Maddox Cross has always had to be tough. When his father went to jail for murder, the teenager took care of his sister and mother. Now on his own and working security at a night club, Maddox wants to become a tattoo artist-a dream that comes closer to reality when he falls for the hottest, most tatted woman he's ever seen. She's wild and beautiful, and Maddox will do anything to be with her.
Bee Malone came to town to open up her new tattoo parlor, Masquerade. Since being kidnapped as a young girl, Bee has had trouble getting close to anyone. But when she meets Maddox, she sees that under his hard biker's body is the sensitive soul of an artist. What starts out as a sizzling one-night stand soon becomes so much more.
Bee wants Maddox to join her tattoo business, but letting him into her life means revealing all her most intimate secrets. And as the past begins to intertwine with her present, Bee fears their love may not be as permanent as their ink . . .
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Sadly I can't say the same about the second book in the Games series, Facade. It just wasn't the same experience and I felt let down once I'd finished reading it. But even though Facade never gripped me as hard as Charade did... it was still a pretty good book. Enough to earn a 4 out of 5 rating.
So in keeping with my tradition of reading this entire series as each book gets released, I was once again excited to begin reading Masquerade. This is the third book in the Game series and as is the norm, previous characters from both Charade and Facade make appearances. I kind of like that in any series. It's nice to be able to keep in touch with familiar characters while we get to know new ones. It makes the reading experience not such a lonely one...
Especially if the new characters are two you aren't really sure you actually like. Well... I can't say I didn't like Bee and Maddox... I just couldn't 'get' them if that makes sense. I didn't connect much and it's not because they weren't great people. I think it's just that both had so many issues that this clouded my reading (and enjoying) experience.
Now by now means is Masquerade not a well written book. It is. This of course is Nyrae Dawn's style. So I didn't give up because even though when I got to about 50% I still didn't really feel captured, I was enjoying the book to an extent. Enough to complete it and of course enough to award it a 4 out of 5 stars.
But honestly my rating is more so directed at the writing style, the plot and the overall reading experience. Not the characters (Bee & Maddox) at all. Maybe Maddox... since again Nyrae has proven that she kicks ass at writing male POV's... but I can't really say I fell in love with Bee. In truth I didn't enjoy reading her POV much. I found myself skimming a little at one stage. Maddox's side was another story. I did enjoy reading through his eyes. I liked that for once we didn't have a cocky, hot headed macho man. He was all male... don't get me wrong... he just had a lot going on in his head which took preference over an attitude - which I really liked.
I guess the problem here is that for once we have the girl (Bee) who has a whole lot of attitude and perhaps that's why I didn't really like her much. The roles were reversed and for whatever reason - I didn't love it.
Masquerade is about Bee... who early off you learn was kidnapped when she was a child. Nine years later she's returned to her parents and for this reason she doesn't know who she is. She can't relate to the Leila her parent's expect her to be and neither can she be the Coral her kidnappers brought her up to be. So now she's Bee. It's her own identity and she's living each day trying to discover who 'Bee' really is. And she struggles to understand the concept of what Love actually means. Since her kidnappers loved her, but they also stole her. Her parent's Love her but they have no idea of who she is since she didn't get to grow up with them. So she's scared, confused and really messed up.
Maddox is the brother of Laney (female lead character from Facade) - so if you've read Facade you will kind of know the back story there. I wont be going into that in this review since it would take a whole lot of time. But the bottom line is that Maddox feels guilt. A whole lot of it. Guilt for not loving his mother enough or maybe it's for loving her even though she treats his sister badly. Guilt for not protecting his family from the sins of his father. Guilt for not protecting Adrian (Facade) also from the sins of Maddox's father... it's a whole lot of guilt and it's totally understandable.
Anyway so that's the basis of the book. My four stars come about (like I mentioned) the writing is great, the plot pretty cool and overall it's a great read. But I couldn't help but get a little confused at all the drama inside Bee's head. Most of the time I felt as if we were on repeat instead of moving forward. The conclusion (after all the 'I shouldn't, but I want to' motions) was kind of bland. There's no punch in this book. It runs on one wave length and gets a little dreary at 60%. It was only at 80% that I can say that the book felt as if some progress was being made. That's a lot of percentages to get through before something captures you.
I hate to say this but I'm feeling as if this series is dying. It's only been going downwards from the original high and it's not a good pattern.
Rating: 4 Stars
I received this book from the publisher / author in exchange for an honest review
• Read My Review For Facade (Games #2)
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