Read Dark Soul, Volume I by Aleksandr Voinov Online

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Love lights even the darkest soul. Stefano Marino is a made man, a happily married West Coast Mafia boss who travels east to await the death of a family patriarch. All the old hands have gathered—of course sharks will circle when there’s blood in the water—but it’s a new hand that draws Stefano’s eye. Silvio “the Barracuda” Spadaro is protetto and heir to retired consiglieLove lights even the darkest soul. Stefano Marino is a made man, a happily married West Coast Mafia boss who travels east to await the death of a family patriarch. All the old hands have gathered—of course sharks will circle when there’s blood in the water—but it’s a new hand that draws Stefano’s eye. Silvio “the Barracuda” Spadaro is protetto and heir to retired consigliere Gianbattista Falchi, and a made man in his own right. Among his underworld family, being gay is a capital crime, but the young killer has never much cared for rules. The only orders he follows are Battista’s, whether on the killing field or in his bed. But Silvio has needs Battista can’t fill, and he’s cast his black-eyed gaze on Stefano, as he drives the older mafioso toward urges he’s spent his whole life repressing. As much as Stefano resists, when the Russian mob invades his territory and forces him to seek aid, Gianbattista’s price brings Stefano face to face once more with Silvio—and his darkest desires....

Title : Dark Soul, Volume I
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 32886398
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 107 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Dark Soul, Volume I Reviews

  • Rosalinda *KRASNORADA*
    2019-03-04 20:52

    Just a few quick thoughts before I read Vol. 2. This book confused the hell out of me. It feels like I am missing something and I hope I’m not the only one. I guess I’ll get a lot of answers in the next instalments but I also hope I’ll get some background to the story because I feel like I’ve been thrown in the middle of a story that started way back. I know I am not making any sense…So why do I start my review “complaining” about something but I still give this book 4 stars? First of all because Voinov’s voice is just superb. Second, because the characters are so intriguing and I feel like I need to stop my real life and read this series in a row. And third, because there are some very well written steamy scenes. My fave you ask? Yes, that first weird-but-oh-so-damn-hot one.Stefano, as the blurb says, is a made man, a happily married west coast mafia boss who travels east to await the death of a family patriarch. And he crosses paths with Silvio *SIGH*.Silvio “the Barracuda” Spadaro is protetto and heir to retired consigliere Gianbattista Falchi, and a made man in his own right.Silvio is gay and he doesn’t care whether that’s right or not. He is who he is and he doesn’t care for rules.So, what’s gonna happen when these two souls meet each other?Lesson learned.Whatever Silvio had meant by that, Stefano knew it’d really been himself who’d learned the lesson tonight.I still don’t understand Silvio, I have no idea what his (view spoiler)[”feelings” are for Stefano (I guess just lust at this point) and for Falchi. One minute it looks like he doesn't care for Falchi but then...you all know what I mean, I don't even want to mention it under spoilers because some people will open them even if they haven't read the series. I can't ruin it for them. (hide spoiler)]. But I know he’s broken and I have a thing for broken characters so I’ve fallen for him hard.Hope next book is as intriguing as this one.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Baba
    2019-03-12 22:00

