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It annoys me when a seemingly ridiculous premise for an entire series isn t even semi explained by the end of book one Plus, it seems she starts book two with Lucius Which doesn t interest me I won t be continuing. 3.75 4 STARSOne year, two players, three brothers and unknown forces manipulating from the sidelinesThis story is very well written however I did find the idea a bit similar to a book series that I barely finished the first book of That being said, things took a very interesting and crazy turn at the end which has me intrigued enough to read the next book of this three book series I liked all the characters than enough to read on even if the idea whether it be debts or acquisitions as a tradition among prominent families still doesn t wow me The heroine, Stella s motivation was relatable to me by saving father from a life in prison in exchange of giving a year to the arrogant, District Attorney, Sinclair VinemontShe had no idea what was in store I wasn t even sure how far I d go, but I knew I had to win Losing wasn t an optionOverall, this is a fast paced, quick entertaining read that is intriguing enough to recommend and seeing where the author takes Stella nextHow would he win this competition What would victory entail My death 3.5 StarsCounselloris the first installment in Celia Aaron s new series entitledAcquisitionWhile the premise acquisitions as a tradition is not original, I have to say I enjoyed this first book It was dark enough to label it as a dark read, it was full of depravity which I enjoyed and it had some suspense elements that made this an entertaining readI ve never been a good man My darkness is neither restrained nor buried It lives right at the surface The only thing that hides it is my maskMeet Sinclair Vinemont a district attorney from a powerful southern family He s old money, single and has a successful career From the moment he meets Stella Rousseau he knows she has to be his new Acquisition, practically a slave to him and his family Stella is an artist and all she cares about is her father Her life is shattered when her only remaining family goes on trial for fraudSalvation had a price the highest one imaginable and I knew she would pay it the moment I first laid eyes on herThe prosecutor is no other than Sinclair Sinclair makes Stella an offer she can t refuse if she wants her father to live save and secure, she has to be his, body and soul for one year As the story unfolds, Stella tries to learn the rules of this sick game and meet everyone s expectations and Sinclair tries to stay unaffected by Stella, but lines are easily crossed since the connection between them seems to be stronger than anyone thoughtHis touch, his insistent kiss marked me deeper, surer than any lash ever could I was betraying myself I knew it I didn t care I didn t want anything other than him, his hands, his body, his kiss I had never felt aliveI enjoyed this one, but I can t say I loved it Like I mentioned above there are some similarities with other series A little too many IMO However, the story is well written and kept my attention enough Written in dual pov, this tale has both angst and drama to keep you entertained Sinclair is a hero or exactly antihero so far that you will hate for the most part He s arrogant, ruthless and depraved and all he wants at first is to win this sick tradition The AcquisitionI was screwed I had to stop thinking about her as a her She was an Acquisition my Acquisition and nothingHe s cold and unforgiven at times, he humiliates Stella than once, but he s also protective and even caring with her Stella is portrayed almost entirely as a strong heroine I liked that and also her determination to find a solution to escape this strange situation she s in She s na ve and impulsive at times, so she finds herself than once in some nasty situations Both characters backgrounds are well done, which I appreciated We get to know both of them really well, how they think, they fears and also their flaws I also enjoyed the dynamic between these two characters The love hate relationship was well done, intriguing and their chemistry was fantastic The story was fast paced, the writing engaging and the supporting characters fascinating Overall, a great, enjoyable read Taboo, Dark And Sexy With a storyline reminiscent of Pepper Winter s Indebted series, the Acquisition series tells the story of an ages old twisted tradition and the girl that must be subjected to several trials over the course of a year of captivity Stella agrees to become Sinclair Vinemont s acquisition for one year, in exchange for her father s freedom from prosecution Signing on to be his slave, she has no idea of what the future holds for her, but she knows that she d do anything to spare her father imprisonment.Quickly, Stella begins to work her way into the heart of Sinclair He tries to keep his distance, because he knows that he will have to break her over the course of the Acquisition trials Yet, he cannot avoid the growing feelings that he has for Stella.The completion of the first