Charity: The Trevor Project

All month I’m raising money for The Trevor Project, a suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ+. For more information regarding The Trevor Project, here is a link to their website: https://www.thetrevorproject.org/ Here is the link if you would like to donate: https://donate.tiltify.com/@maepolzine/wolfies-for-pride Any donations would be appreciated to help us reach the goal!

Review of Den of Vipers by K.A. Knight

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When picking the next book to read, I was going to go for something else. Then my mind kept going “yeah but Den of Vipers, what is that about? You keep seeing it on TikTok and quickly scrolling past.” And my curiosity got the better of me. Honestly, the only thing I knew going into this book was that it was spicy and there’s something with a bottle. I didn’t read the book summary or look at any other details. And the accounts I saw this book popping up on normally read fantasy, so I thought it was along those lines… Nope. It was a bit of a shock and outside my normal realm of reading. So, now that I have finished the book I thought I share my thoughts on Den of Vipers by K.A. Knight.

Synopsis

Ryder, Garrett, Kenzo, and Diesel—The Vipers. 

They run this town and everyone in it. Their deals are as sordid as their business, and their reputation is enough to bring a grown man to his knees, forcing him to beg for mercy. They are not people you mess with, yet my dad did. The old man ran up a debt with them and then sold me to cover his losses.

Yes, sold me. 

They own me now. 

I’m theirs in every sense of the word. But I’ve never been meek and compliant. These men, they look at me with longing. Their scarred, blood-stained hands holding me tight. They want everything I am, everything I have to give, and won’t stop until they get just that. They can own my body, but they will never have my heart. The Vipers? I’m going to make them regret the day they took me. 

This girl? She bites too.

Book Details

  • Published: July 10, 2020
  • Page Count: 652
  • Genre: Contemporary Romance, Reverse Harem
  • Trigger Warnings: Abuse/Assault

Thoughts on Den of Vipers

The book is written in first-person POV with each chapter taking place between one of the five main characters: Ryder, Garrett, Kenzo, Diesel, and Roxy. So, you get each of their thoughts and views on what’s going on throughout the book. Considering its reverse harem (a term I purely learned thanks to this book), everyone is a love interest. There are no side characters here. If you don’t know what reverse harem is, it’s a polyamory relationship with multiple guys and one girl. Again, going into the book I did not know this. Though if I had looked at the Amazon page for more than 0.2 seconds I would’ve seen that along with the trigger warnings.

To start off with Den of Vipers is dark, it starts off with the Vipers (a mafia that runs the city the book takes place in) collecting/kidnapping Roxy after her father sold her to pay off his debts. Real father of the year right there (extreme sarcasm). She isn’t some weak damsel though, Roxy holds her own after years of abuse at the hands of her father and running a bar that criminals frequent. When other members of the mafia try to collect her she stops them, but the four leaders (Ryder, Kenzo, Garrett, and Diesel) don’t take no for an answer, they kidnap her personally, and lock her in their penthouse. All of them are torn over what to do with her since not taking her would send a message that anyone could get away with skipping out on their debts. Though they all lean towards fucking her, torturing her, and killing her.

Real fucking great guys.

Now I’ve read books where main characters get captured and have relationships (consensual and non-consensual) with their captors at one point or another. But I’ve never really had the same reaction to those as I did with Den of Vipers. Maybe because in those we only have the female’s POV, or they get out of the situation. Roxy is not one of those characters. She acknowledges that she might have Stockholm Syndrome after like a day or two of being with the Vipers, and after a failed escape she gives up on the idea of fighting them then works on getting into relationships with each of the guys.

If you don’t want spoilers, don’t read this next section. I’m going over my thoughts on each of the relationships. Though I’m not going to spoil how the book ends. Just a general thought on each.

Spoiler
Each of the relationships has a very different tone:
  • Ryder is the classic dom/sub type as he has serious daddy and control issues.
  • Diesel is the torture, twisted sex, which was honestly not my cup of tea. Since I’m sharing spoilers in this part, the sex scene where he puts a scalpel up her ass then fucks her resulting in him getting sliced open to the point he needs stitches is not my kink. Daggers to the throat are one thing, but that is just nope, nopity, nope, nope no.
  • Kenzo is the exhibitionist, sugar daddy type. He has the most sexual scenes with Roxy, and he’s also almost always involved in the group ones.
  • Garrett is the restraint and choking one mostly due to his PSTD after being almost killed by an ex-fiance. The restraints were Roxy’s idea to help him not get triggered.

Most of the early sex scenes are not what I would are explicitly consensual. Roxy never says no but she also never says yes. It’s assumed by the guys as most of those scenes are written from their POV, not Roxy’s. They see her as not fighting as her saying yes, especially when they find her panties wet. And the ones that are in her POV, she admits she’s consenting to each of them even if she hates herself for it concerning they are her captors.

Also, none of them care if she’s in a relationship with the others, so long as it’s only one of the four of them. Going so far as she’s not really allowed to hang out with other guys including tattoo artists or their guards. They even send each others pictures of them with Roxy to each other, sometimes just hanging out in the penthouse other times in the middle of sex. Honestly, for how possessive these guys are it’s kind of shocking they are willing to share her with each other.

Roxy also shares a lot of similarities with each of the guys. Diesel and Roxy both had junkie moms. Kenzo, Ryder, and her had physically abusive fathers. And she’s got the same explosive anger as Garrett, as well as PSTD from events that have them both scarred.

While all of the relationship stuff is going on, the Vipers are dealing with a rival mafia that’s trying to have them eliminated. Roxy ends up helping them since her life is forfeit without them. Either she’ll spend the rest of her life running since the Vipers won’t let her go, or anyone trying to settle a score against the Vipers will kill her. Especially after she is seen with them in public. Since they do eventually let Roxy join them on trips to get information or for Garrett’s underground fighting. Not to mention they dress her in snake accessories and clothing, as the guys start to buy her things. Eventually even trusting her with knives and a gun of her own, as well as ensuring she knows how to use them. And giving her the choice to leave.

I won’t spoil the ending, but it’s intense like most of the book. And a lot of graphic scenes of abuse and assault. So, if you can’t handle those types of things Den of Vipers is not for you. Also since I know some types of sex scenes can be triggering, there is that too. Since it explores pretty much every kink. There’s no vanilla sex or the scenes written from an emotional standpoint. It’s all written in the physical sense. And not all the kinks might be something that’s your cup of tea, quite a few of them were not mine. There’s are a lot of sex scenes in the book, like almost every other chapter has a sex scene in it with one of the guys and Roxy… sometimes multiple. It is reverse harem after all.

Though this wasn’t my usual type of book, I did enjoy some aspects of it but there’s a bunch I didn’t. Especially as what plot there is, is heavily overshadowed by the romance/smut that it’s easy to forget. I would give Den of Vipers a 2.75 out of 5-star rating. The book can be a lot at times, and while it was entertaining to read it’s not completely my taste (some of the sex scenes just weren’t for me). I don’t know if I would go out of my way to re-read Den of Vipers, not to mention there’s very little plot. Like there is one but there isn’t at the same time. But I’m glad I read the book because now I won’t have to quickly scroll past things in TikTok to avoid spoilers. But yeah… not something I would go for again.

Love ya,

Mae Polzine

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2 Comments

  1. Brooke Carrington
    May 17, 2021 / 8:47 AM

    Love the cover but after your description I don’t know if this one is for me either. Thanks for the review!

    • Mae Polzine
      Author
      May 17, 2021 / 8:48 AM

      Yeah the cover is gorgeous, but this book wasn’t for me.

      Thanks for stopping by!
      ♥ Mae

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