Book Reviews, Reviews by Ariel

Review: Masquerade (Games #3) by Nyrae Dawn

I received this book for free from the mentioned source in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book nor the content of my review.

Review: Masquerade (Games #3) by Nyrae DawnMasquerade by Nyrae Dawn
Series: Games #3
Published by: Forever Romance on 1/7/2014
Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Romance
Pages: 320
Format: eBook
Source: NetGalley

View on: Goodreads
Grab it: Buy on Amazon

Review Score:
About the Book:

A biker. A tattoo artist. A love to last a lifetime.Maddox Cross has always had to be tough. When his father went to jail for murder, the teenager took care of his sister and mother. Now on his own and working security at a night club, Maddox wants to become a tattoo artist-a dream that comes closer to reality when he falls for the hottest, most tatted woman he's ever seen. She's wild and beautiful, and Maddox will do anything to be with her.Bee Malone came to town to open up her new tattoo parlor, Masquerade. Since being kidnapped as a young girl, Bee has had trouble getting close to anyone. But when she meets Maddox, she sees that under his hard biker's body is the sensitive soul of an artist. What starts out as a sizzling one-night stand soon becomes so much more.Bee wants Maddox to join her tattoo business, but letting him into her life means revealing all her most intimate secrets. And as the past begins to intertwine with her present, Bee fears their love may not be as permanent as their ink . . . 70,000-80,000 words.






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I like to pace myself with books.  I typically take at least a week to get through a book, no matter how many chapters, how many pages, because I like to make the story last.  I devoured Masquerade by Nyrae Dawn in three days.  If that doesn’t tell you how much I loved this book, I don’t know what will.


Masquerade is the third book in the Games series from Nyrae Dawn.  It can be read as a standalone, but it might help to read the previous two to fully understand Maddox’s backstory.  Maddox has all sorts of issues.  His mother is suicidal and his father is in jail for killing his girlfriend’s boyfriend’s two-year-old son.  If that isn’t messed up enough for you, Maddox puts the blame for everyone else’s pain on himself.  He spends all of his time protecting his sister, and refuses to get close to anyone else.


Bee has her own set of problems.  Growing up with people that she has believed to be her parents only to find out that she was actually kidnapped when she was four is a lot to take in for a person.  She was returned to her biological family when she was thirteen, and she has since struggled to become the person she thinks her parents want her to be.  Somewhere between Coral, the name her kidnappers gave her; and Leila, the name she was born with, she creates Bee, the person she wants to be.  She has no idea what love is supposed to be.  Her kidnappers loved her enough to steal her and raise her as their own, and her biological parents love her even though they didn’t know anything about who she had become as a person.  Because of all that, she keeps her distance from others, feeling that love causes people to do things that are a little too crazy for her.


When Bee and Maddox meet in Lunar, the club where Maddox works security, the two hit it off right away and have a one night stand.  Both are satisfied with the arrangement, neither of them wants anything more, which would be fine except for the fact that Maddox walks into Bee’s tattoo parlor the next day, hoping to apprentice there.


I don’t know if I can fully describe in words how much I loved this book.  First off, really well written.  The story is told both from Bee’s and from Maddox’s points of view, which is nice for being able to really get into the heads of the characters and seeing what they’re hiding from the other person.  The sex scenes aren’t super graphic, which could be a plus or minus depending on your tastes, I personally didn’t mind it.


The interactions between Bee and Maddox constantly made me smile.  They’re both very sarcastic and both put on a tough facade to try and fool the world into thinking they don’t need anyone else.  But of course this is a romance novel, so you know they’re clearly lying to themselves.  The banter between the two of them seemed really natural, and even though the two clearly care about each other, their relationship is anything but perfect which helps add to the realisticness of it all.


Symbolism is a big part of the novel, and if I had one complaint about the story it would be that the symbolism was not very discreet in the second half of the book.  Bee’s tattoo parlor is called Masquerade, which is fitting because of her feeling like she’s living a masquerade, and for Maddox it’s the same thing, but I swear, the word Masquerade was used about 5 or 6 times in the tail end of the book, not in reference to the shop.  It’s kind of like, “Yes, I get that she owns Masquerade, and they’re in a masquerade, I see what you did there, thank you, I get it.”  But it was only mildly irritating, and it was in the last 25-50% of the book.


For me, Masquerade gets 5 out of 5 controllers.  I had a really hard time putting it down, I loved Maddox and Bee, and I loved watching their relationship develop.  Really well done, and a really great read.




My Rating

rate 5


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About Nyrae Dawn

Writing has always been Nyrae Dawn’s passion. Nyrae gravitates toward character-driven stories. She loves going on emotional journeys with characters whether it be reading or writing. And yes, she’s a total romantic at heart and proud.

Nyrae resides in sunny Southern California with her husband (who still makes her swoon) and her two awesome kids.

When she’s not with her family, you can be pretty sure you’ll find her with a book in her hand or her laptop and an open document in front of her. Nyrae also writes adult romance under the name Kelley Vitollo.