    DARK SOUL VOL. 1 / REVIEW COMPLETED AUGUST 31, 2012Yet the most disturbing feature was that little smile playing around Silvio's lips, a smile that didn't reach anything else in his face. It was knowing, that smile, full of dark awareness no boy that age should have. I was not eager to read this series but I'm glad that I gave it a go. Dark Soul Vol. 1 is rather intense and features intriguing and complex characters.When Stefano meets Silvio for the first time…(…)"I didn't catch your name.""They call me Barracuda." No smile, just stating a fact. The name was oddly fitting for that expressionless face. "Silvio Spadaro."…things are not always as they seem. Silvio was a killer, a sicario. Battista--a Mafioso and at the same time Silvio's lover--taught him shooting, killing and biking. But our mysterious, cold and predatory Silvio is hiding behind his cool and tough armor. I *think* his sense of self-worth is very low, and it’s pretty obvious that someone did a number on him. The scene with the gun was interesting. Somebody had torn Silvio, made him suffer, and while part of him was appalled by that, another part of him admired the fact that Silvio not only suffered as sensuously as he did, but also that he'd won out. Survived. So much softness and strength in one human being seemed amazing and precious.On the one hand, he did provoke Stefano and seemed to be very self-assured, however, on the other hand, Silvio did seclude himself in his own little world. He was there but somehow he was…not. It’s like having two souls in one body. One is enjoying and needing the rough and painful sex and the other one is retreating from this need. The revulsion was palpable.Anima nera…black soulI was wondering about the quote "Lesson learned". After this poignant scene with the gun Stefano should have known that he is bi-sexual. Lesson learned. Well, I could be wrong though. As for Silvio I'm rather clueless. What did he learn?Stefano doesn't want to sleep with men. It's more than dangerous, it's simply insane. And he is in love with his wife Donata. But then again, it's almost impossible to shake off his embarrassing obsession for Silvio. He is the most erotic and most intriguing person he'd ever met. I'm pretty fascinated how Silvio is embracing the pain. It feels like he wants to punish himself. Silvio's lover, Battista, is rather deviant and kind of a sicko. I'm glad it's (view spoiler)[over between these two. (hide spoiler)] At least I hope so.Silvio has been surrounded by an intriguing darkness for a long time, and I'm looking forward to unraveling his enigmatic personality. Onwards to Dark Soul Vol. 2.Silvio stepped closer, and his hands were suddenly on Stefano's head, his neck, and Silvio was so close that everything else blurred. All-consuming darkness in those long-lashed eyes. The kiss was a slap to the face, a shock to the system. Every system. Stefano almost stumbled, but grabbed hold of Silvio's head and pulled him closer, clashing teeth and lips.Now he knew what it felt like to kiss a man. If it destroyed him, so be it.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Anna(Bananas!)
    2019-03-15 21:17

    A tasty, twisted morsel. I'm hungry for more. On to Vol 2! Love Silvio: "That's why I don't belong to anybody. I'm not following their f**king rules."Silvio now Silvio as a young boy Silvio about to kill your ass. RUN!!!

  • Rach
    2019-03-11 22:20

    OMFG! that was an absolutely amazing read!SILVIO I LOVE LOVE LOVE YOU!!!![image error]I think I have found my number 1 ultimate bad boy! *REVIEW TO FOLLOW*

  • Monique ~ Sinfully
    2019-03-15 23:50

    This series, is so un-bloody-believably brilliant that I devoured each and every one of the books back to back! I could not put them down.Because of this I will do a review as a whole on Dark Soul Vol. 5 I have also rated the series as a whole rather than individually.

  • Julio Genao
    2019-02-25 21:05

    Sexual tension thick enough to eat with a spoon.After you've had sex with it.

  • Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
    2019-03-14 02:58

    **Woah! Free right now at Amazon US! 10/5/14**3.5 starsI think this book and author were too overhyped for me. I was expecting fireworks and crazy chemistry and sizzling heat. I was mildly disappointed. I began and finished the first book pretty confused about the mob story that is supposed to be happening. I'm confused about Stefano's mafia goals. I'm not confused about his chemistry with Silvio and where that will lead- very excited about that! I'm going to keep reading and hope it gets even better. Don't get me wrong, I liked it, but I want and expect it to get better. Especially for the price.

  • Loederkoningin
    2019-03-11 00:14

    Let's all take a moment to consider that my friend just lost her m/m virginity to a guy being (view spoiler)[ raped with a gun (hide spoiler)]. Yes.I know...This may therefore be our first and last m/m buddy read, but at least it will make a good story. Eventually.

  • Aleksandr Voinov
    2019-03-22 02:01

    The new edition has been published (new covers, newly edited, also 3 parts rather than 5).

