“Release” by A.M. Sexton

Let me start by saying that this book is about a trope that isn’t my favorite: whores and slavery (dubious and non-consensual sex). None of the sex is sweet by any stretch of the imagination, and one of the main characters is a bit more than deeply flawed. This book is dark. That being said, I loved it.

Set in a world that could be our world in the future, the gap between the lower and upper class is staggering in the city of Davlova, and only the rich get technology. Our protagonist, Misha, is a pickpocket-turned-whore with a “secret” mission: to incite revolution.

 

“Opportunites were seized. Fortunes made. Of course, in order to take full advantage, a man must be willing to get his hands dirty.

Or his knees.

The man who’d led me into the alley this time stank of onions and pussy.” – A. M. Sexton

 

Sexton’s voice in this piece is captivating right from the first lines. The plot was interesting, the characters were memorable, and I loved how she played with my sympathies; one moment making me hate a main character, and then the next making me love them. But really the best part for me was the writing. It’s beautiful and gritty and uses all my senses. I could taste and smell and almost touch that world she created.

I also appreciate an ending that isn’t too happy.

I have encouraged you to read this book, and warned you against it. Do as you will.

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