On the first day of her nude modeling job, Elle deals with a corpse, an eccentric dark artist, his sexy brother, and a grandmother that can see someone's future by just touching their hands. Although these crazy distractions shove her on edge, it's just what she needs to mend her battered heart and forget about her ex-boyfriend. Besides, she does get to live in their castle for the whole three months.
Everything seems magical and perfect. Until more dead bodies are discovered.
There's something going on at night, right in the artist's garden. Under the moonlight, young women are being cut and sliced, and no one has a clue to who's doing it. And the more she's around the weird family in the castle, the more she realizes that they all are hiding secrets.
Goodreads Link - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18626645-the-muse
“Can I take you upstairs to my room?” he whispered. As if to not give me too much time to think about it, he assaulted me with sweet and long sugary kisses all over the tops of my cleavage. My nipples pebbled at his attention. My breasts begged to be released right there on the dance floor in front of everyone.
“Come with me.” He clutched my behind some more. “God, I’ve got to have you tonight. Please.”
But before I could answer, someone screamed.
It wasn’t the type of shrill sound that one could hear at a party where someone let out a loud yell of enjoyment. It wasn’t a cry of excitement. It sounded like fear. The noise cut through the air and delivered cold shivers up my spine.
The person screamed again.
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***Nona’s review of The Muse by Kenya Wright***
When Elle arrives at the artists’ compound, the first thing she sees is a body bag being taken away. That would have been my cue to say “See ya” and tell the cabbie to drive me back to the airport. But Elle is braver than I am. She is also trapped. Thanks to her controlling, abusive ex she has only five hundred dollars to her name and posing for the artist Hex is the only way she can earn enough to remain independent.
If Hex were poor and untalented, he’d be called an oddball, but since he’s a rich and famous artist, he’s considered eccentric. Many of his creations are large interactive works. He seems obsessed with death and dying. Besides dealing with Hex, Elle also encounters his grandmother, another strange soul, who casts spells. But is she practicing magic or witchcraft?
Luckily, Elle also meets Alvarez, Hex’s handsome older brother. He takes care of the business side of Hex’s empire. Alvarez and Elle are powerfully attracted to each other but a series of macabre deaths interrupt their budding romance. Al also has a secret. He’s hiding the existence of a mysterious woman named Dayanara from Elle.
This is the first book in the Dark Art Mystery series, and there is a lot of darkness in the story. Hex and his grandmother share an obsession with death and decay. Themes include murder, child abuse, mutilation and crimes from the past. I found it pretty grim at times. The forces of good vs. evil really have a field day in this tale. Good ultimately triumphs, but at a very high price.
My favorite parts of the book were the romance between Elle and Alvarez and Elle’s personal growth. She is trying to break away from her ex, an artist for whom she served as muse. He refuses to let her go, but his love is selfish. She’s working on getting stronger and discovering she has other gifts besides physical beauty. Alvarez encourages this growth. He’s an awesome, protective, loving character—not just for Elle, but for the rest of his family. This is a huge burden for him, and Elle is only one who sees what it’s costing him. I loved the scene where he seduces her by quoting the lyrics of a Spanish song and the scene where they finally consummate their love.
Be warned, there are some intense themes in this book. But readers who enjoy a romance with an unusual setting and a strong suspense line will want to give The Muse a try.
Kenya Wright always knew she would be famous since the ripe old age of six when she sang the Michael Jackson thriller song in her bathroom mirror. She has tried her hand at many things from enlisting in the Navy for six years as a Persian-Farsi linguist to being a nude model at an art university.
However, writing has been the only constant love in her life. Will she succeed? Of course.
For she has been coined The Urban Fantasy Queen, the Super Iconic Writer of this Age, The Lyrical Genius of Our Generation. Granted, these are all terms coined by her, within the private walls of her bathroom as she still sings the Michael Jackson thriller song.
Kenya Wright currently resides in Miami with her three amazing, overactive children, a supportive, gorgeous husband, and three cool black cats that refuse to stop sleeping on Kenya’s head at night.
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