Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Release Blitz feat Review + Giveaway:
Torrent by Gemma James!!!!

Title: Torrent (Condemned #1)
Author: Gemma James
Genre: Erotica, Romance
Release Date: July 22nd 2014

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She sent an innocent man to prison. Now, eight years later, he's returning the favor...

I’ve been obsessed with Rafe Mason since I was thirteen. The twisted part of this story is that I still want him, even now.

Now that he's holding me captive on an island.

Rafe has his reasons for doing what he's doing, and if I'm honest, I can't blame him. I’m the girl who sent him to prison for a heinous crime he didn't commit.

But now he's free and the tables have turned...now he's the one driven by obsession.

**TORRENT is a new adult dark romance with disturbing themes and explicit content, including sexual scenes and violence that may offend some. Intended for mature audiences. Part one of the CONDEMNED series. This is not a stand-alone read.**

My Review:

Alex De Luca was just a teenager when she lied and sent her friend, Rafe Mason, an innocent man, to prison for eight years. Instead of speaking up and doing the right thing, she let him rot in a cell while his hatred for her grew into something uncontrollable.

Now he's out on parole and he has only one objective. To break her in a way that she broke him. He wants her screams, her tears, and he wants to see her shatter into millions of pieces.

Honestly, this is a difficult book for me to review. A part of me disliked it while another part of me was sucked into everything that was happening. I'm not a stranger to darker reads and I rather enjoy stepping outside of my comfort zone and getting truly engrossed in a good work of fiction. The emotions that this kind of story tends to draw out of me are usually quite strong. They range from anger, disgust, acceptance, and it really forces me to try and understand just what made a character the way that they are.

Now there is a warning that Torrent features sexual scenes and violence that may offend some. I'm pretty sure we all know to expect something like that from a darker read. However, I know that some people have triggers and I want to let you know that there is rape between step-siblings in this book. If that hits home for you and will trigger a horrific memory, then you may want to pass on this one.

I did find it really hard to feel for Alex. I understand, to an extent, why she did what she did. But honestly, her actions once she was kidnapped baffled me. There wasn't enough of their past in this first book to make me form a connection. To make me understand how she could care for Rafe as he was hurting her. Torturing her. Violating her.

If I really reflect on the situation I can see where Rafe was coming from. He cared for a girl who essentially threw him away and let him rot for eight years. Things happen when you're locked up that change you. He had a lot of time to allow his anger to turn into an inferno like rage that would destroy everything around it, and of course he had his eyes set on one girl in particular.

This was a really quick read for me. There were some areas of the story that I felt like the execution was a little off, but Gemma's writing is captivating enough that I was able to overlook that fact.

I will admit that the ending drove me absolutely CRAZY. Not because it's a cliffhanger. I have no issues with those kinds of endings. However, I found the change of direction in the very last chapter to feel more like a cop-out than anything.

Overall I would have to give Torrent 3 stars. It wasn't what I was expecting, and I do hope to see more character development and more glimpses into their past.

**This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review. The fact that it was given to me in no way changes the way that I feel, and this review is based solely on the story itself**

10 Random Facts About Torrent:

1. I began writing Torrent last summer. Back then it was a barebones beginning about a young, reckless girl and her dead brother's best friend who couldn't fight his darkness any longer. The island has been in the story all along.

2. I really have Skye Warren to thank for how Torrent turned out. Last year around Christmas time, she called for submissions for a short story anthology about criminals. Well, I had an idea … and that idea was too good to confine to a short story. I decided to combine my earlier efforts with the premise of a girl sending a man to prison for a crime he didn't commit, and him coming back for what he felt he deserved.

3. Once I had the island in mind (small, privately own, with a single cabin on it), I turned to Google to find out if I could find any real islands of a similar nature to use as a reference. There just happens to be one about three hours from where I live, situated on the Oregon side of the Columbia River. It even has a cabin on it. I've driven there twice and have seen it from the highway. I call it "my island." The setting in the novel, though based on real places, is purely fictional, with the exception of the Columbia River and Portland, Oregon.

4. I rewrote the beginning about three, maybe four times.

5. Zach and Alex were originally full-blooded siblings. I gave into censoring myself out of fear of being banned from retailers, even though I had no intention at first of writing sexual scenes between the two. Once I changed their relation to step-siblings, the brief taboo scene in the beginning formed, and in my opinion, strengthened the setup of the novel. It also opened wicked avenues for book two. ;)

6. I didn't immediately know why Alex sent Rafe to prison. She was a stubborn character who kept me in the dark for a while!

7. Torrent is the first book in which I wrote from the hero's POV. It was interesting getting inside Rafe's head.

8. One of the twists about Rafe's past (something he learns after he's out of prison) basically wrote itself into the story part way through. Same with Jax, Rafe's buddy. These characters and subplots just popped in of their own accord!

9. If you're looking for an easy read with hearts, flowers, and mainstream topics—this isn't the book for you. This story will make you squirm, possibly make you sick at times, and push you into the darkest corners of your mind. But I'm a romantic at heart and believe in happy endings. Getting there is hell though.

10. I do not feel guilty about the cliffhanger ending. Have you watched any TV season finales lately? AHHHHHHHH! I understand the frustration, and I'm evil enough to rub my hands together in glee. Don't lynch me. I'm working on the second book.

About the Author:

Gemma James (a pseudonym for Christina Jean Michaels) loves to explore the darker side of sex in her fiction. She's morbidly curious about anything dark and edgy and enjoys exploring the deviant side of human nature. Her stories have been described as being "not for the faint of heart."

She lives with her husband and their four children — three rambunctious UFC/wrestling loving boys and one girl who steals everyone’s attention.

Follow Her Here: Website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads

Coming Soon in Late October 2014

Rampant (Condemned #2)

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