lovers became a crime punishable by sexual slavery. Which is about the least I’d have to say about this situation and it wouldn’t be internally, either.
Cleo/Sarah is constantly apologizing for her amnesia, as though that’s a thing to apologize for, and accepting Arthur’s apologies for almost selling her. Really? “Sorry I almost sold you into sex slavery” and all is forgiven? I’m supposed to root for a couple consisting of a man who sells women into slavery and woman who’s okay with it? This book ends on a cliffhanger, but I don’t think I can bring myself to read the sequel.
I will say that I would read something else by Pepper Winters. I really liked her writing style, and I don’t mind darker romances, but I can say that asking me to root for a human trafficker is just a step too far.