Review: Consequences (#1, Consequences) by Aleatha Romig

My Thoughts

Intense, heart-stopping and thrilling!
A riveting read built on layers of mystery with dramatic plot twists that had my heart racing and my emotions vacillating on how I felt  about everything. Well written and unputtdownable!

5stars

Synopsis

consequences coverBesieged by memories of a brutal abduction, Claire Nichols wakes in an unfamiliar bedroom, within a luxurious mansion. Her recollections have one common denominator, the man she just met, Anthony Rawlings.

Unbeknownst to Claire, for a very long time, she has been within Anthony’s sights. Many of the pivotal events in her life occurred, due to his sinister manipulation. Every action has a consequence, and his actions result in their chance meeting.

More than a psychological thriller, Consequences is a vivid story of one woman’s struggle to survive incomprehensible circumstances. Every aspect of her being suddenly depends upon the tall, wealthy, dark haired, dark eyed businessman. Anthony Rawlings is known to the world as prosperous, benevolent, and kind. Claire quickly learns that he can also be a menacing controlling captor.

With few options but concession, Claire attempts to earn her freedom, while enduring a hellish existence that truly appears perfect. Persevering tests and trials, she struggles to retain her pure Midwest values and beliefs. Encouraged by memories of a loving upbringing, she gains strength in the simplest of joys: solitude in nature and good in the face of evil.

His goal in sight, Anthony’s calculated agenda encounters an unforeseen detour. He becomes captivated by Claire’s beauty, resilience, and determination. The interaction of these two compelling characters instigates strong emotions: fear, anger, love, and lust. Claire and Anthony’s tumultuous journey flows into uncharted waters of intrigue and passion.

Utilizing vivid detail, this 167,000-word novel unfolds like a movie, before the eyes of its readers. From the opening criminal abduction, through twists and turns, to the unlikely romantic thrills, the suspense climaxes as Anthony’s motivation becomes evident.

Anthony and Claire must decide if they will stay true to one another, or allow preceding actions to result in justifiable Consequences.

My Review

OHMYGOD these books!!! Seriously. INTENSE!  At first, the story begins and I can’t believe the cruelty of Claire’s situation. I HATE Anthony Rawlings. HATE him. He’s so cold and in control… always in 100% control. And because the story is primarily imparted from Claire’s POV, I didn’t often understand Tony’s intent and feelings, which furthered the portrayal of his callousness and mercilessness.

The book immediately begins with 26-year-old Claire being kidnapped. She finds herself in an opulent bedroom suite in Iowa, held captive by a man she recently met while working as a bartender.

“The room looked like heaven, but she already knew it was hell.”

When she wakes, she’s disoriented and her body is bruised. She finds herself face-to-face with her captor.

“Anthony Rawlings was so different from the man she met less than a week ago–the handsome tall man, with brown hair and the darkest eyes she’d ever seen. He’d been polite, kind and gentlemanly. Last night, none of those words could be used to describe him. To say he was cruel would not explain what she endured. One could say demanding, aggressive, abrasive, controlling–but above all, brutal.”

She’s raped and abused, both mentally and physically, constantly and coldly reminded there are rules that MUST be followed.

“Actions have consequences. I have told you that. Why is that difficult for you to understand?”

Anthony is surprised at Claire’s fiery tenacity, but often times, her bravery results in such cruel consequences. As Claire reluctantly acquiesces to Anthony’s rules, her “freedoms” increase. She escorts Anthony to events and learns perhaps his most important rule– appearances are everything and public failure is not an option. And with daily reminders to not disappoint him, Anthony continues to be patronizing and abusive, callous and cruel.

“He hurt her–not just physically, but also emotionally–down to her core. He humiliated her and seemed to enjoy humiliating her routinely, since she arrived.”

But Claire endures through compartmentalization. “This compartmentalization had facilitated her survival.”

“To say he was cruel would not explain what she endured. one could say demanding, aggressive, abrasive, controlling–but above all, brutal.”

Claire is so tremendously brave. I love her character. Yes, there are many times you want her to drop the mask and fight and flee to escape this horrible situation. But it’s a complicated one and I often reminded myself that there are always consequences. Yet, there are moments when she does bravely stand up to Tony with small moments of defiance, brilliantly negotiating for her very minor privileges. And just when I thought I could not hate Tony more, he shows moments of kindness, warmth and even love.