trial leaves Stella scarred and forever changed We are offered a glimpse of this sexually depraved secret society and a hint of the trials yet to come One of three chosen competitors, Sinclair is determined to come out of this year s Acquisition trials the victor The winner becomes the next Sovereign, holding the elite title for the next ten years and assuming leadership of the families.While Stella and Sinclair spend the rest of the book in an emotional tug of war, his attempts to push her away may have finally worked The story ends with an unforgivable revelation, pushing Stella too far The dynamics between the two are irrevocably changed.Overall, I really enjoyed this dark, erotic story Although it wasn t overwhelmingly dark, there were a few scenes that will make you cringe While the story is largely implausible, it proves to be entertaining and intriguing I am dying to see where this story leads and what further trials are in store I will begin the second book in this series immediately. Modern Slavery in the Old SouthThis is one of these rare books that I DISLIKE HATE all the characters, main and secondary.But it still keeps my attention and my curiosity until the very end But I still love it and I want to start reading straight away the second book of the series although I know it will be pure torture for my poor soul.Let s see the players Sinclair Vinemont He needs a willing slave to play with and to present her as his Acquisition at the ruling society of Louisiana He is tall, dark and psychotic Well, I always believed that wolf will always be the bad guy because we have never heard his side of the story In this book we have the bad wolf s point of view, but really this just made me dislike him Okay he knows what will happen Ok he feels guilty Ok he lusts for the girl So what He is just a pawn Am I the only one who noticed that Vinemont somehow rhymes with Lord Voldemort Stella Rousseau The willing victim, the martyr Just a na ve girl who really has no clue about the people around her and their intentions A girl who still falls for the bad guy, because deep down she is a masochist She knows what Sinclair is capable of and she still offers him her soul She sees signs about the rest of the people who are ruling her life and she still offers her life TO them, offers her life FOR them like she is a sacrifice lamb.Mr Rousseau, the dad What a ruthless, disgusting excuse for a father There are hidden truths about him that come into light at the end of the book Stella is still there for him WTF Why I would have run away like hell hounds were after me.Dylan, the stepbrother Too persistent, although not wanted I still don t get what his role is But he is definitely annoying.Renee, the personal maid She has her secrets and she had her deal of suffering But her role is to soothe the victim and make her feel comfortable without revealing too much There is no excuse for this.Rest of the house staff Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing What can I say about them Rebecca Vinemont, the mother How can a mother teach her first born son how to become a tyrant What a psycho twisted situation I don t care if she suffers about what she did I don t care that she lost her soul at the process She was responsible for the innocent souls of her children Another poor excuse for a mother Lucius Vinemont , the second brother I think he is the most stomach turning human being in the book Please, please big bother let me play I will be a good torturer I am sure I can be a better sadist than you and our precious family will win.Teddy Vinemont, the third brother Okay he is young, brainless and a student But he hears a lot, sees a lot, and says something And then he goes fucks the maid and forgets about everything Let s party The ruling society of Louisiana Let s find an excuse any kind of excuse for a nice, long, old fashioned orgy Let s see some blood on the side Let s see some torture Just yuck That being said, I am starting book two Instagram Twitter Facebook Pinterest I read this for the Unapologetic Romance Readers New Years 2018 Reading Challenge, for the category of Dark Romance For info on this challenge, click here Remember when FIFTY SHADES OF GREY came out and people were like, This is weirdly uncomfortable this feels like the ownership of another human being than a romance Well, Celia Aaron decides to take squick a step further in COUNSELLOR, because hey, wouldn t it be fun if a girl and a millionaire signed a contract where he would actually own her Stella s father is going to jail and Sinclair represents the opposing party He meets with her on the DL and presents her with some papers and then says, Hey, baby be my slave for a year and I ll nix all the charges against your pops But if you refuse, I ll make sure that he gets raped and probably dies in prison LOL But seriously, sign or bad things will happen to your dad Faced with that kind of ultimatum, Stella signs the contract willingly while he is literally panting at her ear like a horny pervert insisting that she do so alarm bells, anyone no and promptly becomes a slave As