  • Lisa Arbitrary - AttentionIsArbitrary M/M Blog
    2019-03-04 22:12

    ~~~No Spoilers-Mr. Voinov has once again caught me by surprise. Dark Soul 1 was not what I was expecting and I should know better, by now, than to have any preconceived notions regarding what Voinov has written. Honestly, I kept putting this read off as I wasn't interested in reading a story about the mafia. This isn't a book about the mafia. This is a story about onions.Yeah, yeah I know the onion/layer analogy is over used but still, it is a good one to describe this book. The characters are multi-layered, the progression is multi-layered and the emotions that the reader experiences are also quite layered. Layered may be too straight-forward of a term. In the analogy you peel back the layers to see what lies beneath. In truth, what we have here is a complex network of intensity that is not typically found in the male-male romance genre. _______________I'm starting to dislike, resent even, that these talented authors, of the m/m genre are placed in any category that might separate them from a wider audience. _______________Dark Soul has all the intensity, complexity and depth that I am beginning to expect from Voinov. One warning: Pick this book up and expect to read it straight through. There is not one moment of lull where you can stop and walk away. The Characters: In my opinion, character development is Voinov’s strong suit. I think he must delight in creating the complex personalities that keep us so enthralled.Stephano initially appears to be a straightforward mafioso character; calculating, secretive, planning, scheming. That would be too simple for Voinov. There is much more to learn and discover about Stephano. His sexual denial just waits for us to strip away and understand.Silvio is pure, liquid, dripping sex. If that doesn't get you to read this then I don't know what will. Voinov could have stopped right there with his development of Silvio but of course, he didn't. He gave us a broken, tortured, scarred beautiful creature that instantly penetrates your psyche. More, please.Gianbattista might prove to be just too simple. Simple in this book is just too easy and I refuse to just buy into his easy, suave charm. Complex simplicity is his deception.The Story:Set in a backdrop of underworld tension and manipulations, the real story is only enhanced by the scenes that Voinov paints. Through Stephano's observations we peel the layers of Silvio's character while simultaneously discovering Stephano's true nature. The story development is just that, it feels very much like the set-up that it is for the next books in the series. That's just fine. Since it powered right through and in parts, blasted the pages with gritty, sexy, hard-to-look-at action, there was no lack of story. Just a continuous, rising build to the next book.Admittedly, there is a bit of just-go-with-it, that as a Voinov fan I was willing to do. After a particularly intense and brutal exchange Silvio seems to too easily forgive Stephano. I am confident that there will be further development that explains the ease with which this forgiveness comes. In fact, I think it was purposely left open ended for future exploration.I highly recommend this book and am hoping to be able to recommend the series as well. I will be moving right along to Book 2 as there are more layers to peel.~~~Take a look at my Male/Male Romance Book Blog:http://www.attentionisarbitrary.blogspot.com

  • Dia
    2019-02-24 02:56

    5 STARSWhat a super HOT story! It's my first book by Aleksandr Voinov and I was dying to read this series after meeting Silvio Spadaro in Guns n' Boys: He Is Poison by K.A. Merikan. These authors entwined their characters and the scene Silvio Spadaro appeard in, well let's just say it left me wanting for more. Much more!This fist volume is actually director's cut, combining Dark Soul Vol. 1 and Dark Soul Vol. 2, as they were first published. The blurb already gives us the general plot, but this book has its surprises. Well I must admit I was expecting a different story. Something closer to Guns n' Boys: He Is Poison. But this one gave us a lot of action, suspense, and it was as hot as I expected it to be, but not as hot as I would have wanted Silvio and Stefano to get. Does it make sense? I mean, there are a few aspects I'm not really approving, and I was a little disappointed to see how Silvio was under Battista's spell. Yes, they were both unexpectedly hot, but I wanted more of Silvio and Stefano together.What I really liked was the fact we get Silvio's POV too and the story is super fast paced. "He’d have gladly killed to be able to cry against somebody’s chest or shoulder, to just be held and told it was okay to be scared."The end of the first volume feels a little like a cliffhanger. Stefano is getting ready for war and well you have no idea where he and Silvio stand. I'm really hoping to get them finally together. I predict it will be nuclear. This author definitely knows how to write super hot scenes.

