Release Date: April 27, 2018
What do you do when the devil has you in his sights?
You show him that you can play his game.
Austin Lowes is new to town. She’s running from a mom who hates her to her dad who cares nothing about her. Only a few months and she will be free, or at least, that’s what she hopes … until she meets him.
Cole Reynolds is the devil disguised as a man. He wants her fear, he wants her blood, and he wants her soul.
Just a little game, he says, I dare you.
Will Austin survive him, or will she lose herself and the game?
Secrets are revealed and justice will be served, but at what cost?
Who survives and who doesn’t?
“Why am I here?” I ask, wanting to get this over with.
Cole takes the bottle from my hand and brings it to his lips, taking a big gulp. His Adam’s apple working as he swallows.
I cross my arms over my chest, trying to look unaffected. But I’m having trouble breathing.
“We’ve been thinking …” he says, rubbing his chin.
“We want you to be a part of our group,” Deke finishes his sentence.
I look among the five of them and start laughing nervously. “You’re joking, right?”
“Not one bit,” Deke says, shaking his head.
“No thanks,” I say and turn to the door. I twist the handle and start to pull it open, but a hand slaps on the door above my head, holding it shut.
I jump back to look at Cole. He leans against it casually, getting comfortable and blocking my only exit. “It wasn’t an offer, Austin.”
My eyes narrow on him. “What makes you think I want anything to do with you guys?”
“Deke,” Cole says, lifting the bottle to his lips again.
I spin around to see Deke step up to us, his phone in his hand facing Cole and me. A video plays, and it’s of me driving Cole’s car away from the warehouse after he stole the red car.
“How did you get that?” I demand.
He just chuckles, placing the phone in his pocket. “I don’t kiss and tell, baby.”
My eyes narrow on him calling me baby. I turn back to face Cole. “You’re blackmailing me. Again.”
He shrugs carelessly. “You can call it whatever you want.”
“I’m calling it what it is,” I snap. “You know damn well that I had no idea what you had planned.”
He pushes off the wall and leans down, his face inches from mine. I can smell the cinnamon on his lips and can’t help the shudder that runs through me. “I dare you to prove it.”
“You son of a—”
“In order to join,” Deke interrupts me, “you have to pass a test.” He crosses his arms over his broad chest.
“I’m not interested …”
“Initiation,” he corrects himself.
“I don’t want to be involved with whatever fucked-up shit you guys are in.” How many different ways do I have to say it?
“Let her out,” Kellan says, but no one listens to him.
Deke continues. “You have to fuck one of us while we all watch.”
My heart starts to pound at his words. And my eyes widen when he takes a step toward me.
This is a joke. It has to be.
He arches a brow in challenge when I just stand there staring at him. “You want me, baby? I’m ready.” He licks his lips as his blue eyes settle on my legs. Then he reaches down to his jeans and unbuttons them.
He’s serious! My eyes immediately shoot to Cole.
His eyes hold their usual anger as they glare down at me, but a slow, devious smile spreads across his face, and the guys start laughing. “Well, there’s your answer, man,” one of them calls out from behind me.
My jaw tightens. “I don’t want to …”
“Leave us,” Cole orders, interrupting me. And like the trained sheep they are, they all walk out. I can still hear their laughter as they walk down the hall, the door slowly shutting behind them.
I plop down on one of the lounge chairs, trying to slow my racing heart. “You can’t force my hand, Cole. Not with this.”
He walks over to where I sit. Reaching out, he runs his busted knuckles along my cheek. I swat his hand away, afraid of what will come out of my mouth if he touches me.
His hand grips my hair and yanks me to stand. I cry out as he shoves my back
against the closed door. He towers over me, pushing his body into mine. I’m panting while he holds me still. He dips his head to whisper in my ear. “Are you a virgin, Austin?”
“No,” I growl. My hands come up to push him off me, but he grabs them and pins them above my head. I whimper, and my thighs tighten.
“That’s a shame.” He sighs, and his breath skims across my skin making me shudder. “I like to take pretty, innocent things and destroy them.”
“You’re sick,” I say, panting.
He chuckles but doesn’t deny it. “But that doesn’t make you want me any less. I saw the way you stared at me in the car. The way you licked your lips when I thought about kissing you. The way you whispered my name. How you stared at me when I got out of the pool. And let’s not forget the way you allowed me to touch you last night. Tell me, were you disappointed when I didn’t throw you on the bed and fuck you right then?” I moan. “I bet you’re wet right now.”
“Cole,” I growl his name, not wanting him to see how right he is.
But he ignores my warning. “You wore red for me again, sweetheart. You wanted my attention, and you got it. Now, what are you gonna do with it?”
Shantel is a Texas born girl who now lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma with her high school sweetheart, who is a wonderful, supportive husband and their two daughters. She loves to spend time cuddled up on the couch with a good book.
She considers herself extremely lucky to get to be a stay at home wife and mother. Going to concerts and the movies are just a few of her favorite things to do. She hates coffee, but loves wine. She and her husband are both huge football fans, college and NFL. And she has to feed her high heel addiction by shopping for shoes weekly.
Although she has a passion to write, her family is most important to her. She loves spending evenings at home with her husband and daughters, along with their cat and dog.
Make sure to follow her on all social media sites!
Well, color me impressed because this book turned out to be all kinds of awesome. It actually reminded me a little of Corrupt by Penelope Douglas. The writing was fantastic. The pace was very good considering that this was a LONG book. It took me near to six hours to finish it. It is told in a dual POV style (Cole & Austin). The plot was super engaging and had me skipping my lunch so I could see where this was heading. There were twists and turns. Secrets and lies. Blood and death, and revenge, lots of revenge. Last, it was all wrapped up in an OK ending <— this is where it lost half a star for me. I thought the ending was a little abrupt, and it felt a little rushed. I felt like it needed a chapter or two more to wrap the story up.
COLE…Cole was a complete a$$hole through a lot of this book, but I couldn’t help but love him. He was devious. He was dangerous. He was angry. Most of the time I didn’t know if I wanted to smack the everloving sh!t out of him or give him a hug. He was a complex character for sure.
AUSTIN…I really liked Austin’s character as well. Although there were many times I wanted to smack her upside the head and say; “WAKE THE F@CK UP!” That said, she was also strong. She was feisty. She held her own with the GWS (Great White Sharks). She was a very good heroine.
There were some awesome secondary characters in this one. I LOVED Becky. I LOVED Deke <— I really hope these two get a book of their own. I was also intrigued by Shane, Brennet, and Kellen, and Lilly was cute as well. A lot of them play quite large parts in this book that made it all the more excellent of a read.
Medium. For high school students, these peeps sure did get around (lol). The sex scenes were suitably spicy, and the frequency was fairly high. There is also some rough sex and choking.
High. This was a pretty angsty read. All of it coming from secrets and lies. There are a lot of acrimonious scenes between the hero and heroine. A little bit of physical abuse. Blackmail. Stuff like that. Neither were virgins. The hero had been celibate for 9 months (although he was a manwhore prior to that). The heroine only had one previous lover (I think). There was really no OW or OM drama to speak of.
~IN THE END~
I enjoyed this one a whole hell of a lot. The writing was great. The plot was engaging. The main characters intriguing. The secondary characters were awesome. The sex hot. It had a good amount of angst that didn’t come in the form of other people <— my favorite type. If the ending had been just a teensy bit more fleshed out, I would have totally given this a 5-star rating. There is really not much left for me to say…just read it and enjoy it.