by Samantha Wilde
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Pub Date 27 Dec 2022 | Archive Date 17 Dec 2022
She’s made a deal with the devil himself . . .
Detective Sophia Aldridge is on a man-hunt for contract killer Cole Holmes. Ever since the arrests of Lionsgate Kinship, the elusive assassin has dodged the police. Aside from one grainy image of him, no one speaks about the man deadlier than the grim reaper himself. Winding up face-to-face in an alley with him steals her breath. She’s caught him red-handed in a murder, and despite their tousle where he should have killed her, he walked away, leaving her unarmed and pissed off. But the feeling of his large, deadly body up against hers is embossed in her mind.
Getting Sophia underneath him would be a slice of heaven that Cole is too smart to taste. He gave her a warning: stay the hell of his tail if she wants to live. That’s why finding her outside his apartment days later has him seeing red. He makes one final visit to her home, and makes a devastating discovery: hot cop is a mom.
She might be scared of Cole, but she’s not stupid. She swore to protect and she won’t stop until Cole is punished for his crimes. But then her world is shaken . . . her baby girl is kidnapped. Immediately, Sophia assumes Cole is responsible, but when she ambushes his apartment, she realizes she’s wrong. Time is running out, and she needs to bring her daughter home before it’s too late. Cole swears to help, but he has one condition. She needs to let him get away with his lucrative career intact. Sophia will do anything to save her little girl, even break her oath. One thing she can’t guarantee is if she can keep her hands off the dangerous killer who should have her running for the hills.
Average rating from 39 members
Sophia wants to catch a killer. As a detective working for the Seattle Police Department, she’s working hard on a case with Human traffickers.
When she runs into Cole Holmes at a bar after there’s been a killing in the bathroom, she needs to arrest him, but even though he has a chance to take her out, he doesn’t and walks away.
When she goes snooping around for him, he notices and warns her off in her apartment. When the baby monitor goes off and reveals her 4 year old daughter Bella waking up from a nightmare to Cole, he’s mad he didn’t dig deeper.
Bella goes missing the next day and all Sophia can think of his that Cole had something to do with it. When she confronts him, and he denies it, she falls apart. They make a deal. She won’t have him arrested and he helps her find her daughter.
For over half of the book we follow Cole and Sophia and how they bring back Bella. When the Human Traffickers are still operating, they work together with Coles brothers to take them down. Sparks and feelings fly around Cole and Sophia, but when a second abduction happens and the police is involved, Cole has only one choice left.
I’ve been listening to a lot of crime podcasts and to know how “slow” the police work can be, this book definitely reflects it and it’s aggravating when this happens to missing children cases. I’m not saying to go out there and find yourself an assassin with underworld connections when someone in your life goes missing. In this fictional book though, it worked, lol.
I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
Samantha Wilde has done it again! This was stunning! The plot was well-paced and captivating from start to finish. The characters were well-developed; complex, and intriguing. I highly recommend this suspenseful and thrilling story.
I love this series.
If you like tense, nerve jangling suspense, passionate chemistry, brothers to the end, kind of books, Marked is right up your street.
Blood brothers series and this book, are brilliantly written and crafted by the author, it takes your breath away with every chapter.
I adore the brothers l, Cole is the eldest, an enigma, the violent damaged one, he can’t settle or have serious relationships, he’s an assassin.
When he meets detective Sophia Aldridge all that changes.
Excellent storyline and chemistry with these two.
I received an Arc copy of this book and chose to write a review
This was the perfect recipe for a great, yummy cake. Seriously, all the ingredients mixed perfectly well together. You can’t help but connect with the characters and feel what they feel.
Steamy but the plot is kicking ass. I was intrigued and interested since I read the blurb and that interest just stayed put until the very last chapter.
Going into this book I was a bit wary but OMG I’m obsessed! This book is impossible to put down for so many reasons! An interesting, action-filled plot that kept me sooo entertained and on my toes! The romance and the smut was great! So easy to connect with characters and the way every single character developed throughout the story was amazing. I also love how involved the side characters were in this book and it didn’t seem like they were just there for no reason. I’m also obsessed with how they ended up together while being opposites in soo many ways!
