Hey lovely readers!
Today’s post is a book review of Raze by Tillie Cole, book #1 in the Scarred Souls series.
“One man stripped of his freedom, his morals…his life.
Conditioned in captivity to maim, to kill and to slaughter, prisoner 818 becomes an unremorseful, unrivaled and unstoppable fighter in the ring. Violence is all he knows. Death and brutality are the masters of his fate. After years of incarceration in an underground hell, only one thought occupies his mind: revenge…bloody, slow and violent revenge. Revenge on the man who lied. Revenge on the man who wronged him. Revenge on the man who condemned him and turned him into this: a rage-fueled killing machine. A monster void of humanity; a monster filled with hate. And no one will stand in the way of getting what he wants.
One woman stripped of her freedom, her morals…her life.
Kisa Volkova is the only daughter of Kirill ‘The Silencer’ Volkov, head of the infamous ‘Triad’ bosses of New York’s Russian Bratva. Her life is protected. In reality, it’s a virtual prison. Her father’s savage treatment of his rivals and his lucrative and coveted underground gambling ring—The Dungeon—ensures too many enemies lurk at their door. She dreams to be set free. Kisa has known only cruelty and loss in her short life. As manager of her father’s death match enterprise, only grief and pain fill her days. Her mafia boss father, in her world, rules absolute. And her fiancé, Alik Durov, is no better; the Dungeon’s five-time champion, a stone-cold killer, the treasured son of her father’s best friend, and her very own—and much resented—personal guard. Unrivaled in both strength and social standing, Alik controls every facet of Kisa’s life, dominates her every move; keeps her subdued and dead inside…then one night changes everything.”
I’m honestly stuck on where to begin with this one, because I didn’t love it. Yup I said that, me, Adrianna, did not love a romance book. And oh my goodness that was hard to type! I’m so used to loving these types of books, because romance is my fave, but this one? I just couldn’t love it.
Let’s start with Kisa. This poor woman is in a horribly abusive relationship with no way out. Everyone she loves either chooses to ignore what’s happening to her or they just don’t see it at all. The man she’s with is just the worst and some of the things he does to her actually made me queasy. I’ve been very open on my blog about the fact that I’m a survivor of both mental and physical abuse, mainly sexual. So I often appreciate books focusing on those topics, because they’re real, they happen, and they need to be talked about. But I felt this one was a bit too graphic for me. It definitely needed a trigger warning. Kisa is so strong and so courageous, but I found her difficult to connect with. I wish there had been a bit more development for her and Raze’s relationship.
As for Raze, I just didn’t really care for his character. What happens to him is absolutely horrific, but he actually kind of annoyed me. Just his one word sentences and random grunts. Nope, nope, nope. I do love how hard he tries to fit back in with the world. And my heart did break for him. But I just couldn’t get invested. I did like the Russian mafia part of the story. And I really liked the ending. Plus I love any book that includes a playlist. But I don’t think I’d re-read this one. If you like dark romances you’ll absolutely love this!
Thanks for reading guys! Talk to you soon! <3 Adrianna
*Cover and synopsis from Goodreads