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New Release Review and Giveaway: ILLICIT DESIRE by Taylor Michaels

First book in a new series!

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Illicit Desire Synopsis:

Raphael is everything I should run away from…

Cora Milan came to Miami to get a fresh start, away from the memories and stigma that followed her and her brother at home. When she’s mugged, Raphael Ortiz rescues her. He’s sexy, successful, and dangerous—Miami’s most eligible bachelor and it’s most elusive. A cartel lord who lives on the wrong side of the law, with only a veneer of respectability. He is the exact opposite of a clean slate, and he makes no apologies for wanting her.

When Raphael forces his way into her life, Cora knows she should run. But the attraction between them is undeniable, and Raphael is a man accustomed to getting what he wants. The more she loses herself in him, the deeper she is drawn into Raphael’s criminal world.

But when her past and his present collide, both of them will be left grasping for the only thing that can save them from the darkness around them—each other.



Illicit Desires is a short read with a great deal of steam. It’s also the first book in the series, and ends with a definite cliffhanger…if you’re the type of person who doesn’t like to wait, the next installment doesn’t come out until 2015–just a friendly warning. 😉

Both Raphael and Cora have some pretty heavy-duty baggage, relationship and otherwise. We spend much of this novel figuring out some key things about their backgrounds, things that might bring them together or tear them apart. In fact, in the final pages we see an element of Raphael’s life causing their separation while moments later a threat from Cora’s past ensures that she’s not going to be completely rid of him anytime soon. Did I mention a cliffhanger? 😉

Raphael and Cora move pretty quickly into a very intense relationship; for him at least, it’s lust at first sight, literally from page one as Cora walks past his building and has her purse stolen. What he does from there has elements of a fairly frightening fairy tale as he swoops into her life and solves a lot of her immediate problems for her. Suddenly she has money, a job, and a sexy billionaire interested in her; however, that billionaire makes his money as the head of a cartel. One that she’s now working for.

The jury’s still out on this one. I’m not sure how I feel about a hero who truly is a bad bad boy. He has people beat up. He deals in drugs. Mention is made of dealing in even darker trades. Sure, he’s an attractive, powerful man, but….

Cora is a strange blend of too much innocence paired with worldliness. On the one hand her past does have some very frightening stuff that she’s lived through, making it somewhat believable that she’d want the protection that a guy like Raphael could offer. On the other hand, she stood across from two of his associates from Columbia and said, “Raphael didn’t tell me we had Columbian business partners. What do you import?” Um,really? She’d already Googled him–and the grandfather who started the business and handed it to him–at that point and should have known exactly what they were talking about.

This was a quick and steamy read. If you like more than a hint of danger in your romance and you feel that our criminal underworld is largely misunderstood, give it a try.

Rating: 3 stars / C

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Buy Links:

Amazon | Barnes and Noble |Illicit Desire on Goodreads


Taylor Michaels Bio:1525096_10151826862048342_1551981715_n

Taylor Michaels is the pseudonym for Nazarea Andrews. Her books tend toward dark adult romance. She still likes chocolate and wine and book boys a little sexier than they should be. She can be found on Twitter and Facebook and loves hearing from readers. When not writing, she can most often be found playing taxi driver for her three daughters, hanging out with her husband at their small business, or burning dinner. She lives in Georgia.


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