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on January 6, 2016
This is a really difficult review for me, because while I found the story utterly repulsive, I had an inkling about what I was getting into when I downloaded the book. I was curious after I read all the five star reviews, wondering what was so great about a book with such a dark theme. I personally think it was a well written book. It was engaging, despite the distasteful subject matter and character development issues. I did keep reading on, which is a real credit to this book, the subject matter being what it is. I was not familiar with the dark erotica genre, and now I know it is not for me.

This book is written for people who have rape fantasies (or those who just have kinda offbeat taste in reading materials). I am not judging because fantasy is just that-not reality. No one would actually want this situation to happen to them in real life, I get that. For me, it was hard to read about rape presented as a fantasy come to life though. This book absolutely destroyed my libido for the whole time it took me to get through it. Obviously there are plenty of readers that derive sexual excitement from the fantasy of a rich, domineering man kidnapping them and forcing sex on them, but I am not one of those readers. The content of this book was extraordinarily creepy to me, but in for a penny, in for a pound.

SPOILERS AHEAD!!!

Characters:

I was perplexed by Nora's character throughout the book. In the beginning, I thought she had potential to be a tough lead and figure out a way to take Julien out or get off the island. But every time she would think, say, or act like a sane woman actually would in her situation, she backpedaled into passivity. There were so many completely unreasonable thoughts going through her brain and I really had to suspend disbelief. Julian rapes her, enjoys hurting her intentionally. She knows not to trust him. She recognizes the darkness in his eyes. But he's SO hot. Really? She finds out that he kidnapped her in the first place because she reminds him of someone from his past, physically. Instead of understanding that she is a husk to him, nothing more than a physical manifestation of someone else from the youth of this mentally damaged man, she thinks it's cute or sweet or something. She feels for him and comforts him. That part had me reeling. So while I found Nora to be an interesting character in some ways, I couldn't help but to be disappointed in her lack of critical thought overall, and how quickly she decides to abandon all thought of rescuing herself somehow. Her parents and friends are barely mentioned. She doesn't seem to think about them much while she is on the tropical island with her totally psycho hunk of a master.

I'm no expert, but I can't help but to think that Stockholm Syndrome must progress in a different way than it was presented here. Ignoring pain and rape because the perp is attractive doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I could see if the kidnapper was unusually kind and deliberately set out to gain sympathy from the victim, but just being good looking doesn't inspire loyalty or love. He had her date beat up while she watched and lorded his power to kill this boy over her to keep her in line! Why would she experience Stockholm Syndrome after that? Docking some points for disappointing and ineffectual heroine and implausibility of Stockholm Syndrome based solely on Hottie McHotpants' exterior.

I completely despised Beth's character in this story. She was my most hated character. This is a woman who has a troubled past. She was a mother of a daughter, and unfortunately had a lot of experience with bad sexual situations. And yet, she enables Julian to keep Nora penned up, totally stripped of her freedoms, and sexually and mentally abused, against her will. Her justification was that Nora doesn't know the meaning of having it bad in life. So she deserves to be a slave and a sex toy for a psychopath? Holy cow, I couldn't believe what I was reading! I thought she was way more evil than Julien could ever be. There was no redeeming this character for me. Heartless and cold, and absolutely devoid of morals or empathy. I am docking points here too with character development. I couldn't reconcile her past history with her actions. Beth was the very opposite of what I would expect her to be. Her attitude about this entire situation was so flippant, "But he is obsessed with you! Appreciate it, princess!" A woman who has had so many bad experiences with men that she doesn't want a man to touch her in any way, ever, should object when it comes to another young woman being subjected to sex and captivity against her will, IMO.

Julian was basically a flat character. I don't feel like I got to know him well. I was hoping for some more insight into his character, but there wasn't much development with him (the second book is partly from his POV from what I understand, so perhaps book 2 is where a reader will learn more about him). He's sick and twisted. The type of guy who takes what he wants instead of working for it. He faces danger every day and puts everyone close to him at risk because he likes the rush. Essentially, a narcissist, if you want to be kind. He's the absolute worst of the worst as far as possessing flawed character traits, and that doesn't change. Yes, we did get a sob story or two trying to explain away why he is such a basket case, but none of the background had me sympathizing with him at all. This is a man who thinks it's his right to have a sex slave that he can bend to his will without thought to anything but his own personal satisfaction, and that's about all the readers knows about him. Docking points for overlooking some backstory of this "hero".

The one thing that bothered me above all else in this book (the same major complaint I had about 50 Shades), is that the heroine is so young and inexperienced. As a reader, I find it cruel to use a barely 18 year old virgin in a story with this much sexual violence. It feels wrong to pair these naive girls up with predatory older men, and makes these stories even less palatable than they already are. It also enforces the gender stereotype that once a woman has been touched, she's ruined in some way. I'm sure my age and the fact that I have a daughter explain much of my distaste for the "abusing a young virgin" plot line, but really, beyond that, it's just pitiful and outdated that FEMALE writers use this lamb/lion trope over and over again, when it has been overdone since the age of the bodice rippers from the 70s and early 80s. I personally have had it with reading about these young victims! Where are the strong, confident women in these books? It's not an age thing, it's an attitude thing really. I don't care if they are 18 chronologically, but please give main female characters some backbone and mental fortitude!

