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Expected publication date: January 27th 2015
"How much is a life worth?
I grew up in Colombia, the daughter of a wealthy drug lord. I lived a life of extravagance, until one day a drug run went horribly wrong and everything came crashing down around us.
I was given away. A payment for a debt. The Gypsy Brothers Motorcycle Club became my new owners, and I did everything I could to survive.
But falling in love with the man who owned me wasn't part of the plan..."
One of the biggest 2014 surprises was Gypsy Brothers series by Lili St. Germain. My co-blogger at Way Too Hot Books, Purple, told me from the start that I would love it. I knew that she was probably right, but I still left those books for later. I am glad that I did, because I'd go crazy waiting for the sequels. (Seven Sons is free on Amazon, so you can always download it and see for yourself if we are obsessed with this twisted story for a good reason.)
Before Juliette Portland, there was Dornan Ross. Cartel is the first book in the trilogy that follows the events prior to everything that happened in Gypsy Brothers. You don't have to read Julette's story first, you can start with Cartel. Good news is that all three books will be published in 2015 - the second book, Kingpin, should be released on June 1st, and the third book, Empire, on October 1st.
There are no good guys here. One of the most appealing traits of Lili St. Germain writing, at least for me, is how realistic everything feels. When the focus of the story is on extremely violent world of drug and weapons trade and human trafficking, you can never talk about people who are innocent or without a fault. Yes, there are victims, but those involved into machinery behind every crime that is committed, are not victims. They made a choice, it doesn't matter for what reason, but they are involved, willingly. But than again there's that saying about "sins of our fathers"... Maybe deep down you long for a different life, but it's hard to escape the only world you have ever known. Cartel is dark and brutal story about people who are facing all of those things. Even the most innocent person involved, has the darkness inside her mind and heart.
No one can save you. You have to take care of yourself, however you can. Morals of the story. No sugar-coated fantasy about prince on the white horse. No higher power that will save you because you pray every day. Just simple, cold truth. If you have any wish to survive, even for just a little bit longer, you have to became the wolf. You have to be ready to do things you loath, you need to adapt, you need to forget your inhibitions and become a power player. You have to manipulate and lie and cheat. And be aware - all the time - that maybe even that won't be enough and learn to live with it.
Very dark read. Cartel is a kind of book you should read without knowing anything about it before, just pick up the book and go into the story blind. But one thing that I have to warn you about is that Cartel, and the rest of the books written by brilliant Lili Saint Germain, are dealing with a lot of dark and twisted aspects of our world. There is no fluffy romance and redemption. No one is innocent. If you can deal with that, you don't want to miss reading these amazing books.
*Copy of the book provided by author in exchange for an honest review.*