Loved this book so much and I’m so ready for ready to read other books Samantha Wilde!
Oh my goodness, I can't believe that I missed out on reading all of the previous books leading up to this one. I totally loved it. It was suspenseful, had the right amount of tension and I couldn't put it down. I will definitely be reading the other books by Samantha Wilde, she's definitely a new author for me.
Action, suspense, conspiracy, corruption, and betrayal - and a huge human trafficking network behind it all. So how can a professional assassin and a detective partner in all of that?
This is the first book that I’ve read from Samantha Wilde. I will definitely be reading more based on this novel. Marked contained two main characters that definitely developed well over the course of the book. Their love, which seemed like it would be impossible for them to like let alone love one another, wasn’t forced at all and progressed at a natural pace. I’m a big fan of Instalove stories and this was a slow burn that was refreshing from all the Instalove I’ve read lately. The action kept you guessing, although I did have my suspicions along the way but I’m smart like that. 😉
,, Marked is the first book I read by the author Samantha Wild, and I can say that I was pleasantly surprised. I didn't know that this was part of a series, but that didn't bother me while reading because the book can be read independently.
This is a story about the collision of two worlds and the circumstances that force them to unite and fight for a common goal.
Sofia is a detective and Cole is a person on the internal wanted list. When some unforeseen circumstances happen in Sofia's life, the only person who can help her is Cole. Together, they embark on a journey full of unexpected complications.
I would not like to reveal any more, I recommend that everyone read it and make their own judgment. I think the book is excellent, I like the writing style, the dynamics of the story, the main and secondary characters of the book. I recommend it to everyone and I hope they will enjoy it.
Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for this opportunity, I enjoyed it.
Cole Holmes’s is a contract killer, after completing an assignment Sophie a Seattle police detective just happens to be off duty at the scene and chases him down to arrest him, he has an opportunity to kill her but walks away leaving her unscathed.
Sophie’s young daughter Is kidnapped, thinking it’s Cole she confronts him, it wasn’t him but he agrees to help her with the contacts he has as long as she stops pursuing him.
So the adventure begins, and a thrilling one it is too. Lots of action, twists and turns and people in very high places involved.
This book is part of a series I was unaware of but in no way was it confusing, I certainly want to read the previous books now.
A good all round thriller and romance with lots of action and twists. A great read, well written, exciting and entertaining.
My thanks to net galley and publisher for the opportunity to review this book honestly.
I was intrigued after finishing the first chapter because I really needed to see how this story was going to play out. On the one hand, you have a detective as the ‘h’ and a contract killer as the ‘H’. Sophia is fearless, assertive and will not compromise on her morals or standards when it comes to her job. So I ask myself, how do we get from that point in the story to the end where there is a HEA with a contract killer and a detective and will it be entertaining and believable?
I am happy to report that the answer is Yes! This book was really engaging with the lots of intense and nerve-racking scenes, and really good romance to boot. I really liked Cole and Sophia; they had good chemistry and I liked their interactions with all the other characters.
It is obvious that this book is part of the series and I am now curious to read the other couples’ stories (they made appearances in this book). I didn’t have any issues following the story despite not having the backstories of the other couples so it was a good standalone.
My only quibble is that the ending felt a bit rushed (or maybe I just did not want the story to end!). I needed a bit more detail on how their relationship was going to work in the end; Did Cole have to change his name? Has he really put his past to bed? etc. Maybe the answers are saved for the next book.
Overall, I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone looking for a good romantic suspense.
Thank you to the author, publisher and NetGalley for this ARC. I am leaving this review voluntarily.
There’s nothing like a forbidden romance where the male character is an assassin and the female is a detective! And I have to say, this one really works.
Marked is part of a series about Lionsgate, and a web of adult ‘brothers’ separated and placed in the carer system, trying to fight their individual and collective demons.
Cole is hired for a job and on finishing up is chased by Sophia. For some reason he lets her go when confronted by her, only to come ho against her when her daughter goes missing from a park. Sophia thinks Cole has something to do with it. They form an alliance - she’ll support him getting immunity, he’ll help find her daughter … the only catch, they do it his way.
