Madeleine, Abducted by M.S. Willis


4 stars****  Maybe a 3.5...  can't really decide....
This book is similar in nature to the Dark Duet Series... and NOT for anyone who may be sensitive to Dark and Disturbing content. Slavery, rape, forced submission, torture... it's all there and very explicit! It was very engaging and definitely had my anxiety levels raised. I really had a hard time putting the book down once I started.
The best way to describe this book is to compare it to Hell. You have Joseph the leader who is evil and basically the devil. You have his devoted demon followers who do all of his dirty work. And, then you have the shock factor of slaves being treated in inhumane and humiliating ways... basically, the souls who have been condemned to a life in this hell. This is how The Estate works. Normally they only enslave those who are being punished from crimes against the Estate. BUT Joseph has become obsessed with forcing his son to follow in his evil footsteps and enjoys toying with him. His new game was to kidnap an innocent girl named Madeleine because he knows that his son has an affection for her and her music. And he forces his son to train her to be his personal slave.
Aaron takes on training her as his slave because he knows that if he refuses she will have a much worse fate if she is given to anyone else on the estate. And, his father is just evil enough to do it for amusement. Aaron feels strongly for her and wants to protect her in the only way he knows how. The author does an excellent job developing this dark love story that forms between them using music as their connection. Aaron in many ways is more tortured than Madeleine. He realizes that his father has chosen the best way to torment him by forcing him to extinguish the one light in his life he allowed himself to have. This quote sums up his conflicted emotions:

"Dream of me, Maddy. See me as I want to be; not the nightmare who torments you, but the devoted and mystified man who worships at your feet."

There are definitely some beautifully written emotional moments between Aaron and Madeleine and I loved that she became his reason to hold on to that small bit of good inside him.
I do have a few complaints with this book. One is that I never really understood what The Estate was and their function. Where did they get all of this so called "power"? The only two places we ever really see are Aaron's apartment where he keeps Madeleine and their occasional trip to the Ballroom where slaves are openly tortured, humiliated abused and raped. It would have been nice to have had more history of how the estate began and why for some reason his father was so untouchable. It seemed a little unbelievable to me that it was so hard to rid the estate of Joseph.
My other complaint was that Xander (AAron's right hand man and best friend) sort of out-shone Aaron. His character was the best character in the book. There were many times where I felt his relationship with Maddy was more realistic and a small part of me wanted her to be with him. Also, Aaron is supposed to be the dark hero... but, the fact that he never seemed to have the balls to stand up to his father in regards to Madeleine just didn't seem logical considering he is supposed to be a skilled assassin and the most feared man in the estate. Men who love their women do not allow them to be harmed... so, certain events that took place in and out of the ballroom in which Aaron openly participated just didn't work for me and I felt like these scenes were put in simply for shock factor. And, based on his lack of balls I developed a dislike for him in general. Man up Aaron... seriously! 
At the end of the day I would definitely recommend this book to those that have a taste for the dark and disturbing. It's well written and will satisfy most who are a fan of this genre. And, one can't complain about the content if you have been warned ahead of time! The torture and abuse is not sugar coated in any way.
Book two will be Xander's story and I'm not sure if I'll read it or not based on the brief description. Dark and disturbing is something I can occasionally dip into when I'm in the right mood but it's not something I like to read on a regular basis. So, we'll see... I may be on board since it is about him. 

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