4 “He Can Hold My Hand Any Day” Stars!
Book 3 in the “Hades Hangmen” series, ‘Souls Unfractured’ tells the story of Flame and Maddie. If you’ve read the first two books in this series, then you should remember Maddie as one of the beautiful, “cursed” sisters that was rescued from a religious cult. Similarly, you’ll recognize Flame as the MC’s resident scary guy with a cutting problem. No two people could seem less likely to fall in love, but Ms. Cole makes it happen.
The story is well-written and captured my interest right off the bat. One of the things that I found intriguing was that this book focused far more on Flame’s past trauma, than Maddie’s. As a result, I felt far more connected with Flame than the other Heroes from earlier books in the series.
I was incredibly impressed with how Ms. Cole was able to address his past sexual assaults, while not taking away from his character’s strength or badass biker appeal. She skillfully weaved some very sensitive topics from Flame’s childhood into the story, showing a raw, emotional side of the much-feared killer. She made him human. Given the brutality that he is known for, that was no easy task.
Flame was definitely the best part of this story for me. Maddie’s character, for the most part, seemed pretty interchangeable with the previous heroines in this series. She’s gorgeous, traumatized, afraid of most men, sweet and sheltered. Victimized by pedophiles that used false religious prophecies to perpetuate their crimes, she shares a horrid past that is similar to Mae and Lilah.
Similarly, Flame’s story added something new to the familiar kidnap and rescue plot. After all, even Cain, aka Rider, is tired of kidnapping these girls at this point. This time around, their kidnapping was comparable to a “catch and release”. It had to be the shortest, and least dramatic, kidnapping ever! So yes, Flame’s story was what kept me tuned in.
As Flame and Maddie slowly built their relationship together, I found myself rooting for Flame. I wanted him to experience affection sooo badly. When his walls finally started to come down, all I could think was, “Damn, hand holding never seemed so erotic before!” I’ve read many sex scenes that weren’t even close to being that hot!
I’m a sucker for a happy ending and was glad to see Flame and Maddie get theirs. While this book did have many similarities to the earlier books, I have enjoyed them all enough that the redundancies didn’t take away from my enjoyment of this story.
I’m looking forward to the next book in this series. I cannot wait to see how things work out. I’m particularly curious to see how things will play out for Cain, now that he seems to be getting a very small taste of what he deserves.
Overall, I really enjoyed ‘Souls Unfractured’. It was very well written and held my attention from start to finish. It had many similarities to the first two books in the series, so whether or not they appealed to you might be a good indicator of whether or not this one will or won’t suit your tastes as well.
Note: This book, like the two prior books in this series, contains descriptions of child abuse, including child rape. If these topics are triggers for you, you may want to avoid this title.