it turns out, Sinclair is part of this creepy group of people who have resurrected the slave trade in the South I m sure they have a name, but let s just call them the Slave Appreciation Society Sinclair is in the running to become Sovereign, which is basically President of the Slave Appreciation Society, which means that he gets tithes from their income and also power and prestige Oh, and that he breaks freaking slaves that he kidnaps Let s not forget that part.You become Sovereign by having weird, Hunger Games like human versions of dog shows only instead of fighting for their lives, the audience has an orgy while watching the contestants read slaves get forcibly tattooed with branding marks, paraded around naked on a runway while people catcall and grope, and then whipped 25 times one time for each decade that the Slave Appreciation Society has been in existence It s a truly bizarre and disturbing scene and I found myself both fascinated and horrified.I know the slavery thing is going to be a deal breaker for some, and I feel like even the author kind of had a oh no moment when she realized that writing an erotica novel about romanticized slavery in the modern day South might be triggering for some because at one point, Sinclair casually says, for no apparent reason, that this new slave trade isn t about color To be fair, it isn t All of the slaves at the competition are white if I remember correctly That doesn t make what you re doing any better, bro.I don t mind reading captive romances as long as they re done well, but I feel like this one was executed pretty badly Don t get me wrong it was breakneck AF, and I sped through it while hating myself for each page read, unable to help myself but there were some pretty huge problems that made suspension of disbelief fall utterly flat on its face There are some pretty awful psychological elements that come into play for Stockholm Syndrome, and if you re going to write that book but wuss out at the idea of making the heroine hate the hero, then you really shouldn t write captive romances because as uncomfortable as it is to write a romance where the hero and heroine hate each other for good reason , I think it s uncomfortable when this is just glossed over as normal.Seriously, why are people doing this Sinclair keeps saying that he has to do it for duty, family, etc Why You have dirt on high powered political people and if you really wanted to get out of it, all it would take was a whisper in the right ear, and all of this would come crashing down like the f d up Jenga tower that it is Whining about how you re powerless to stop what you re clearly capable of stopping just makes you a spineless weenie Also, where are they getting these people, these slaves, from Stella was blackmailed and one of the women was a prostitute what about the others Also, I thought it was really creepy how quickly Stella started fantasizing about Sinclair Right after she s kidnapped, she starts touching herself while imagining them doing it in the shower uh and then right after he whips her so badly that they have to medically induce unconsciousness, she and him do it The beginning was great, because she hated that jerk and with good reason, and I thought, Oh, cool, a heroine who isn t going to take this BS, and will give the hero something to think about Nope All of that flies out of the window as soon as she scopes out his hot bod and killer jawline.The book ends on a cliffhanger, encouraging you to buy the next one, but I think I m going to call it quits with the Slave Appreciation Society for now Go figure, hey 1.5 stars DNF 47%They will mark you He ran his fingers across the skin at the nape of my neck, making a vivid heat tear through my body from the points of contact Here His other hand snaked under my cloak and around to the open back of my dress His fingers played at my exposed skin And here W.T.F I had a bad feeling going into the book because of the the sadistic demeanor of the main male character I thought this to be some twisted Beauty the Beast, where the Beast traps Beauty using her father But, no Oh, no This is so much than that The man is a complete arse, but the author starts slipping every now and then what a tormented soul he is and how it s all about duty Duty my arse And branding Seriously What are women, cattle I ve had my fair share of branding with Story of O, and it was enough to last me a lifetimeCopy provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review Live US UKCouncellor takes the reader on a journey of depravity, suspense and drama This dark romance kept me wondering, questioning and completely engrossed in the story telling from the beginning to the very end Told in the first person and from the alternating perspective of Stella and Sinclair the story emerges through the easy flowing narrative that paints crystal clear pictures in the mind evoking feelings of angst ridden anticipation It presents a hedonistic world in the deep south of Louisiana where depraved traditions rear their ugly head every ten years, revealing people s dark proclivities and giving the rich