One Hundred & Thirty-Six Scars: The Devil’s Own Book One
Set in Las Vegas and Westbeach, One Hundred & Thirty-Six Scars follows the story of Beast and Meadow.
Beast, AKA Agent 316, is an ex-soldier of the secret organization The Army. He was essentially raised to be a killing machine. We get a glimpse of his life inside the organization. We learn that they have a serum that causes short-term memory loss which was used on him to prevent him from remembering his kills. He enters into the story attempting to run away from The Army at the age of fourteen. He is caught and brought back to the compound that The Army operates out of. He and his best friend, Hella, finally successfully escape at the age of eighteen. They then go to the Sinful Souls Motorcycle Club in Westbeach to meet up with Abby, a friend from Hella’s past. There we learn that Beast is the child of Luce, the president of The Devil’s Own MC out of Las Vegas. Luce brings both Beast and Hella back to his clubhouse where Beast decides he needs to get away from everything for a while to process everything, so he rents an apartment at a run-down complex.
Meadow enters into the story at the age of four where we found out for the first time that she lives alone with her father who molests her. He begins to rape her at the age of twelve. At the age of fourteen, she decides she has had enough and plans to kill herself one night when her father is done with her. In the middle of him pinning her down and undressing her, we learn that he cuts her on the inside of her thighs each time he rapes her, hence the title of the book. Right before he makes the 137th cut, Beast storms in (after passing by the door that was left cracked and seeing what was going on) and ends up killing the father and leaves after disposing of the body. Meadow learns she has an aunt, so she packs up and moves. She meets and befriends Phoebe (the sister of a member of the Sinful Souls MC) in New York; they eventually move to Westbeach.
The Devil’s Own MC is called in for assistance by the Sinful Souls where Beast and Meadow officially meet after all these years. They instantly begin to fall for each other, and after two days, she goes back to Las Vegas with him for protection while the Sinful Souls deal with repercussions from an altercation with the Russian Mafia (this story is told in the Sinful Souls MC trilogy by Amo Jones). The Army is still a major threat for The Devil’s Own, so they begin to plan a way to take them out. They go in, Beast gets “captured”, and Meadow decides to go after him once the rest of the club gets back with the news. While she and Jada (another ex-soldier) take out the soldier outside the main building, Beast escapes his old captors and blows the building up. Meadow moves back home for a month before deciding to move in with Beast and become his Old Lady and live happily ever after.
Standalone novel with a HEA. New Adult romance. There are a few possibly triggering scenes that mention being raped/molested at a young age and a scene where the lead female is about to be raped.
I quite enjoyed this storyline. I did have several issues with the writing and plot, but overall, the story was a good one. For starters, the writing just didn’t seem to flow to me. It is written in first-person present tense and dual POV between Meadow and Beast, but it just seemed incomplete in some way to me.
My second complaint is how quickly Meadow seemed to get over having been raped. She was molested and raped for years by her father and spent even more years being repulsed by any physical contact with a male and unsure that she could ever have sex for fun, but as soon as Beast came on the scene, she had a complete and almost instant change of heart. It’s quite unrealistic. I, therefore, did not like the beginning of their relationship.
I also did not like that the scars Meadow has did not play a larger role in the book, especially because the book is titled for them. They were only mentioned a handful of times, and even then, it almost seemed as if they were mostly just mentioned in passing. I also felt like that was quite unrealistic, as well. I do wish they would have had a somewhat larger role. They came from an extremely traumatic time in Meadow’s life, and for her to be so blasé about them just doesn’t seem plausible, in my opinion.
I also felt like the story was somewhat rushed. The main plot points, such as the showdown with The Army, just seemed to happen and be resolved too quickly. There was not a lot of detail put into them; whereas, other scenes, such as some of the sex scenes, went into great detail. I get that this is a romance novel, but if you’re going to write large conflict scenes like that, I think you should put just as much detail and time into them as you do with the romantic scenes.
Other than those main items, this was a pretty good book, and it is a book that I will consider reading again in the future. I plan to read the other books in this series once they are released. I do enjoy Jones’ writing for the most part, and I think she has great story ideas, so I do look forward to reading more of her works. If you enjoy a good storyline, hot sex scenes, and are not triggered by talk of rape or an almost rape scene, then I suggest you give this book a shot. It can be a little triggering for some, so if a few dark scenes make you uncomfortable, then maybe choose a different book.