Claire Nichols endured the CONSEQUENCES of Anthony Rawlings’ vendetta.
When she first arrived to his home, her goal was survival. Through strength and compartmentalization Claire captivated her captor. Her resilience in the face of his rule threatened Anthony’s well developed plan. Domination became desire and power turned to love.
Their passion and adoration in a world of opulence appeared perfect. Yet, reality was a roller coaster of emotion. Claire’s world teetered on the edge of sanity as Antony monitored her every move. When given the opportunity to flee, Claire drove away. A fateful decision which set a well laid plan into motion.
However, unbeknownst to either of them, there were others who saw past the perfect facade of Anthony Rawlings. There were others who saw the TRUTH. Conspiracy and unfulfilled promises result in an early prison release for Claire. Not just a release – a pardon. According to the law, her crime never happened!
Will it be that easy? Faced with freedom from her past... can Claire seize it? Can she build a new life, mend her broken spirit, become the woman she once was, and seek her own revenge? Or is it all a game? And does the game master have different plans?
How does Sophia Burke fit into the puzzle that is Tony and Claire? Will her presence affect the future of this well esteemed man? Can he dominate twice? Is that his goal?
TRUTH continues the tumultuous saga of CONSEQUENCES, introduces new players, and uncovers more intrigue. Aleatha Romig skillfully weaves past transgressions through current deception to create a fervent world of obsessed desire. In this reality can an all-consuming relationship survive?
When buried sins are discovered they threaten not only Tony and Claire’s future -- but their very lives! Will the TRUTH be revealed in time?
Genre - Dark Abuse/Contemporary/Thriller
1 Deflated Disappointed Star!I Must Tell The TRUTH!
Beware of the Spoilers Below…and Warning of Long Winded Ranting!
If you read my review for this series’ first book, Consequences, you know that I didn’t think favorably of it. In fact, I only gave it two stars because of how much I disliked both main characters, Anthony and Claire and I wasn’t inclined to move on to book two and subject myself to another read that left me feeling desolate and empty. But I was assured that I would feel completely different about Truth and by the end of the book I would be “Team Tony”. So against my better judgment, I moved on to book two with hope and an open mind. Partnering with my favorite gal pal, Juls, we did this as a buddy read, so we could rant or rave as we read through each chapter.
Well, as I sit here trying to come up with what to say in this review, the only phrase I can come up with is…
I Call Bullshit!
Truth had me wishing I could rewind time and get back the hours I spent trapped inside this tortuous, infuriating read!
If it’s even possible, this book was worse than the first book, leaving me with no choice but to hide behind the masses of four and five star raters with my lonely one star rating.
And I have one question…
What in the hell did everyone see in this book that I didn’t?
I know I’m in the minority here but if you’ll continue to read I’ll share my thoughts and why I thought it didn’t warrant praise from this reviewer.
First let me say, the first fifty percent of the book was great! By some stroke of luck and a dying judge’s attempt at revenge, Claire is released from prison. With the help of her lawyer, a mysterious benefactor and an old friend, Claire sneaks away from Iowa where she’s spent the last three years in purgatory. She gets to the sunny shores of California where she starts a new and beautiful life filled with the love of good friends, family reconnections and even a new love interest. Things seem to be going in the right direction for Claire and with her mind set on her new life as well as utilizing her new-found detective skills, she seek out information on her ex-husband, Anthony, knowing knowledge is power. Certain its only a matter of time before Anthony finally finds her, she wants to be ready to combat whatever his next move is. She knows her life is a game of chess to the domineering and vile Anthony and with her friends and family, she gains a strength she hasn’t known in a long time.
And then the book takes a one-eighty down the path of “I can’t believe this shit!”. In walks Anthony into Claire’s new life and everything goes BOOM! Instead of stealing her away in the middle of the night and trapping her in his mansion in Iowa as he did before, Anthony worms his way back into her life spouting promises of love and being a changed man.
And Claire, instead of being revolted by her kidnapper, rapist, abuser and armed with the knowledge or at least the suspicion of his past deeds as a murderer, Claire decides this poor man has had such a horrific childhood by stumbling across the bodies of his murdered parents, that surely he’s scarred and in need of a big ol’ Claire hug! *sigh* Soon her resolve for vengeance for all this evil man has done to her, vanishes and in its place is sympathy, concern and the idiotic notion that he couldn’t, nor will he ever hurt her again!
