Top positive review
Dark, delicious, and intriguing
Reviewed in the United States on March 23, 2021
Oh, I am intrigued. More than intrigued- because Requiem of the Soul is a consuming and addictive dark and delicious story. Vengeance, complicated characters, emotional turbulence, and arranged marriages, violence, and seemingly unending secrets- this is everything I love about dark romance and that I love about this writing duo.
Our heroine Ivy is no longer sheltered from the dark workings of the Society now that her father is in a coma- leaving her ruthless, cruel brother at the helm of their family. His power mongering, and her families lower status in the Society, leave her at the mercy of powerful and merciless men- the most dangerous of whom is Santiago De La Rosa, a once family friend now enemy. And Ivy has now become a casualty in his vendetta- his unwilling bride.Ivy wonders if perhaps Santiago is better than her brother’s cruelty- she’s given up the quest for true safety long ago. Is he the monster everyone says he is? And will that monster, set on breaking and destroying innocent Ivy, truly sacrifice her in the name of revenge?
I just live for this kind of story- and NK and AZ do this trope so well. Santiago is such a unique and captivating anti-hero- I was enthralled by his darkness. From his appearance to his backstory to his tortured and conflicted intentions- we both relish the tiny slivers of softness and care we see in him but we’re also consumed by his darkness, his ruthless and merciless control over Ivy. NK and AZ give him such a unique and complex charisma- and I feel like we’ve only just begun to see the nuances of his soul. His brokenness is so beautifully and subtly articulated- these authors so artfully give him dimension even though we don’t yet know his full self. But I am a total goner for the uniquely riveting villain- I want him to destroy me, too.
For his dark and tortured heart, we have Ivy’s light. She’s the classic soft but solid marifa heroine that I love. She’s gentle, she’s selfless and kind. Brutalized by the machinations of a corrupt and resourceful man, she’s just trying to survive and protect her family. And survive she does- while also holding onto her sense of self. She’s resilient and resourceful - and while there is gentle resolve to her, she also has some spine- a fiery defiance that Santiago catalyzes in her. She’s a woman yet to come into her full power- but she’s starting to recognize how to reclaim it. Her selflessness and gentleness speak to me- and something about her calls to our anti-hero too- as much as he resists her thrall.
And oh my is their chemistry tumultuous and volatile- we get some much frenetic romantic tension between them, and some deliciously erotic steam as well. These two are nothing sort of combustible- and as her kindness spills out on Santiago and his protectiveness starts to kick in, oh man was I swooning for these two, even if their connection is still tainted, even if there is a perversion to Santiago’s intentions.
This story is packed with intrigue, suspense, twists and turns as we discover not only are there nuances to these characters but that there is much complexity to the dark, violent society world they are both living in. Action, danger, violence awaits- and just when I found my bearings, new secrets and new players entered the fold. Our story is a heart pounding crescendo- slow, deliberately anticipatory, spiraling into a rapid paced, jaw dropping finale and a shocking and brutal cliffies that has me desperate for more of this series! Bring on book 2- I need it yesterday!