Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The Compound Series

The Compound Series (#2-4)
Mother Before Wife, Just Keep Sweet and Prophet Take All
by Melissa Brown

Genre: Fiction, Suspense

Mother Before WifeSecrets. 
So many secrets. Nothing but secrets.

I started another life with a new husband, thirteen new sister wives and a new place to call home.
But the secrets weigh on me, on all of us.
And every secret leads back to the Prophet the, self-proclaimed, mouthpiece of God.
The man I’ve worshiped since childhood, the man we obey without question.
And he’s the man who will destroy us all.

I must reveal his secrets. 
Prove his betrayal, his lies and his deceit.
I will not be silenced, no matter how hard he tries.

And I will never give up. Ever.  

Just Keep Sweet: Obstacles.
So many obstacles. Nothing but obstacles.

Months ago, I agreed to help Aspen Black take down the Prophet of the FLDS—to prevent her daughter from being married at an early age, and to save innocent lives from systemic abuse on the compound.

The obstacles in this case are mounting, as are my feelings for Aspen. The tension between us is palpable and I know there’s more to our connection than the increasingly difficult case at hand. But, she’s not only married to the Prophet’s brother, she’s equally devoted to her faith. Two obstacles that just may be insurmountable.

But, no matter what happens, I will close this case. 
Even if it kills me.

Prophet Takes All: Fools.
So many fools. Nothing but fools.

That worm of a detective, my mother, Paul. Fools—all of them. But Aspen, oh Aspen…she was the biggest fool of all.

Aspen Black, a seemingly ordinary woman of the compound, transformed into the utter bane of my existence in just a matter of months. She had the gall to question me, to seek the counsel of an outsider, and to disobey my word.

To add to her list of transgressions, Aspen recruited my own brother in the crusade against me. For this, they must both be punished. And their daughter, Ruthie, is the key to their retribution.

Aspen and Paul will pay for their crimes against the one true prophet. If it’s the very last thing I do.
from GoodReads

Review: First of all I just need to point out that I'm rating these three books with 1 rating and reviewing them as one because I read them back to back and even though there is an end to each of the books that doesn't mean that the story is over.  The story isn't finished until the end of Prophet Takes All.  If you don't have all of them in your hands, you'll be left in suspense.  Don't say I didn't warn you!  I could have seen these three books compiled into one longer book as the story flowed directly from one book to the next.

These three books are so much more than the first book in this series, Wife Number Seven.  They are not romance novels although there is a sex scene or two scattered in the books, the most being in Wife Before Mother.  There is drama, suspense, mystery, conflict and more.  I was so drawn to these stories and needed to know how the situation would be resolved.  I was sickened by what was revealed in Just Keep Sweet and became increasingly angry with the prophet.  Each book has a different narrator with a different voice, Aspen in Mother Before Wife, Jonathan, a police detective, and Paul, Aspen's husband, in Just Keep Sweet, and Clarence, the prophet, in Prophet Takes It All.  It was hard to read a story from the prophet's perspective as he was such a unlikable man.  My blood boiled by the end and I was so disappointed by the turn of events.  Thankfully the story finished as I wanted it to!

The writing style remained the same from Wife Number Seven to these three books so the same issues I had with the writing were present in the next three books.  There were chapters that were third person narratives scattered in between the first person narratives which were disruptive.  I do feel that the writing improved by the end (there were no flashbacks with ellipses!) which kept me engaged in the books.

Overall this is a good series and you could skip the first in the Compound series if you are not a fan of steamy romance novels.  Brinley and Porter do appear in future books and we do realize why Porter had the issues that he had but if you haven't read Wife Number Seven there is enough explanation that you would be fine.

Rating: 4 stars

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