Review – The Obsidian Collection – Various Authors

Summary:

Nine authors. Nine dark-love novellas.

The wicked have never looked so good…

Obsidian Escape by Rebel Adams
Just one look at the battered form of Whitney Geddings awakens a fierce protective instinct in Detective Jackson Ogden…but at what price?

Obsidian Liquor by Scarlett Dawn
Reporter, Elizabeth Forter, never expected one drunken challenge to leave her sexually satisfied and waking beside Daniil – the head of the Russian mafia.

Obsidian Faith by Bev Elle
Shanice Bailey’s epic faith in Trevor Kyle, the man she’s loved since they were both wards at the Baptist Children’s Home, is shaken when his sketchy foster father shows up on their honeymoon.

Obsidian Heart by Nicole Flockton
Will Erika’s holiday fling with Brandt bring him out of the shadows, or is his heart destined for darkness?

Obsidian Sky by Lara Henley
When military man, Brandon Michaels, comes home to a town he no longer recognizes, his salvation may rest in Arabella Knight, a woman who has secrets that no one knows.

Obsidian Ice by Missy Johnson
Medical intern Cam Fletcher knew becoming a surgeon would be hard work, but what he wasn’t counting on was falling for his mentor – cocky surgeon Eric Langdon.

Obsidian Jewel by Angel Lawson
Professional thieves, competitors, and occasional lovers, Maya Clarke and Malcolm Kent, must work together for the job of a lifetime and try not to kill one another while doing it.

Obsidian Desire by t.h. snyder
Can one chivalrous act change Tyler Jones, a coldhearted man, or will desire burn through his soul and change him forever?

Obsidian Beauty by Emily Walker
Out of jail and finally ready to confront the man who left her there to rot, Abigail Rivers is upset to learn Benton Sellers has moved on with no regard for the sacrifices she has made for him

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Review:

1) Obsidian Escape – Rebel Adams
Whilst I enjoyed this story, I was a bit surprised that there was no mention of Jackson getting hauled over the coals because of his relationship with Whitney. Afterall, he was the lead police officer on her domestic abuse case, so I assume that he would have had a severe telling off.

I enjoyed the interaction between them, it felt like extreme fore play, leading up to the steamy sex scene. Not once did it feel forced or rushed, and the quality of writing was very good. A few minor editorial errors, but nothing to put off readers

2) Obsidian Liquor – Scarlett Dawn
When I first started reading this one, I struggled to get in to it due to some over formal wording/dialogue and a couple of repeated spelling errors, but once I moved passed those, I was sucked in very quickly.

I admit I was a little disappointed with the ending as far too many questions were left unanswered, but I also understand why the author did that. I just hope a sequel will be considered to give the reader some closure and enable us to answer the questions.

I think this story would have been better as a full length novel rather than a novella, maybe then the ending could have satisfied me that bit more.
3) Obsidian Faith – Bev Elle
I liked the premise of this story, with Trevor and Shanice being foster kids together, and growing up with families living near each other.

While I was drawn in to the characters and their stories, it wasn’t my favourite. Not because it was badly written or unrelateable, far from it. it was an extremely well written and thought out story with an engaging plot. It simply didn’t grab me without letting go the way some stories have done.

Again, I think this story could have worked better being longer to enable the author explain the building relationship between Trevor and Shanice as it felt pretty sudden to me, even though I expected it to happen. I don’t think quite enough background to their falling in love was given.

4) Obsidian Heart – Nicole Flockton
A little bit on the ‘cheesy’ side of romance for me – 2 people, hiding from their past fated to meet, falling in love. But that didn’t mean it wasn’t enjoyable, it was. It just felt a bit too ‘predictable’ and a little cliche for my liking.

The settings were described beautifully, and made me want to hop on a flight straight away, but more to relax rather than meet my own Brandt. Whilst I enjoyed the story for what it was, I felt like I’d read similar before. I think it would make a great TV movie, especially seeing the locations and being able to visualise the characters.

