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  • Writer's pictureDeidre - Ann Anderson

Unveiling The Allure of "Cruel Beginnings": A Book Review

My Official Rating: 4.5/5 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟✨

Steam Rating: 5/5 Spice Peppers 🌶 🌶 🌶🌶🌶

Book cover of 'Cruel Beginnings' by Lili and Lyra, featured in our in-depth Cruel Beginnings Book Review.

Book Blurb:

I’m not a girl who expects to be saved.

I gave up on fairytales a long time ago.

So when my knight in shining Armani stalks into town and delivers me from my tragic fate, I’m grateful.

Darius Prince shouldn’t be in the seedy strip club where I’m paying off my mother’s debts, one piece of my soul at a time. And he definitely shouldn’t be the one who claims me in exchange for a suitcase full of trust fund cash and a deal inked in blood.

His dark eyes shine with a hatred so deadly, I wonder why he wants me at all. Especially when I find out he thinks I’m somehow connected to his twin sister’s disappearance.

Darius doesn’t rescue me. Instead, he drags me into his web of tragic secrets and forbidden desire. He binds me so tight, I can’t find my way out of his grasp. Not that it would make a difference. Escaping my fate isn’t an option.

They say every ending is a new beginning.

I just didn’t expect my beginning to be so cruel.

The Dark Corners of Romance: Trigger Warnings

Before we dive in our Cruel Beginnings book review, let's be clear—this book is not for the faint of heart. It delves into some serious, potentially triggering subject matter. Before diving in, make sure you consult the trigger warnings to see if this is a story you can comfortably invest in. The "dark" in this dark romance is not just a creative adjective; it's a forewarning. Check The Author Website HERE for a FULL list of Trigger Warnings.

Now Available - 'Cruel Beginnings' by Lili and Lyra, featured in our in-depth Cruel Beginnings Book Review.

Cruel Beginnings Book Review

Now that we've gotten that out the way, and we're all back in our safe space, l

et's dive into my thoughts, shall we?

Meet Our Protagonists

The Pull of a Complicated Protagonist: Meet Birdie

Birdie is not your traditional damsel in distress. She's a layered, complex individual with a personality that refuses to be pinned down to one-dimensional tropes.

In a world that continually lets her down, Birdie rises, full of resilience and a dash of grit. She's the sort of character that leaves an imprint on your heart, forcing you to grapple with her complexities and question your own moral standing.

Darius: The Anti-Hero We Never Knew We Needed

Darius Prince is an enigma wrapped in a designer suit. With a cruel exterior and a past shrouded in mystery, he becomes a character you can't help but be drawn to. Even as you may question his motives and dislike his methods, Darius brings an element of thrilling danger and complexity to the story that is both haunting and irresistibly compelling.

If you love characters who walk the fine line between hero and villain, Darius is your dream come true—or your nightmare.

Did The Relationship Dynamics Work?

Hell yes! The chemistry between Birdie and Darius is electric, filled with a tangible tension that keeps the pages turning. Their relationship is far from conventional, teetering on the edge of dark fantasy and brutal reality.

The authors, Lili and Lyra, weave this tangled web with such finesse that you're caught in the middle, unable to decide whether you want to break free or delve deeper into the chaos.

So, Why Not Five Stars?

The book comes close to perfection but falls just a tad short for me. As a fan of dark academia, I was hoping for more elements from that sub-genre. Although the story itself was riveting, a little more of that intellectual and atmospheric flair would have elevated it to a full five stars.

Will I Be Reading The Sequel? F**K Yes!

Lili and Lyra have mastered the art of pacing and organic character development in "Cruel Beginnings." The story unfolds effortlessly, each revelation timed perfectly to keep the suspense building. And that ending? Well, it leaves you gasping for air, craving the next installment like it's a drug you didn't know you were addicted to.

Final Thoughts - Do I Recommend Cruel Beginnings?

"Cruel Beginnings" is a rollercoaster of emotions, a beautifully crafted story that challenges your understanding of love, morality, and human frailty. It’s a must-read for fans of dark romance, but it’s not for everyone.

Prepare yourself for a ride that will leave you exhilarated, exhausted, and absolutely hooked. If you're ready to confront the darker aspects of desire and love, then this book is your next must-read.

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