Tears of Tess by Pepper Winters
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
5 sparrow stars
Tess Snow is a twenty year old college student who lives with her boyfriend, Brax, in Austarila. Brax and Tess have a good relationship. It’s sweet, simple, easy.
Brax wanted me. Brax was safe. I loved him in my own way.
Brax is everything Tess could ever want in a boyfriend. Everything with them is perfect. Except their sex life. Tess has always had different wants and needs than her boyfriend. She wants to try to step out of the box with Brax, and what better time to do that then on their vacation to Cancun?
While on vacation, the unthinkable happens to Tess. She is taken. Stolen. Kidnapped to be sold. Tess tries to find ways to escape, get out, but she is unsuccessful. She doesn’t make it easy on the kidnappers, she fights.
I would never give up. I would fight until I died.
After being held into captivity for a while, she finds out she is leaving Mexico, going to an undisclosed location. She is going to her master. This terrifies her more than anything.
Three little words. If anyone asked what I was most afraid of, what terrified me, stole my breath, and made my life flicker before my eyes, I would say three little words.
I was sold.
When Tess gets to her new home, she is surprised. It is big and beautiful. She meets her new master. His name is Q. She doesn’t know much about Q. All she knows is he is French, rich, handsome, and he owns her. That makes him a monster in her eyes.
Even though she knows these things about Q, there is something about him that excites her. She hates how she responds to him. She feels something for him that she’s never felt before. All those things she has always wanted and tried to hide... thats no longer possible.
I hated him, knew what he did was wrong, but my body, shit, my body didn’t care.
Q has some dark desires, but he’s not the typical dark and sadistic master. You can tell throughout the story he goes back and forth trying to keep his wants and desires in check. He doesn’t want to go to far, but Tess has her own wants and desires. She has a way of pushing Q, bringing out the side of him he tries to cage.
‘Come for me, esclave.’
How far is too far? Tess is a strong character. She is not easily broken. She will do anything for her freedom. But she’s fighting a battle. A battle between her mind and her body.
“After tonight, every time I say your name you’ll get wet for me. I not only own your body but your identity, too. Do you deny it?”
“No, I don’t deny it. I’m yours. Through and through.”
She starts to feel things she never imagined she would feel while in captivity.
‘Monsters find each other in the dark.’
I’d never felt this way. This uninhibited. This free.
I finally found a place where my twistedness belonged. In Q’s arms.
‘He opened my cage and allowed me to fly. I can’t stop it if my freedom is here.’
Q and Tess...There is so much I want to say about Q’s character, but I don’t want to spoil any of the book. There were a few things about him I assumed, but also a few things about him that surprised me. I love a good damaged man, so you know I loved Q. He was just irresistible. And the french... I could just imagine his accent and it made me melt. Tess was tough. She was resilient. She knew what she wanted, and she went after it. I respected her for that. I loved Q and Tess separately, but I loved them more together.
‘Je suis à toi’. I am yours.
‘Nous sommes les uns des autres.’ We are each others.
This was a fantastic read. It captivated me from the beginning and I couldn’t put it down. We read this story from Tess’s perspective, but we get a nice epilogue from Q’s p.o.v. Beautiful. Emotional. Conflicting. Sexy. Edgy. All those things and more.
I was expecting this to be a little darker and more disturbing. It had it’s dark moments, but it wasn’t as much of a mindfuck as I expected it to be. It didn’t make me enjoy it any less. For those of you that don’t love the dark and disturbing reads, it will probably be on the dark side for you. There were a few scenes that were on the dark and twisted side, but not as many as I was expecting. Overall, I was very impressed with this debut novel. A 5 star read for me and going on my favorites shelf! Anyone looking for a semi-dark, unconventional love story with some bdsm, give it a go! I am looking forward to reading more from this author in the future!
**ARC kindly provided by author, Pepper Winters, in an exchange for an honest review.**
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