SPARK OF MADNESS by Brynn Ford
Release Date: July 21st
Series Name: Ember Glen
Genre: Dark Dystopian Romance
In Ember Glen, men purge under the full moon. It’s the duty of women to serve them. When Mercy refuses to serve, Arlo will force her to find absolution through three brutal trials. But will their forbidden romance destroy their world?
Eden Books: bit.ly/sparkeden
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Neglecting my duty to serve is a sin, and during the last full moon, I became a sinner.
He saw me run from my duty, chased me, and caught me.
He promised me that I would be punished.
But I never could have imagined the hellish fate that would be chosen for me. More than that, I never could have imagined the maddening lust that would spark between me and the man who caught me.
This passion is forbidden…and it might set us on fire.
It’s my role to catch the sinners, and Mercy sinned gravely.
I saw her and I chased her, drawn to her inexplicably.
She sparked something within me, but she had to be brought to judgment.
Her punishment is coming in the form of an archaic ritual we’re bringing back to make an example of her. I’ll be her warden, her keeper, the man to ensure she stays alive between her tortuous trials.
Something within her brings out the worst of me…and the worst of me wants to ruin her.
This is a dark romance series. You can find a list of tropes & triggers at www.brynnford.com/triggers.
My ARC Review:
This was my first read by Brynn, and what a wonderfully dark, delicious and dirty read it was too!!! I loved the world building and the characters were brilliant – not for the faint hearted, this is a very steamy dystopian read that will push your buttons and your boundaries!
Set in the future but the people in Ember Glen live in a cult type situation where the Elders and the Council rule the community according to God’s law as laid down in their edict. The community is split into a domestic style life, where women have husbands and bring up children, but then some of the girls are then chosen so serve the men, who once a month on the full moon get to purge themselves of their lust and violence on the Servers, thus keeping their community safe from violence! The women who are servers are taught how to service the men and their needs, and then become Servers at the age of 16. The men are brutal in their taking doling out of violence and abuse as they see fit, as is their right, to Purge.
Mercy is a Server, now age 20, but has never agreed with the way of the community, always rebellious and has been reprimanded many times for her sins. On this Purge she sees another server set alight and the male then come after her, so she does the unthinkable and runs away into the forest.
Arlo is a member of Control and sees her run and gives chase. He captures her giving her the choice of either running or facing him. Yet Arlo finds himself captured by Mercy, her beauty and her sinning ways.
The Elders and Control decide to make an example of Mercy Madness and is to be put through the Trial of Dissention, the idea being this is a 3 stage trial and if at the end of it she is still alive then she is free – yet no one has ever survived all 3 stages, so essentially this is a death sentence for her.
Arlo is made her Warden, which means looking after her and preparing her for these trials, but their attraction to each other reigns down on them, as Arlo at times is unable to help himself, feeling lust, anger, depravity, violence, possession and repulsion for Mercy. Can she withstand the ferocity of the Trial and somehow survive?
This book won’t be for everyone, but I really loved it! I couldn’t read it fast enough!! This story will really push your buttons with its toxic religion, the misogynist views of the men, how the women are treated and abused all supposedly with the blessing of God! There are scenes hot enough in here to melt you kindle, with a lot of kink as well! Mercy is a bright spark in this darkness, she is strong and fierce and questions everything, which is why she is cast as a sinner, as her questions look to destroy the very balance of their community. I truly felt for her in her despair and am rooting for her in the next 2 books!
I’m not too sure about Arlo, he has been raised to follow the guidelines, yet Mercy makes him question his own beliefs and religion, she unbalances him, making him want to sin with her, she makes him think – but will this be enough to save her? I can’t wait to see what happens next – definitely worth the read for any dark dystopian lovers, but be warned and check the triggers beforehand.
About the Author:
Brynn Ford is an author of dark and dirty romance for daring readers. She is a lover of the dark, twisted, and playful and strives to bring the unmentionable aspects of passionate romance into her stories.
Brynn lives in the Midwestern United States with her husband and sons, whom she expects will someday be embarrassed by their mom’s books. When she isn’t obsessively writing, you may find her binge watching favorite shows while eating far too much junk food or fanatically reading, always seeking to lose herself in the emotional roller coaster of a damn good story.
She is quite the idealist despite her fascination with the wicked and warped aspects of humanity. She’s a firm believer that her characters continue to live on outside the pages in the minds of her readers. Stories don’t just end because there aren’t any more pages to turn.
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