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Seduction: Devil’s Den # 2 by Violetta Rand with Excerpt

Welcome to my stop for Seduction, book 2 in the Devil’s Den Contemporary New Adult Erotic Romance from Violetta Rand.  Please be sure to check out the other tour stops, and don’t forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway where you could win a $25 eGift Card of Winner’s Choice Bookseller, Loveswept Mug and Nail Polish

Seduction

The second book in the Devil’s Den series is focusing on Robyn’s sister Marisela.  In this story, Violetta Rand makes some interesting choices for her characters as we continue this New Adult romance series.

Marisela is running from an abusive ex, Esteban. While not graphic in the details of that less than savory relationship, Rand presents enough detail to let readers see Marisela’s life, and bring her some empathy.  Until she keeps contact with him. Now, I understand the psychological damage and manipulations that happen in abusive relationships, but leaving him behind should have shut the door. She just didn’t get that memo.

Marisela is difficult to appreciate: I initially thought I could like her, she was brave enough to try and strike out away from what was known (if not comfortable) and was trying to redefine herself. But, her redefinition was almost a full-scale cloning of her sister Robyn’s approach and attitude: making her prickly and not particularly intriguing.

For his part, Craig was an all too typical frat-boy type, with posturing and crass phrasing that hid what was not a bad guy underneath. As in the first story, I still have difficulty with the backstory for him, although his past as a cop made him more believable as head of security.   I just found him limited, and here is my real problem with the story: language.  Now, I’m no prude, and I have a mouth like a sailor, but there is crude ‘boy speak’ that wholly shows a character’s limitation with language and attempts to impress, and then there is just crude – where crass steps in to ramp up the rawness of the plot without providing an equal balance in emotional connection. Sadly, this feels more like the second example.

Another disconnect is the frequent head-hopping, without full development for an emotional oomph for readers. I didn’t find that Marisela and Craig had anything more to offer one another than a hook up here and there: and why would they? Their interactions, with Marisela trying to find ‘herself’ and her quick responses to Craig, even with her issues, just didn’t feel honest or plausible to me, and his knowing her history but rushing in white knight like also didn’t work. Logic would dictate that both are hesitant and concerned about the danger from her ex. Neither are. And the danger and tension surrounding that whole subplot just felt flat and unbelievable to me.

There is attraction and smexy times, much of which is hot and steamy. It was far more passive for me, as I didn’t feel the characters sparked off one another to make me feel their desires or needs.  There wasn’t the angst that I felt in the first book, so it was harder for me to believe in the more dramatic moments. And while I didn’t dislike either Marisela or Craig greatly, I didn’t find the head-hopping helped me to form solid opinions about either character: there were moments of ‘that won’t end well’ thoughts that never quite came to pass in the plot.  It’s not a bad story, it’s just not enough for me to grab onto and need to see more.

Seduction: Devil’s Den # 2 by Violetta Rand with Excerpt

Title: Surrender
Author: Violetta Rand
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published by: Loveswept
ISBN: B00N6PEWEG
Published on: 17 March, 2015
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Pages: 250
Rated: One StarOne StarOne Star
Heat: One FlameOne FlameOne Flame

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About the Book:

Perfect for readers of Abbi Glines, Seduction returns to the Devil’s Den, a Texas strip club where hearts can’t hide when the chemistry is right. 

The night Marisela Gonzalez rides up to the Devil’s Den on her motorcycle, running from trouble and looking for her sister, she finds more than a place to hide out and work her red-hot body. She meets a guy brave enough to stand by a tough, terrified nineteen-year-old girl who’s been in the wrong place with the wrong jerk one too many times. And he’s ready to show Marisela how a real man treats the woman he desires.

An ex-cop taking over as the club’s head of security, Craig Hanson can handle anything—except the urgent need he suddenly feels to hold Marisela tight. Commitment has never been his thing, but all that changes when Craig finds something too real to deny between them. Sensual and vulnerable, Marisela’s got a scary past. And when it comes knocking, Craig goes all in to protect her—because seduction is the ultimate game changer.


See the Devil's Den Series on Goodreads 

 

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

Tasty Excerpt

 

Robyn half runs down the steps. She must have heard my voice. She stops in the kitchen doorway and stares at me. “Marisela? Oh. My. God. Where have you been? Mom is so worried. I’ve been looking for you for months.”

