Category Archives: C J Roberts

CALEB SPEAKS! EPILOGUE (The Dark Duet #2.5) by CJ ROBERTS

epilogue pic

 

SYNOPSIS

I’m writing this because you begged. You know how I love the begging. In fact, you probably know too many things and know them far too well.
Who am I?
Well, that’s what I’m trying to figure out. I was a whore in my youth, a killer since my adolescence, and a monster as a man. I am the man who kidnapped Livvie. I am the man who held her in a dark room for weeks. But, most importantly, I am the man she loves.
She loves me. It’s quite sick, isn’t it?
Of course, there’s more to our story than can be surmised in a few short sentences, but I’m at a loss for justifying my behavior back then. I assume if you’re reading this, I don’t need to make those justifications. You’ve already made your own.
You’re reading this because you want to know about the rest of the story. You want to know what happened that warm summer night in September of 2010, the night I met Livvie at The Paseo. It was the night my life changed all over again.
It didn’t happen exactly as Livvie said. She’s been very kind to me in the retelling of our story. The truth is far more…complicated.

black heart 3

 Reviewed by Jenny

5 Stunning stars!

“Who am I?
Am I Caleb?
Am I James?

I’ve often asked myself this very thing and have always come up with a different answer. Perhaps the only answer that can be truthful is to say, “I am both.”

Such was the beginning of Epilogue and with these words I was drawn back into the Dark Duet series. Those words crushed me for the man who was, and is, Caleb/James.

Being up close and personal with Caleb felt……. intimate.  I experienced a connection and a love for Caleb the like in which I never have before – it was as if Caleb was narrating his story to me personally. As if this beautiful, dangerous and damaged man was laying his inner most thoughts, fears and feelings bare… to ME.

“Tell me I don’t deserve you. Tell me all the things I already know.”

Caleb’s telling of his story touched me deeply and had me laughing with him, feeling happiness and sadness for him, whilst also experiencing a sense of anger both at him and with him.  Stripping his emotions bare for all to see rendered me to tears and made want to reach out, touch his cheek, offer him assurance and urge him to continue. His humour charmed me  and the power of Caleb’s voice culminated in emotions of every description to course through me.

“She wanted me. She wanted me as much as I wanted her…..”

Caleb’s story always demanded to be told. Well I know I wanted to hear it – and who else but Caleb could make us understand and give us the answers we so desperately craved. There was much I desired to hear. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I was completely satisfied at the end of Seduced, but if I was going to be privy to Caleb’s narrative on how Livvie and Caleb arrived at the point at the end of Seduced …well, the opportunity was one I wasn’t going to miss!!  From that point, a want to know became a need to know.

“Fear is part of it.”

Why Livvie? Why did he choose Livvie, and how was she to have such an effect on Caleb……how was she able to enter his heart and break down his defenses where others hadn’t.  Who was Caleb now?  Was he very different to the Caleb then? What feelings did he experience that night in September of 2010, the night he met Livvie at The Paseo. I needed to know it all!

“It was only natural for her to wonder about the ways I hadn’t changed.”

Well, I could not have been more impressed with the execution and conclusion of Caleb’s words in Epilogue if I tried.  CJ Roberts has indeed done Caleb, and her readers proud.

Caleb is an engaging, charming, sexy and witty narrator who completely captivated me.  His is a story peppered with humour, inner conflict, cheekiness and honesty.

Did Caleb slip effortlessly back into Livvie’s life or did he have to fight like he has never fought before? How had Livvie coped without Caleb during his absence and how did Livvie move on and make a life for herself?

“I always wondered—before—if you craved me like this. Did you?”

We are afforded so much more than mere “answers” in Epilogue.  CJ Roberts has written a raw tale in what I feel is an absolute must read for those of us who took Livvie and Caleb into our hearts. To bear witness to the struggle, the turmoil, the fun, the sensuality and the absolute passion between these two really is compelling reading and in no way constitutes “an alternative pov” tag.

