Tag Archives: grief

Release Blitz: Unshackled by Cara Dee

Unshackled | Cara Dee

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Release Date: November 19th, 2021

Universal Link: https://readerlinks.com/l/2169333

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/59607169-unshackled

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Unshackled eCover

Blurb

In the wake of the bloodiest war the Sons of Munster had seen in a long time, we were supposed to celebrate our victory and move on with our lives. I wanted to see my brothers-in-arms dance and drink way too much. I wanted to hear laughter and Irish music. Instead, we were a syndicate crushed by grief.

Shannon O’Shea had lost more than most, and every fiber of my being screamed at me to pull him from the depths of his despair. As the father of my best friend, he’d been there for me when my parents kicked me out for being gay. Now it was my turn. I had to find the answers. I had to rescue him.

The day he asked for a favor and demanded discretion, the plan unfolded before my eyes, and I couldn’t resist the temptation. No names, no faces. He wouldn’t know it was me in the darkness. At the same time, the shackles around my wrists tightened as old enemies slithered back out of the gutters of my city, and my brothers and I were once again on the warpath.

Unshackled spares no one, and along the way, you’ll get everything from high-speed car chases, secret meetings in the dark, and the rawest hours of grief, to strong family ties, humor, and unconditional love.

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Excerpt

Seventeen minutes later, I returned to my own place a changed man. A deaf man.

I rubbed my ear and tossed my keys on the hallway table.

Shan was sitting on the couch, sipping a drink. Vodka, judging by the bottle on the coffee table.

“What’s the occasion?” I asked.

He glanced over at me, and the languidness of his movements told me everything I needed to know. He’d been at it for a while.

I removed the bottle and returned it to the cabinet.

“I need a favor,” he muttered. “I…I can’t ask sober.”

I frowned and sat down next to him. How bad could it be? Our guys in the syndicate turned to me for favors all the time. With my position, I was more connected than the boss himself, ’cause Finn had to stay clean. He couldn’t get his hands dirty for nothing.

“Whatever you need, sir. You know that.”

He nodded with a dip of his chin, then finished his drink and set the glass on the table. “You’ve set men up with mistresses and girlfriends before.”

Shite.

I’d been waiting for this, yet I hadn’t expected it so soon.

“Aye.” I eyed him carefully. His pain was as evident as usual.

But maybe it wasn’t so soon after all. It’d been over a year since Grace had died.

“Do you want me to arrange something for you?” I asked. “I can get it done in a couple of hours.”

He swallowed hard. “I miss human touch, but I don’t wanna see anyone.”

I felt my forehead crease. I could relate to the yearning, but I wasn’t sure if he was talking literally about the last part. “You mean you don’t want a relationship, or you want it anonymous?”

“Both,” he rasped. Then he cleared his throat. “I’m not looking for intimacy. Just physical. No faces, no names, no talking, no off-the-books apartment, nothing social.”

I nodded slowly, the alternatives appearing in my head—or disappearing, one by one. I wanted to say intimacy was exactly what he needed, but it was his choice. There were still options.

“That leaves you with massage parlors and fetish clubs,” I answered.

“It has to be dark,” he insisted. “Pitch black.”

Okay. He really didn’t wanna risk seeing a face. Fine, I could work with that. A certain underground club came to mind, and it was run by a friend of Colm’s. Aside from the main club being an essential location for our drug trade, it had an upstairs area with a VIP section, a hallway full of private booths, and a couple rooms with viewing windows for live porn.

“Any other preferences?” I asked. “I reckon you don’t care if she’s a blonde or a redhead in the dark, but body type? Age? You want her screened and on birth control so you can go without rubbers? You care about safewords? You want a subservient little thing or a bossy—”

“Jesus,” he muttered and rubbed his temples. “It suddenly feels too complicated. And at the risk of making it worse, I’d prefer a man.”

Fuck my life. Fuck my life hard.

About The Author

cara dee image

I’m often awkwardly silent or, if the topic interests me, a chronic rambler. In other words, I can discuss writing forever and ever. Fiction, in particular. The love story—while a huge draw and constantly present—is secondary for me, because there’s so much more to writing romance fiction than just making two (or more) people fall in love and have hot sex.

There’s a world to build, characters to develop, interests to create, and a topic or two to research thoroughly.

