Friday, June 21, 2013

Control by M. S. Willis Review

Title:  Control
Author:  M. S. Willis


***Content Warning - This is a new adult fiction with mature themes.  It contains graphic sexual situations, mature language and explicit descriptions of sexual violence.***

Paige Stone lived anything but a normal childhood.  Having been raised around an abused women's shelter operated by her parents, Paige was a constant witness to the tragedy and heartache suffered by women at the hands of the men they trusted.  Out of refusal to ever allow that to happen to her, Paige built walls around her heart at a young age.  Those walls were only fortified when tragedy struck on her sixth birthday and took from her the only friend and love she knew.  Now at 22 years old, and working as a private investigator, Paige is driven by a deep need for strength, independence and a stubborn refusal to accept help from another person.  Surrounding herself with her three best friends, Paige never assumed that the autonomy she had worked so hard to build could be challenged.
That was, until Paige met Daemon Pierce.

Mysterious, strong-willed, and breathtakingly beautiful, Daemon seemed to instantly know Paige better than she knew herself.  Paige is disgusted by Daemon's reputation as a womanizer, but becomes intrigued when she is unable to discover his background.  Paige's curiosity about Daemon proves to be her downfall as she is swept up in his charming and arrogant pursuit to possess her in every possible way.

For the first time in her life, Paige will struggle for control while Daemon slowly dismantles the walls she has built around herself.  Only time will tell who will be victorious in their battle of wills as Daemon teaches Paige the weaknesses within herself that she never knew existed.  Paige stays one step ahead in her struggle against Daemon's controlling ways, but when tragedy strikes her life a second time, she has to choose; will she put her life in danger, or will she finally accept a helping hand?

Just when I was starting to give up hope, an amazing set of arms wrapped around me and I was suddenly being hoisted up onto the speaker.  I was placed down and one of those arms stretched out in front of me to keep me from falling forward.  I took a second to catch my breath and turned to thank whoever  grabbed me.  As soon as I caught sight of his clear blue eyes, my breath hitched and I was momentarily stunned silent.  I continued my exploration of the person beside me and discovered a chiseled square jaw lightly sprinkled with five o'clock shadow.  His face was framed with messy dark brown hair.  My gaze slowly wandered downward and found the most masculine pair of broad shoulders a girl could ever ask for.  His t-shirt was pulled tight over his chest and biceps and his mid-section dipped down into a perfect 'V'.  His dark blue jeans perfectly accentuated his muscular legs which hung over the edge of the speaker.  I looked back up into those eyes and he smiled the most jaw dropping smile revealing two dimples on either side of his mouth.
He leaned over to speak closer to my ear.  "Sorry to manhandle you without permission, but you looked like you could use some help down there."  His voice was a deep enough timbre that it wasn't difficult for me to hear him over the music.  I continued staring at his sculpted mouth like an idiot and then shook my head to free myself from his spell.  I could feel my face getting hot from looking at him.
"Uh, yeah, thanks for that.  It normally doesn't get that bad down there and I wasn't expecting to get trapped."  I smiled at him and then turned my attention back to the stage.  The band was starting in on their second song and the crowd calmed for a moment before picking it back up with the increasing tempo of the song.

He leaned over to me again.  "No problem beautiful, I'm always happy to assist a fair damsel in her time of distress."  Even though his lips were brushing over my ear, causing tremors, and his hot breath rolling down my neck was doing wonderful things for my body, I was suddenly annoyed.
I shouted over the music at him.  "Please don't say that."
"What?"  He looked at me and his confusion at what I had said was clearly written in his expression.
"Don't call me a damsel in distress.  It's degrading and I don't appreciate being classified by use of a demeaning stereotype."  


M.S. Willis is a romance novelist whose debut novel, Control, was released in 2013.  Although currently
writing in the romance genre, Willis has plans to expand her literary pursuits into multiple genres and has no fear  conquering difficult subject matters in her writing.  Willis is a native Floridian who is also a photographer and musician.  When not absorbing herself in written, visual or musical expression, Willis is an adrenaline junkie, a 'closet' video game enthusiast, and an avid outdoors person and nature lover.