Epilogue does not simply fill in the gaps.  It manages to give us an extension of the story where the reader experiences a journey so different and intoxicating it’s akin to feeling a new phase in the lives of Livvie and Caleb. Epilogue is a frank, gritty, passionate and emotional read where feelings are stripped raw and the narrative is told in an almost voyeuristic manner. Oh yeah, I admit it….there was a time or two I actually answered Caleb, such was the intimate nature in the way he conveyed his thoughts, as if he were conversing with me personally.

“No one knew who we were or what we had been through to get to that moment.”

The sex is kinky and very, VERY hot …..oh and very, very consensual…..VERY consensual. These two have been programmed in such a way that sex, the sex they enjoy, is very much a part of them as breathing. How they express and feel, so much is sexual and experiencing the emotion built into these scenes will leave you breathless. Yep readers, these two definitely know how to get your pulse racing!

“No questions, Pet. You’ll like it. I promise. Or at the very least, I will.”

As I said, the manner in which this story is told really does make one feel like a voyeur watching two people in their most private, intimate moments and with this came the heart crashing feelings of witnessing Caleb attempting to assimilate into Livvie’s life, trying to understand the woman she was to the woman she is, addressing his guilt and desperately wanting to be part of Livvie’s life.

“My feelings toward her were on the tip of my tongue. I’d been holding the words in since the moment I had watched her walk out of my life…”

Livvie was a revelation.  This girl who we all empathized with, hurt with and who made us feel so desperately for the girl who lost her youth and her innocence and who, at the hands of Caleb experienced the most harrowing, confusing and conflicting of situations and emotions…..how did Livvie survive and maintain the capacity to forgive and love?  Or did she? Hers is an inner strength we admire greatly.

“I want to ask you a few questions, Caleb, and I need for you to be completely honest with me. Can you do that?”

I cannot urge readers enough to pick up and devour Epilogue as I did.  To refer to Epilogue as merely “Caleb’s pov” would so far off the mark because Epilogue is, in factan extension of the story and an absolute MUST READ.

CJ Roberts is an author who knows how to deliver a story. This author loves, deeply loves her characters and it shows.  She has never shied from telling Caleb and Livvie’s story the way “they” want it told and has always remained true to her characters, even if that has been at the discomfort of the reader and for that I admire and respect her greatly.

As a reader I love nothing more than to be tested. To be taken out of my comfort zone, to question my thought process and feel emotion to the point of tears and anger, to have my gut twisting and my heart aching….it’s what reading is all about for me and it’s bloody exhilarating. There’s nothing better, and I can tell you that has been my experience with every book in the Dark Duet Series and Epilogue is no exception.

“Tell me I’m a sick bastard and you want me out of your life forever.”

Epilogue is Caleb’s story and who better to trust with his story than the person who loves him most.  CJ Roberts….. Caleb and I commend you. What a truly sensual, beautiful, emotional, provocative, passionate and raw story you and Caleb have given us.

“I know, Pet. We’ve come a long way from there. Yet, here we are….”

Caleb spoke, CJ answered and I listened. Caleb and Livvie, you own my heart. 

 ARC Supplied by author for an honest review

THE DARK DUET SERIES by C J ROBERTS

dark duet series

CAPTIVE IN THE DARK BOOK ONE
Amazon us || Amazon uk 

SEDUCED IN THE DARK – BOOK TWO
Amazon us || Amazon uk

EPILOGUE BOOK THREE
Amazon us || Amazon uk

 

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Filed under 5 Stars, C J Roberts, Our Reviewers, Pick an Author, Reviews by Jenny

SEDUCED IN THE DARK – THE DARK DUET BOOK TWO by CJ ROBERTS

 

SYNOPSIS

BOOK TWO OF THE DARK DUET
The exciting, titillating, and action-filled conclusion to Captive in the Dark.
What is the price of redemption?
Rescued from sexual slavery by a mysterious Pakistani officer, Caleb carries the weight of a debt that must be paid in blood.
The road has been long and fraught with uncertainty, but for Caleb and Livvie, it’s all coming to an end.
Can he surrender the woman he loves for the sake of vengeance? 
Or will he make the ultimate sacrifice?
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It seemed to Caleb, the nature of human beings revolved around one empirical truth: we want what we cannot have. For Eve, it was the fruit of the forbidden tree. For Caleb, it was Livvie.

Jenny: 5 Amazing plus stars!

