Rating: 4.5 stars
Buy Links: Amazon | All Romance
Chase Connors has been in love with Enzo, a straight man, since the day the man brought him into his home. After suffering at the hands of a madman, Chase had issues to work through, and Enzo gave him a safe place to work through them, treating Chase as he would a cherished brother. Two years later, Chase still basks in the attention he receives from Enzo. If that’s all Chase can have, he’ll take it. When he finds out that Enzo’s most recent fling may be pregnant with Enzo’s child, Chase prepares himself for the worst, expecting to be thrown out, but finding himself reassured that he will always have a place in Enzo’s home and in Enzo’s life.
Enzo Martinelli is the head of the Martinelli family, mobsters and drug dealers to the core. He took Chase in not out of a sense of charity, but because he wanted better for the young man. He knew of Chase’s infatuation when he moved Chase into his home, but Enzo also knows the type of man he is himself. He kills for a living. He doesn’t want that for Chase. He wants Chase to have every opportunity to have what his former captor tried to rob from him.
But when one of Enzo’s oldest friends comes into town, Chase’s world is turned upside down. Enzo’s friend and sometimes-lover is male. Chase had no idea that the man he’d secretly loved for years was bi and now he refuses to take no for an answer. Enzo resists at first, certain that being his lover will put Chase in danger. Finally giving in gives Chase and Enzo what they have both desired for so long, but it doesn’t stop the traitors in Enzo’s life from attempting to kill him to take over the profitable empire that Enzo has created.
Out of the Darkness is the sequel to J.C. Owens’ Taken. And, ohmigod, if you’ve read Taken, you’ve been dying for Enzo and Chase’s story. It was worth the wait. I love this story. All heart-wrenching, angsty, and beautiful, Owens keeps true to form in the writing of this action-packed, adventure-filled, hot and steamy, romantic and exciting story.
I have a thing for bad boys. It’s not a secret and you really shouldn’t be surprised. I enjoy an author that has the ability to write a true bad boy, a man with seemingly no redeeming qualities, and still make me love him. On that note, please allow me to introduce you to Enzo Martinelli. Enzo is the baddest of the bad. He is head of a large crime family. He kills. He tortures. He deals drugs. He’s a bad guy, but he still has a heart. He shows his heart with Chase even before they are a couple. He takes care of Chase, gets him the help he needs to heal, wants the best for his future. So under his hard exterior is this caring man.
Chase is a horse of a different color. Torture doesn’t even begin to describe the hell he’s been through in his short life, yet he is strong, optimistic, and hopeful. He’s a beautiful character, full of determination. He’s vibrant and hopeful. I love his resolve when he sets his mind to something. It happens more than once in this story. When he wants something, Chase will get it.
This story is wonderful. I love the good guy/bad guy romance, of course. That struggle is perfect in this book. But there is also the mystery and action that makes up this story. The drama that comes from more than one relationship. The action in this story is heart pounding, perfect. The drama is enough to stress me out and call fictional characters “bitch” out loud with other people around, looking at me funny. Yes, that actually happened. And the mystery, well, let’s just say I didn’t see a lot of this plot coming. Even the villains, I had an idea who they might be, but no certainty. That’s how I like it. I like a story that is difficult to guess.
There were some editing issues and name switching that irritated me a little. The author uses “the Martinelli” as a nickname and it was a little annoying how much it was repeated throughout the story. But other than editing issues, I had no qualms with the book.
I loved this story. I loved the characters, even the cameos from Kirith and Landon. And I love the story. I want more and hope that this author is not finished with this world. I highly recommend Out of the Darkness by J.C. Owens. If you haven’t read Taken be sure to read that as well.