Every book is a challenge for me, an opportunity to learn something new, and a puzzle to piece together. I want my characters to come to life, and the only way I know to do that is to give them substance—passions, history, goals, quirks, and strong opinions—and to let them evolve.

I want my men and women to be relatable. That means allowing room for everyday problems and, for lack of a better word, flaws. My characters will never be perfect.

Wait…this was supposed to be about me, not my writing.

I’m a writey person who loves to write. Always wanderlusting, twitterpating, kinking, cooking, baking, and geeking. There’s time for hockey and family, too. But mostly, I just love to write.

Find Cara on social media here:https://www.caradeewrites.com/cdwlandingpage

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Cara pulls all the emotional strings in this epic Mafia romance

Unshackled eCoverUnshackled by Cara Dee

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

So I’ve not read the This Life I series but that didn’t stop me from falling headfirst into this epic Mafic romance.

OMG seriously, this one pulls every emotion going as Kellan Ford (who I recognised from his appearances in Cara’s Auctioned series), pines for his best friend’s dad Shannon.

Although Shannon’s bisexual and his wife always knew, very few others did, so Kellan’s always had a hopeless attraction for him, or so he thought.

This slow unfolding of the desire between them is brilliantly done throughout the book.

What I loved most about this is how Cara never shies away from Shannon’s difficulties in moving on with the loss of Patrick and Grace. There’s no magic dick here, no suddenly okay being in a relationship with another man.

Both men are also dealing with copious amounts of grief following the multiple deaths the Sons of Munster have suffered during a bloody gangland war, including said best friend Patrick and his mother Grace – Shan’s wife and the woman who helped bring Kellan up after he was thrown out for being gay.

The tensions throughout this book are tight with fear, with guilt and secrets, with foreboding as members of the rival Italian family the Sons thought they’d finished off are seen skulking around Philly.

Honestly, I had no clue where this book was going to go but I was more than happy to come along for the ride – literally including high-speed car chases, dodgy dealings, torture and more murders.

None of these characters is even remotely what could be considered a good man even Shannon, who’s been a psychiatrist helping thousands of people over the years the Sons have been operating, doesn’t have clean hands.

But I was surprised by how little I cared – so long as Kellan and Shannon were able to move beyond their traumas and work out that they were more than just extended family and could be actual family.

This book is scorching hot too. There’s a Daddy/boy vibe with without any of the other kinks that go along with it, Kellan wants to take care of his Daddy but he wants to be able to lean on him too.

Definitely one to savour.

#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Thought-provoking and – ultimately – a beautiful romance from T.J.

53588713._SY475_Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is such a difficult book to review, not because it’s a difficult book, but because the subject itself – and the feelings the book provokes – are hard to explain.

I’m not sure if it’s aimed at a Young Adult market but, if it is, I think it’s going to be a wonderful way for them to be gently eased into dealing with death not only as a concept, but the after effects on peoples’ emotions when a loved one dies.

It also works perfectly fine for adults too! It’s an interesting narrative, a tale which is better to be experienced without knowing what’s coming next, so I won’t be spoilering anything about the actual plot.

I found it took me a good quarter of the book, until around the 35% mark before I would say I was actually enjoying reading it, rather than just reading it because I had an ARC from the publishers.

But, once I clicked with the story being told, I couldn’t put it down, staying up until 3am this morning to finish it because I had to know what happened to Wallace and the rest of the gang in Charon’s Crossing Tea Shop.

It’s a beautiful book, it’s one which makes you sit and think, not only about what might come after death – although this isn’t a religious book by any stretch of the imagination – but also about how we live our lives.

What regrets would we have if we suddenly found ourselves in a way station on the way to whatever comes next? How would we deal with any unfinished business we might have?

It’s also funny, Tj Klune does have a real talent for making you laugh while ripping your heart out at the same time and at its heart, it’s about love.

I won’t lie, the dedication made me get a bit teary and, like TJ, I really hope the late, and wonderful author Eric Arvin woke up in a strange place and that it might have been somewhere a bit like this…

How much of this book is directly related to Erik’s death I don’t know, but I think it will be a cathartic read for anyone who’s had to deal with the grief of losing a loved one, whether it be suddenly or not.

It’s beautifully written, as is anything from this author, and it carries a wry appreciation that the very things which make us human are also those which we may overlook until it’s too late.

#ARC kindly received from the publishers TOR via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review

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