And while she’s running about defending this man who destroys lives everywhere he goes, he’s out continuing to plot his revenge on the next unsuspecting person.
THIS BOOK WAS STUPID!!!
Anthony’s reasoning for wanting revenge in the name of his grandfather is way stupid! Nathaniel’s unsavory business practices start this whole mess by stealing money that wasn’t his! And when he gets caught, he rages how he’s going to seek revenge on those who turned him in but before he gets a chance to do so, he dies in prison… where he BELONGED! So Anthony and Nathaniel’s young wife take up the gauntlet to exact his revenge on his behalf. Time and money are the only things standing in their way so they wait and Anthony builds his empire. When the timing is right, they start killing off family members of the two men who turned Nathaniel in. Marie and Anthony’s vengeance was just self-indulgent and dumb.
Anthony isn’t a complicated character. He isn’t a beautiful soul hidden behind a rough exterior. He’s completely ruthless and insane! He’s a petty, childish man with control issues who’s pouting because someone stole his favorite toy and now he's throwing mud in everyone’s sandbox! Ugg!!! I HATE HIM!!! Even if his reasons weren’t completely ridiculous, his methods were irredeemable!!! I could NEVER find him attractive! He kidnaps Claire, he rapes her repeatedly until she submits through fear, he beats her into a two week coma where she suffers a concussion, broken ribs and broken bones and he puts such a whammy on her mind, she actually thinks she’s in love with him. He intimidates her through fear and domination. He ruined her sisters life by ensuring her brother-in-law, John, lost his prominent lawyers career and Emily lost her teaching job by having to move once John was thrown in jail for a crime he didn’t commit. One in which Anthony set him up for. Anthony is implicated in Simon’s death. Claire suspects he could have had something to do with her own parent’s death. And most importantly, Anthony sets Claire up for his attempted murder and sends her to prison!!! His crimes are countless and extend further than I can list here on this review.
Why in the hell would Claire want him? How could she love a man who’s done all these things to HER? Is she just an idiot with no common sense or mind of her own or is she a masochist who gets off on the pain and misery? And what’s worse, throughout Truth, Claire gives up her new love interest Harry, a man who cherished her and was honorable. She actually gets upset with her sister and her brother-in-law for trying to talk her out of going back to Anthony. There were several times she puts off talking to Emily and flat out refusing to tell her sister the truth. Emily, who was there for her through everything, who suffered as much as Claire, even if not physically, is now a nuisance to Claire because she wants good things for Claire instead a life of fear and degradation.
Claire is a selfish bitch! This chick, by not telling the truth and not trying to change her circumstances in Consequences and by going back to Anthony after everything he’s done to her and her entire family, has once again pushed the unconditional love and support away to be with a man who was the reason for all the bad and horrific things in her life.
And then if all that wasn’t bad enough, the mystery surrounding the revenge in this book fell flat and was entirely too predictable. Another thing that irritated me was Claire seemed to be the pied piper of men. Whoever came into contact with her, wanted her. She must have had beer flavored nipple or something because Anthony wanted her to the point of insanity, Harry wanted to be with her and then the PI who Anthony hired fell in love with her. I’m sorry, but there was NOTHING special about Claire let alone enough to warrant man after man falling at her feet in worship.
Also, the ending of this book sucked and the fact Claire leaves town letting her sister think she’s been kidnapped again or is dead is so disturbing I can’t even wrap my mind around it. But the one person she lets know she’s still alive? Anthony! If I had been Emily, John, Amber and Harry, I would have wiped my hands of Claire the moment she decided to go back to Anthony and cut off any and all contact with her. The first time she didn’t have a choice. This time, she chose to go back. He might have initially blackmailed her to go back to him, but she had resources, she had family, she had friends. All these things would have helped her fight Anthony, but Claire didn’t want to fight. She wanted to go back and she wanted to be with him. It’s all on her what happens next!
The Wrap Up:
Needless to say, this is NOT a book I will ever read again. I am permanently deleting it from my Nook and will NOT read book three. I have no desire to read any more of this story or these characters and suffer the frustration it causes.
I would like to thank my good friend Juls for reading this and Consequences with me. She kept me sane as we tried to analyze, figure out and come up with reasons why things were happening. And finally, she was there when we both decided to just give up and read the last 90 pages as a free-for-all because we just wanted to get this stupid, messed up story done and over with. Thanks girl.. I’m still completely “Team Kill Evil Anthony” and not even him saving babies in Africa could change my mind! :)