5) Obsidian Sky – Lara Henley
I don’t think much research was done into either military personnel or the Amish lifestyle. Brandon speaks like a teenager, yet he’s returning from, what I assume to be Afghanistan, after 5 (uhm… That’s far too long) years. I come from a military family, and something about him and his military life didn’t ring true for me. I couldn’t quite work out how old he was supposed to be, but his POV was a mish mash of overly formal and teenaged sounding which was very confusing.

Arebella comes across as a 15/6 yr old with the way her POV is written, considering she raised her sister from 5 yrs old, before running away from an arranged marriage. There was no mention of Rumspringa which surprised me when Are was so unhappy in her community, even at the age of 5, which again I found unrealistic.

I really struggled with this story, and couldn’t finish it. The lack of research, which suggested to me that the author wanted to make an impact, so picked a military lead meeting an Amish girl to cause a clash of upbringing just for the sake of it. and the young sounding writing were too much for me to overlook as a reader. Its a good idea for a story, but needs more research and further editing, which would make it work better as a full length novel rather than a novella.

6) Obsidian Ice – Missy Johnson
Engaging from the start, Cam is likeable and relateble.  I loved the interaction between he and Erin, whilst a minor character, seemed to be quite an important one. I spotted a couple of minor editing mistakes (Eric’s surname changes from Fraser to Stanton), but I barely noticed because I was so engrossed in the story.

A sweet story about self acceptance and learning to be yourself, this is the only m/m story in the anthology.
The story, and romance within, didn’t feel rushed at all which made it read all the more natural, yet the ending was a little too abrupt for my liking. I think an epilogue would have worked well to round off the story a little more.

7) Obsidian Jewel – Angel Lawson
I loved this story. There’s something about thieves and spies that really pull me into a story, and Lawson mixes the two brilliantly!

Maya and Kent are the perfect ‘anti-lovers’ (yep, I made that word up, can I copyright that?) throughout, and I have to admit, I didn’t see the ending coming at all. But I didn’t feel disappointed by it.

The interaction between Maya and Kent felt real, and at times I could feel the animosity rolling off the page, as well as the obvious sexual attraction. This is one of the main reasons I couldn’t stop reading this story. I needed to know how it would end.

My favourite of the entire collection!

8) Obsidian Desire – T. H. Snyder
Not a bad premise, but as soon as I got into a chapter, tenses would change and throw me slightly, disturbing the flow of my reading.

Overall, the story fell a little flat for me as Tyler and Saige rekindle their chemistry. It felt a little unbelievable and a bit rushed as they have a one nigh stand, then 3 years later are willing to take a risk on a stranger even after he, a sheriff, left her at the side of the highway.

Could be extended into a full novel to enable the author to give the reader more background and to explore the current relationship as it grows.

I have to admit, I very nearly didn’t finish this story also, but I forced myself to continue on with it.

9) Obsidian Beauty – Emily Walker
Another story I almost didn’t finish. Again, it felt very ‘young’ and unresearched.

I thought the premise was a really good one, after all. Who wouldn’t want revenge after being in prison for 10 years, yet your partner managed to evade capture? But, that wasn’t the full story. Abigail wanted to find Benton and get back together with him. The whole revenge angle confused me as it seemed to come out of nowhere.

Scott… as a police officer, there is no way he would have gotten involved the way he did with Abigail’s revenge plan. That entire aspect felt very unrealistic to me, but he was a needed character for the romance element of the story.

It just felt very rushed and came across as quite naive, especially when Scott and Abigail were in the strip joint, yet she was supposed to have been a stripper herself. Again, needed expanding into a longer story so the plot could have been fleshed out more to prevent the reader getting confused and losing interest.

All in all, I was a little underwhelmed by this collection, apart from 2 stories out of the 9, they just fell a little short for me.  It was supposed to be a collection of ‘dark-love’ stories, but none felt particularly dark to me, just love stories.

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Filed under Compilation, contemporary, M/M, New Release, Novella, Review, Romance

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