I never meant to hurt Robyn. She’s always been my idol. The woman I want to be like. But the older I got, the more I realized there was no chance of following in her footsteps as the perfect college student. She’s the real gem in the family. My mother mistakenly invested all her time and money in me. I’ll turn out to be her greatest disappointment once she sees me and finds out I dropped out of school six months ago. I stand. “Robyn.”

She rushes over and hugs me. I feel her tiny body tremble. “It’s all right.” I try to soothe her. “I’m home to stay.”

She pulls back and looks at me. “Home?”

“College isn’t for me.”

“And what’s all this?” She runs her fingers up my leather sleeve. “You’re a biker now?”

I give her a stupid grin. “If that’s what you want to call me.” It’s hot; I unzip my jacket and wiggle out of it.

“Marisela!” Robyn exclaims.

I look up. “What’s wrong?”

“You have tattoos.”

“Yeah, Marisela,” Craig comments. “What else are you hiding?” He stares at my arms.

Robyn throws him a look. “I’ll deal with you in a minute.” She looks back at me. “Well?”

I have two Chinese tattoos on my right arm, 勇敢的天使 and 難逃一死. “This one means escape death. The other is private.”

Robyn cradles my arm. “Escape death?” She throws Garrick a look before she asks me, “Are you in trouble? Oh my God, is your tongue pierced, too?”

I smile and stick it out. She shakes her head. “I can’t believe you. Mom is going to kill you. Then that tattoo will have real meaning.”

“Are you done examining me?”

“No,” she says, thrusting her hand on her hip. “Where’s the Prius?”

I nearly choke. “I traded it for my bike.” Mom bought it for me for high school graduation and transferred the title to my name. As far as I’m concerned, it was mine to do with as I pleased. I hated that car and everything it represented.

There’s a period of silence. My gaze sweeps the kitchen. It’s huge. Painted pale yellow with white trim. I notice the Viking stainless-steel appliances and the high-end dining set. I remember when my sister couldn’t afford groceries. I’m so happy for her. “Congratulations on your marriage. I’m sorry I missed the wedding.”

Garrick nods. “We missed you.”

“Yeah,” Robyn agrees. “Now, tell me why you and Craig are together.”

We all sit down and Craig hijacks the conversation. He doesn’t leave out any details.

“A beer bottle?” Garrick questions me.

I nod. Craig gives me a nasty look. “If looks could kill,” I say.

“Stupid kills, girl,” he snaps. “She needs to leave town.”

Garrick inhales. “Maybe.”

“Hey,” I say. “I don’t need the three of you deciding my fate. I’m here to start over. I’m going to get a job at the Devil’s Den.”

“Doing what?” Robyn’s shrill voice sounds like Mom’s.

Should I risk saying it? “Dancing.”

Robyn squeals and holds her hands over her mouth. “This is my fault. Mom predicted something like this years ago. She accused me of being a bad influence. Oh my God.” She shoots up out of her chair and starts pacing.

Garrick follows her and wraps his arms around her. “Calm down, baby.” He looks over his shoulder at me. “Any other surprises?”

My shoulders droop. I’m stupid. Really inconsiderate. I show up unannounced in the middle of the night and expect my sister to embrace my wild ideas without question. She’s always been open-minded, but me stripping might be too much for her to handle. I remember all the talks she had with me, warning me that dancing is the furthest thing away from glamorous a girl can get. Consequences, she told me, they are real and never go away. I shiver.

 

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About Violetta Rand

Raised in Corpus Christi, Texas, Violetta Rand spent her childhood reading, writing, and playing soccer. After meeting her husband in New England, they moved to Alaska where she studied environmental science and policy as an undergraduate before attending graduate school. Violetta then spent nearly a decade working as an environmental scientist, specializing in soil and water contamination and environmental assessments.

Violetta still lives in Anchorage, Alaska and spends her days writing evocative New Adult romance and historical romance. When she’s not reading, writing, or editing, she enjoys time with her husband, pets, and friends. In her free time, she loves to hike, fish, and ride motorcycles and 4-wheelers.

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