4.5 STARS ☆ KARINA HALLE ☆ BLACK HEARTS

BLACK HEARTS

(Sins Duet #1)

by

Karina Halle

“You’re everything I’ve ever needed,” he says through a lustful groan. He bites his lip, the corded muscles of his neck straining. “I was famished, starved, for you. For this.”

So…I have had The Artists Trilogy and Dirty Angels on my Kindle what seems like forever. Picture me hanging my head in shame for not having read them yet. I’ll remedy that ASAP, because, let me tell you – this is the story of Javier and Louisa Bernal’s son and Ellie and Camden McQueen’s daughter. 

Violet is a photography student in her second year. She lives with her parents in an upscale area in San Francisco, the Haight Ashbury district. For the longest time she has had the feeling that something doesn’t mesh with her family. She can’t pin it down but she knows it has something to do with her parents. An envelope she isn’t supposed to open, containing an article she isn’t supposed to read only deepens the feeling that Violet lives in a house of cards built on lies.

Vicente is the prince of one of Mexico’s most influential drug cartel’s. He doesn’t want to be his father’s heir but it is ingrained in him. Although he doesn’t even like his father a lot Vicente strives to impress him nonetheless. A plan to bring in the one person his father let go takes him to San Francisco. Going through the daughter to get to Ellie seems like a good idea but he didn’t count on the effect she would have on him. He is enthralled, utterly obsessed with her, and soon his own lies and secrets start to haunt him.

I’ve never really felt possessive over a woman before. I’ve had my fun, I’ve moved on. But after just having a drink with Violet, watching her expressive dark eyes trying to take me in, to make sense of me, opening herself just enough, I was hit with this raw, hot need to make her mine. To have. To hold. To possess.

Violet’s growth into herself is beauty. She is a little bit shy in the beginning. People tell her she is too sensitive but that trait actually gives her a heightened intuition. It’s this gut feeling that has her on edge with her parents. With Vicente’s help she develops a sense of self worth and even defiance. He helps her to live in the moment and to get out of her head.

And yet for all her softness and kindness and bleeding heart, I want to make her stronger, better. Something more like me.

Vicente’s chapters give a lot of insight into the works of his mind, yet he is still an enigma to me. He is ruthless – like father like son – but there is an underlying yearning to connect with people. He is cruel and driven, he kills without remorse. Still, there is a softness to him you wouldn’t expect. Vicente plays the good guy well but let’s not forget that he is the son and heir to a cold blooded drug lord. And still he didn’t take his father’s brilliant and manipulating mind into account.

There is a lot of dirty sex that will have you panting and/or changing your panties. Violet is adventurous and Vicente pulls out all the stops he has in his repertoire of seduction. Shhhh…this guy is SCORCHINGLY hot.

Black Hearts is an amazing start to a this duet. Karina Halle’s writing is compelling as always. She builds in twists and surprises which keep you guessing until the end of this first installment. The characters are multilayered and colorful. We get multiple POVs which also include Ellie’s and Javier’s. This is a gripping and in parts dark tale and I am so looking forward to the conclusion of this little series – I am sure that Ms. Halle won’t disappoint.

“There aren’t any other women, you know that. Just you. Only you.” I hate what those words do to me. Fill me with hope. Make my heart swell. We’re not even a couple and yet we’re acting like it. How scary it would be for all of this to stop, to fall apart. It’s so soon and yet I can’t bear to lose it.

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