Review – The Mad Tatter – J. M. Darhower


Reece Hatfield has just one rule when it comes to falling in love: don’t fucking do it. There’s no room in his life for another person. He can barely keep a handle on things as it is. A shadow of the man he used to be, Reece spends his days tattooing, the artist inside of him longing for the chance to do something different.

Avery Moore is all dance, all the time. Ballet is all she’s ever known, and she’s damn good at it. Her body is her art, a living canvas that captivates Reece the first time he lays his eyes on her.

He yearns to leave his mark on her body… in more ways than one.

The tattooed degenerate with a shady past. The beautiful ballerina with a bright future. They live in different worlds, yet somehow, they fit. But just because they fit doesn’t mean they belong together. Cracks sometimes form. Two pieces don’t always make a whole. The course of love never did run smoothly. Things get messy.

And Reece doesn’t do messy.

Not anymore.



Silver Stars 4

I have never made it a secret that I love Darhower’s work and words. I’d heard a little about the surprise release for her birthday this year, but knew very little detail. So I bought it.


While The Mad Tatter is a bit of a departure from what many readers know Darhower for, but her ‘voice’ is strong and, for me at least, instantly recognisable. Told from Reece’s POV, the way he narrates his story is different from any she has written and released previously, it is also very Darhower (I hope that makes sense).

There’s something about a tattooed bad boy that draws most women to them like flies to sh*t. Especially if their pretty good looking. Sometimes, to those who haven;’t had a tattoo, or seen someone get one, there can be an air of mystery about tattoo shops and the people behind the needle. Despite what they’ve seen on Miami or LA Ink.

Reece doesn’t have much of a life beyond the shop, the bar over the road, and visitation with Lexie. Even after he meets Avery, his life doesn’t change that much. This is the reason I gave this book 4 instead of 5*. It’s very clear that Reece is interested in Avery, but doesn’t ‘do’ love or commitment, and with his ex, who can blame him. I think this is why he doesn’t chase her in the same way that she does him, yet when they are together, he does try to instigate things to go further.

This book flowed well, and I read it in one sitting. The characters are likeable (mostly – when Reece isn’t being a bit of a dick) and relateable.  I could imagine being friends with them and going out for a drink with them. Darhower’s strengths are not just her characters, but the way they interact with them. The banter in The Mad Tatter between Reece and Ellie (or Lexie) is fantastic.

I could quite easily see these characters being part of a serial with stand alone novels, all linked by the tattoo shop as I would love to read more about them and how they all ended up working together.

A great read.

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Filed under contemporary, Favourites, Review, Romance

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