February 18, 2016

TBT #20 - Review: Tears of Tess (Monsters in the Dark #1) by Pepper Winters

★TBT #20★
Making its appearance on this week's #ThrowbackThrusday is Monsters in the Dark series by Pepper Winters​. My first ever experience on the darker side of romance, and it totally blew my mind! The whole series was like a roller coaster ride of my feelings, it was terrifying yet full of hope and passionate love.

Title: Tears of Tess
Author: Pepper Winters
Series: Monsters in the Dark #1
Genre: contemporary, erotica, dark

“My life was complete. Happy, content, everything neat and perfect. Then it all changed. I was sold.”

Tess Snow has everything she ever wanted: one more semester before a career in property development, a loving boyfriend, and a future dazzling bright with possibility.

For their two year anniversary, Brax surprises Tess with a romantic trip to Mexico. Sandy beaches, delicious cocktails, and soul-connecting sex set the mood for a wonderful holiday. With a full heart, and looking forward to a passion filled week, Tess is on top of the world.

But lusty paradise is shattered.

Kidnapped. Drugged. Stolen. Tess is forced into a world full of darkness and terror.

Captive and alone with no savior, no lover, no faith, no future, Tess evolves from terrified girl to fierce fighter. But no matter her strength, it can’t save her from the horror of being sold.

Can Brax find Tess before she’s broken and ruined, or will Tess’s new owner change her life forever?

A New Adult Dark Contemporary Romance, not suitable for people sensitive to grief, slavery, and nonconsensual sex. A story about finding love in the strangest of places, a will of iron that grows from necessity, and forgiveness that may not be enough.

Amazon US | Amazon UK


Tears of Tess by Pepper Winters
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

My reaction when I see Dark Romance...

Yep, That me!! They scare me big time!! I can’t stand assault, violence, rape, Trafficking. These are usually elements for my nightmare. At some point I needed to be brave enough to come out of my comfort zone that’s when “Tears of Tess” came along.

“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.”

Just first few lines from Prologue and I dived into this story. Yes! I was terrified beyond belief but the story from Tess’s eyes made it real. She was a victim of human trafficking! I hoped and prayed that she stayed strong, she’d escape, she’d fight for her freedom and never breakdown but what followed after she was sold was worth reading.


I was so captivated by this story not a typical Stockholm syndrome cliché. Tess was definitely captive in Q’s mansion always plotting for her escape, never obeying her master. Series of events leads her to see different dimensions to Q. He was not a captor but a saviour, time and again he proves her that she is safe with him, he would always protect her. Q’s an enigma, he had an aura of power and authority but never really wanted to dominate Tess nor did he abuse her, yet trying to break her just to keep his demon lurked in the dark pit of his life. Tess is not submissive by nature instead she has her own dark twisted fantasy which she never releases until Q unlocks it.
“Only think of me and what I’m doing.
There is intimacy in pain esclave.
Let me make your pain my pleasure.”
But when time comes for her let go this twisted reality will she embrace her freedom? Or will she go back to her master the one her body obeys?


I loved the strength Tess carried throughout the book, Loved her transition from timid girl to a fighter, to a strong woman who embraced her true desire. I loved the passion and growing intensity between them. This is one unconventional love story, living together they didn't fix each other but unleashed their darkness to heal them both.
“I’m willing to be your monster Q.” 
The epilogue in Q’s POV was beautiful you will see his horrid past in bits and pieces. Once you learn them you will definitely fall for Q, there is more to him than just a monster.

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