Jason L. Lee is a Florida native.  The arts have always been a big part of his life.  Science, nature, and spirituality have been inspirations to him.  He started displaying his work in 1993.  In 1996 he started to venture from drawing and photography into acrylic painting.  This led to painting live with local bands starting in 1998.  His paintings are now created mainly at home.  He uses a combination of impressionistic and illustrative painting techniques to create fantastical imagery.  He is currently a Scenic Artist working for the Nassal Company and Co-Founder of the Arts Hub Organization.


I started making jewelry in the 80's.  In middle school I sold bracelets.  In 2004 I started selling my jewelry
to the public.  I went to the William Holland School of Lapidary Arts to learn stone identification, wire wrapping, and chain making.  In 2009 I met Jason L. Lee, an artist and curator.  He liked my jewelry and invited me to display in Creative Spirit Art Gallery, at 1st Friday Art Strolls and on Orange Avenue.  I have a company with my mother, Tita.  We set up all over Florida, have an Etsy store, and Facebook page.  People around the country own my jewelry.

I had the opportunity to ask M. S. Willis some questions.  I hope you enjoy them!

1.)  What made you want to become an author?
I've always wanted to write and have been doing so since I was young.  I have a strong imagination and I have always been able to imagine visual details of people and places and describe those images to a point where another person understands what I'm seeing in my head.  I also have a tendency to 'script' how life is supposed to go, unfortunately, events and conversations don't always happen the same way as my script, lol.  I recently made the decision to finally sit down and write a novel.  Thankfully, self-publishing has made life much easier for writers and I took the opportunity to finally do something with my love of writing.

2.)  I loved the ideas brought to life in this book.  Where did these ideas come from and what made you write about them?
The underlying theme from Control is loosely based on lessons I learned in my life.  Paige's parents are based on my parents, except their jobs are different.  However, much like Paige's parents, mine also took steps to help people in abusive situations and I was exposed to those situations starting in my childhood.  The characters in Control are completely fictional people that somehow developed lives of their own within my head, but made sense with regard to the underlying theme of the book.  I will admit that there are a few scenes in Control that actually happened in my life...I just won't say which ones ;-).

3.)  Who was your favorite character to write in this book?  I personally love David's character.
David was my favorite character to write.  Through David, I introduced levity and humor into the book, which I felt was necessary due to the more serious aspects of events in Control.  Writing David's character provided me the opportunity to laugh and be lighthearted in between some very tough and emotional scenes.

4.)  Besides reading and writing, what are some of your favorite activities?
Besides reading and writing, I also enjoy photography and music.  I play piano, cello and guitar.  I also love video games and I'm a roller coaster junkie and a thrill seeker.  On top of that, I love nature, so I often hike and spend time outdoors.

5.)  What is your favorite genre to read?  If it is different than your writing genre, do you think you would ever write a book in that genre?
My favorite genre to read is romance, but I tend to go back and forth between contemporary romance, paranormal romance and erotica.  I do plan to write books within the sub-genres of romance, but eventually other genres as well.

This book left me speechless and totally wanting more in the end.  I have so many questions that are left unanswered and I really hope they get answered in the second book.  However, I would highly recommend this book to anybody who was looking for something with intrigue, romance and strong female lead.  I would recommend it to people who weren't looking for those aspects in a book as was just that good.  There were a few sex scenes but they were far from awful, there was talk of battered women and other abusive situations but they were tastefully written and well kind of intense.

My heart raced as I read this book and I honestly never wanted to stop reading.  There was an intense need to know more as I read this.  It frustrates me that there are still so many unanswered questions but it makes me want to read the next book that much more.  I will say that I usually hate cliffhangers but while this one left me hanging it wrapped things up nicely to make it easier to wait for the next books release.  I have found another author to fall in love with, with this book.


5 out of 5 stars

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