Review by Lyndell Williams WINTER’S BEAST
By Twyla Turner
$9.99, 252 pp, paper
$3.99, 254 pp, Kindle (Free, KU)
Love and loyalty frequently clash in life and lead to a big ole mess of emotions. It is the same in the world of romance fiction. People are often conflicted between staying true to one person or following their love, desire, or lust for another.
In Winter’s Beast by Twyla Turner, the main character, Yury, a disfigured henchman for Ivan, has to watch as his boss/savior sexually torments singer Winter. Ivan, obsessed with Winter’s beautiful voice and albino body, holds her captive and grooms her to become his sex slave and feature in his erotic club. This guy is all kinds of diabolical.
No, I’m not turned on. You are!
Winter initially resists Ivan, but he uses her sexual insecurities and inexperience to groom her into submission. While Ivan is preying on Winter, Yury tries to make life in captivity bearable while he falls in love with the beauty.
The world of kink simultaneously disgusts and enchants Winter, whose sensual history is dotted with sporadic moments of unfulfilling sex. She despises Ivan, but her body responds to his sexual abuse in a way that leaves her confused and titillated.
Simon braced himself on the balcony and released a gust of air from his burning lungs into the Harlem landscape. Marcus’s warning reached him loud and clear. Hands off his baby sister. Except, it was too late; Simon’s hands and everything else had already been all over every inch of Regina’s voluptuous brown body, and he didn’t have any intention of keeping them to himself and ending their torrid lovemaking. The only reason he wasn’t in her bed at that moment—touching and tasting every wondrous curve—was because she was way out on Long Island with her parents. Otherwise, he would be busy flouting his best friend’s veiled warning. Another night of passion was definitely worth the risk.
Simon crossed his arms and kicked the top of his shoe at imaginary rocks on the ground. Look, idiot. Marcus has been a great friend, and you’re going destroy your friendship because you like rolling around in the sheets with Regina? He’s going to kick your ass for touching his sister. Marcus was capable of taking a man down in seconds. Although no slouch in the fighting department, the last thing he wanted was to brawl with his best friend. “What am I going to do,” He asked the sky.
“About what?” Marcus appeared holding a plate full of raw meat.
“Nothing. Just thinking about a case.”
“You wanna run it by me?
“Nah, thanks though, man. I really don’t want to talk shop right now.”
“I can dig that.” Smoke billowed from the grill as Marcus laid the steaks on the grate. “I just checked out the score. Knicks down by 10.” He poked at the meat.
“Of course, they are. I don’t know why you constantly hope they have a chance in hell of winning.”
“Hey, what’s wrong with having faith in people?” Marcus stabbed at the meat sizzling on the hot grill.
The two laughed and the tension dissipated. As fool hearty as it was, he couldn’t give up what he started with Regina or his friendship with Marcus. If things become more serious with Regina, I’ll let Marcus know about us. Preferably when he isn’t brandishing a pitchfork.
Lawyer Simon Young is smart, confident, and adept at keeping things with women casual—until he meets his best friend Marcus’s sister, Regina. Immediately intrigued by Regina’s beauty, Simon becomes increasingly enthralled and ultimately risks his friendship to have her for himself.
Social justice writer and activist Regina Kent is usually cautious and savvy. Yet, unable to resist her attraction to the handsome Simon, she plunges into a torrid affair, knowing that she chances angering big brother and her less tolerant followers, many of whom will not accept that one of their most popular pro-Black bloggers is dating an Asian man.
As their clandestine romance evolves, Simon and Regina fall deeper in love. Making sure that things stay between them becomes progressively impossible, and neither knows how much longer they can keep Marcus in the dark and the world at bay.