“Anthony Rawlings never previously considered fulfilling someone else’s desires. His entire adult life had been about his wants, goals, ambitions and needs… He no longer wanted to dominate, but to satisfy.”

Glimmers of vulnerability seep through the perfect facade and Claire begins to see the real Tony… not only the dark side, but also the side which cares for her, the side that shows regret.

“Perhaps I’m afraid of losing you, afraid if you truly know me you will not want to stay with me.”

During those times, I observed that like Claire, as a reader I was almost broken down so much that the smallest kindness seemed monumental. With those perceptions lacing my already-fragile emotions, Tony now seemed to me like a complicated man that could love and be worthy of being loved. But how could I think that? How could I possibly like him? How can I root for him? For them? Something was definitely wrong with me. As you read the second half of the book, there are so many more moments that confuse how you feel about Tony. You hate him. You love him. And then you hate him all over again.

There were a multitude of times I felt incredibly anxious about what could happen, times where I was frightened of the consequences that Claire would undoubtedly suffer. The tension I felt throughout was intense.

As the story continues to unwind, you realize just how much more it is beyond the complicated dynamic between Claire and Tony. Their situation is mysteriously rooted in the past. The plot is comprised of many unique puzzle pieces coming together slowly. And just when you think you’ve got it, and things normalize… the walls come crashing down. The story ends with a BANG. Mouth agape. Shock. Hurt. Angry.You absolutely HATE him again. 

This book is so unique, so good and there are so many elements that made me LOVE it so much:

  • Unique story – The idea of this book is completely unique – the plot is intricately woven with unexpected turns that make your jaw drop. How she thought of this, I have no idea!
  • Stellar writing – The writing is so tight. Not superfluous at all, each word seemingly written with the intent of taking you to the next significant point in the story. And although the book is long, I was riveted and I wanted to know what would happen next. I really loved the quotes at the beginning of each chapter that ranged from William Shakespeare and C.S. Lewis to Keri Russell. They set the tone for each chapter, preparing you for what would come next.
  • Character strength and complexity – Both Claire and Tony are flawed and complicated in different ways. Both make bad choices, both characters amazingly written. And they both evolve in the books and to see those changes come alive on the page is pretty great.
  • Shock value – I never knew what was coming next. I’m typically pretty good at figuring things out, but even though I was right some times, the way things would happen and the way things resulted were shocking. I loved that it had the ability to surprise me.

I can’t say enough good things about this book. I immediately dove into book 2, Truth! As intense and emotionally-draining as this book was, I needed to know what would happen next. It fueled me to devour the next book. I definitely recommend this incredibly thrilling series!

“It is not the circumstances that make a person a success. It is how that person responds to those circumstances.”

addseriestogoodreads

                                         

About The Author

aleatha -author pic

Aleatha Romig voted #1 “New Author to Read” on Goodreads, July 2012 through now! She is a “Published Author’s Network” member of the Romance Writer’s of America.

She has lived most of her life in Indiana, growing-up in Mishawaka, graduating from Indiana University, and currently living south of Indianapolis. Together with her husband of twenty six years, they’ve raised three children. She works days as a dental hygienist and enjoys spending her nights writing. She also likes to spend time with her family, friends and patients. Her pastimes include exercising, reading and writing.

Aleatha enjoys traveling, especially when there is a beach involved. In 2011 she had the opportunity to visit Sydney, Australia to visit her daughter studying at the University of Wollongong. Her dream is to travel to places in her novels and around the world. CONSEQUENCES, her first novel was released in August 2011 and has sold over 20,000 copies. TRUTH, the sequel was released October 2012 and has surpassed 10,000 copies in less than 3 months!

Aleatha originally published through self publisher Xlibris a subsidiarity of Author’s Solution/ Penguin Publishing. In October of 2012 she re-published on her own, a true Indie Author. Later that month she published Truth through Romig Works. Aleatha is happy to be represented by Danielle Egan-Miller of Browne & Miller Literary Associates.

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Comments

  1. Maggie123 says:

    OMG….Please hurry with CONVICTED….these books are rivoting, intriguing and beyond awesome….

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