♥ SYNOPSIS ♥
The only sure way to destroy a man is to take what he cannot live without.
Three years ago, I had everything.
A beautiful wife.
A reason for living.
Until a ruthless task force, assembled under Mayor Michael Culling, with a brutal strategy to make the streets of Detroit ‘safe’, ripped away everything I loved in a deadly hunt called The Culling.
They tried to kill me, too. I wish they had. Now I’m cursed by the memories of that night, and the words I whispered to my dying wife.
A promise—to avenge the wrong and set it right.
I’m no longer Nick Ryder. I’m a masked vigilante. Faceless. Loveless. Fearless. A man with nothing left to lose—one who’s seen the dark and violent truth behind the city’s flawless veneer.
Michael Culling doesn’t know who I am. Or what I want. All he knows is that I’ve kidnapped his beautiful wife.
An eye for an eye—isn’t that how the saying goes? And Aubree Culling is the perfect pawn to destroy him.
If she doesn’t destroy me first.
♥ my review ♥
My first Keri Lake and it’s a huge winner. I’m not much of a dark reader but there are so many elements in this book that were right up my alley. It has suspense, romance, and a holy freakin’ plot twist that for the first time actually made sense or worked for me.
I don’t want to write a long review for this book because I might give away spoilers. This is one of those books that you should go in blind. The little you know, the better. The blurb is pretty straightforward. Yes, it’s dark and it’s not for the faint of heart but it’s also an optimistic book. And I never thought I would say this but it is optimistic because at the very heart of this story is a story of redemption and love. And you guys know how much I love those.
Nick Ryder lost everything. His reason for living was obliterated in a single act of violence before his very eyes and he was left with nothing but vengeance in his heart. Part of that vengeance is kidnapping the wife of his enemy. But the moment he got to know Aubree, she changed from being his vengeance to becoming his salvation. Aubree was one of the strongest female characters I know. Despite the horrors she went through, she never lost her agency. I loved that moment when Nick realized that the one person he thought he could use to destroy the man who took away his family was going to be the one to set him free.
For readers who don’t not like violence, this book might not be for you. Keri Lake was brutal in showing readers how dark and messed up these characters are. But the author didn’t leave me without a tether, or a moral compass so to speak. These characters did some messed up things and went through horrible circumstances but they retain their decency throughout the book. Ms. Lake skated that fine line brilliantly. And then there’s that twist. Honestly, twists don’t always work for me but here, it worked out brilliantly. And I had an epic face palm moment when I realized just what she did. But like I said, it worked for me, so yay!
This won’t be my last Keri Lake for sure. She can definitely write. The emotions that the characters went through were perfectly nuanced and the action sequences were heart-pounding. Once I started this book, I just couldn’t stop. This book was like an adrenaline rush I never want to get over. Just fantastic!