There’s undeniable romantic tension between the couple early, with Sophia grappling with her conscience about accepting Cole’s help, especially given her profession. Cole calls in help from his brothers because it’s apparent Sophia’s daughter’s disappearance has something to do with Lionsgate. There’s a whole lot in this book that might not make rational sense about this relationship and the two character’s professions, but irs what really makes this book, along with the familial bond between all the brothers.
Criminal Minds, but with romance. Just how I like it.
Marked is set to be published on Dec 27, 2022. Thank you to BooksGoSocial, NetGalley and the author for the Advanced Reader's Copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Holy smokes! I’ve mentioned in previous reviews of this series, as well as Ms. Wilde’s other series, that she certainly knows how to write romantic suspense and I absolutely stand by that statement more now than ever after reading Marked, the 5th book in the Blood Brothers Series. These books never stop with the action, suspense, drama, nail-biting scenes, twists & turns! Yikes, I could not put it down! I was anxiously awaiting Cole’s story after having been introduced to him in the previous books and his story did not disappoint. As with the other books, Marked can certainly be read as a standalone, but I suggest reading them in order to get the most enjoyment out of them because all the characters make appearances (which I love!) It makes for a well-rounded, fully developed story line in my opinion. After reading each book, I’ve thought to myself that this couple has become my favorite....and then I read the next book and...yep, I feel the same way about this couple. I would be hard pressed to pick any of these characters as my favorite because I have throughly enjoyed getting to know each and every one of them. This is Cole & Sophia’s (and of course Bella’s) story and like the others, it was another intensely emotional read for me. The slow burn between Cole & Sophia was pure perfection. I believe it’s Ms. Wilde’s style of writing extremely protective male characters and strong, brave female counterparts and the intensity with which they fight for their beliefs that really make these books shine. I love everything about them and recommend them 100%! And I do believe (wink, wink) that this series isn’t over yet!! Thank goodness because I want more! I’m grateful to have been given the opportunity to read and review an advance copy of this book through NetGalley.
I am loving this series, and I have been waiting for Cole's story for a while now.
This did not disappoint. Cole and Sophia are such a great match, loved how their story played out... there was quite a few tears on my end.
I really enjoyed this book. Not your typical romance but really enjoyed the fast pace, danger and suspense this book had. I love how Coke turns into such a softy for Bella.
Was this the best ever book? No. Was it entertaining? Yes. I finished in one afternoon.
This was a page turner, I am not familiar with the previous books in this series and that did not hinder my enjoyment or my connection to any of the characters - which is not usually the case when you jump in late to the game in a series. The writing and pace really propelled this story and it's GOOD. The forbidden romantic angle, the bad boy, the good girl who is all straight and narrow... all of it, really worked when it could have been fluff and nothing. This will appeal to anyone who enjoys a suspenseful, character driven romance. There action and strong characters dropping in that you like, that you want to see succeed. I will absolutely read the previous books in this series and will look for other work from this Author. Thank you to the Author and Publisher for the opportunity to read this in advance of it's publication. It's a really enjoyable book that will do well.
So glad to read another book in the Blood Brothers series. With the Lionsgate Kinship definitely wounded but not gone by a longshot, detective Sophia continues to find who is heading the group. When her daughter is kidnapped, she is forced to seek help from the one she doesn’t want to Cole Holmes. Their story was full of suspense, action, and romance between the two. A book I couldn’t put down and can’t wait for the next one.
I have been craving Cole's story since book 1!
This was precisely what I wanted in his story; drama, sexiness, revenge, and action.
Cole is a wanted man and Detective Sophia Aldridge is out to get him. Little does she know that she will end up relying on him to save both her and her daughter.
This is a high-speed story, right from the first page you are in the middle of Cole killing a man. This story brings what we assume is a conclusion to bringing the trafficking group they have been after in each book. I loved that we got to know Cole better and see him potentially get his HEA.
That last sentence in the book..........WHOA!
Finally we get Cole's story and it sure delivers!
Marked, the fifth book in the Blood Brothers series, written by Samantha Wilde.
