Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Devil's Contract by Claire Contreras

He gave them a choice.
She took it.
He made her promise two years.
She should have known there was a catch.
The author’s blurb about the book tells nothing – no hints about the story and what’s about to unfold. The story follows Amara Maloof, a young woman who at seventeen, offered herself up to repay her father’s debts, including continued payment of her mother’s cancer treatments, and let them live their lives as normal. Seven years later, Philip Batiste, the man she agreed to give herself to in exchange for her parents’ security, has returned to collect his payment.

At the time, Amara is in a relationship with Colin, and must leave him and her entire life behind when Philip comes to collect his debt. She has no idea what she is getting into, only that she has to move to Paris,  and has signed a two year contract to provide him with whatever services he wished. She would work for his, ahem, companies – and not all of them are legit. Upon arrival in Paris, she is taken to a home where she meets Courtney, another one of Philip’s employees. Courtney befriends Amara, and helps her cope with some of the difficult situations she’s placed in, and “trains” her on how things work. Then, things get confusing. You think that Philip is running a high-end escort service, but then says his girls are spies to gather information from clients. Her work also includes traveling and exchanging documents / items that are inferred to be explosives. One said client, Samuel, actually turns out to be one of Philip’s business partners, and asks Amara to help him crush Philip. It’s said there is a third partner, and you can infer who this third connection is during the story. 

Then, things get confusing. An update from Colin, a brief encounter with his mother and information about the company he’s just inherited tangle a more complex web of secrets and deception. Then while Amara is traveling she sees Colin and his new woman, he infers things are not what they seem with his new fiance.

Then there’s this thing/connection to Amara’s grandfather, and her childhood spent in Iran. What the heck is going on? Well, you won’t really know until you pick up BOOK 2 Dammit!! Fricken cliffhangers. Nothing but unanswered questions (okay, one of them was answered but was as I mentioned, predicted if you paid attention). I have to wait until the fall for the second book. When I one-clicked this one, it didn’t originally have the title “Contracts and Deceptions – Book 1”. At least I don't remember this...Otherwise, I would have been prepared for something that was a continuation story and waited to read until book 2 was released. Crap. Whatever.

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