Title: The Skull King
Author: Penelope Sky
Publisher/Year: Penelope Sky 4/2/19
Length: 182 Pages
Series: Skull #1
My husband is cruel, ruthless, and despicable.
I hate him with every fiber of my being.
The only reason I haven’t killed him or tried to run away is because of the promise I made. I sold myself to save someone I loved…and this is the price I have to pay.
I was sitting alone in a bar when the most handsome man walked inside. Striking blue eyes, cheekbones as sharp as glass, and a muscular body fit for a war. He was gorgeous. I couldn’t take my eyes off him. When he bought me a drink, I didn’t say no. I’d been unfulfilled for so long, and I wanted a real man for the night. My husband had his affairs so why couldn’t I?
I noticed the peculiar ring on his right hand, a diamond carved into a skull. If only I’d known what that meant, I would have known who this man was.
The Skull King.
A man more cruel and ruthless than my own husband.
I love the world that our author Penelope Sky has introduced us to in all of the series that i’ve read so far. It’s a dark world of illegal ‘stuff’ in the heart of Italy, but those that we should fear the most are the ones that we truly want to love the most as well.
In this story – we get to learn more about a group that we heard a bit about in the Banker series. The Skull Kings have their leader, and that is Balto – our leading man. A guy who’s forced his way to the top of the food chain, has control of the entire country and all illegal activity that goes on, and what he wants he gets. He’s a man of his word, and when someone crosses that, he’s out for blood.
That’s where Cassini comes into play – because she gave up her freedom to save someone that she thought was worth saving and in return, he betrayed her, and she was stuck in a marriage to a man who was so intolerable, that her day to day life was too much for her to survive.
Similar to the chemistry that we saw in the Banker, the heat between Balto and Cassini when their paths cross for the first time, it’s explosive and it’s just a matter of time before we see how it plays out for them.
There’s so much tension throughout this story – we see how badly Cassini wants to find happiness in her life but that comes at a price, and without having to risk everything and everyone one, she knows that the future is bleak. Balto on the other hand is beyond confident, feeling that he’s untouchable that he’s willing to risk quiet a bit to get what he wants. Lucien, Cassini’s husband and the man that crossed Balto in the worst way is at the core to everyone’s unhappiness and has the ability to make things better. yet he’s selfish and won’t consider anything.
The way that this story plays out is that we see the push and pull of doing what’s right by reputation v. living the life that everyone wants. The theme of being true to your word is really the bottom line factor – and we see what happens to those who keep their word and those who don’t.
I feel like there’s a lot that we don’t get into in this story, and that makes me wonder if we’ll get more in the following installments or if there will be spin off series. Case and Dirk, Cassini’s brothers have their family business but they also have an underground business as well. I’m curious about their stories and what that means to Cassini’s future. We get teased but ntohing concrete.
We also meet Heath, Balto’s identical twin, and he starts to play a bigger role in this book but we don’t really scratch the surface much more on this one.
Where we are left off is at a point where we were just about to sigh and relax, but that’s not possible and freedom is impossible. One man takes what belongs to another when resolutions aren’t made and that means that we see hearts broken, relationships broken, and there’s a whole new smell of fear in the air.
Also, in true Penelope Sky form, it’s not just fear in the air but the smell of lust and sex. There’s a chemistry between our main characters that’s hot and they don’t even try to contain it. Cassini knows what she wants, and owns it with her strength. Balto is a man that doesn’t apologize ever, and when he sees that there’s an obstacle to get what he wants, he plows through.
I’m curious to see how this plays out because i really want to see how hard and mean Balto is but i want something better for Cassini. Lucien I can do without honestly, so i’m excited to read on to see how this plays out. Enjoy!