Trusting Stone

Alexa Sinclaire
Trusting Stone
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Evernight Publishing
Release Date
November 2015
Book 1 of Trust Series
Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance, Romantic Suspense/Mystery

Eden Walker used to be a good girl. She followed the rules, obeyed her parents, and reaped the benefits. Until the night one wrong step showed her that all that glitters is not gold. Now she's starting over, trying to do things on her own terms and find the passion she's only dreamt about.

Sebastian Stone never expected to find love. His past is too painful for him to imagine letting someone in enough to love. He's happy focusing on his security company and he's happy with his one-night-stands. Until he bumps into Eden, a blast from his past.

Sebastian makes Eden realize she's still scared to follow the passion she knows is missing from her life. Eden is the woman for him, but can Sebastian convince Eden to follow her dreams all the way through? Or will circumstances beyond her control pull them apart?

Book Review by Delta (reviewer)
May 12, 2016   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
97 people found the following review helpful
Warning: this book is filled with an abusive, sometimes violent and unhinged dude disguised as a supposed Alpha male. There's nothing about this book that sits well with me.

Once the life of the party, a socialite debutante trust fund baby, Eden Maxwell has struggled to heal since her on/off boyfriend's fraternity brothers attempted a horrific gang rape, resulting in a suicide attempt and leaving the exclusive Boston college she attended. Now trying to regain her life without her parents' constant interference, Eden returns to the US after a year studying in Scotland and learning her new reality.

Sebastian Stone grew up in the shadow of his father's passionate love affairs…and the violent death of his mother. He has no clue how to start opening his heart to anyone, but he recognizes that it's time, and when he spots his old neighbor Eden, he realizes it might just be her. Soon, the two are inseparable, and everything about Sebastian turns her on for some reason, even his domineering ways and extreme jealousy.

But things aren't always what they seem, and Sebastian's secrecy has Eden questioning everything she thinks she knows about the man she's fallen in love with.

TRUSTING STONE is the first book in the Trust series, and it's a doozy. Eden was the victim of a nasty attempted gang rape, and she spends a lot of the book trying to get over her fears and reclaim her life. Except she doesn't actually do anything to make that happen. On again, off again boyfriend Joachim offers to help, but really it's only some strange visceral reaction to Sebastian that helps her embrace her sexuality and begin to heal. Now, there's all sorts of way to heal, of course, but jumping Sebastian's bones (as a virgin, mind you) wouldn't exactly be at the top of the sanctioned list, in my humble opinion. She's spent almost 2 years quietly regaining her sense of self-worth, and one raised eyebrow and "you're so brave" from Sebastian and she was magically okay? Her self worth plummeted when he wasn't with her, the dramatic "I'm nothing without him!" and "she disappeared without him." Listen folks, if you need to depend on another person to feel value or worth or have an IDENTITY, it may be time to take a step back and work on healing yourself. You gotta do YOU, friends!

Sebastian, for his part, was an asshat. He was rough, domineering, abrasive, overbearing, jealous, rude, caveman and ignorant, and none of those in a hot Alpha male kind of way. The only connection he seemed to want to have was the kind that secured Eden's wrists to his bed so he could fuck her 6 ways to Sunday whenever the hell he wanted. And fuck he did, as the scenes were plentiful and gratuitous, making me skim through them to get done with this pointlessly lengthy read. The two of them had barely any real, meaningful conversations, basically just him forcing himself on her the second he saw her…every time.

And how about the psychological and physical abuse? Grabbing her arm and pulling her out of nightclub in a jealous rage or grabbing her arm, leaving bruises as he throws her on the bed and rams into her, alienating her friends or demanding she stay away from them, putting down her wardrobe choices because men may take it the wrong way…that all speaks (to me) not of a loving and mutually respectful relationship, but borderline an abusive relationship. I know that if my BFF was with someone like him, I would encourage her to run fast and far away from the douchenozzle!

Even though the sex was good (when not violent and angry), I couldn't connect with this couple or any of the players in TRUSTING STONE. The relationship felt forced and the "hero" was one slap short of truly abusive, which was disguised as passionate and swoonworthy. Honestly? I'm not comfortable giving any props to a book that encourages this type of behavior under the guise of love.

Bottom Line: Unless you enjoy your MC's in an abusive and destructive relationship, I can't recommend picking up TRUSTING STONE to anyone. This book is truly insulting to women
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