REVIEW: Portrait Of Rage by Cynthia H. Wise

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REVIEW: 4 STARS

This is my first experience with this author but it won’t be my last. The dark mood she creates throughout Portrait Of Rage kept me reading until the last page. This is not a book where pages can be skipped. Each chapter perfectly pushes the story forward an inch or mile depending on where you are in the text. I wouldn’t call it a fast-paced read but there was no moment where it was slow either.  In my opinion, Cynthia Wise is a master of the slow, chilling story-build but she’s not afraid to yank the curtain back early on so the reader knows what’s at stake.

Portrait Of Rage showcases the threat of supernatural horror layered on real-life horrors. This aspect of the book is finely balanced with just enough supernatural occurrences to keep the eerie suspense of the story going. As a lead character, Thomas Shear is completely believable as the artist whose work is inspired by his nightmares. There’s a bit of steamy romance and even a likeable, competent detective looking for the truth. This was a unique and original read with just a reminiscent hint of the classic, The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde.

I would highly recommend this to readers of dark thrillers.

Glad I took a chance on this author. As a lover of both horror and romance this well-written book ticked all the boxes for me.

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Excerpt

Portrait Of Rage

 

Kelly’s breath caught as she watched him. He really was the most gorgeous, sexiest man she’d ever met. “I’ve heard that over-stimulating the senses can be deadly.”

“There’s only one way to find out.”

Kelly smiled as the kitchen door swung shut behind him. She could still feel the touch of his kiss and hands on her body and she felt a soft blush warm her cheeks. She shook her head in awe of her own unhindered response and turned to the task of preparing the table.

The china sparkled as she lit the candles, watching each wick ignite into a glowing flame. Otis Redding’s “Dock of the Bay” drifted to her ears as she dimmed the lights.

“Perfect,” she whispered, surveying the scene. She raised her wine glass in a silent salute. A caress from eyes behind her softened her smile as she turned.

“Everything’s ready—”

Kelly’s smile wilted as the delicate crystal she held in her hand slipped to the floor with a splintering crash. She shook her head in denial at the little girl standing a few feet away and cringed beneath the haunted, forlorn light-blue eyes that pleaded for help. They seemed to bore into the very depths of Kelly’s soul, and she shuddered as the little girl lifted her hand, beckoning her to follow.

“Please, help us.”

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Special Thanks to Tasty Tours for facilitating the ARC of this book for review.

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