  • Lauraadriana
    2019-03-15 18:56

    Well there he goes again. Mr. Voinov taking me places I know I should not be comfortable in, and not just making me love it, not just love it, oh no no...I'm going to be craving more of this.This place that Voinov has created, it's deadly, it's dangerous, it's fueled with desires that are just on this side of frightening...And yet it's sedate, civil, formal. Men like Stefano and Gianbattista, I mean just because they are criminals and killers, it does not mean they aren't gentlemen. I loved that, no oily, gaudy mafiosos here. These are bred, cultivated men, who just happen to make business that involves unsavory consequences, and the ocassional need for cold blooded killers. Killers like Silvio.I'm not even going to go into how deliciously deadly Silvio is, because I just met the man, and just don't feel like sharing. But ohhhhhh baby baby baby, Silvio I want to know ALL ABOUT YOU...Just like Stefano does.Awesome start to this series. Glad there is more to look forward to.

  • Lenore
    2019-03-10 03:00

    The only reason I’m not giving Dark Soul five stars is because it’s part of a series. These stories aren’t delivered like traditional stand-alones (at least this one isn’t) so I don’t have the whole picture yet.The first thing that you realize when you start reading this is that you’re not at the beginning of the story. Or rather, you are at the beginning of the part of the story the author chose to give you. And you have to figure out lots of details by yourself. The author doesn’t facilitate things for you nor does he make any attempt to make you like the characters. What he does however is dissect them in his own special way and allow you to witness their raw thoughts and emotions. Then he lets you decide for yourself. And I decided I liked Silvio “the Barracuda” Spadaro. To be precise, I liked the way Stefano Marino sees him since the story is told through Stefano’s POV. Silvio has the blackest eyes framed by the longest eyelashes. He’s slim and lithe and a little feminine but at the same time he’s all muscle and sinew. He’s cheeky and at the same time intimidating. He’s a killer and he’s in his early twenties but he’s feared by mobsters twice his age. And he’s the protégé of a very powerful mobster, a now retired consigliere, Gianbattista Falchi.Stefano is what they call a “made man”, i.e. an established mobster, happily married to beautiful and sexy and smart Donata. What we learn though is that Stefano has some dark and unspoken sexual urges, and Silvio not only brings them to the surface but makes Stefano want to act on them. Desperately.These are high-rank mobsters though and homosexuality is not exactly applaud in their circles. There has already been a certain amount of speculation about Silvio and his mentor, about how Gianbattista remains a bachelor even though he is in his fifties and the last thing Stefano needs is for the rumour mill to start spinning about him.And then Stefano gets the chance to interact with Silvio in a most “explosive” manner before he is forced to ask for Gianbattista’s help to stave the Russian mobsters off his businesses. Inevitably, by asking for Falchi’s help, Stefano gets in deeper as far as his obsession over Silvio is concerned. According to Stefano, Silvio is “a forbidden fantasy, made of razor blades and sweat and desire.”Oh and, excuse me, but I have to say this out loud: That is one awesome cover! Simply beautiful. Isn’t that the perfect image of Silvio right after he comes up for air from that whirlpool?I enjoyed the first story, but the second one I loved. It rewarded me in a most glorious way. And what I call “Voinov’s italics” had a lot to do with it. What are those? The thoughts the reader is privy to but are not revealed to the other characters of the story. At some point, Stefano tells Silvio he won’t get involved with him:“As it stands, I won’t get involved in any of this. You’re…” the most erotic, most intriguing person I’ve ever met, “With Falchi. I’m here to ask for help. That’s it.”Silvio only hears the “You’re with Falchi” part but the reader learns oh so much more!Also, it was in the second story I grew to care about Silvio, I learned more about him, verified the little slut does have a heart and it can actually break. At some point, toward the end of the book I heard Diane by Therapy? in my head when I read the Silvio parts. Hey, little boy. Wanna take a ride with me? ;)I can’t wait to meet you again in Dark Soul.

