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I Belong

Review: Riot by Tillie Cole

Title: Riot

Author: Tillie Cole

Genre: Dark Romance

Series: Scarred Souls (Book #4)

Publication Date: March 7, 2017

Format: Paperback, 352 Pages

ISBN-10: 1250086280 (St. Martin’s Griffin)

ISBN-13: 978-1250086280 (St. Martin’s Griffin)

Reviewed by: Kristie


Stolen by the Arziani Georgian crime mob as a child, 152 was raised and conditioned to be a Mona—the most subservient of the Arziani Blood Pit slaves.

Gorgeous and kind, she has been and under the imprisoning influence of the Type B drug and under the command of the Blood Pit Master’s sister, Mistress Arziani, for most of her life, until the Master calls her back home to Georgia.

He wants her under his total control, and Master always gets what he wants.

But when 152 is gifted to the Blood Pit’s fearsome champion death match fighter as a prize, 152 suddenly finds out that the men who appear most brutal, may just own the kindest hearts. And love may be found, even when living in hell.

Freedom, family, love, 152 will have to fight for what she wants and ultimately make an impossible choice.

Quick & Dirty: Intensely dark romance novel that may not be for everyone.

Opening Sentence: The course sand crunched under my feet as I pounded down the tunnel.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Riot by Tillie Cole appears to be the fourth and final book in the Scarred Souls series. It is the first book of this series that I have read even though I do own a couple of the other books in the series but I got this one for review. I will say that I was a little confused in the beginning because I thought these were more about like MMA fighters or something until I realized that that was not the case. I had to double check the synopsis again. As I started to read without double checking, I thought it was also possibly a paranormal but nope it is not. (It is drugs.) Then then other strange thing (at least for me) was that I had to decipher when they talked about Georgia and had to realize it was the country not the state.

Riot is a dark, dark novel that may not be for everyone. If you haven’t check out this series already then, I will highlight the details. This world is set in a dark underground world of whoring and underground fighting (often to the death). 152 is an orphan. She was kidnapped as a child to become a love slave for whomever… but since has been transferred to Master because of her beauty and she is his Mona (#1 exclusive woman). These love slaves are under the influence of drugs but once she becomes Mona she gets to be weaned off the drugs so she knows she is the Master’s woman.

901 is the Master’s #1 warrior. He kicks ass and doesn’t give a shit for names. He kills as quickly as he gets into the ring. As a warrior, he doesn’t have to worry about drugs. Master has been trying to control his blood lust for some time to no resort when 901 finally gives an emotional reaction to 152. When Master realizes this, he decides to fuck with 901s emotions and send him 152. 901 has rejected all other whores before but they refuse to let 152 out of his cell. 152 has been given drugs that give her a sexual high and the unfortunate side effect is that she must have sex and be released otherwise she will die. 901 has to give in to his “potential” feelings towards her or let her die, and for some reason he decides that he can’t let her die. Even though his number one goal is to piss off Master.

Riot ties right in to a storyline that has been ongoing with the Scarred Souls series. Characters from previous books appear to finally destroy what Master has been building all these years so I do believe that having prior knowledge to this series is a plus but it wasn’t necessary. (Although, I still plan on reading the stories that I have previously purchased.) And I will say having prior knowledge of the past characters would be a plus.

Honestly, I thought the romance was a bit more of forced circumstance than actual love. I still rooted for the couple but I did have a hard time really feeling the romance since their getting together was just completely awful. Not to mention, 152 is raped by Master explicitly several times throughout the story. (This is why I say this story isn’t for everyone.) These characters are put through really tough and terrible circumstances.)

Overall, if you like to walk on the dark side then check this series out. The story itself entertained me but I did struggle through some of it. I may not have, if I had prior knowledge of the previous books in the series. It is a contemporary, dark romance series. (Also, for bonus points, if you’ve watched any of Arrow it deals a lot with the Bratva and the Russian underground crime syndicate. I found that part entertaining.)

Notable Scene:

The air in the champions’ quarters thickened until I felt caged and hot. When I finally opened my eyes, unable to stand the tension crackling between us, it was too see 901 radiating with rage. His muscles were taut, protruding with veins. His teeth were gritted together. I could see he was about to explode.

I tried to capture his attention. I implored him to meet my eyes, but his gaze was transfixed on my thighs. It was only seconds later when 901 released a livid roar and charged the cell door that I shouted out as his shoulder slammed into the rigid metal bars. But Master didn’t move. He didn’t even flinch. When I glanced back to see Master’s face, it was lit with triumph. My heart stuttered in its beat. He wanted this. He was breaking his champion.

He had used me to achieve it.

I hated myself at this moment. But not as much as I hated Master.

Scarred Souls Series:

1. Raze

2. Reap

3. Ravage

4. Riot

FTC Advisory: St. Martin’s Griffin/Macmillan provided me with a copy of Riot. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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