5 stars · Asshole Alpha Heroes · Contemporary Romance · Dark · Kick-ass Heroine · Panty Melter

Blood to Dust by L.J. Shen

Blood to Dust Book Cover Blood to Dust
L.J. Shen
Dark Romance
L.J. Shen
July 17, 2016

His name is Beat, and I should hate him.

Bound, blindfolded and bruised, I'm tied in his basement, waiting for the men who stripped me from clothes and humanity to collect his debt to them. Me.

His name is Nate and I should hate him, but I don't.

I'm not supposed to know his real name, even worse, I'm not supposed to care. He is nothing to me but means to an end. The plan is simple: break free, collect the pieces of my broken soul, kill the bastards and run away.

His name is Nathaniel Thomas Vela, and I've never seen his face, though I hear that it's beautiful.

Behind the rugged and handsome exterior, there's a quiet murderer, a killer who thinks guns are for pussies and ends people with his bare hands.

His name doesn't matter, neither does his face, but what does matter is my heart. And right now, sadly, it's his.

Blood to Dust is a standalone, full-length novel. It contains graphic violence and adult situations some may find offensive.

ARIANNA’s Review

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To be honest here I had high hopes for this one after reading Mrs. Shen’s other two books. Once again she managed to keep me intrigued with her fantastic storytelling and with a very smart and layered plot. ‘Blood to Dust’ was not exactly as dark as I had expected to be, but I have to say I enjoyed it very much. I was invested in the story from the very beginning and it really kept me at the edge of my seat the entire time for one reason or another.

“We’re polar opposites. He’s peace looking for color, and I’m a storm looking for serenity. And somewhere between my chaos and his peace, we found each other.”

Prescott is a hostage, but she used to be so much more – a daughter, a sister, a friend, until she was robbed of everything by the man she thought he is ‘the one’. Even if she grew up in a wealthy family, Prescott knows what it means to be alone, to be rejected, to lose someone, to do anything in order to survive. Now, bound and kidnapped, Prescott is not frightened. She’s a fighter, not a victim and all she wants is to make THEM pay…and she will, one way or another.

“She’s aiming straight for my fucking heart, this chick. Shot after shot in the dark.
And sooner or later, I know, even in the pitch black, she’s going to hit her target.”

Nate ‘Beat’, a convicted felon with blood on his hands owes Godfrey, the man who is now responsible for Prescott’s life a favor. He’s one of the two men who will have to look after Prescott while she is in captivity. He has some rules he has to follow if he wants ‘the boss’ to keep his promise he made to him and of course if he wants to stay alive.

Prescott wants to escape and she has a plan. She figures out very quickly some truths about Nate and most important, the fact that they should be allies, no enemies. Nate tries hard not to break the rules, but as he starts to spend more and more time with Prescott, he realizes they are more alike than he thought, that she understands him better than anyone without judging him, that he’s in lust with her even if he shouldn’t be.

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Mrs. Shen delivered a very addictive tale. Like I mentioned above this story of these two broken souls gripped my interest from the beginning. An unusual captive story in some way, ‘Blood to Dust’ was fast-paced, raw and gritty and I loved every minute of it. I honestly enjoyed every aspect of the story – the smart well developed plot that made me hold my breath more times than I want to admit, the two flawed, well portrayed characters, the action, the suspense and last but not least, the deliciously steamy scenes.

I loved the two main characters. They were perfectly imperfect, damaged, intense and a little crazy in a very…well, endearing way. Both Prescott and Beat’s backgrounds were fantastically done, so both of them felt real somehow. Prescott was a fantastic heroine. A storm to be reckoned with, she is smart, strong and determined as she is introduced. She’s a fighter, a bada$$ heroine I connected with immediately. I really sympathize with her as the story progressed and her tragic past was revealed. I loved how she never gave up, how she fought to bring THEM down, how to never played the victim even if she had all the reasons to.

“It’s difficult to hate him when he’s becoming more human with every page.”

Beat’s portrayal was simply stellar. I enjoyed how gradually we find out what makes him tick, what he wants. Beat was a man of honor from the moment he was introduced, a man who despite his past can still be kind.

I truly enjoyed how Prescott and Beat’s relationship progressed. The transition from “captor”/captive to something more felt real, believable and I simply loved them together. As much as they try to fight the attraction between them, they realize pretty quickly “this thing” between them is something good. To witness these two characters becoming…more was fantastic. Their connection was there, palpable and the sexy scenes between them were scorching hot. The way they needed each other, the way they healed each other were wonderfully done.

“You’re crazy, uncalculated and lethal for me. So yeah. Being by your side is exactly where I should be.“

Personally, I wouldn’t have minded the story to be a little darker. I’m not saying it wasn’t, but I truly believe it would have been perfection with more dark and disturbing elements.

If you are looking for a raw and gritty story that will keep you at the edge of your seat, look no further. ‘Blood to Dust’ was exactly that and more.

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