  • Sammy Loves Books
    2019-02-19 01:12

    Intriguing Introduction to the Dark Soul Series!!!Stephano Marino is a Mafioso made man with a problem. He's about to go to war and he needs help. So he turns to Gianbattista Falchi, aka Battista, a retired consigliere. Battista, provides help to Stephano in the form of "Silvio". Silvio is Battista's second in command. He's his heir, his sicario, and his lover. He's beautiful, feminie, and deadly. Silvio is also a killer. Dangerous and souless. BattistaThe details of Battista and Silvio's relationship are dirty and raw. Silvio is a young brutal killer, but he has a soft side. And by the end of Vol.1, a part of him is hurting, breaking my heart in the process.Volume 1 is more of an introduction to what promises to be an action packed, darkly erotic, series. I'm immediately moving on to Vol.2

  • ~ Becs ~
    2019-02-24 01:05

    I received the whole collection from NetGalley for review so this will be short - I will post a full review when I've read all the volumes.I loved this. At first, I felt a little lost - we're plunged straight into a large mafioso scene where everyone is waiting for someone important to die. I kind of felt like I'd missed the first chapter - I really struggled to follow what was going on.But - it didn't last and I loved Stefano's curiosity about Silvio like some kind of exotic butterfly. The story is now set up beautifully for Stefano to explore what is developing between him and Silvio has they head to the US together.

  • Susan
    2019-02-26 20:00

    Book 1 so perfectly sets up what I am hoping to be a deliciously dark & twisted series...and one that I plan to devour and probably reread over and over again. What Voinov manages to do is take shocking scenes (the scene starring a Desert Eagle pistol; sex scene by the hot tub) and story lines (Giambattista's and Silvio's relationship) and manages to make them beautiful in a "I-shouldn't-find-this-beautiful-but-I-so-do" sort of way. And by the way, I could give this 5 stars alone for building an infatuation in me over Silvio's ass. I am SO EXCITED to read how this plays out between Silvio and Stefano!!!One annoyance: why draw this out over 5 too-short volumes? Why not just make this one novel? Just curious...

  • Adam
    2019-03-09 19:20

    3.5 starsWell that was a very good start! Voinov's darker reads are the perfect blend of morally questionable and sexy. I'm hooked.I'm enthralled by Silvio, and pretty sure he'll either tug at my heartstrings or make me cringe soon enough. Probably both. On the other hand, I'm still deciding whether I like Stefano or not.Oddly enough, I wasn't that squicked out, by either Stefano's treatment of Silvio, or about Silvio and Battista's relationship. Maybe it's because I was expecting worse, and I'm pretty sure the next volumes will deliver in that department.And of course, the writing was brilliant. Despite most of the book being set in sunny Italy, there's a sense of darkness and almost melancholy throughout the story.On to the next one!Review for the full series HERE.

  • Kelly
    2019-02-21 02:55

    I'm so glad I decided to step way beyond my comfort zone and read this. It was absolutely brilliant. Mr. Voinov continues to amaze me with his remarkable talent. I'm dying to know more about Silvio and Stefano and can't wait to read the next one.

  • Clarifina ~Books Are My Drugs~
    2019-03-16 21:08

    Damn...my first m/m and it's this. Not that I'm complaining. It was pretty damn hot. And Silvio...*drool Mmm...I think it's pretty clear I'm not thinking straight right now. I was actually pretty weirded out when I found out that I liked some of the screwed-up scenes but oh well, it was a good, short, hot first m/m read so I'm kinda happy. Not at all the reaction I was expecting from myself after reading this.

