Hey lovely readers!
Today’s post is a book review of Bane by L.J. Shen. Before I start there are a few things I need to say. First – this book was provided to me by Social Butterfly PR for review, all opinions are my own. Second – this book deals with rape and the scenes are a bit graphic. So if that’s a trigger for you. you may want to avoid this book. Third – I am a survivor of sexual abuse, so this review does get incredibly personal. Just wanted you all to be aware 🙂 Okay let’s get started.
“A COMPLETE standalone and a Sinners of Saint spin-off.
Naked surfer. Habitual pothead. A con, a liar, a thief and a fraud. Last I heard, he was extorting the rich and screwing their wives for a living. Which is why I’m more than a little surprised to find him at my threshold, looking for my friendship, my services, and most puzzling of all—looking humbled. Thing is, I’m on a boycott. Literally—I cut boys from my life. Permanently.
Problem is, Bane is not a boy, he is all man, and I’m falling, crashing, drowning in his sweet, perfect lies.
Hot as hell, cold as ice. I wasn’t aware of her existence until a fat, juicy deal landed in my lap. She’s a part of it, a little plaything to kill some time. She is collateral, a means to an end, and a side-bonus for striking a deal with her oil tycoon stepdad.
More than anything, Jesse Carter is a tough nut to crack. Little does she know, I have the teeth for it.”
I really loved this book guys. I’ve been waiting awhile for it and I honestly had no idea what to expect, but it certainly wasn’t this. A book that made me face my own demons again, a haunting tail with a female I could relate to in the most terrible way. But hell if I didn’t love it. It was truly beautiful and I applaud L.J. for giving dignity and grace to Jesse, to a situation that is so hard to depict in the right way.
Okay so are far as the characters go, they were both phenomenal. Bane is this beautiful soul wrapped in an asshole honestly, but I loved him. He is a true survivor and I just loved his quick wit and dirty mouth. His motives for pursuing Jesse are a bit crappy, but watching him fall in love with her is so worth all the shit that happens. It’s gradual and sudden all at once, beautiful in its honest simplicity. My heart aches for him and the life he’s led, but at the same time I found him completely irresistible. He’s so hot like OMG I need him in my life, his words, his actions, he has no shame and I love it. I also love the foundation he’s built for himself even if his side profession is less than ideal.
Now as for Jesse, this is where it gets personal guys. Jesse is the survivor of a pretty horrific gang rape and though that exact thing did not happen to me, I could relate to the sexual abuse aspect. and that just broke my heart. Reading the story from Jesse’s point of view was a little like reading my own thoughts and I can’t tell you how therapeutic that was. I have never cried so much over a book. Jesse is so beautifully strong. I understand why she has retreated into the shell of a person she starts out as in the book. I get why she never turned in her attackers, I get why she flinches when men get near her, I know because I’ve been her. So watching her rejoin the world, learn to trust, and fall in love was everything I wanted. And the use of Pushkin in this book just touched my souls, especially because the quote used is one of my all time favorites. I honestly think this book is now in my top 5 favorites of all time and that says so much.
Aside from the heavy this book has so many great elements: humor, romance, great sex scenes, a brooding sexy guy, a strong beautiful woman, drama, closure, and resolution. What I loved so much about these two is that while they both acknowledged they were broken, they did not treat each other like they were. Bane trusted Jesse to make her own choices with him. And Jesse always let Bane be himself. They never tried to change the other, they only tried to help them heal. It was like they breathed life back into the other without really meaning to. This honestly is the best New Adult romance I have read to date.
“My whole life has been pledged to this meeting with you…” ― Alexander Pushkin,
“Spoiler: The princess saves herself in this fairytale.” – L.J. Shen
Thanks for reading guys! Talk to you soon! <3 Adrianna
*Cover and synopsis from Goodreads