BOOK REVIEW: Captive in the Dark (The Dark Duet #1) by C.J. Roberts

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SYNOPSIS

Caleb is a man with a singular interest in revenge. Kidnapped as a young boy and sold into slavery by a power-hungry mobster, he has thought of nothing but vengeance. For twelve years he has immersed himself in the world of pleasure slaves searching for the one man he holds ultimately responsible. Finally, the architect of his suffering has emerged with a new identity, but not a new nature. If Caleb is to get close enough to strike, he must become the very thing he abhors and kidnap a beautiful girl to train her to be all that he once was.

Eighteen-year-old Olivia Ruiz has just woken up in a strange place. Blindfolded and bound, there is only a calm male voice to welcome her. His name is Caleb, though he demands to be called Master. Olivia is young, beautiful, naïve and willful to a fault. She has a dark sensuality that cannot be hidden or denied, though she tries to accomplish both. Although she is frightened by the strong, sadistic, and arrogant man who holds her prisoner, what keeps Olivia awake in the dark is her unwelcome attraction to him.

WARNING: This book contains very disturbing situations, dubious consent, strong language, and graphic violence.

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REVIEW

Ashley’s book review: 5++ stars

I fell upon this book many months ago after one of my facebook blog pages I follow had an “author take over” and the author was C.J.Roberts. Captive in the Dark was her debut novel, so I’ve obviously never read anything of hers. She posted a teaser for the book, the first two chapters. I started reading it without really knowing what it entailed and BOY WAS I SURPRISED! After reading the first two chapters I was hooked, but yet I was hesitant to read it. I decided to search out the book to get a better feel of where this could be going and after reading this in the book description: “WARNING: This book contains very disturbing situations, dubious consent, strong language, and graphic violence.” I was just a little apprehensive to read the rest it. I even broke down and read TONS of the reviews to get a feel for the book and that didn’t help at all! It made me EVEN MORE intrigued, but EVEN MORE nervous to read it! I’ve never been one for “dark” books…don’t get me wrong I love reading some BDSM and such, but I’ve never dark like this. I think my biggest issue was my internal battle: What if I like this book?!? And if I like this book, what does that say about me?!? Finally after downloading a sample of it on my kindle and having it sit there for months, Black Friday happened and wouldn’t you know Captive in the Dark went on sale! So I took that as a sign that I HAD to buy it and give a chance. I.WAS.NOT.DISAPPOINTED.

C.J.Roberts debut novel Captive in the Dark was a “read with one eye open, hold your breath, intensely dark” book! As a reader and as a person, you hear captive and captor and you immediately LOATHE the captor and pray that the captive gets away…RIGHT?!? Well in this book it’s not so black and white. Yes, for a majority of the book, I wanted to hate Caleb and inflict pain on him because of his plan for Livvie/Olivia/Pet/Kitten and what he was making Livvie endure, but sadly I ended up not being able to. C.J.Roberts was able to achieve this internal struggle within me because she had dual POVs! I got to see Caleb’s motivations and reasoning for why he was doing what he was doing. “Revenge, Caleb reminded himself. That was the purpose of all this. Revenge, twelve years in the planning and a few months away in its execution.” Unfortunately, Livvie had become part of this revenge scheme whether she liked it or not.

The growth and development of these two characters throughout the book was just indescribable. Livvie starts out as this timid kitten (hence the name Caleb uses for her) and remains timid throughout most of the book, but she is eventually shaped into this powerful character and a survivor without her even realizing it. Caleb on the other hand, is such a intensely COMPLEX character and was seeming to break down to his original form and resisting it at every turn. “The longer he was near her, the less he seemed capable of trusting himself.” Livvie did that to him. “There was just something about her, something he wanted to taste and touch. Something he wanted to claim.”

The “reading with one eye open” and “hold your breath” part of the book: At times, Caleb was very cruel to “kitten”: “Caleb was a strange person, cruel and inhuman; a monster, yet, at other times, he seemed so capable of something like caring.” There were parts where Caleb showed a more gentle side towards Livvie and then we would see his more brutal side come out; the side that was so deeply imbedded in who he is because of his “upbringing”. “Why couldn’t he just keep being an evil, soulless bastard so I knew what his role was and I knew mine? Why did he have to continually switch back from cold and unforgiving, to comforting and warm?” He is not only the “villian”, but in his early life, he was very much the victim. We learn about what shaped him into the man he is today. As the book progresses, Caleb’s internal struggle is more and more frequent. His need for revenge has wavered and he doesn’t like the change in himself. “He had underestimated her in some way, and she had found a way to affect him.” How will things turn out? Will Caleb continue to seek his revenge? Will Livvie escape? Does Livvie want to escape?

This book had me questioning my sanity and wondering if maybe I had Stockholm’s Syndrome?!?

C.J.Robert’s goes ALL OUT with this book! She takes ballsy to a new level!! There is SO MUCH MORE to this book than meets the eye.Like I said in the beginning, I was a little apprehensive to read this, but I am extremely glad I did! It was an eye opener…even though I had one closed sometimes lol. I felt like I was in a rut with the books I’ve been reading recently and I just wanted something different…well C.J.Roberts did exactly that for me!

C.J.Roberts is a phenomenal writer and I am immensely HAPPY that Seduced in the Dark book 2 is out when I finished Captive in the Dark!! I think I would’ve died a little on the inside if it wasn’t out! As weird and odd as this is, I am praying for a HEA here…strange I know…lock me up in a psych ward, but until you read this book, you just cannot fathom as to why I want this ending for Livvie and Caleb.

Personal Favorite Dark and Twisty Quotes:

“It wasn’t enough to fuck my body; he wanted to mindfuck me as well. It was working.”

“He was my tormentor and my solace; the creator of the dark and the light within.”

COLLAGE

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PURCHASE LINKS

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AUTHOR

5082404CJ Roberts is an independent writer. She favors dark and erotic stories with taboo twists. Her work has been called sexy and disturbing in the same sentence.

Her debut novel, CAPTIVE IN THE DARK, has sold over 150,000 copies and is the first of three books in her bestselling and award winning series DARK DUET.

She was born and raised in Southern California. Following high school, she joined the U.S. Air Force in 1998, served ten years and traveled the world.

She writes short stories under the name Jennifer Roberts

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