  • DayDreamer
    2019-03-19 21:55

    I'm riveted. Both Silvio and Stefano are intrigiung characters. I need more.________Why did that send a tingle through his body? What was it about Spadaro that made Stefano want to hit him, kick him, even shoot him? Why did he want to hear the man groan in pain? Why did that turn him on?Power. It had to be the power."Everything in the world is about sex except sex. Sex is about power." --Oscar Wilde ^_^

  • Chippy *Moves Like Jagger* Marco
    2019-03-04 20:55

    I'm horrified!!! I forgot to do a review for this book, I did one for all the others. Oh, my weak, forgetful mind. I don't have time now, I have work, but I will get back to you my dear Silvio!!!! I promise or you can put a hit out on ... my arse!

  • It's just me Shelly B
    2019-03-19 21:05

    Silvio....."...more like a siren or succubus, as deadly as he was tempting."He is extremely mysterious, dark, dangerous and sexy. He's also an assassin. I ABSOLUTELY loved his character!!! There's no confusion for him he knows what he wants and one way or another he will achieve his goal.Stefano...He is a mob boss. He's also dark and sexy but CRAZY confused and uncertain after he meets the deadly Silvio.....have I told you I REALLY like Silvio, I may have repeated myself sorry;)Silvio and Stefano meet for the first time at the house of a dying mob boss. After meeting both of their curiosities get the better of them, for different reasons of course. At that point we get a little breaking and entering and gun play. I'll let you use you imagination on that one;)They meet again at Silvio's place of residence, so Stefano can discuss a business deal with Silvio's boss. This is where the story begins......curiosity, uncertainty, lust, criminal, dark, sensual and list goes on!!!I read this book on a whim. I've seen others reading it but never thought much about it....other than the cover and the author. The cover always stood out to me and last night I decided "why the hell not." I'm so thankful for split second decisions because this book was GREAT!! The author made a 60 some page book seem like a full novel. It started from the first word and ended with the last.....I was glued to it!!!I can't wait to find out....

  • Laura
    2019-03-16 00:12

    Dark Soul (vol.1) by Aleksandr Voinov had me at “hello”. As soon as I saw the cover, I knew I had to read it. It just grabbed and pulled me in. And once in the words, there was no escaping the power, magnetism, and gut punching force of this story, characters, and world. Mr. Voinov introduces readers to a mafia world filled with tradition, war, head games, elegance, and brutality. Stefano Marino is a young mafia boss with a wife, territory and interests to protect, but also a dangerous passion and longing that may put it all at risk. Stefano’s world shifts and pulses with temptation and desire as soon as he sets his eyes on Silvio Spadaro. I have come across some strong characters before in fiction, but when these two meet and interact on the page—it truly takes my breath away! Silvio possesses such a tense coil of energy that pulls you right to him. And those eyes…“Those black eyes were without light without reflection. The stare punched the air from his lungs, and those lips…God, those lips.”Pulling quotes is something I can’t help doing. I adore coming back to lines I jot down to live that moment all over again. But with this book…hell, I was book marking the whole time! I found myself reading lines with jaw dropping admiration for their force and electricity that hit my heart, guts and soul over and over again.“All paradises have gates, Falchi said. You’d wonder why God made Paradise with an exit if he didn’t anticipate having to use it eventually.”To say this story, Silvio and Stefano’s chemistry, and Mr. Voinov’s writing style made an impression on me would be an understatement. It fucking rocked my world to the core! I had to remind myself to exhale several times—Breathe, Laura, breathe! And this is just the beginning….can’t wait for more!

