Dubious (The Loan Shark Duet, #1)

Dubious (The Loan Shark Duet, #1)

Dubious by Charmaine Pauls

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The cliffhanger on this one- have mercy!
I’m not a big fan in general of story lines where the man (well, either of the main characters, really) has sadistic tendencies, and hurts the person they are supposedly falling for. Even if that person grows to like/crave what they do, I still don’t like it. That said, this book was relatively tame in that aspect. However, when he did “punish” her it was for things she hadn’t really done wrong, and he did it for show/to appease others. So… that was a hard pill to swallow. He has some groveling to do in book 2. Some serious groveling. We’ll see how that turns out.
Aside from that, I did enjoy the suspense in this story. The looming threat of Magda. The mystery surrounding what happened when Valentina was younger. I also enjoyed the side characters, particularly one who is introduced as a heinous and irredeemable human being. He later revealed his motivation for that initial act of evil, and now I no longer wish him a slow and painful death.
I was glad to see people (and animals) around the house warming to Valentina. There is such coldness in that house. Such apathy and brutality. Shortly after arriving she has, without even trying, made people care for/about her. I thought this was done really well. Also, this book has three (count ’em, THREE) of my favorite tropes. I won’t say which ones. Because spoilers.
Again, the cliffhanger! I’m so glad I can pop into my Kindle app and buy/have book 2 immediately. This is why I binge completed series. I can’t tolerate waiting to find out what happens. I have NO chill.

View all my reviews


“Perversely hot, gritty, and richly textured, Valentina and Gabriel’s story is one of the best dark romances I’ve read.” –– Anna Zaires, New York Times bestselling author of Twist Me

I’m a loan shark. Breaking people is in my blood. The Haynes’s were supposed to be a straightforward job. Go in and pull the trigger twice. One bullet for Charlie, one for his sister. But when I saw Valentina, I wanted her. Only, in our world, those who owe us don’t get second chances. No way in hell will my mother let her live. So I devised a plan to keep her.

It’s depraved.
It’s immoral.
It’s dubious.

It’s perfect.
Just like her.

(DUBIOUS is the first full-length novel in a two-part duet and ends on a cliffhanger. The second book, CONSENT, is available.)

Published by Amanda Marie

Compulsive reader. Romantic suspense/contemporary romance/dark romance/NA romance addict. Particularly fond of mafia, forced/arranged marriage, secret baby, kidnapping, and dark alpha heroes. Just out here doing my part for humanity- these books won't read themselves.

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