Title: The Starkest Truth
Author: Courtney Lane
Series: Breaking Insanity #2
Genre: dark, abuse, psychological thriller
This is not a romance.
After her recent nuptials, Nikki Brenton is quickly thrust into a world she once avoided. Unable to adjust, her unhealthy addictions begin to tempt her and threaten to poison more than her sanity.
Nothing has ever been peaceful for Eric Brenton, and his life with Nikki is no exception. The past he suppressed has returned to wreak havoc on his life. He quickly discovers he can’t avoid his past, because it’s ready to attack him where he is most vulnerable.
When the truth is as subjective as reality, the line between trust and doubt is tested; for Nikki and Eric the line may come dangerously close to disintegrating.
Content contains descriptive violence, graphic sex, coarse language, and scenes that some readers may find objectionable. Reader discretion is strongly advised.
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The Starkest Truth by Courtney Lane
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
5 **Fuck with me, why don't you?** STARS
“There is nothing more enticing to a predator than wounded prey.”
So many conflicting feelings and a lot of rage in my stomach. Where do I begin? First things first...I loved this hellish ride. I feel like I was just put through a meat grinder and it will take me a few days to find my wits again. Yes, it’s that good and also that fucked up, edgy, risky (as per usual with Ms. Lane), boundary pushing, brutal and all consuming.
Here I thought the end of book one gave us a resemblance of closure and I really thought I had a grasp on what was going on. What each and every player wanted and how it all fits together. And I had a least a bit of hope for Nikki and Eric. WRONG. Oh so wrong. There is so much more to be said and the cunning way in which Ms. Lane wove this net of intrigue and deception is truly masterful.
“You're in denial about him. If you ever see past it, you will see this for what it really is. You're part of a cycle that never ends. It will never end.”
There is not much I can say about the story without giving too much away. The book takes off right around the time The Sordid Promise ended. Nikki and Eric are married now and for all intents and purposes they are still in the honeymoon phase of their relationship. That being a twisted, non conventional and slightly psychotic honeymoon phase. None of these characters are right in the head and that alone makes a relationship a hard thing to navigate, but in this instalment the story gets manipulated from the outside. And that’s pretty much all you get from me. It truly is something you need to experience for yourself if you can stomach it.
A lot of intriguing things happen in this book. First Ms. Lane goes back in time to show us how Eric came to Nikki and what his relationship with her mother was like. Then throughout the book we get time jumps back to his childhood to see how he became the man he is now. A look behind the scenes and it made this book a lot more layered and revealing than the last and at the same time it made it all the more confusing. There is this constant undertone of doubt and misguided trust. But for the most part it is an in depth look at the relationship between Nikki and Eric.
“I'm addicted to the way you hurt me--emotionally and physically.”
The Starkest Truth was written in dual POV and for me it was a double edged sword. On the one hand I was craving some insight into Dr. Brenton and on the other hand it revealed how little control he really has over the whole situation. Which in and of itself isn’t such a bad thing because it makes him a very 3 dimensional character, but it added to my ever growing anxiety.
Nikki. I have no words. She is in an impossible situation. There is no right way to handle any of the things she has been dealt in life and I can only admire her for making it thus far. God knows, or better yet only the devil knows what’s in store for her. We should all pray for her...if you believe in that sort of thing or not. It’s damn well needed. ;)
Here is what I love about the author and the books she writes. She gets my attention from the first to the last page. I feel like I’m sitting a little straighter, trying not to miss a single word. Because frankly, one careless second and you missed an important plot point. The writing is so excellent and dense, every word counts. It’s workout for the brain with some boundary pushing and panty wetting sex on top.
This instalment truly is the dissection of Dr. Brenton. I'm still a little speechless and out of breath. I'm also disturbingly in love with Eric and there is not one sane reason why that should be. I have said this before but the man is no anti-hero. He is something else entirely and peeling back the layers is frightening but also very exhilarating. Problem is, the path leads way down the rabbit hole and at this point there is no light in sight.
When do we get book 3 again? I’ll be sitting in my corner rocking back and forth scared out of my mind until I get some real closure, so please someone better help me out of my misery.
Warning! There are triggers all over the place, and this is not for everyone! Don't be afraid to stay away if you have a problem with very dark themes and can't handle psychological games.
**ARC very kindly provided by author in exchange for an honest review.
Books by Courtney Lane we read before:
(click cover for amazon link - reviews below)
|★5 Stars★||★4.5 Stars★||★4 Stars★|
|Flo's Review||Flo's Review||Flo's Review|
About the Author
COURTNEY LANE has been creating her own little world since she was very young. When she was eight years old, she began to bring her worlds to life with a pen and paper. Although she's had a few short hiatuses, writing has been her passion for a number of years. Until 2013, she'd always viewed her writing as a personal hobby and a purgative process: She never thought about sharing her very personal works with anyone outside of her friends and family. On October 8, 2013, she took the plunge into self-publishing and began making her works available to the public.
While many of her works touch several different genres, she has an archetype when it comes to the female protagonists in her stories — they have to have certain brand of strength, be deeply flawed, and harbor layered personalities. In her books you will find themes that reflect the darker side of life with a tremendous amount of depth and complexity. She also has an affinity for characters that aren't necessarily the girl or boy next door, or the people you'd encounter in everyday life. In other words, she prefers to explore characters who aren't easy to fall in love with.
Currently, Courtney can be found either working on her next book, playing the latest role-playing game on her X-Box (preferably a game by BioWare), or spending time with her family.
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