Bad boy and contract killer Cole Holmes is drawn into rescuing a little girl who's been kidnapped; the "only" complication being that her mother is Detective Sophia Aldridge who is hell-bent on putting Cole behind bars for his many crimes.
They shouldn't work together but needs must, and other needs develop along the way.
I have been hooked on the Blood Brothers books since I stumbled upon the first one on Netgalley in 2021. Fast paced, bad boys, mafia, corrupt police and strong capable women. If you haven't yet read them all, I recommend that you do; you're in for a treat.
I thought this would be the last book, but after having read the last few paragraphs I am not so sure any longer...
Oh my gosh, this book. My favorite of the Blood Brothers series. Everything about this book is so…great, fantastic, fabulous, wonderful does not do justice to this book. This series is one of the best I have ever read. Both Cole and Sophia were written in such a way that I was compelled to continue reading nonstop. I needed to know what happened next. As with the other stories in this series, the action is non-stop which is right up my alley and so interesting. I could keep gushing about this book, but let me leave you with this – go out and get this series if you like non-stop action, morally grey characters, amazing heroines and sexy times.
What? This series isn’t ending yet?
Thank you NetGalley for the eARC. I missed all previous books but that didnt make this one hard to follow. I could tell i was missing some details but overall it was still spectacular. This was so action packed and interesting I actually skipped over the sex scenes to keep the action going! I’m going to get all the previous books now
When I requested this book, I had never had of the author so I had nothing to compare to. I didn't really want to research the author, I wanted the book to capture and captive me. As someone who has just got back into reading, I ABSOLUTELY STRUGGLED TO PUT THIS BOOK DOWN. Simply amazing, so well written, and the author really does take you on an adventure of ups and downs, but leaves you intrigued and wanting me, her writing style is fantastic.
From the moment Cole and Sophie world collided, you just knew it was going to be a bumpy ride of good guy bad guy but the plot makes it easy to choose which team you would pick.
I was a little bit concerned when one of the characters changed race from having "mocha-coloured skin to Olive-toned skin to having pink nipples". This didn't really affect the character as I already had an image from the initial description, but it confused me a little. Other than that, I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to get back into reading, is in a slump or just wants to try a different genre. I have now discovered the rest of the books in this series and have included them to my Christmas wish list.
Marked is the fifth book in the Blood Brothers series by Samantha Wilde. Detective Sophia Aldridge has a mission: to arrest contract killer Cole Holmes. The sparks fly when the couple encounters each other at the scene of one of Cole’s hits. Cole does the unthinkable and lets the detective live when she sees his face. Later, Sophia’s daughter, Bella, is kidnapped, and Sophia knows it has to be Cole who did it. After a confrontation that proves Cole is innocent of the kidnapping, Sophia makes a deal with the devil to get Cole to help bring Bella home before it is too late. What the couple doesn’t expect is the fiery, undeniable attraction that consumes them.
Cole is the best villain-to-hero I have read in a while. I like that Cole does try to be a better man eventually, but he doesn’t make promises he can’t keep. Cole is a cold-blooded killer, yet his mesmerizing personality almost made me forget that fact! I loved Cole’s journey in finding comfort and love when he had never had them. Cole changed during this journey, yet he always stayed true to himself.
Sophia is an excellent detective. I could feel her heartbreak and turmoil when she discovered Bella had been kidnapped. Her desperation when asking Cole to help is palpable. Sophia is strong and has a fierce moral compass, yet she can also see the grey areas when what she loves most is taken from her.
The connection between Cole and Sophia was hot, hot, hot! They both knew growing closer was a monumental mistake, yet they were helpless to stop the growing attraction and burgeoning feelings. Even though Cole is on the wrong side of the law, he makes Sophia stronger, just as Sophia makes Cole a better man.
This is a fast-paced, action-heavy contemporary romance. I couldn’t put this book down! This was my first Samantha Wilde book, and I am going back to read the previous books in the series. Marked grabbed my attention instantly and ruthlessly and led me through an action-packed, passionate, intelligent romance.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book through Netgalley and the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Detective Sophia Aldridge has made it her mission to find and arrest contract killer Cole Holmes. After a chance encounter with him when he left her disarmed but alive, she's on his tail, more determined than ever. When her little girl is kidnapped, Cole is her first suspect, but when she confronts him she realizes she needs his help and his brothers to rescue Bella in time.
