Never back down, never turn your back, and never fall in love. Head of a multi-million dollar criminal enterprise, Vernon Newell doesn’t let family ties or misplaced sympathy get in his way. But there is one chink in his armor—Sirena Patras, the beautiful young Greek girl he seduced and deserted eight years ago.
When Vernon discovers that Bella Bell, a prospering tattoo artist in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, is actually Sirena, he sets out to woo and to win her. Despite her attraction to the fabulously sexy man, Bella wants nothing to do with a hard-headed, ruthless criminal.
But when threatening messages start arriving, and Vernon disappears, Bella must choose to abandon the man she loves, as he did her, or risk her life to save him.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I received a copy of the book from the author, and I am giving my unbiased review. Sirena/Bella is a young and prosperous tattoo artist who happens to be in love with Vernon, a mob boss. Bella is living in NY trying to make a more prominent spot for herself not only in her own tattoo shop, but also with a tv series. When her paintings for the tv series are stolen, her shop bombed, and her cats killed, as well as losing her apartment and calling off her engagement with Vernon, Bella must now look deep within herself to get back on her feet and take everything that was taken from her back. Unbeknown to Vernon, his kid brother Cole and his step-mother demand and scheme to take and steal everything that Vernon holds near and dear, as well as his status and possessions. Bella believes that Vernon has gone back to his mobster ways, and Vernon believes that Bella is now out of his reach. Will they both learn to make peace and fight for each other and their futures or will they each give in and go their separate ways? Close to the Skin begins where the first book let off. Unfortunately, I have not yet read this first book, but I will be picking it up soon! I was a little bit confused at times, because I haven't read the first book yet, but Close to the Skin answered all of my unasked questions. I fell in love with Bella and Vernon. Even though they come from completely different upbringings, they are both good and powerful in their own ways. Bella is a strong female who stands on her feet, but she also asks for help when she needs it. Vernon is a complex mobster who truly loves Bella, but is willing to make some sacrifices. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Close to the Skin. The plot was excellent, and the characters have many different dimensions, as well as plot twists! I highly recommend this book. Thank you Ms. West for the opportunity to read your work. I look forward to reading more of your books.
My Disclaimer: I was provided a free copy of this book by the author’s representative. I am voluntarily providing an honest review in which all opinions are fully my own. I am not being compensated in any way. ~ Judi E. Easley for Blue Cat Review My Review: ✰✰✰✰ This was a great story to follow the first book. The pacing was a bit uneven and I found my attention wandering a bit in parts with all the description of dark alleys. But this answers the questions I had from the first book about the other couple, Sirena/Bella and Vernon. Remember the first book was Ari the former Olympian and Melissa. Sirena is Ari’s sister and best friends with Melissa. The older couple has gone back to the island they own and living their peaceful life. Sirena’s life is far from peaceful. Sirena is desperately trying to build up her tattoo business and take care of her colony of feral alley cats. Her drawings for the big job get stolen and she loses the chance there. Her cats are attacked. She’s attacked. Her shop is vandalized. She ends up teaming up and sleeping rough with some street kids. Actually, they are Ari’s team of street kids. But the love of her life is trying to go straight during all of this. He was a total thug and crime boss. Now he’s an “ex”. He’s also her ex, but he wants her back. He’s trying to go straight, but he’s a bit naive about it. His stepmother and half-brother aren’t being helpful at all because they want what he has and could continue to provide. It gets messy and a bit confusing with everyone running around in the dark. That’s when it drags a bit, I think. There are scary parts and sweet parts in this second book. The absolute sweetest thing is when Vernon brings Sirena three tiny kittens to care for. He couldn’t have done anything more right if he’d brought her the moon or a million dollars! This might not be quite as good as the first book, but it is certainly a good read. The relationship between these two is funny and sweet and on-and-off. You just have to read it! I’ve been unable to find a release date, yet, for Under the Skin Book #3. Share this: