Claim Me (Stark Trilogy #2) by J. Kenner

For Damien, our obsession is a game. For me, it is fiercely, blindingly, real. Damien Stark’s need is palpable—his need for pleasure, his need for control, his need for me. Beautiful and brilliant yet tortured at his core, he is in every way my match. I have agreed to be his alone, and now I want him to be fully mine. I want us to possess each other beyond the sweetest edge of our ecstasy, into the deepest desires of our souls. To let the fire that burns between us consume us both. But there are dark places within Damien that not even our wildest passion can touch. I yearn to know his secrets, yearn for him to surrender to me as I have surrendered to him. But our troubled pasts will either bind us close . . . or shatter us completely. Release Me is an erotic romance intended for mature audiences.

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This review is going to consist of two parts. The first is related to the first half of the book – to which I felt that it deserved a rating of 2 maybe 3 out of 5. The second part of this review will be about the second half of the book, which surprised me so much and that part of the book deserves a 4 out of 5 star rating. So let’s begin… If you read my status updates while I was reading this book, you will know that I was annoyed, frustrated and bored out of my mind. Yip – I truly was. The only reason I even made it to 50% of the book was because it was given to me as an ARC and therefore, I had committed to actually completing the book. Had I bought the book, I might actually just have given up long before 50%… perhaps even at 30%. Why? Because for reals… the book started with a scene about sex… and 20% into the book… it was still the same damn scene and the same damn sex. It was long and you have to know that when you are bored during a sex scene in an erotic novel… something’s not right. I couldn’t take it anymore so I stopped, pulled up another book and spent a good amount of time away from Claim Me, before I forced myself to go back to it. I did… and then when I got to 45% I walked away again. I kept complaining that so far, nothing’s happened. Not a single thing except location changes and positions. I know that erotic romance is all about steam and foreplay – it’s suppose to make us readers all hot and bothered, but Claim Me didn’t have the desired effect on me. I was reading a novel, not watching a porno and you know what – cheaply made porn movies have more of a storyline than the first half of this book had. I ended up skimming to the middle. That brings me to the second part of this book. 50% and onwards… that’s where the story actually started to progress and thank the Lord, there appeared to be more to Claim Me than just sexual context. Not much – but a sufficient amount that made me consider this book worthy of 4 stars when I’d eventually finished reading it. Yes, we still have loads of sexual scenes, yes the fact that Nikki constantly talks about Stark’s money… that was annoying. Like we had to constantly be reminded that he’s rich… There were many moments were I was going ‘we know already! Shut up about his gazillions of dollars and his obvious amount of power!’ – It only added to many pages that just seemed to contain repeated information we already knew about. But… I did like that Stark’s story came out. What I didn’t like about it was that during the first book, such a huge commotion was made about it and then in Claim Me… they speak about it for 2 sentences and that it. Done – Settled! What author J. Kenner is good at is writing love scenes and clear chemistry between characters. But I still can’t really deny the fact that there is very little to the actual plot of this book. Yes, at the end you find out something Crazy… but really, it’s not enough to consider it a real plot. It also reminded me of the crux of Reflected In You… not the exact same, but fairly similar. And here I was going to commend the fact that so far, even though it was boring at first – at least it hadn’t reminded me of other popular erotic romance novels. But then suddenly… I was back to making comparisons.

I really was hoping for the best when I started Claim Me, because heaven knows and so do you if you’ve read my previous review, that I wasn’t a huge Release Me fan. But I must say that I did enjoy the second half of Claim Me far more than the first half or even the first book. I really hope that the third book, Complete Me, isn’t going to be rushed because I get a sense that things have only just picked up. And somehow I have a feeling it’s going to be explode in the third book – but it’s going to be exploding fast and maybe not effectively. From My experience it’s proven that in a three book series, the plot needs to rise in the first, break in the second and conclude in the third, but here, the break has only just happened at the end of Claim Me, so I’m really, really hoping that the third and final book will be effective enough.

But still, I have eyes and I know there are huge Stark Trilogy fans out there… I might not be one of those… but I’m only human so of course I’m inquisitive enough to actually pick up the final book when it’s released – The only issue I have at the moment is that I’ve read so many books over the last year – some that get absolutely no attention, how come this works and those don’t? I don’t get it. But anyway… to each their own.

Rating: 4 Stars

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