RAZE by Tillie Cole
To take back life, one must first face death…
One man stripped of his freedom, his morals…his life.
Conditioned in captivity to maim, to kill and to slaughter, prisoner 818 becomes an unremorseful, unrivaled and unstoppable fighter in the ring. Violence is all he knows. Death and brutality are the masters of his fate.
After years of incarceration in an underground hell, only one thought occupies his mind: revenge…bloody, slow and violent revenge.
Revenge on the man who lied.
Revenge on the man who wronged him.
Revenge on the man who condemned him and turned him into this: a rage-fueled killing machine. A monster void of humanity; a monster filled with hate.
And no one will stand in the way of getting what he wants.
One woman stripped of her freedom, her morals…her life.
Kisa Volkova is the only daughter of Kirill ‘The Silencer’ Volkov, head of the infamous ‘Triad’ bosses of New York’s Russian Bratva. Her life is protected. In reality, it’s a virtual prison. Her father’s savage treatment of his rivals and his lucrative and coveted underground gambling ring—The Dungeon—ensures too many enemies lurk at their door.
She dreams to be set free.
Kisa has known only cruelty and loss in her short life. As manager of her father’s death match enterprise, only grief and pain fill her days. Her mafia boss father, in her world, rules absolute. And her fiancé, Alik Durov, is no better; the Dungeon’s five-time champion, a stone-cold killer, the treasured son of her father’s best friend, and her very own—and much resented—personal guard. Unrivaled in both strength and social standing, Alik controls every facet of Kisa’s life, dominates her every move; keeps her subdued and dead inside…then one night changes everything.
While working for her church—the only reprieve in her constant surveillance—Kisa stumbles across a tattooed, scarred, but stunningly beautiful homeless man on the streets. Something about him stirs feelings deep within her; familiar yet impossibly forbidden desires. He doesn’t talk. Doesn’t communicate with anyone. He’s a man beyond saving, and a man she must quickly forget…for both their sakes.
But when weeks later, out of the blue and to her complete surprise, he’s announced as the replacement fighter in The Dungeon, Kisa knows she’s in a whole lot of trouble. He’s built, ripped and lethally unforgiving to his opponents, leaving fear in his wake and the look of death in his eyes.
Kisa becomes obsessed with him. Yearns for him. Craves his touch. Needs to possess this mysterious man…this man they call Raze.
RAZE by Tillie Cole
This book was a good read. It was intense, heartbreaking, hot, and dark. It certainly pulls on the heartstrings but kind of evens out with the sex and violence, lol, ya feel me?
It’s the first in a four-book series about an illegal “fight to the death” cage fighting ring. Run by the various gang bosses around the world. This story is set in Brooklyn and Georgia and involves mainly the Bratva.
Right from the start it really pulled me in as it starts with a bang…literally, lol. The characters are believable and the story keeps you interested…until about 80% of the way through when it started to lose me a little.
I’ll be honest, I love me some gore, sex, and violence. A little dominance here, a little BDSM there, ya know? But I’m really not too god with the lovey dovey, gushing tears of happiness and the super soft side of the men with a dreamy happily ever after.
Maybe it’s just me, maybe I’m totally messed up? But, I am what I am, lol. I do enjoy a HEA but not too much on the sappy stuff please.
There were definitly some dark scenes here and it made me cringe with the violence that was endured by pretty much all of the characters at one point or another, so, yup, trigger warnings.
- KISA – Kisa is a Bratva princess, only daughter to the big mafia boss man. And as such, she is engaged to the only son of one of the “Three Red Kings”. She isn’t spoiled as you might expect but she instead does everything she can to act according to the wishes of the “Family”.
She’s kind and gentle but also quite smart. I’ll give her her due, she can deal with the uglier side of the Mafia lifestyle and runs the gym for the Dungeon fights.
Sadly she is engaged to a very mentally and physically abusive man, who has her believing he needs her in order to stay even remotely sane and so she feels it’s her duty to stick with him.
For years, Alik wanted me. From childhood, he always wanted me close. He was always angry, starting fights and getting into trouble. He would tell me he heard voices in his head, voices that would tell him to hurt people, but when he was around me, he was calm, the voices went away. – Kisa
ALIK – Alik is not a well man. He has severe rage issues and hears voices telling him to do terrible things to people. The only thing in the world that calms him at all is Kisa and he is majorly obsessed with her.
His possessive and controlling nature, as well as him being the undisputed champion of the Dungeon for many a gorey year, means that everyone is terrified of him. And for good reason. The man loves to torture and kill. He has even killed a man for just looking at “his” Kisa.
It would appear that he has been brought up by an abusive father, whom I suspect may also be a sociopath. He’s the guy you love to hate in this story.
His head cocked to the side as his eyes narrowed. “For a minute there, I thought you’d left before I gave you permission. For a minute there, I thought you had defied me, Myshka … For a minute there, I thought you’d lost your fucking mind.” – Alik
As you can see, he’s a pretty scary fuckin’ crazy-ass mofo. Tillie Cole really wrote this character well. He’s very intimidating, even on paper!
- RAZE / 818 – Raze has lead a seriously fucked up life since his early teens. He’s been tortured, raped, drugged and all manner of horrific things that you can think of.
He remembers nothing of his life before the “Gulag” and is basically a killing machine that “They” created. His story starts when he’s introduced to his new life at around fourteen years old and gets his first glimpse of what’s to come.
A loud rip sounded from the cage, the sound slicing down his back and bringing vomit to his mouth. As a huge spectator abruptly moved out of the way smiling in celebration, everything became clear. The fighters in the cage were kids … boys who looked no older than himself. And they were fighting … to the death … – Raze
Sixteen years later his life is death. That’s it. That’s all he knows, until one day all of the prisoners escape and he has only one thing on his mind. Revenge. Although he doesn’t remember why, he has a name and an address that he’s been remembering for the last sixteen years. Alik Durov.
- SEX SCENES – The sex scenes were hot (the consensual ones were anyway) but there wasn’t much of a build-up to them. Not much anticipation.
“Touch me, here, Raze. Lick me. Suck me here on my clit. Make me come in your mouth.” – Kisa (I do love a woman who isn’t afraid to ask for what she wants)
It was the first time I’d ever tasted pussy. Her scent drove me forward. Using my thumbs to spread her lips, I circled the tip of my tongue over her clit. Kisa moaned and jerked as soon as it made contact. My tongue became frenzied, licking her clit over and over, and Kisa’s legs began to shake, her nails clawing at my bare shoulders. – Raze
FINAL THOUGHTS on RAZE by Tillie Cole – I really did enjoy this book, even with a fair bit of sappiness. The characters were so well written and you could clearly picture them all in your head. The suspense was great and it was fast paced and full of action. But it didn’t leave me feeling that I wanted to read the next book in the series.
The next book is about Talia, Kisa’s best friend, but I think I’ll give it a miss.