I've been anticipating this book since their first encounter in book one, but not sure how it would play out between an assassin and a cop. Although he's the most elusive and secretive brother, Cole has been my favorite from the first and I was so happy with the conclusion of this book. And the hint of another book when I thought this series was done just makes my reader's heart squeal like a teenage boy band groupie!
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
This is the fifth book in the series and can be read as a stand alone, though there are mentions back to previous books.
Sophia is a detective and is currently working on two different cases. When her daughter gets kidnapped, she goes after Cole personally. Cole isn't a kidnapper and can't stand people who harm children so against her better logic, she lets Cole help her find her daughter.
Wow! This book was so good that when I woke in the middle of the night, I had to finish it. Thankfully, it was over vacation and I could without worrying about work the next day. I did look up the other books and sadly have not read them. This is something I plan to remedy.
What I loved about this book is that Cole, the "bad" guy, is actually not as evil as the good cop thinks he is. I'm quite sure that if the rest of the books were written like this one that this will be a series I could read again and again.
Many thanks to Net Galley and BooksGoSocial for providing me with an ARC of this book.
Just like Unchained, this book needs a suspense warning! This story is about Cole and as we had already read, Cole is no mister nice guy. He has seen and done things that will get you locked up. For life.
And while he is nearly a ghost, Sophia Aldridge has found him. Determined to tell her to stay out of his way, Cole decides to visit her home. And find out she is a cop and a mom… Now, he can’t get her out of her head. And he certainly can’t hurt her. Because he might be a coldhearted killer, he is no animal.
When Sophia’s baby girl is kidnapped an nobody seem to be able to help her, it is ironically Cole who can find her. Desperate to save her baby, she makes a deal with Cole: he will save her daughter and she will let him walk. And although it goes against her moral code, her baby is her everything.
But while on a hunt against the clock, Sophia learns that the world isn’t as black and white as she believed. There are all kinds of shades of grey. Hot shades of grey, if you know what I mean 😉
As usual, Samantha twists your heart inside out and then puts it back together again. Not for the faint of heart, but totally awesome! Five out of five stars from me and a special thank you to Netgalley for providing the arc.
Suspense Action Romance
Sophia Aldridge is a detective hot on the trail of dangerous assassin, Cole Holmes. She’s on a mission to put the criminal killer away for good and a chance encounter where he beats her only reinforces that drive.
When her little daughter is kidnapped, she suspects Cole and goes after him full force only to find out he’s not responsible and that he’s most likely the only one who can help her find her daughter. Desperate times calls for desperate measures and the unlikely pair forge on together.
Marked was a fast-paced romantic action, suspense thrill ride full of twists and turns! The characters were dynamic and the storyline was written in the enemies-to-lovers trope. Very well done and enjoyable!
I received an advanced copy of this book and voluntarily left an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
This is a voluntary review of an advanced copy.
This is the first book that I have read with this series of brothers but I was able to feel right at home and not clueless as the book went along.
Wow, what an opposite couple that you just would not expect to make it to a HEA! Cole was an assassin and Sophia was a cop when the book started and she was trying her hardest to bring this evil criminal to justice until her daughter was kidnapped.
At that point, she did not care who helped her as long as she got her daughter back unharmed. Without the restrictions that the police must follow, Cole and his brothers were able to track down who took Bella and quickly get a rescued group prepared.
Since, I don't want to give away an twists in the plot, I won't give any more details!
This was an action packed romance and loved that they were so different but overcame their reservations to get their HEA!
I totally love this blood brothers series. If you like romantic suspense, then this series is a must. While this one was more of a slow burn, it had just the right amount of steam for the intense story line. I so loved Cole. I think he was misunderstood and while he did vigilante justice, he did it for the overall good and I can’t fault him for that. Especially given the type of criminals he was trying to fight. Heck, for that, he deserves a medal! I received an advanced copy and I’m leaving this review voluntarily.
Loved it! Sophia is a detective who runs into Cole while off duty--a physical altercation ensues as she's been trying to track him down and bring him in for murder. Fast forward, and we have the pair having to work together to save Sophia's daughter, Bella.