  • Macky
    2019-03-16 19:00

    Oh Amazon you are costing me a lot of money! Found this just trolling through and was intrigued by all the 5* reviews so downloaded this 1st volume of Dark soul.... after two or three pages I went back on Amazon and promptly purchased the next 4 volumes! Honestly.OMG Silvio.The man is so hot he could survive the fires of hell.! He is bad boy heaven but still even this early in the series I can see that underneath all the sex n' swagger he has vulnerabilities and secrets and yes like everybody else I fell in love with his chracter. OK so he's a stone cold killer - whatever!!Seriously, this is going to be one heck of a great series, its dark,sexy,gritty,provocative and addictive. I can see why everyone has given rave reviews. The strange thing is as I have said before, D/S in m/m usually puts me right off but somehow didn't faze me out this time. These are fairly short reads but this one packed a mighty punch, its clever really, Mr Voinov has written it like a mafia Soap opera enough of a cliff hanger style ending to make you come back for more but to be honest he didn't need to do that - he had me at chapter one!All I can say is buckle up Stefano you're in for a bumpy sexy ride and I for one am with you all the way.

  • JaHy☝Hold the Fairy Dust
    2019-03-09 21:01

    **Short and sweet review***Look folks there was hardly any m/m action so I'm in a rush to start book 2 (which better be smuttier) This is a mafia story about 3 main characters1) Stefano - I'm SMDH at you for multiple reasons. , btw you still owe Vince a new gun.....And shut the fuck up about feminine features, if it has a dick its masculine. God, I hope he fucks ____ soon. 2) Gianbattista- You stupid asshole ! I don't trust any man that discards a god piece of ass. Something is definitely off about you.3) Silvio- you little tease, I friggin luv u ...that's all folks. .. I give the book 3 3/4 stars. This story confused and frustrated me at times. ***'huh, my review tells you nothing about the story...sorry that's what happens when I'm smutfully frustrated . I'll redo this later.....eventually........maybe! ***

  • Bev
    2019-02-25 02:56

    Silvio, Silvio, wherefore art thou Silvio? A simple review really. I can't wait to read the others, it's that good!! But I do know what I would like to happen to Gianbattista Falchi of course, that's not for me to decide!

  • Steelwhisper
    2019-02-25 02:05

    1.5* rounded up for the excellent cover and a well-edited prose.ETA after sleeping over this for a night, and after being tackled about my take by a Dark Soul fan:What expectations do I have when reading a book? Is a book "for me" or "not for me" and how, if this is so, does this make it into the rating. Would I know aforehand, and if I do, why would I still read? To be arsy, or why?Okay, let me address these and some more implied questions.Yes, I dislike alphamales, I hate organised crime, gangsters are not hot for me. That doesn't mean that I wouldn't enjoy a well-written book or movie which doesn't outright glorify crime, gangsters and the mafia, and proffers some well-placed criticism or is neutral regarding these. This much I at least thought I could hope for given what I read of Mr. Voinov's other work. Alas, this wasn't the case at all. Instead this was a straight eroticisation of criminals, death, guns and the mafia without the slightest amount of self-criticism or ambiguity.Even if a subject and the plot are quite against my tastes or predilections, if well-written I usually can take away something from a book which benefits me and the time I spent with it. I may not rate it ultra-high (usually those books get 2* and 3*), but I consider it time well spent. Unfortunately for this book the sole positive factors I found were the stunning cover and a well-edited prose. Neither the plot, nor the characters were engaging, or even just deep and well drawn. Instead they felt like cardboard cutouts or the stereotypes of anything "mafia" as they exist in popular opinion. This is not merely a lack of "for me", it's a very basic lack.What do I expect from a book? Well, that depends on the author and on the prior reviews. There is and was a lot of hype going on about this series, the books surface on many rec lists, and the author certainly is at the top of the pile. So yes, I expected quite a bit from this book. At least something weighty, an ambiguous take of the Camorra and US mafia.Instead I got unadulterated, pure fluff.Nothing against fluff! I like reading fluff now and then, and depending on the quality of the fluff and whether or not it hits my personal preferences, I may even squee and fangirl about such fluff (see my list of tentacle erotica written by C. Mistry). However this is touted as being the cutting edge of superior, sharp storytelling within the m/m erotic romance field, and I have to say that I simply expect far, far more from something promoted as so excellent and leading the field. I can best explain my take by referring to two stories few m/m readers will read: The Change and Gaijin (which by the way manages to portray a young Yakuza boss in ways much, much more frightening and dangerous!). These two also are erotica, they have more literary clout than a lot of lit fiction, and they are so substantial in content and characterisation they could anchor a hundred of "Dark Souls" against a real gale! And this is what I expect of a top of the heap book. Sooo. I don't know whether or not my expectations are too much. But they are what they are, and "Dark Soul" unfortunately didn't measure up to them. I also don't consider these expectations to be particularly exacting. They are quite regularly met by the top of the heap books in m/f erotic romance or erotica once an author is acclaimed for their writing ability. At the end of the day (view spoiler)[a gun shoved up an arse doesn't shock me, isn't erotic for me and doesn't on its own mean that a book is good. Instead this came over as the attempt to gain points with alleged "edginess".(hide spoiler)]Original review:This was one boring, unsexy and unerotic read for something supposed to be erotica. Well, I don't find either alphamales, nor the mafia, nor gangsters, nor guns even vaguely erotic. So there's that. The rest of the story was meh and the idea of some mega-c4-touting war between the Russian and the Italo-American mafia doesn't make me slobber with anticipation for the rest of the serial which will end up at around 18$ if you buy them all. Things might have been different if either of these men had shown something else than one-track minds, or if at least there had been some sort of criticism of organised crime. As it were, instead there was some completely weird kind of hero worship going on, which elicits vague distaste.The cover is pure genius on the other hand.But on the whole...["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Emanuela ~plastic duck~
    2019-02-19 01:52

