Review: Heart of Stone (Stone #1) by Dakota Willink

TitleHeart of Stone
Author: Dakota Willink
Publisher/Year:  Dakota Willink 12/27/15
Length:  442 pages
Series: Stone #1


ound by need. Entwined in secrets…


I had dreams and aspirations, none of which included a man by my side. Been there, done that.

Then I forgot my cellphone, and all of my carefully laid plans went to hell.

He wasn’t supposed to be there when I fell.

I wasn’t supposed to get lost in a sea of sapphire blue when he helped me up.

And he wasn’t supposed to be Alexander Stone, the New York billionaire real estate tycoon.

I saw the dark promises in his eyes when he looked at me.

But the shadows of my past haunted me, making me afraid to explore the possibilities I could never before have imagined.


I was used to getting what I wanted.

I understood the value of finesse and patience to achieve the desired result.

But a chance run-in with Krystina Cole quickly turned my world upside down.

She was strong, determined, devastatingly beautiful-and stubborn as hell.

Her quick wit and firecracker attitude was the complete opposite of what I wanted in a woman.

But I still wanted to claim her.

Tame her.

Make her mine.

And I always get what I want.

My Thoughts

I kept getting this book and series as a suggestion of things to read so of course I had to dive right in. The subject matter is always one that interests me – I love to see someone’s eyes opened to the world of non-vanilla activities, and watch how someone comes out of their shell to realize that there truly is more to it than kink and pain.

What we get in this story is a girl who’s come out of a relationship where she felt controlled, he cheated and she now has trouble trusting men. She will never put herself back in that position. Add to that, she’s living in a city where she’s trying to find her footing and she’s having a tough time at it. Her dream is to work at an Advertising agency, and yet right now she’s working in a grocery store since that’s what she was able to get. It’s not until the owner of the store looks to sell because he needs the money that Krystina’s life changes

Enter Alexander Stone. A mogul and a man who’s direct and precise about what he wants in every facet of his life. He’s got many companies and he’s trying to create a name for himself outside of the empire that his father built. He needs control, requires it, but when he sees Krystina for the first time, he realizes that the notion of control with her goes to a different level.

What we have in this story is typical of others in the genre. There’s a man who’s a firm and strong dominant – needs to be like that in everything he does, but he finds that he has this softer side towards Krystina. He is not the relationship type, but he’s going that route with her. He’s never been one to really be patient with a sub who didn’t know the lifestyle and yet he’s willing to take his time and introduce her to things in the right way so that she can make her own opinions.

This story is a slow build – you get to see a lot of hedging on what they are each willing to compromise to be ‘happy’. Happy is relative in this sense since I think that they are both masochists in their own way and don’t want to allow themselves to be happy. It’s a roller coaster of sorts in terms of building trust, understanding perspective and realizing what they are willing to do or give up to make someone else comfortable.

I wanted to like this book – I had such high hopes, but what I will say is that while intentional in nature, the characters make me a bit nuts. it took me far longer to read this first installment than it should have and it’s giving me much hesitation to find the next one. I want to love it, I love the idea of a girl who’s learning a new world and a guy who realizes that he can compromise, but…..this one is not necessarily the right one for me. we’ll see. I rarely let a book beat me! Enjoy!

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