"I don't mean a goddamn thing to your father except as the means to an end. You know why he won't let you see the manuscript? He doesn't want you to know the truth. That he's writing my story. How I spent my adult life killing women who were foolish enough to fall in love with me."
Its way past my bedtime but I wanted to write this up before I crashed so that I can move on from this eerie and disturbing story. You know those experiences you occasionally have with people and there's an almost unspoken "let us never speak of this again"? Yeah, this story is one of those.
"It's easy to kill," he murmured, and the pads of his thumbs stroked the fragile hollow of her neck. "Did you know that, Cassidy? Just a certain amount of pressure, and it would crush your throat. You'd suffocate, fairly quickly. It wouldn't be very messy, at least at first. But then, when someone dies a sudden, violent death, their bladder and bowels empty. Diana stank when I found her."
No one does anti-heroes quite like Anne Stuart do they? I don't want to give anything away (the truth isn't revealed to the reader until around the 86% mark, with another big revelation coming even later) but Richard is out on bail provided by Cassidy's father in exchange for Richard telling his story to him. Richard has been convicted of killing his wife and even though they can't find the bodies, they think he also killed his children. Cassidy's father is a narcissistic a-hole who is basically offering up his daughter to a murderer so that he can write the book of a lifetime. The story presented to the reader is that Richard asked for Cassidy after seeing her picture on the dad's desk and father of the year thinks Richard wants her for sex. It's a distasteful introduction to the characters, to say the least.
Throughout the story, Richard is a creepy threatening dude who loves to play with words about his guilt and innocence. I have no earthly idea why Cassidy was drawn to him but somehow it worked, I kept reading. I mentioned in a reading update that this had a bit of a Gone Girl feel to it, which with Richard's description and the whole is his guilty, not guilty question, it definitely did in the beginning. The middle and ending were different enough to lessen it but I could see those that enjoyed that book liking this one, too.
Those looking for a strict genre romance probably will want to look elsewhere, unless quotes like this make your heart flutter,
He stared at her. At her pale, defiant mouth, her sorrowful eyes. "I'll dream about you in hell," he murmured.
"See that you do."
This was dark, eerie, and disturbing (definitely has some trigger warnings involving(show spoiler)
) I need to go watch some Winnie the Pooh or something.