Sophia and Cole make a great pair. While Sophia is upright and moral being on the police force, she has to bite her conscience and accept help from a person whom she considers in a criminal. Certainly Cole falls under the morally grey area as he does commit murder, but he is the lesser of two evils since his targets are also criminals. Cole couldn't care less about others besides his family, so when this firecracker gets in his space, he is resistant to helping her but cannot turn his back on a child. This makes for an interesting dynamic between the two of them. Additionally, I really liked their characters. Sophia is smart and strong, not backing down from a challenge. She is full mama bear when it comes to her daughter, but we also see a vulnerable side to her after Sophia is taken and the desperation and loss Sophia feels. I wanted to hug her the whole time. Cole himself is somewhat callous and grumpy, never getting close to others and not understanding how his brothers have all fallen for their respective partners, but seeing how Sophia keeping him on his toes and Bella has him wrapped around her little finger, he is actually a ferocious teddy bear.
We also see Cole's brothers and their respective partners jumping in to help out. I actually haven't read the previous books and I think this could serve as a stand alone and provides just enough detail for you to understand who the characters are, I definitely will be going back to read the others now. There is enough action and suspense and great character interaction to keep the pages flying, all leading to a satisfying resolution. However, in the epilogue, we get a tidbit of what's in store. I can't wait!
4.25stars--MARKED is the fifth instalment in Samantha Wilde’s contemporary, adult BLOOD BROTHERS erotic, romantic suspense series focusing on the Holmes brothers-Nash, Cole, Dallas and Dare. This is assassin for hire Cole Holmes, and detective Sophia Aldridge’s story line. MARKED can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story lines is revealed where necessary but I recommend reading the series in order for back story and cohesion as there is an ongoing premise throughout.
WARNING: Due to the nature of the story line premise there may be triggers for more sensitive readers.
Told from dual third person perspectives (Cole and Sophia), covering a few days in the life, MARKED follows the search for a killer. Detective Sophia Aldridge has been searching for assassin Cole Holmes believing he is someone connected to a child-trafficking ring aka Lionsgate Kinship. Walking into a murder scene, Sophia finds herself facing down our story line hero, but Sophia’s life is about to spiral when the people at Lionsgate Kinship set their sights on our story line heroine. With the authorities following the rules, Sophia needs someone to cross the lines when her only child is abducted, and the police have few if no leads to follow. As Cole and his brothers begin a search for the child, secrets reveal a connection to Lionsgate and our story line heroine. What ensues is the quick building romance and relationship between Cole and Sophia, and the potential fall-out as a search and rescue turns deadly, leaving Sophia wondering where everything went wrong.
The relationship between Cole and Sophia is forbidden as Cole is a wanted man, and Sophia has been charged with taking him down but Cole only kills those deserving to die, and Sophia is caught between head and heart knowing to get involved could mean the end of her career. The $ex scenes are intimate and passionate.
The secondary and supporting characters include Sophia’s boss, and police chief Kenneth; Sophia’s ex Bart, and their daughter Bella. We are reintroduced to Cole’s brothers and their other halves: Nash and Lexi (Bound 1), Dare and Tessa (Traced 2), Dallas and Gemma (Extracted 4).
MARKED is a story of betrayal and vengeance, power and control, family and relationships. The fast paced premise is intriguing and engaging;the romance is seductive and intense; the characters are broken, desperate and determined.
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Marked is a very good story that kept me hooked from the start. Good well-balanced characters. Enjoyed
This was a great book, for a Romanic Suspense, it checks all the boxes: hot scary*ss hero, action, spice, fast pace... I just wish I enjoyed it more. I didn't quite connect to the heroine and the plot felt pretty standard and cheesy at the end. But that's just me, as this is not my usual genre and I prefer to listen to audiobooks, when the narrator gives more dimension and that tone of suspense.
I'd still recommend it to anyone looking for a fast-paced, quick read, where bullets and sparks fly - sometimes at the same time. Cole is the epitome of hot, scarred, gruff, alpha hero who will kill for his lady if it came to it.
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