Friday, March 25, 2016

Dirty Angels (Dirty Angels #1)

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 2:00 PM

Age: Adult
Category: Contemporary, romance
Rating: 4 stars

Rosie Thinks: Just a warning before we get into this review: in the summary, it says this book is dark. And it is. It is very dark and deals with a lot of violent situations, like rape and torture, so if this is a trigger for you, please don't read this. In saying this, it was never as bad or as explicit as I was led to expect, but it still deals with a lot of violence.

When beautiful Luisa Chavez catches the eye of the deadliest drug lord in Mexico, Salvador Reyes, she knows she will do anything to give her ailing parents the care and money they need. But marrying Salvador is a worse hell than she can imagine, and when she tries to escape, she runs right into the arms of rival cartel boss, Javier Bernal. Javier plans to ransom Luisa back to Salvador, but neither of them are prepared for the twisted attraction that emerges between them.
The hero in this story is not a hero. There are no heroes in this story. All Javier is, is a villain. He is, in all honesty, a terrible person. But somehow, Karina Halle made me love him in all his psychotic glory. She got us into his head and showed us this elegant, honourable creature, who can go from smiling one second to murder the next. His complexity and buried humanity is everything I want in an enthralling character! I went into this book expecting to not like it. Instead, I fell in love with it, and mostly with Javier. Luisa is fantastic as well. In a story like this, I expected her character development to go a different way than what it actually did. She started off selfless, innocent and bright, and ended it . . . well, I'm not going to spoil it for you! But I will say that she keeps the selflessness, and has this inner strength that had me cheering all the time. This isn't your usual dainty female MC who lets things happen to her - and neither is she that boring Strong Female Character, whose only characteristic is to be, well, strong.

This book moves at a fast pace, and was action-packed in the right places and suspenseful throughout. It kept me guessing throughout, more because of the unpredictability of the characters than anything else. I've never read of a character quite like Javier before, and certainly not in a romance book. But if you're looking for a lovely, sweet romance, this probably isn't it. Javier and Luisa's story is gritty and intense, filled with animalistic emotions and violence. It was both of them struggling to find anything in the desperate situation they were in.

I have no idea about Mexican drug cartels, but this book made me interested in them! So I'm not too sure how accurate it is, but Karina Halle has said that she has strived to be as close to it as possible, and did her research. This book, although being the start of a new series, is technically tied to Karina Halle's other very popular series, The Artists Trilogy. I haven't read them and you definitely don't need to read them.


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