Book Review : Secrets (Web of Sin #1) by Aleatha Romig

Book Review : Secrets (Web of Sin #1) by Aleatha Romig


I’m Sterling Sparrow. You’ve no doubt heard my name or read it on the top of tall buildings. There’s more to my business—my realm—than what is seen aboveground.

Within the underbelly of one of America’s largest cities lives a world where a man’s word is either his most valuable tool or his most respected weapon. When my father ruled that world and that city, he promised me someone who would one day make my reign complete.

Since that day, long ago, Araneae McCrie has been mine.

She just didn’t know.

My father is now gone.

The city and the underbelly are now mine.

The time has come for me to collect who was promised to me, to shred her life of secrets and make her who she’s always been—mine.

Have you been Aleatha’d?





A Sneak Peek Into “Secrets” : 


Renee mother’s fingers blanched as she gripped the steering wheel tighter with each turn. The traffic on the interstate seemed to barely move, yet they continued to swerve in, out, and around other cars. Renee jumped, holding her breath as they pulled in front of a monstrous semi, the blare of the truck’s horn filling their ears.

“Listen very carefully,” her mother said. “Your father, he made mistakes. Deadly mistakes.”

Renee shook her head from side to side, unwilling and unable to process the information as she watched her mother continued to navigate the roads like the devil was on their heels.



“Listen child. Take this. Inside are your plane tickets. God knows if I could send you away farther than Colorado, I would.” Removing an envelope from the depths of the bag, she handed it to Renee.

Renee’s fingers began to tremble as she looked down at the envelope in her hands. “You’re sending me away?” The words were barely audible as her throat tightened and heaviness weighed down upon her chest. “Mom –– ”



“Hadn’t I already been the one to lose at every turn in life?”



Her bloodshot eyes briefly turned to Renee’s direction and then back to the highway. “Renee, never doubt that you’re our angel. However, the reality is somewhere darker. The devil has been searching for you. And my greatest fear has always been that he’d find you.”

“Found? I don’t understand.”

The only woman Renee knew as her mother shook her head just before wiping a tear from her cheek. “I prayed that you would be older when we had this talk, that you would be able to comprehend the gravity of this information. But as I said, things have changed.”

The writing on the envelope blurred as tears filled Renee’s eyes. She couldn’t comprehend anything that was said to her right now, all that she know was that she was being sent away by the person she loved most.



“Our time is up. They’ll kill me if they find me, just as they did your dad. And Renee…my fate would be easy compared to yours.” She cleared her throat, pretending that tears weren’t cascading down her pale cheeks. “In that envelope is information for your new identity, a trust fund, and where you’ll be living. Your dad and I had this backup plan waiting. We’d hoped that we’d never have to use it, but he insisted on being prepared.”

Slowly, Renee peeled back the envelope’s flap and pulled out two Colorado driver’s licenses. They both contained Renee’s picture –– that was the only recognizable part. The name, address, and even birth dates were different. “Kennedy Hawkins,” Renee said, the factious name thick on her tongue.

“Learn it. Live it. Become Kennedy.”



“According to the documentation, my parents’ names were Phillip and Debbie Hawkins. The perfect boring family. Boring or exciting, family was something I would never have again.”



The car crept forward in the line of traffic near the departure terminal of O`Hare Airport. A million questions swirled through Renee’s head and yet she struggled to voice even one. In the end, she reached out to her mother’s arm. “I don’t want to leave you.”

Her gaze moved from Renee to the world beyond the windshield. For what seemed like hours, she stared as the slight glint of sunshine reflected on the frost-covered January ground. Snow spit through the air, blowing in waves. Finally, she spoke, “Never repeat the name.”

“What name?”

“Swear it,” she said, her voice trembling with emotion.

“I swear,” Renee said, nodding to show her mom that she understood the gravity of what she was about to hear.



“Know you’re loved. Never forget that, Kennedy.”



“Sparrow, Allister Sparrow. He’s currently in charge, but one day it will be his son, Sterling.”

Renee wished for a pen to write the names down; however, from the way the sent a chill down her spine, she was sure she’d remember that name for the rest of her life.




3 Words to Sum Up This Book : 


Disappointing, Unoriginal, Predictable 




Review : 


You know, after being in a book slump ditch for so long, I thought I would come back with a bang; giving you –– dear readers –– the excited and ecstatic fangirl that you deserve. But oh well, sometimes life just don’t go as planned.

To start off, I think if you have been following this blog or my Goodreads for a while you know that I have been slowly moving away from the M/f romance novels. Not that there’s anything wrong with the normal heterosexual romance novels, but these days, everything about that genre is just so predictable that it doesn’t take someone with half a brain to figure out how it’s going to end 25% into the book.

