Friday, March 4, 2016

Book Tour for Deep by Skye Warren (Review & GIVEAWAY)

The steamy world of the Chicago Underground series continues with this gritty and dark tale of two bruised souls connected by their mutual pain.  Keep reading to get a tantalizing taste of Deep by Skye Warren, along with my impressions of this compelling read, and then add it to your bookshelf.  In honor of this erotic and suspenseful read make sure to fill out the form below for the chance to win a $50 Amazon GC too!

Dark. Powerful. Dangerous.
Philip Murphy has all of Chicago under his thumb. Except me.
We met in a perfect storm of violence and lust. He saved me and then disappeared from my life. Now I pretend I never knew that kind of darkness. I focus on midterms and campus parties, as if they can wipe the slate clean.
Then he turns up outside my dorm room—wounded and barely conscious. He’s the head of a crime syndicate, a powerful man, but he needs me now. There are traitors in his midst.
I can help him, but I can’t fall for him.
Not again.


“Come on then. One free punch. I won’t stop you."
Without meaning to, I moved my body to face him—as if I was really going to do it. As if I was really going to punch him. I wasn’t going to, though…was I? I wasn’t even sure. This felt so topsy-turvy, as if I was in a room full of fun-house mirrors again—or I had never left. I looked like myself but different too. Both scary and afraid.
“I’ll do it,” I threatened, holding up my fist. But I was mostly stalling for time. I didn’t think I could hit him. I wasn’t sure it would even hurt him if I did.
“Go ahead.” He glanced out the window beside me. “We’re almost there. The offer expires in three…two…"
The truth was he deserved worse than a punch for ruining my life. It wasn’t the classes I would miss most or the date with Sloan. It was the chance at a normal life. A chance to have a family. There were strands I’d been braiding my whole life, and he had come along to cut them.
Of course I wasn’t sure I could actually punch him, even if he deserved it. Not without him physically threatening me. Back then, when those men had come for me, I’d fought them. I’d even hit Shelly, pumped up on adrenaline and terror.
If someone was attacking me, I would have fought back. But hitting someone who was just sitting there? Hitting Philip? I couldn’t, no matter how much he deserved it.
“Hit me first,” I told him.
That startled a laugh out of him. “What?"
“Come at me. You start to hit me, then I’ll do it."
“I’m not going to hit you, kitten."
“Well, I can’t hit you any other way."
He sighed. “You know this is ridiculous, right?"
“How is it ridiculous?” To my underwater brain, this made the most sense of anything.
“You know you deserve it. And if I were more…you know, bloodthirsty…I would have already done it. This is just…just enabling me."
One second he was sitting there regarding me with bemusement. The next he launched himself across the seat, his large body moving with surprising grace. I hadn’t taken into account how fast he could move. Of course he’d been strong. He could have overpowered me in a second. But he also moved like a goddamn panther, wrapping his hands around my wrists before I could blink. I didn’t even have time to pull my arm back, much less punch. Instead he had my hands pressed against the side of the car, his body looming over mine, his hips between mine. His face was only inches away from me, gaze trained on my mouth.
“Like this?” he asked softly.
“Not fair.” My voice was breathless. A spark of heat between my legs reminded me that while my brain might have been mad at him and my heart might have felt conflicted, my body was one hundred percent on his team.
“Oh, I think it was completely fair. You wanted me to come at you. And that’s what I did. So hit me."
I yanked my wrists, but he held strong. His eyes flared with arousal at watching me struggle. Oh God. I couldn’t deny I felt it too, the clench of delicious surrender. He was holding me down, and I loved it.
“Let go of me."
“No, kitten. I’m just doing what you asked.” His lips brushed a millimeter from mine.
“Enabling you.” The warmth of his breath was the only warning before he kissed me, fever-hot lips pressed against mine, his arms like iron bars around me. I melted into the seat, into the car—and against his body in the places we touched. My hips rocked against his, and he groaned into my mouth.
He lifted his head but left his body around me, an erotic cage. I blinked slowly, disoriented.
Only then did I realize the car had stopped moving.
“One,” he said softly, his eyes almost sympathetic. “Time’s up.”



Readers who enjoy their romances dark and gritty will find themselves drawn to the complex relationship between the hardened underworld criminal Phillip and the young girl Ella, desperate to find a family who loves and accepts her.  From their first meeting to their reunion years later their connection remains combustible with lives still on the line due to their painful pasts and readers will find themselves quickly immersed in this compelling and erotically-charged world.