This was definitely one of the most gut-wrenchingly difficult, raw, brutal, thought provoking and emotional reads I have ever sat through.  There were times I thought I couldn’t go on and my resolve was sorely tested.  My chest ached, my stomach was in knots and more than once I felt physically sick with the anticipation of what was about to happen.

“I’ve been doing this a long time- manipulating people to get my way. That’s why you think you love me. Because I’ve broken you down and built you back up to believe it. It wasn’t an accident. Once you leave this behind….. you’ll see that.”

Reading this book I felt that CJ must be one of the most talented writers I’ve ever read.  How she crafted this story and brought it all together left me in total awe.  She is a storyteller who certainly doesn’t shy away from what she feels needs to be told, even if, at times, this makes the reader uncomfortable and takes them to a place they thought they could never go.

The reader is taken from the time Livvie is captured and from there she recounts how her predicament evolved and how Caleb and the others played a part in her story. It was nothing short of brilliant how this story was pieced together.

“She kisses my scars and I create new ones for her.” 

Caleb is still the broken “monster” we met in Captive in the Dark.  He is hell-bent on his revenge and willing to sacrifice Livvie (Kitten) into slavery just to ensure his task is carried out.

I have to admit to having strong feelings for Caleb when reading Captive in the Dark (The Dark Duet #1).  I hated him because I loved him, when really I should have despised him.  Nothing changes in this book.  I was still questioning my sanity over my feelings for this man.  How could I, after what he had done and was still prepared to do, feel so much love and compassion for him?  What was it about this man that drew me to him? Oh trust me, there were times when I wanted to knife him through the heart.  This man will test you, and he will test you BIG time, but his tender times with Livvie will hit you deep in your heart and it is at these times when you feel, when you hope, that there is goodness and perhaps love somewhere in this man.

Livvie has grown in this book.  She has feelings for Caleb that have her questioning if she is of sound mind.  How could she feel the way she does for Caleb after what he has done to her?  After what he was still intending to do to her?  He never sugar coated her fate.  You will be clenching your heart for Livvie. You can’t put yourself in her shoes because you couldn’t withstand the heartbreak of being there.

“Tell me you love me, Caleb,” I whispered.
He kissed me, refusing. “I wish I could, Kitten” 

I will tell you now that I cried reading this book more than I have ever cried reading a book before.  Whilst this story is at times shocking, it was also so emotional throughout, and catching glimpses of Caleb’s past will have you clutching your chest.  I defy anyone to read the last chapter of this book without crying.

After finishing this book I sobbed for an hour afterwards and just stared into space.  I had to absorb everything I had read and marvel at what an amazing and emotional journey this author had just taken me on.

“In the dark, my master let down his guard and he was Caleb again. He didn’t correct me. He didn’t punish me. He didn’t push me away emotionally. Caleb was there to hold me until the nightmares passed. He was there to tell me I was beautiful. He was there to tell me I was going to be okay. In the dark, he seduced me. I didn’t want the seduction to end.” 

As I’ve said, this is by no means an easy read, let’s face it, a book about human trafficking and sex slavery was never written with the intention of being an easy read.

However, when you pick this book up (be sure to read Captive in the Dark first!) you will experience, what I can promise you will be an emotional rollercoaster the likes of which you will be hard pressed to beat.

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

This book will make you angry.  It will make you sick.  It will make you sad. It will test your resolve.  It will make you question your thoughts and your feelings, but I promise you, you will not forget this book.  It will stay with you long after the last page, because not only will this book touch your heart, it will touch your soul.

 (Please note: I was a Beta reader for this book)

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THE DARK DUET SERIES by C J ROBERTS

dark duet series

CAPTIVE IN THE DARK BOOK ONE
Amazon us || Amazon uk 

SEDUCED IN THE DARK – BOOK TWO
Amazon us || Amazon uk

EPILOGUE BOOK THREE
Amazon us || Amazon uk

 

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Filed under 5 Stars, C J Roberts, Our Reviewers, Pick an Author, Reviews by Jenny

CAPTIVE IN THE DARK – THE DARK DUET BOOK ONE by CJ ROBERTS

SYNOPSIS

Caleb is a man with a singular interest in revenge. Kidnapped as a young boy and sold into slavery by a power-hungry mobster, he has thought of nothing but vengeance. For twelve years he has immersed himself in the world of pleasure slaves searching for the one man he holds ultimately responsible. Finally, the architect of his suffering has emerged with a new identity, but not a new nature. If Caleb is to get close enough to strike, he must become the very thing he abhors and kidnap a beautiful girl to train her to be all that he once was.