Which is why I have decide to stick with M/M (read : gay romance) novels, as there are more variables that can come into play. Not to mention the fact that I just seem to enjoy the dynamic between two men better than a man and a woman –– don’t take an axe to my head please.

With that said, since lately I have fallen into a no-end-to-be-seen book slump, I decided to go back to the basics and start with something simple and –– maybe, just maybe –– entertaining as well. Well, lo and behold, this is what happened.





So here we are again. Back with our regular segment of : white and innocent lamb falling for the dark, mysterious and assholish shark/lion/piranhas/whatever the hell you want to call it.

Woohoo! You’re excited, she’s excited, he’s excited, everybody’s excited! 



“Numbers were my thing. I understood them.

There was no emotion in numbers. They simply were.”



Here we have out main female protagonist, Renee/Araenae/Kennedy. She’s not your sweet girl next door. No, no. She’s strong and willful woman. She runs a successful nation wide business that is on the rise. Her silk business is high in demand, everyone wants a piece of her silk. Renee has a great support system, her best friend –– who also happens to be her business partner –– and her bestfriend’s family who takes her in as one of their own. 


book review secrets aleatha


Renee has a “no bullshit, let’s get straight down to business” demeanor, which was what made her as successful as she is today with her silk company. That is, until she meets the dark, the enigmatic, the alluring yet terrifying Mr. Mysterious.



“The room no longer existed. All that I could see was him—his gaze on mine.”



Because all of a sudden, her nipples started getting hard as soon as they breathe the same air. And her panties are already soaked even before he said a word. Yes ladies and gentleman, this is truly how potent and strong this mysterious man’s allure is. She just can’t seem to resist him. He could get her hot and heavy in a matter of seconds with just one smoldering look and poof. There goes all her clothes. 





O’ hail all that is holy and make way for our smoking’ hawt and filthy rich male anti-hero. He’s got it all.

Looks? Check. 

Riches? Check.

Fighting skills? Check.

Control freak? Check and check. 


book review secrets aleatha


At this point, the only thing I don’t yet know about him is his dick size because I DNF-ed quite early on into the book, but I believe if I stayed long enough, I’m sure we’d have a detailed description of his girthy 10 inch size dick that makes even the holiest of lord want to turn gay to top everything off. Oh, of course, and how could I forget. Our all capable, over controlling with a sprinkle of just enough assholery male protagonist also have women falling for him left and right and basically just trying really hard to get a taste of that lollipop.



“You want a man to take control, to quiet your smart mouth with his, and show you how satisfying it can be to let go. I’m that man. I always have been.”



But he don’t want none of these girls. 

Because why? Cause he like a challenge, duh. Obviously.





Okay, not going to lie, this novel actually started off really strong. I was basically glued to my kindle until I was at 38% where I realized that this book was just like all the other alpha-male books out there.

Started off with a 16 year old Renee running for her life because her father made a deal with a mob sounds like a really fun and interesting premise. And the execution was alright for the first few chapters. We were shown a strong-minded young lady who’s carved her way in the world despite the card that was handed to her. She didn’t buckle down when problem arises, she stared at it head first and handled it like a champ.



“It’s not a flaw to think of others.”


“It is if it’s at your own expense.”



That is, until she met Sterling a.k.a Mr. Mysterious. After that, she just turned into a horny teenager. The amount of times where at one moment she was angry, and then horny the next gave me whiplashes. This woman (or I should say girl) was all over the place whenever it come to Sterling. Which I mean, I don’t blame the girl. But come on, I expected her to be smarter than that.


book review secrets aleatha


As for Sterling, he was basically a mix of all the alpha males out there. You have over controlling, dirty mouth, big dick, money enough to buy himself an endless amount of pussy. You name it, he has it. 

There is no originality to his character. There is nothing that differentiates him from hundreds of other alpha males out there. Which is why I decided to finally quit this book at 38%.




The Verdict : 


Now, despite my sarcastic trashing of this book, it is by no means bad. The writing was alright, but the plot was very predictable. However, my assholish opinion is part of the minority since a lot of other readers seems to really enjoy this series.

Would I recommend this book?

I mean, if you don’t mind the used-to-near-death writing formula of an overbearing alpha male meets girl, then by all means, be my guest. Or, if this is your first rodeo and the first book that you picked up in your reading journey, then this might be a really enjoyable experience.

However, if you’re a big ol bitch like me who’s always looking for something new and interesting in a book and have seen this type of novels dozens of times and are already sick to near death by it, this one might not be for you. 



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