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SEDUCED IN THE DARK (THE DARK DUET, BOOK #2) BY C.J. ROBERTS: BOOK REVIEW

by hmhibbit, May 2, 2019

Seduced in the Dark

The Dark Duet, Book #2

By C.J. Roberts

ISBN#  9780615680040

Author’s Website:  http://www.aboutcjroberts.com/

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

*Beware of spoilers*

It’s been four months since we left Livvie and Caleb and a lot has transpired since then.  Livvie is back on U.S. soil.  She’s in the hospital where she was taken after she got shot crossing the border.  She has been charged as a possible terrorist and is being questioned by a pair of FBI agents.  She’s uncooperative until Agent Reed shows her a picture of Caleb.  Her grief over losing him is debilitating and she’ll do anything to possess that picture, even discuss what happened these last four months.  She details the horrors she experiences at Caleb’s hand, how she fell in love with him, despite it all, and how she ultimately lost him.

The slave auction is fast approaching and the agents are trying to figure out where it is to be held so they can raid it, arrest those involved, and free the slaves once and for all.  However, they can’t do it without Livvie’s help.  Can they trust her to tell them the truth? 

They also try to wrap their heads around how Livvie could fall in love with a monster that did such vile things to her.  A man that debased and used her and was intent on selling her for his own purposes.  And, when she’s done telling her tale they may have a better understanding of her and even Caleb.

“monsters aren’t born, they’re made”

This review is going to be a little all over the place because my emotions with this book were likewise all over the place.  By the end of the first book, Captive in the Dark, I was starting to love Caleb, in my own weird way.  He was starting to show emotion and was struggling with what they were doing to Livvie, seeing so much of himself in her.  I was expecting that to continue, but the spell was broken and I was just as devastated as Livvie was when he took her to Felipe’s mansion and turned cold and toward the end quite cruel in the presence of his peers. 

“It was worse–knowing he knew the difference between kindness and cruelty and chose the baser of the two.” 

Rafiq was questioning Caleb’s commitment and loyalty and if he had what it takes to train Livvie properly.  And, sadly, Caleb lets it affect how he treated her.  He had to prove he was up to the task, not to mention to try to convince himself that he could let her go when the time comes.  I know he didn’t want to treat her that way, but felt he had to; that it was expected and I was disenchanted and disappointed by the whole thing.  And some of the things he did, nobody was even around to witness.  I was constantly afraid of what horrible thing he was going to do next.  I think he did try to protect her to a point, otherwise she could have been treated like Rafiq treated Nancy *shudders*, but even at his worst, Caleb wasn’t nearly as cruel as Rafiq.

“Dealing with Caleb was all about perspective. You couldn’t appreciate his kindness until you’d felt his cruelty.”

This book is mostly presented to us in flashbacks as Livvie tells her story.  Considering I liked the last book so much I was pretty disappointed with the majority of this book while reading it.  I HATED this book most of the way through.  I despised how Caleb was treating Livvie.  After seeing the emotions he was capable of, it hurt to see him acting so cruel.  I wanted him to be redeemed, but he just kept getting worse and worse as time passed.  I was starting to wonder if Caleb could ever make up for the damage he was causing.  I was to the point that I didn’t even want to read the book, I had to FORCE myself to keep going, I did pay for the book after all …   And, then like the clouds lifting, the book suddenly got good about ¾ of the way through.  Caleb made Livvie do the one thing too much and it brought out his own jealousy, a powerful motivator apparently.  It forced him to claim her once and for all.  Claim her in a permanent way that could jeopardize their plans.   If only he could make Rafiq understand and find another way to get his vengeance. 

“Mine.”
The word was a declaration. It rocked him to his very foundation. It was a truth he’d kept hidden for far too long. Caleb didn’t know anything about love, or loving anyone, but he knew… Livvie was his.”

I did not expect the level of betrayal that Rafiq was responsible for.  He was so incredibly cruel in everything that he did.  I was happy when Caleb learned of all that he had done and no longer had to feel indebted to him.  However, I was also heartbroken for Caleb, all that he knew since being saved was a lie.  In the end, I felt that Caleb showed more compassion, then Rafiq deserved.

“He’d learned the hard way that there was no future when all he could see was revenge. The only thing revenge had ever given him was a brief moment of satisfaction, followed by an empty abyss. He was through with revenge. He wanted to feel full instead of empty, loved, instead of feared.”

This book took me through so many emotions.  Hate, sadness, and even happiness too … Caleb was able to make me feel all of those things.  I think it’s a testament to C.J. Roberts’s writing that she could make me feel all of those emotions in the same book.  Not to mention that I went from hating this book to really enjoying it by the end.  I am an emotional reader and I was blown away by just how much she could make me feel in this book.  Bravo!  This is a prime example why you should never give up on a book! Now I can’t wait to delve into Epilogue and get some more happily ever after with Caleb and Livvie!

“He had told her he wasn’t Prince Charming, but what he hadn’t said, was he wished he could be.”

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