He drew a deep breath, his eyes growing soft. “I’m going to do everything you want me to do. I won’t do anything you don’t want me to. If you want me to hold you, I’ll never let you go… Anything you want, I’ll do.” He carried me to the bed and laid me down. His arms never let me go. He bent over me… His forehead rested against mine, so softly, matching his voice, “Except leave. That’s the only thing I won’t do.”
What an awesome book! I was in the mood for something a little different than my usual and this one caught my attention. Once I started reading, I just couldn’t put it down. As the leader of a secretive underground world, Cole was a dark, dangerous, mysterious, and completely intriguing hero who Addison had begun to fall madly in love with — even to the point where she was willing to risk her life to be with him. This book was romantic and thrilling, with both a passionate love story and a whole lot of action-packed suspense. I read it in one sitting and loved it!!
To give a little background, Addison, the heroine, began the story still reeling from the devastating loss of her beloved husband in a car accident. She was stuck at a standstill in life — afraid to move away from the house in which they had planned to build their future together for fear of betraying her late husband’s memory but also subconsciously understanding that she eventually would have to move forward with her life. But when her best friend convinced her to rent an exclusive luxury condo, she began to take the first steps towards living again.
And is where the book’s blurb comes into play…
I shouldn’t have remembered him.
He was just a guy who walked through a restaurant. I didn’t know his name. We never made eye contact. There was no connection between us at all.
But I could feel him.
The tingle down my spine. The command in his presence. The snap of tension in the air around him. That was the first time I saw him, and I was captivated.
The second time was different.
He was in the mysterious back elevator of my apartment building. Our eyes met for a fleeting second before the doors closed, and I was staggered. My breath was robbed. My senses on high alert. My body hummed.
That was just the beginning.
He was the leader of the mafia. I was about to fall in love with him, and his name… Cole Mauricio.
I could feel a definite spark to this story. It was intriguing, tantalizing, it drew you in and there were no good stopping points. I loved the writing style — it flowed smoothly and I easily got lost in words. The romance was both passionate and slow building, but I loved the pacing and really appreciated the way the story was never rushed and yet was constantly developing and moving forward as it revealed more pieces of the mystery that was Cole Mauricio.
His eyes grew hooded. “There are things about my life I can’t share. I’d like to to, but I’m in a position where I can’t. Not until I trust you.”
“You can’t tell me where you live?”
“You’re unbelievable. You want to have sex with me, but you won’t tell me where you live?”
… “I really do want to.”
“You have a job you can’t tell me about. You live somewhere you can’t tell me about… What am I supposed to do with that?”
“I was hoping you’d give me time. I can tell you; I just can’t do it now.”
“My life I can’t talk about, but this — you coming to me — is like a breath of oxygen. I can breathe again.” He dropped his mouth, lingering on my shoulder. “Something pure among so much tainted.”
Cole and Addison’s relationship was surrounded by danger due to the fact that he had enemies everywhere who wouldn’t hesitate to exploit any weakness he showed. But despite the risks, he couldn’t stay away from her. Their romance was passionate, intense, and they both could feel even from the start that they had something serious growing between them. I loved the progression of their relationship and how strong, capable Addison was. She was no damsel in distress and even though she didn’t know all his secrets, they supported each other in a really wonderful way as a team.
“I’m not scared of who you are. I’m not scared of what you can do. I’m not scared of what it meant to be at your side. I’m only scared of how much I can’t be without you. That terrified me, all the way to the bone. But I’m still here. I can’t walk away from you.”
He did everything in his power to shelter her from the ugliness of his life but eventually the danger did catch up to them. Remember that this is a Mafia romance so there’s definitely a suspenseful and action-packed element to the story as well complete with gunfights, shocking betrayals, kidnappings, and secrets that are brought into the light.
“Who is Cole Mauricio?”
“He’s the head of the Mauricio family.”
My mouth dried up. “What does that mean?”
Then I heard [his] response, and my world was pulled out from under my feet.
“Mafia. He’s not in the mafia, Addison. He IS the mafia.”
This book can be read as a complete standalone and Cole and Addison’s story is wrapped up in a beautiful epilogue at the end. If you’re looking for an edgier romance that’s equally sexy and suspenseful, definitely try this one!
Rating: 4-4.5 stars. Contemporary Adult Romance. Can standalone.