★★★★★ 4.5 Stars
Genre: Thriller / Erotica
Series: The Original Sinners
Publication Date: June 5th, 2018
Publisher: 8th Circle Press
Enter decadence through a gilded looking glass…
The Chateau is like rich gâteau and jazz in the hours of the night when all sin is absolved, and a sensual-sinister echo of the Decadent Movement with modern sensibilities. Mostly.
Lieutenant Kingsley Boissonneault is tasked with infiltrating a secretive cult when his commanding officer’s nephew has been drawn into it, whether by will or force he’s not sure. The cult itself seems to Kingsley like a reverse garden of Eden, a haven of open decadence that is his ideal, if he’s honest, but it’s no stranger to a deeper darkness, and he knows there has to be a catch that both the officer’s nephew, himself, and the other men living there have fallen prey to.
It’s not my usual genre, but I liked its colours as both a mystery-thriller and darkest romance – it spares neither blood nor honey. I’m a sucker for the paradox of opulence and torment, and this has it in spades, especially with Kingsley, who could be its posterchild. A flawed and selfish protagonist, oh yes, but a bad protagonist he’s not.
The ice-blue, nightmarish dreams of his one past love are absolutely haunting.
The pace drops to a brisk walk in the second half, but its language is as luxurious as gold always, even when it’s rolling in the worst gutters of relationships. I think that more erotica should be like this – unafraid but intricate. The Chateau is a wink laced with twisted secrets and gleaming with an overdose of paradise. It sticks to your thoughts like sugar.
[I received a copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]