*I was gifted an ARC in exchange for an honest review*
Synopsis & My Review:
Ellie Watt is used to starting over. The daughter of a grifting team, Ellie spent her childhood being used as a pawn in her parents’ latest scam. Now she’s much older, wiser and ready to give her con artist life a rest. But returning to the dry desert town of Palm Valley, California means one more temptation than she bargained for – Camden McQueen. Once known as the high school weirdo, Camden is bigger and badder than the boy he used to be and a talented tattoo artist with his own thriving business. Ellie’s counting on Camden still being in love with her but what she’s not counting on is how easily unrequited love can turn into obsession over time. When Camden discovers Ellie’s plan to con him, he makes her a deal she doesn’t dare refuse, but her freedom comes with a price and it’s one that takes both Ellie and Camden down a dangerous road.
**The Artists Trilogy is a dark and sexy contemporary ride about three flawed individuals caught in a world where it’s so easy to justify the bad things we do. This is a pure adult read (Not YA or NA). **
"This was a high contrast world and I lived a high contrast life." - Ellie
Sweet Jesus – This book took a toll on me. If my emotions were a person, they would be the person drinking straight from the bottle of Jack; because really, who has time for a chaser or a mixer when you feel like you could cry, scream, and throw things all at the same time?! My emotions don’t.
Sins & Needles is a story about deception, manipulation, justification, and redemption. Ellie Watt grew up being used as a pawn in her parents’ schemes and con jobs, and as if it was in her DNA, she followed in their footsteps and decided to make her living conning men out of money. That is, until she cons the wrong man, and is forced to run back to the only place where she can ditch her alter egos and con lifestyle, and just be Ellie Watt – no schemes, no cons, no games. The only place she can attempt to go legit; Palm Valley. Her plans of making a decent living screech to a halt when she runs into Camden McQueen, her former best friend, and finds out he runs a tattoo business. Correction: a very successful tattoo business. While Ellie sees nothing but dollar signs and sets her plan in motion to con Camden, he devises a plan of his own – one that leaves Ellie with no choice but to agree to his terms, regardless of how dangerous they may be.
You know why I loved this book so much?? Well, one reason I loved this book so much…because it was something foreign to me. This story line was brilliant, and took me to a place I knew nothing about – con artists, fake identities, drug cartels, mafia relations; this story made me experience things I have never come close to being involved with in reality. Sure, it’s nice to be able to relate to the story line and the characters, but every so often you need a book that is purely alien to everything you know; a book that takes you out of your comfort zone. Sins & Needles is that book. The characters were extremely well written, albeit incredibly frustrating at times! Ellie damn near broke my heart when she went through with her plan to con Camden, and Camden kind of scared the hell out of me after he caught her. I mean, this line gave me fucking chills: “I own you, Ellie Watt.”
Sins & Needles by far exceeded my expectations, and I will definitely be waiting on pins and needles until the sequel is released. (See what I did there? Huh? Yeeeeah, you see what I did there). This book will take you on a roller coaster of a journey that will rip you apart, put you back together…and then rip you apart all over again. But it’s worth it; hot damn, it’s soooo worth it!
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