and powerful of the community the outrageous legislation to act out their depravity and play by crazy, crazy rules The finely tuned anti hero embraces his honour bound traditions whilst depicting human, endearing qualities that made me want to love him, despite his perceived cruelness, his actions and his intent Both protagonists have a strong back story Stella Rousseau s tragic past and current family circumstance shapes her existence and will, no doubt, give her the strength to endure her present A present where she becomes Sinclair s Acquisition, a pawn in a tournament steeped in ritualistic barbarism and used to decide who will rule the territory It s a tournament that throws two characters together and depicts grim elements but Celia Aaron s writing made it so I could not look away I became addicted to this story The dynamic between the protagonists is electric and developed at an intense and satisfying speed but one stumbling block came, for me, towards the end I feel that in reality that one of them would have questioned something specific that happened, human nature and fear would have caused one of them to at least think something in relation to a circumstance I m being evasive and cannot reveal the exact occurrence because I don t wish to spoil the story and believe it may lead to a development within the context or there may be a specific reason, I m yet to uncover, why the author wrote this scene and the surrounding moments the way she did Whatever the result of this small matter, it s something that did not take away from my overall enjoyment and exhilaration of reading this dark and somewhat forbidden romance Councellor kept me guessing to the end The suspense laced through is engaging, the debauchery gut wrenching at times but I was transfixed to the story arc, addicted to the happenings with no idea how it would play out or indeed why some things have to be but underlining it all I felt that the characters have clear impetus and I m curious to discover exactly what the driving force is, what are the consequence of failing to win I felt the twisted discomfort of the characters, their unease The anticipation of uncovering the layers of this Beauty and the Beast style story is high, I cannot wait for the second part slated for release in January and the third scheduled for April There is a cliff hanger but, in my opinion, that s one of the elements that can make a series great so I d highly recommend book lovers of dark and twisted reads with layers of intrigue and suspense begin their Acquisition experience without delay Advanced copy received, via NetGalley for my honest review thoughts Teasers made by JxxxPinklady with stock images purchased from deposit photos (FREE BOOK) ⚣ Counsellor (Acquisition, #1) õ In The Heart Of Louisiana, The Most Powerful People In The South Live Behind Elegant Gates, Mossy Trees, And Pleasant Masks Once Every Ten Years, The Pretense Falls Away And A Tournament Is Held To Determine Who Will Rule Them The Acquisition Is A Crucible For The Southern Nobility, A Love Letter Written To A Time When Barbarism Was Enshrined As Law Now, Sinclair Vinemont Is In The Running To Claim The Prize There Is Only One Way To Win, And He Has The Key To Do It Stella Rousseau, His Acquisition To Save Her Father, Stella Has Agreed To Become Sinclair S Slave For One Year Though She Is At The Mercy Of The Cold, Treacherous Vinemont, Stella Will Not Go Willingly Into Darkness As Sinclair And Stella Battle Against Each Other And The Clock, Only One Thing Is Certain The Acquisition Always Ends In Blood Full Disclosure This Book Is A Dark Romance With Elements Of Slavery, Violence, BDSM, And Super Hot Sex It Is The First Of A Series And Ends On A Cliffhanger If You Re Good With These Caveats, Enjoy 2.75 5Dark, twisted, sick, but not romantic whatsoever.It was obvious that this story was dark I can t argue with that But I ve read something darker already and they were far better than this one There were some disturbing scenes for me, but then again, they didn t make me cringe or shudder the way other books I ve read in the same genre did.The major problem I had with this book was that I couldn t connect to both main characters, Sinclair and Stella, especially Stella Of course, I know she s strong and brave, and I admired her for that But aside from her bravery, I don t think there s much else I can say or think of her.And well, what to say about Sinclair He s vicious, malicious, sick, and disgusting He s become one of the most hated characters I ve ever come across with Whatever he s done to Stella, he deserves tenfold I HATE THIS MAN To be honest, this book had so much potential, but just poorly delivered It was almost good somehow I think it could have been better though.I ll probably continue reading the next installment since I still don t get any answers to a ton of questions I had while reading this Anyway, despite my issues with this book, the narrative was very engrossing that I couldn t put it down and ended up finishing the entire story in one sitting.Overall, this was an ok read Nothing mind blowing though.