Title:  Menace (Scarlet Scars #1)
Author: J.M. Darhower
Genres: Romance, Dark
Release Day: 2016
ARC was kindly provided from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Lorenzo Gambini is bored. So fucking bored. Most people either annoy him or avoid him, afraid to face him. Figuratively. Literally. With his face partially disfigured, scarred, he looks every bit the monster the stories make him out to be: the notorious menace they call Scar. They say he’s a sociopath. Maybe he’s a psychopath. Whatever path he’s on, people tend to stay far away from it.

Until one day, a young woman bumps right into him–a woman just as fed up with life, but for much different reasons. With a Scarlet Letter inked on her wrist and secrets buried deep in her soul, Morgan Myers is running from something… or maybe somebody. Lorenzo isn’t quite sure.

You can bet your ass he’s going to figure it out, though.

4 stars! 

“If you give the moster a name, it takes away its power, because we’re really just afraid of what we don’t know. If you name it, if you know what it is, you can be stronger than it.”

Lorenzo is here! I love it when out of the blue, books start loading in my Kindle. For those of you who have read Monster in His Eyes series, you might remember him although it’s not a requirement to read that one first but you have because:

  • Naz
  • JMD
  • Naz
  • Lots of Naz
  • and (you guessed it!) NAZ!

Menace gave me a different feel from other JMD books, it was almost noir-like and it felt like from another time, like I was in this different time with bad cops and mafia guys running around the streets and calling the shots; I really liked that it transported me to another time even though that’s totally on me not on the book, the book is completely contemporary but the characters have another level of maturity about them.

You’ve got to be a fucking fool to be out here at this time of day.
Fucking fool.
That’s what I am.
That’s me.
Lorenzo ‘Fucking Fool’ Gambini.
Say it with me.

Lorenzo is a psychotic bastard and that is the highest level of compliments – sometimes it just is – and this guy doesn’t hold back, it was a delight to be reading him, he’s funny and witty and sarcastic – it was refreshing to read a character that is so funny and bloody at the same time. Lorenzo is the Deadpool of Mafia books, I’m telling you! He has a thing about nicknames, he uses nicknames for everyone even his brother – um, I need Leo’s book ASAP! He made the book for me because his love interest, not so much although she had her moments.

“Face your fears and wipe your tears.”

The two meet really early into the book – first chapter, when she tries to steal his wallet – that’s how you make an entrance! But as a character she didn’t hold my interest, there was a heavy veil of mystery about her that normally I would be all over it but it just became boring real quick because I couldn’t connect to her and I couldn’t figure out why she was being the way she was, why she was putting up with all the things she put up even though she was tough when it came to her interaction with Lorenzo but the rest of the characters, not so much. I would have liked it if she was introduced in the second half, just to let Lorenzo be and do his thing – he could totally have pulled it off.

Still, I’m looking forward to the next one, it’s a JMD mafia book – DUH! And if you’re a fan, you shouldn’t miss this!

about the author

J.M. Darhower is the USA Today bestselling author of books about the hottest hit men and the women who find some hope in them. She lives in a tiny town in rural North Carolina, where she churns out more words than will ever see the light of day. She has a deep passion for politics and speaking out against human trafficking, and when she isn’t writing (or fangirling) she’s usually ranting about those things. Chronic crimper with a vulgar mouth, she admits to having a Twitter addiction. You can usually always find her there.



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