Eighteen-year-old Olivia Ruiz has just woken up in a strange place. Blindfolded and bound, there is only a calm male voice to welcome her. His name is Caleb, though he demands to be called Master. Olivia is young, beautiful, naïve and willful to a fault. She has a dark sensuality that cannot be hidden or denied, though she tries to accomplish both. Although she is frightened by the strong, sadistic, and arrogant man who holds her prisoner, what keeps Olivia awake in the dark is her unwelcome attraction to him.

WARNING: This book contains very disturbing situations, dubious consent, strong language, and graphic violence.


 Reviewed jointly by Gitte and Jenny

5 dark stars

Captive in the Dark  is like no other book we’ve read.

It was  gut-wrenching, intense, at times uncomfortable, yet one of the most emotional and well written books you will ever read.

It will have you questioning everything about your feelings and you may even question your sanity over the compassion and love you will feel for Caleb.

Caleb is a character we should detest, but you can’t.  Everyone we have recommended this book to has had the same conflicting feelings as us in regard to him. You don’t want to feel compassion for this man, but you do.   You want to hate him, but you can’t.

“He was my tormentor and my solace; the creator of the dark and the light within.” 

Oh, don’t get us wrong, there were times we wished this man severe harm, but in the next breath we saw something in him that gave us hope.

What is this book about?

“This isn’t a romance. You’re not a damsel in distress and I’m not the handsome prince come to save you.”

Caleb is a man with a singular interest in revenge. Kidnapped as a young boy and sold into slavery by a power-hungry mobster, he has thought of nothing but vengeance. For twelve years he has immersed himself in the world of pleasure slaves searching for the one man he holds ultimately responsible. Finally, the architect of his suffering has emerged with a new identity, but not a new nature. If Caleb is to get close enough to strike, he must become the very thing he abhors and kidnap a beautiful girl to train her to be all that he once was.

Eighteen-year-old Olivia Ruiz has just woken up in a strange place. Blindfolded and bound, there is only a calm male voice to welcome her. His name is Caleb, though he demands to be called Master. Olivia is young, beautiful, naïve and wilful to a fault. She has a dark sensuality that cannot be hidden or denied, though she tries to accomplish both. Although she is frightened by the strong, sadistic, and arrogant man who holds her prisoner, what keeps Olivia awake in the dark is her unwelcome attraction to him.

Should  we like this story? Should  we fall in love with  Caleb!? No we shouldn’t.  But WE DID!!!!

“Caleb was a strange person, cruel and inhuman; a monster, and yet, at other times, he seemed so capable of something like caring. He made me cry and scream and shake with fear and nearly a split second later he could make me almost believe he wasn’t responsible for any of it. He could hold me and make me feel safe. How was that possible?” 

The writing is beyond perfection if there is such a thing. Genius – Flawless!!

The story was so dark and emotional it gave  us shivers and  more than once we cried for  Caleb and Olivia  who each took a piece of  of our  heart! The irrational became rational and for CJ  to make us LOVE this story, love Caleb and not be able to put it down is undoubtedly a testament to the class act of CJ Roberts.

The sequel to CITD will be released on September 1st. We urge you to read Captive in the Dark now.  Process this book and give yourself time before plunging into Seduced in the Dark to enable you to fully feel the effect of the sequel.

Although at times disturbing, this book is compelling reading.

 

THE DARK DUET SERIES by C J ROBERTS

dark duet series

CAPTIVE IN THE DARK BOOK ONE
Amazon us || Amazon uk

SEDUCED IN THE DARK – BOOK TWO
Amazon us || Amazon uk

EPILOGUE BOOK THREE
Amazon us || Amazon uk

 

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Filed under C J Roberts, Our Reviewers, Pick an Author, Reviews by Gitte, Reviews by Jenny