Ella always tried to be the good girl as she always felt out of place amongst her family and thought making her parents proud would earn their love.  One fateful day shows her why she always felt alone once she discovers she's adopted which takes her on a downward spiral of trying to numb the pain.  Her acting out though leads her to the dark side of society when her father's gambling debts lead to her being kidnapped and her body bartered in trade.  Luckily a hooker with a heart of gold rescues her and puts her in the enigmatic Phillip's sights which changes her life irrevocably as his power and sensuality calls to her and makes every other man pale in comparison.  Years passed but Ella's feelings for him continued with her still feeling lost and alone.  When Phillip shows up on her doorstep bloody and barely conscious her life is once again thrown into chaos.  Her heart too is put through the wringer as her attraction for him becomes an obsession that chains her to his side despite all the danger he represents.  Though she knows he's a bad man it's only when she's in his arms that she finds a sense of belonging and acceptance.  With her brother's life now in jeopardy though her body is once again being traded for Phillip's help in paying the ransom, but with her heart now involved things become even more complicated.  When his past and hers collide, will any of them make it out alive? Ella's a strong-willed young woman who's been through a lot in her short life and is still able to see goodness despite all the badness that's surrounded her. Some readers might be bothered by her young age when she first meets, and becomes attracted to Phillip, but she certainly never acted like a child despite her age.  There was always a maturity about her, forged through her loneliness, that belied her youth.  Her loneliness called to Phillip and in their short time together, once he reclaims her, their relationship is one of steaminess and of him trying to leave his mark on her soul.  Their relationship may have felt heavy-handed at times, but in this gritty world that's as romantic as it gets.

Phillip has fascinated me since the first time I saw him in a previous installment in this series.  He's a larger than life character who made his way through life through shear strength and intimidation.  He's intimidating in this story too, but when he's around Ella there's a chink in his armor.  She has him longing for things, like love and family, that he's long denied himself out of fear.  Behind his scary exterior lies a man who's extremely protective, one who watches from afar until he sweeps in to do the saving.  He's also a man who's a bit jaded and assumes the worse of people.  That's why Ella's his weakness.  She still sees the goodness in people, in him, which weakens him when he needs all his strength to address his past.  Phillip's not the stereotypical hero as he does bad deeds, but he does what he does based on his own code of ethics.  To those he loves and calls family, he'd commit any crime and cross any line, which drew me to him.  His strength and steely composure is sexy and his erotic interludes with Ella show a man in charge and who's desperate to be loved.  He'll never admit it, but he's lonely and his scorching scenes with Ella exude desperation and longing resulting in lots of heated dirty talk.  On the surface he and Ella may appear to be opposites but deep down they both want love, acceptance, and family, and to get there readers are taken on an emotional roller coaster ride where Phillip isn't always portrayed in the best light.

From start to finish this is an engaging read with a sense of foreboding hanging over the story.  The main characters are unique and strong-willed and don't fit any of the usual romance molds.  Ella and Phillip's connection is scorching with interludes that make you blush with their intensity.  Along with a strong physical connection comes an engaging emotional connection that brings a tear to reader's eyes for their mutually painful upbringings.  Along with these compelling main characters comes a cast of secondary characters that give readers an update on the HEAs witnessed in past installments.  It also gives readers a glimpse of an unconventional family that belies blood and is all about heart as all these misfits have a home amongst each other.  Ms. Warren has crafted a gritty tale that turns up the heat while pulling at the heartstrings.  At times you feel dirty for delving into this dark world, but the immensely satisfying conclusion makes it all worthwhile.  Readers looking for a unique romance, and a memorable hero, will want to read this series from the very beginning.  Though this book can stand on its own, the journey to Ella and Phillip's HEA will be more richly rewarding when read from the very start and I highly recommend this beautiful balance of romance and eroticism.

My rating for this is an A-

*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.


Skye Warren is the New York Times bestselling author of dark romance such as Wanderlust and Prisoner. Praised as a “true mistress of dark erotica”, her books have been featured in Jezebel, Buzzfeed, USA Today Happily Ever After, Glamour, and Elle Magazine. She makes her home in Texas with her loving family, four dogs, and one evil cat.


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