Sunday, June 8, 2014

[Blog Tour - Review, Excerpt & Giveaway] ~ Twisted Together (Monsters in the Dark #3) by Pepper Winters

I am so excited to be hosting a stop on the blog tour of Pepper Winters' latest book, the heart pounding, anxiety inducing, dark, sexy and perfect conclusion to the Monsters in the Dark series. Twisted Together. Keep reading for an excerpt, review and giveaway!

Title: Twisted Together 
Series: Monsters in the Dark, Book #3 
Author: Pepper Winters 
Genre: Erotic/Dark Contemporary Romance 
Release Date: June 3, 2014 
Tour Organized by: As the Pages Turn 

Amazon UK: 

"After battling through hell, I brought my esclave back from the brink of ruin. I sacrificedeverything--my heart, my mind, my very desires to bring her back to life. And for a while, I thought it broke me, that I'd never be the same. But slowly the beast is growing bolder, and it's finally time to show Tess how beautiful the dark can be."

Q gave everything to bring Tess back. In return, he expects nothing less. Tess may have leashed and tamed him, but he's still a monster inside.

After surviving the darkness, a new dawn has begun. Twisted Together wades through black to grey, chasing the light of true love to banish the shadows forever.

Pain is a requirement, connection a necessity. But ultimately Q and Tess must face their demons, before they can embrace their future.

All good things must come to an end, and what an ending this amazing story had.  The story of Q and Tess comes full circle in this third and final installment.  Be forewarned, though; this is not a book for the feint of heart.  This is a very dark, erotic romance that includes some very complicated characters.  As with its predecessors, Twisted Together has its fair share of erotica, even a few squeamish scenes, a fully functioning master and slave relationship, torture, desire and rebirth.

This is the story of how Q brought back Tess from the dead.  Not literally, this time.  But after Quintessentially Q, Tess still had some serious issues to overcome.  Although Tess was back to functioning in reality, her mental state was questionable.  Q racked his brain and came up with some very inventive and creative ways to help Tess put her past in the past.  

It becomes clear that Q is boarderline obsessed with Tess.  And I mean that in a good way.  For all of his dark and broody ways, he is completely dependent upon Tess for his sanity.  Q loves her as much as a human can love another.  No matter that it seems that he is the dominant one in their relationship; he is dominated in mind, body and spirit by Tess.  Q will do anything, and I mean anything to protect Tess from their pasts.  A new threat emerges in this book and Q makes some very difficult decisions in order to keep Tess safe.  

This book is the melding of Q and Tess from black and white into a lovely shade of gray.  In the previous books, Q is very dark.  He is monstrous in his desires and believes that his soul is stained black.  Tess was once the innocent Australian girl who happened upon a bad situation that changed the course of her life. Her soul was painted as white.  Twisted Together shows Q and Tess in a new light.  Q absorbs some of Tess' lightness, while Tess definitely takes some of Q's darkness.  Neither character is black or white any longer - together, they are a beautiful shade of gray.

There are some scenes involving Q and a character named Lynx that I feel were some of the best in this series.  There were parts that I had to look away from the page and take breaks from.  There was an intensity in Winters' writing that I have come to love and expect from her.  The mental and physical anguish leapt off the pages.  There were some very intense and well written sex scenes, as well.  Q and Tess experience many different kinds of intimacies in this book ranging from soft, sweet and needy to harsh, physical and demanding.  All were great scenes to read.

I gave this book 4 stars for a couple of reasons.  I think this book was a bit long and wordy.  There was a lot of internal dialogue and some repetition in thought that became tedious after a while.  There are only so many times a character needs to feel undeserving, or to think that their love interests owns them completely.  I think this book lacked some of the action that was present in the first two books.  I also thought that the culminating scene at the end of this book was a tad overdone.  I don't want to spoil it, but I think would have been more enjoyable to me if it the scene was more nuanced.  There were symbolic elements that I thought were spelled out when they could have been assumed by the reader.  

All in all, this book ended Q's and Tess' journey perfectly.  It wasn't about Tess and Q ending up together - this book was about fighting demons that plagued both characters and how their reliance upon each other made them strong enough to survive.  Q is one of my favorite dark romantic leading men, and I am so sad to see him go!  This book left no questions unanswered and gave a satisfying ending to one of my favorite series.  If you are a fan of dark and twisted stories with a dangerous love affair, then I strongly urge you to read this series.  It is a special story that won't leave me anytime soon.

Q no longer looked devilish but royal. 

My heart flew free, fluttering to the ceiling. 

“Donne-moi tes mains.” Give me your hands. The order whispered through the golden light, quintessentially him. His raspy, melodic voice had a power over me he wasn’t aware of. I instantly locked my wrists together, jutting them toward him. 

Q didn’t say a word as he accepted my gift, wrapping soft, black fabric around me. The silk looked like morbid blood, as if I’d slashed my wrists in a fit of insanity. 

The moment he’d restrained me, Q tugged the cord, making me stretch even further across the table, securing it somehow. Once tied, he strolled back toward me, setting my heart jumping and body dissolving under his intense stare. 

My back was icy cold while my front was toasty warm. The two sensations, coupled with my lack of mobility, made my lungs suck in air as if oxygen was about to go extinct. The closer Q came, the more lightheaded and woozy I was. 

I flinched as he cupped my ass. 

“What are you going to do?” I didn’t bother testing the binds. I knew Q—he had a way with ropes—there would be no chance of escape. 

“Sometimes, the only way to make your dreams come true is to shatter them,” he said, circling me like a predator. “Sometimes, the only way to make your nightmares disappear is by facing them.”

Pepper Winters wears many roles. Some of them include writer, reader, sometimes wife. She loves  dark, taboo stories that twist with your head. The more tortured the hero the better and she constantly thinks up ways to break and fix her characters. Oh, and sex… her books have sex.

She loves to travel and has an amazing, fabulous hubby (who speaks French—hot!) who puts up with her love affair with her book boyfriends. She loves to hear from her readers so hit her up at

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Mai Tran said...

So awesome prizes! Thanks for the giveaway.

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