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Brutally Beautiful (Beautiful #1) by Christine Zolendz

A deadly game of hide and seek. 

With blood still on her hands, Samantha Matthews is on the run, running from dark secrets and a man she prays to God will never find her. Running and hiding, just to stay alive. She had no choice but to run, to leave, to hide and forget about her life before. When Samantha believes she's gained enough distance from her past and her demons, she stops running, hoping to find her future in the heavily wooded area of the Adirondack Mountains, a place she never expected to encounter a man with secrets as dark and as sordid as hers. 

Kade Grayson is hiding, not from the demons after him, but from himself and from the entire outside world, wishing every day he could have just died. Arrogant and domineering, he’s tormented and terrorized by his past, seeing nothing good for his future. With the ghosts of his past still haunting him, he has exiled himself to a life of solitude, only living for his words and through his stories.

Until her.

An undeniable attraction, turns into hate and then ultimately obsession, an obsession that grows into a powerful story of love and redemption.
Will the bond they have begun to build between them grow stronger than the tragedies that have scarred both of their lives? Or will they allow their demons to consume them?

Four Stars

I felt wanted. Desired. Hungered for. Lusted. Preyed on. 

I was a bit hesitant on picking up another Christine Zolendz book, not because she can’t write a fantastic story, but because she always leaves me sexually frustrated. Yea, no lie. Her last series, the Mad World, is a prime example. However I’m glad to inform you that she made up for her lack of heat in her previous series to give us this hot-as-fuck-had-me-screaming-oh-my-god-this-is-crazy story. You have been warned.

I wanted to hate her, break her, and keep her the hell away from my sick, twisted mind. But, there was no point in lying to myself, was there? Because I wanted a taste of her even more. I wanted her. 

Kade is one of the most beautifully damaged Heroes I’ve ever come across. The man is intense. He was very hard to like to be quite honest. He’s dark, antisocial and so broken. His past is filled with violence and hurt. To combat his long list of issues, he finds an outlet in writing some pretty gruesome horror stories; he’s actually famous for it. Living in his fictional worlds, he can control his inner demons. But meeting Lainey threatens well-controlled world. He has never met anyone like her before. The very first sight of her intrigues him. 

Unafraid and confident. Fearless. Impressive and deadly sexy.
Beyond sexy. 

Our heroine, Lainey, is one tough chick. Her real name is Samantha, but only her best friend, Bree/Jennifer, will tell you that. Both girls are on the run. Lainey has just escaped her crazy husband…and when I say crazy, I mean the man is completely unhinged. She knows how to defend herself and isn’t meek at all. I loved that no matter what came at her, she always seemed to face things head on. She doesn’t mean to hide from her husband, he gave her no choice actually. So when she meets the brooding Kade, she knows exactly how to deal with him. 

All I wanted was to seep into her skin, curl myself around her heart, disappear completely and escape into her body. To have her taste on my tongue forever, have her smell and touch drown me, and her face always in my sight.
I wanted to erase everything fucked up that had ever hurt her. I wanted to spill myself inside her and fill her with me, no one else. 

Kade seems to be losing his well-built control around Lainey. He doesn’t like it and does everything to prevent her from seeping into his skin. Slowly, and very painfully so, she starts to invade his every thought and action. The stubbornness of Kade had me screaming at him. I understand his hesitance, but seriously…he was one big mind fuck. 

“I’m falling in love with you, Sam, and I’m going to let you destroy me.” 

This was great read. It got a bit angsty in some parts and Kade definitely challenged my patience, but he ended up capturing my heart anyway. This can considered a stand-alone, but I see that the author is continuing this couple journey, which I have no problems with whatsoever. Looking forward to more…

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