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Xavier makes a lot of people nervous. The rest, he flat-out scares. More than his hulking, tattooed body, it’s his predator’s gaze that makes people feel vulnerable, as if he had the power to read their thoughts and see their soul. For his lovers, it’s Xavier’s ravenous appetite for all things carnal—for the taste of flesh under his tongue and the feel of a trembling body under his control, for whispered pleas and muffled cries—that makes him dangerous.
But recently, driven by a festering rage against the men who attacked his sister a decade ago, Xavier has developed a taste for a different kind of hunt and conquest: stalking men who do truly bad things and punishing the predators he sniffs out. The problem with vigilante justice, though, is sometimes the man in your trap is innocent.
Carson suspects he’s playing a risky game with dangerous men. But the lies are convincing, especially when they’re slipped to him among hundred dollar bills. He never guessed how big and dark the secret hidden under all the lies and money could be. And he has no idea he’s not the predator, but the prey, until it’s too late.
And you can’t beg for mercy when there’s a gag in your mouth.
But when Carson escapes from Xavier’s trap, he’s forced to accept that Xavier is far from his most dangerous enemy. Xavier may even hold the key to overcoming the painful past that has kept Carson prisoner for almost two decades.
Living with the guilt of his sister’s rape, Xavier has grown and nurtured an inner hatred for many kinds of people. So it isn’t surprising when he decides to unofficially assist in an investigation into a human trafficking ring taking on the front of a high end club catering to rich men. And perhaps it isn’t too much of a stretch that he meets a very attractive man who may be key to ending it all.
If I had to describe Bad Things, I would say it was a road trip that starts off pleasantly, but ends frustratingly with traffic and detours. Xavier was definitely the more interesting of the two, but Carson (unfortunately) gets a good amount of page time. Their relationship starts off unconventionally to say the least, but the progression of it didn’t feel very believable. In a way, most of the emotional development was recognized in hindsight, which made for quite the jump in their opinions of one another quite a leap.
However, the unbelievable relationship between Carson and Xavier didn’t tone down the sex. Holy cow, talk about steamy. Bad Things probably ranks up there in terms of sexiest book of the year. But even too much of a good thing isn’t always…good. And after a while, I was actually getting tired of the sex scenes. Chalk it up to old age, but I need a little bit more than a good ol’ orgasm (or three).
In terms of plot, the book definitely had one to start. But somewhere along the way, it got derailed by the introduction of two characters from another book, Dangerously Happy. Perhaps if I had read this other book, I would have enjoyed the portion introducing them. Or perhaps not. Either way, I started skimming towards the middle as I realized not much was happening except for lots of sex, kissing, and picture taking.
And while the book starts off deliciously dark with an unconventional start of a messed up relationship, the last portion of the book was nothing but melodrama and sappiness. Which, is not my sort of thing unfortunately.
So overall, Bad Things just didn’t work for me. Great steaminess and one interesting character (Xavier). However, the story was probably 30% longer than it needed to be, and the plot felt derailed towards the middle. While I’m happy with how the the book ended, I’m not quite sure if it was worth the time and trouble to get there.
Title: Bad Things
Author: Varian Krylov
Release Date: September 15, 2014
Purchase Links: Smashwords