ARC Review: THE MAN IN BLACK by Soraya Naomi

August 08, 2018

The Man in Black by Soraya Naomi
Standalone. Although part of the Chicago Syndicate world, The Man in Black is a standalone and can be enjoyed either with or without reading the rest of the series.

He consumed my mind. I never even crossed his.

From the moment I met Michael, mysteriously brooding and dressed like a dark angel, there was something electric between us. Or so I thought.
What I believed was a seductive and undeniably raw attraction has ended up being something else entirely, something I never foresaw.
Because he’s a skilled liar and a master manipulator, and I downright misread his intentions.
And now I’m afraid that falling for the man in black might become my biggest regret.

An overwhelming remorse haunts me after losing my fiancée, but I’m not a man who can afford to lower my guard.
I’m a ruthless criminal, one of the top members of the merciless mafia, the Chicago Syndicate, and I moved back home to keep to myself and do a job.
But when a curvaceous pastry chef with a beautiful smile and a possible link to my former life catches me in a reckless moment, I’m forced to watch her and strategize a plan.
Because I’m not sure if she’s out to get me or if she’s just an innocent civilian who doesn’t know that the restaurant she works at is actually a front to launder Syndicate money.
And I intend to find out if she’s playing me while I’m playing her. But then the demons that haunt me force me to make a huge mistake…

Deceit has a price—I just have to make sure I don’t pay with her life.

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My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Not gonna lie, I was really looking forward to this book. I knew the loss that Michael had suffered, the guilt he was burdened with, the grief he was being weighed down by, and I wanted to see how he would come through it all. Once the boss of New York, he'd taken a lesser role for the Chicago Syndicate under his best friend Adriano while he took the time to get his ish together.

Brielle was a young woman from New York who seemed to be all alone in the world. After graduating from culinary school, she figured Chicago would offer her a new start. She landed a great gig at the Palermo, a syndicate-run restaurant, and her life was looking up. She was making some great connections, lasting friendships, and maybe had a fledgling relationship with the tall, dark and mysterious man known as Michael.

Again, I was really excited to read this story, but for some reason, one I can't quite put my finger on, it didn't work for me. I wasn't feeling the characters. They lacked the depth I'm used to from this author. I'm constantly raving about this series and I've given the previous books 5 stars like crazy, but this book fell well below my expectations. I didn't feel the connection between Michael and Brielle and it constantly felt like their interactions were forced. Brielle annoyed me with her nosiness that went beyond her job description and the fact that she kept looking for something from Michael when he wasn't really offering anything at first really bothered me.

I still love this author and I'm still a huge fan of this series. And I still recommend that everyone who loves truly amazing anti-heroes and stories involving organized crime to add these books to their to-read lists. The Chicago Syndicate bad boys will certainly win your hearts as they've won mine! 💙💙💙

Release: August 9, 2018 | Genre: Mafia Romance | Dual POV - 1st person | Heat: 3.5 | Standalone - Chicago Syndicate #9

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