    This is a very interesting beginning to a new series.Stefano is a mafia boss, who's still consolidating his position. Silvio is a killer and the heir of a retired consigliere. When they meet, they are waiting for the death of another family boss. Every family member is present to pay their respects and to try to gain even more power. Silvio's reputation is that of a deadly young man, but he is surrounded by a sensual aura that he has no problem flaunting. Silvio feels immediately haunted by the lean, almost androgynous man. Silvio's dark, soulless eyes and his dangerous sensuality stir Stefano's stifled desires: an attraction to men, a need to overpower a lover. Silvio seems to latch on it and he finds the way to be helpless in Stefano's hands.The story is not told as a traditional book: this first volume tells of two episodes in Stefano's life. We don't know what happened to the main characters after their first encounter, how Stefano, for example, made love to his wife after having his sexual world shaken by his meeting with Silvio, if he thought about him every day, if he was afraid that episode would reach the ears of people who shouldn't know. We simple see Stefano meeting Silvio again, when he needs the help of the killer's boss. And lover. In this way we get the core of their relationship, their most significant moments and it's exciting to fill in the blanks of a dangerous attraction, that has the power to shatter their world.Silvio draws out Stefano's desires in a sensual, but gritty way. Silvio is aware of his attraction, but he has to mask it, even if the other man can perfectly see though him. Even if Silvio is the yielding, pliant one in the hands of a lover, it's Stefano who in the end wants to surrender to the dark sensuality of the other man. Seduction, fight, violence, surrender, there are all kind of strong feelings and emotions, but no satisfaction yet. I can't wait to read the next part!

  • Debra
    2019-03-12 00:56

    What a great start. Silvio - I already love you and your dark soul. I can't wait to see the layers of this killer unfold. Stefano I am not too sure of yet, and he doesn't seem to be so sure of himself. Aleksandr Voinov excels at writing nuanced, flawed characters and throwing them into dark, twisted situations. This first volume has me hooked and ready for the ride.

  • Wendy
    2019-03-14 00:02

    Stefano an established mafia figure leader, heterosexual, discovers he has dark sexual urges for a man named Silvio.Silvio, a young man, charismatic, a killer with a Dark Soul.The meeting of these two characters explodes on the page. Be prepared to be completely immersed in the mafia world - with a twist! Love it!