SPOILERS ENDED

Target Audience:

This book is not for those readers looking for romance.
If violence and rape are triggers for you, please stay away.

If you enjoy rape fantasies and they turn you on, this is definitely a book for you.
If you liked FSOG, I imagine this would appeal to you.

I'd like to thank Anna Zaires for offering this book for free on Kindle to her readers.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon March 18, 2018
The book had 303 pages or 4005 locations on my kindle. The book was about a girl named Nora and a man, named Julian. Nora was a 17 year old virgin. Julian was a 29 year old sadist. Julian wants Nora, therefore he kidnaps the young girl. The book contains forced sex, anal sex, drugs, blackmail, oral sex, spankings, sex toys and whippings. Nora was young, innocent and rightfully scared. She quickly learned to crave and care about her tormented captor. Julian was a dominant, ruthless, possessive, forceful, in control, and in charge man. The book did end on a cliff hanger and there are 2 other books, which I wont be buying. This was a good ending for me. Buyer beware, this is a DARK romance.
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on July 21, 2017
Love dark erotica which is not for everyone but I love the dark romances and loved how this book progressed to her falling for Julian and was so excited that book 2 and 3 were already written. What can I tell you. I loved this book and the whole trilogy never had a slow moment and loved how their relationship grew Nora and Julian's. Again a must read!!!
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on May 18, 2018
**spoiler alert** I really didn't want to like this book, but I couldn't seem to help myself. I was horrified that Nora was stalked and taken. And then taken to a location that you will never leave on your own.

I liked Nora, but there was some things about her that I didn't like. All in all I think she was a pretty good character. She could be strong at some points, but really she was just, well, not strong; pretty weak actually. She really didn't put up too much of a fight. I think that was her character though. She was resigned to the fact that she would never beat them. She was physically too weak and she gave up before she ever really fought. I'm glad he wasn't too brutal; I don't think I would have been able to read through that. It was hard enough at some points. And the whole experience definitely changed her and you saw it happening. It was well written.

And then there is Beth. I wanted to like Beth, but she sort of annoyed me too. She was there and I felt her character was a bit cold. Why not share your story with Nora? It wasn't like she was going anywhere. That just didn't make sense to me. And then when she did open up you really felt sorry for her. She had been through a lot. And then her death was awful and you felt terrible that Julian had made her go along. She didn't want to be anywhere but that island and then when she left it she ends up dead.

Julian is a force. I wanted to hate him, but I couldn't seem to get there. And the more he opens up in the story the more I find myself liking him. Maybe liking him is not the phrase to use, but I was drawn to him like a moth to a flame. I didn't want to be. I wanted to despise him for what he had done, what he was, how he was. I'm a bit disturbed that I was drawn to him. *shiver*

Not a bad read. And you can see how she falls in love with him.
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on May 25, 2018
I'm not sure how I made it through this entire book. I think I was waiting for whatever was referenced in the prologue to happen, maybe. Or perhaps I was waiting for some huge character development to surface. Something that would make me care for these characters.

These were some of the most boring characters I've ever read. Which speaks volumes when you consider this is an abduction book. Surely, a man brutal enough to kidnap a barely 18 year old to keep as his own personal sex slave would have some dimension.

Nope.

Beth, said crazy man's housekeeper and friend, also had zero personality. And I don't even know where to start with Nora, the main character.

There was no depth whatsoever.

The sex wasn't even eventful. His 'cruelty' was actually really tame.
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on November 11, 2017
A Review of Twist Me by Anna Zaires

Julian and Nora - 4 Stars

I purchased this book just over three years ago and put it on my to read list. I'm glad that I finally got around to reading it, but that's where the conflicts begin. The writing is good, but I have some deep reservations about some of the characters and if they can be redeemed or not. Since this is the first book in a trilogy, I would like to read the other two books so that I can get the total picture of these characters and what makes them tick.

**Honest review voluntarily provided from a Purchased Copy**
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on January 4, 2016
I give it a 4 star because it was well written.

I did not fell in love with the story. I am the queen of darkness genre but this story I needed feelings, emotions, a story at the beginning on why she was kidnapped. I thought that she was to easy in letting him touch her violently to soon. She fell in love with him too soon for my taste. I also felt as the author wanted the hero to be another Christian Grey.

Although I know is FICTION I just needed more of a story from the beginning on his part I still gave it a 4.
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on June 25, 2016
I don't condone kidnapping or being held captive. BDSM and dark romance aren't my normal go-to. But Zaires ability to tell this story in a way that makes Nora and Julian's situation almost sweet and erotically pleasant. Though I don't know what it's really like to experience what Nora underwent, the description and emotions told through Nora's POV softens my initial dislike of Julian. I think me likes him.
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on January 20, 2017
If I could rate it less than one star, I would. If you're into an older guy raping and sodomizing a teenage girl repeatedly while she cries about the pain, then this is the book for you. I did not realize what I had purchased when I bought this book, and I will not be reading the rest.
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on November 5, 2017
I probably shouldn't have liked this book, but OMG I did. In fact, I bought the other two books in this series without bothering to read even one review of either of them.

I have never really had a favorite author in this genre, but I have one now.

If you have read the description of this book you know what the story is about. But knowing this does not prepare you for the flow of how these two play off of one another.

Put your feet up, turn off the tv, and jump into this whirlwind of a read for an exciting, hot and emotional ride.
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