Monday, January 21, 2013

Review: Sins & Needles by Karina Halle

Sins & Needles
Karina Halle
Series: The Artists Trilogy, #1
Genre: Adult Contemp/Romantic Thriller
Publication date: January 29th 2013
by Metal Blonde Books

Ellie Watt is used to starting over. The daughter of a grifting team, Ellie spent her childhood being used as a pawn in her parents’ latest scam. Now she’s much older, wiser and ready to give her con artist life a rest. But returning to the dry desert town of Palm Valley, California means one more temptation than she bargained for – Camden McQueen.

Once known as the high school weirdo, Camden is bigger and badder than the boy he used to be and a talented tattoo artist with his own thriving business. Ellie’s counting on Camden still being in love with her but what she’s not counting on is how easily unrequited love can turn into obsession over time.

When Camden discovers Ellie’s plan to con him, he makes her a deal she doesn’t dare refuse, but her freedom comes with a price and it’s one that takes both Ellie and Camden down a dangerously erotic road.
*A copy was provided by Karina Halle for review purposes*

Sometimes when you finish a book, you loved it so completely, so thoroughly, that you don't even want to give it a 5-star rating. Because then you start thinking of all the other 5-stars you've given, and it just doesn't compare. You don't want it to be compared. This was one of them. Having read a copy the minute it was made available, there were no reviews or feedback yet, giving me absolutely zero expectations, and I. Was. Blown. Away! (!!) I have both been dying to, and dreading, reviewing this book, because I want to just pour my heart out, but at the same time I'm afraid nothing I say can do it justice. So... it may not completely make sense, you have been warned.

First and foremost, this is not a young adult (or New Adult) book. It's a fully adult contemporary novel. We get introduced to two of the most phenomenal (and broken) characters I have ever come upon. The character development in this book is unsurpassable. Our protagonist, Ellie, carved her way into the deepest crevices of my heart. I became in tuned to her thoughts and emotions as if they were my own. Her scars, both physical and emotional, become a palpable part of this novel. To layer her even more, we regularly get taken into her past where we see what she has been through; how she was damaged and emotionally beaten into the person she is today. These chapters are written in the third person, showing us exactly what Ellie thinks of her younger self--with a detachment. This gives her character incredible depth; a driving force to her current situation, her current state of mind.

Before I start on Camden, let me give you Karina's inspired by visualization:

If you are even able to get your eyes off of that picture to read the rest of this review, I can tell you that you heart will be in shreds when this book is over. I don't think I've ever been infatuated with a character as much as I am with Camden. He can eat crackers in my bed anytime! Oh let's face it, I want to eat them off of him, and you will want to, too! *fans self* Ok. Besides being a walking sex-on-a-stick, Camden is a masterfully created tortured soul, broken by his past and so so passionate about everything he takes on. I'm telling you, bringing characters to life like this does not happen very often. These people are REAL. They are 100% completely genuine.

Together, they work! They just do! Plain and simple. It's not always pretty--only imagine what you get when you put two tormented individuals together. Their relationship is rocky, and it's as frustrating as it is smoking hot sometimes, but it will tear your heart out. The ending: it broke me. I was a complete mess. Then I went into instant withdrawal. And the book I'm reading now, which I put on pause to read this one, tastes kind of pasty now! Oh wait… should I be eating it? Damnit! I forgot how to read! *sobs*

Dark, gritty, and sexy as hell, Sins & Needles is pure perfection for fans of contemporary novels with a dangerous edge. It will leave you begging for more, in that blubbering, unattractive way of yours.

5 Smokin' Hot Espressos

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