Sunday, March 26, 2017

Book Review: Black Hearts by Karina Halle

Black Hearts (Sins Duet #1)
By Karina Halle
Release Date: February 19, 2017
Source: Publisher
For Vicente Bernal, truth is all he’s known. The son of an infamous drug lord, Vicente was born to help run the family business, which means he’s been raised on a throne of sordid pasts and dirty laundry, violence and pride. But when Vicente stumbles across someone he’s not supposed to know about – a woman from his father’s checkered past – he sets out to California to find her behind his father’s back.

What Vicente doesn’t expect to find in San Francisco is Violet McQueen, the woman’s twenty-year old daughter. Beautiful and edgy with a vulnerability he can’t resist, Violet tempts Vicente from afar and though he promised himself he’d stay away from her, curiosity and lust are powerful forces. Besides, Vicente has always gotten everything he wants – why shouldn’t he have Violet too?

Soon his wants turn into an obsession, one that sweeps Violet into his games as they fall madly, deeply in love with each other, the type of first love that can drive a person mad.

But it’s a love with tragic consequences.

Both the truth – and the lies – not only threaten to tear them apart, but threaten their very lives.

Someone has to pay for the sins of the fathers.

And they’ll be paying the price with their souls.

I'm a fan of Karina Halle's books, but sometimes they're a hit or miss for me. I really love her books that have to do with travel and discovering yourself and I was excited to read something new from her. Sadly, there wasn't enough character/relationship development in this one.

As the son of a Mexican drug lord, Vicente has lived around danger all his life and he knows he's destined to take over his father's job. When Vicente discovers something secret about his father's past that he has never heard of, he knows he has to go to California and see the truth for himself. What he finds, though, is Violet McQueen, daughter of the women he came to find. Vicente spends time with Violet to uncover some truths, but ends up enjoying the woman and the intense passion they share. Both start falling hard for each other, but is what they have real and will it last when the truth is finally unveiled?

Going into this one, I didn't really know what to expect. This is a spin-off of Karina's Sins and Needles series, but you definitely don't have to read those to read this one. Black Hearts takes place in the near future and it fell a little flat for me. I didn't really care for Vicente and felt like it was a bit insta-lovey. I didn't really feel the real chemistry between Vicente and Violet, especially on Violet's end. She just talked about how she was so attracted and pulled towards him, but I didn't really feel the actual development of their relationship.

Many reviews for this book raved about the action and suspense, but the exciting parts of this book didn't happen until well after halfway through. The beginning/middle of the book was very slow and dragged by. Later on in the story, it randomly switched viewpoints to one of the characters' parents and it took away from learning about and connecting more with Vicente and Violet. I definitely still have questions and want to know what is going on with these characters, but I just didn't care for their romance.

Overall, this one was a bit of a disappointment. While most people on Goodreads seemed to love this one, I couldn't get into the story and didn't buy the relationship. Hopefully book two gives me more answers and a deeper relationship with our main characters. 

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