Venom and Lace

- Dani Antoinette


Not all monsters hide under your bed. Some of them entice you into theirs.

Being blackmailed into being the fake fiancé of Chicago’s most eligible bachelor was nothing compared to what was coming. Ryzen Goodacre’s merciless pursuit to be number one had made him one of the richest men in the city, but I was about to pay the price for his ambitions.

Most women would kill to be in my shoes. Unfortunately for him, I wasn’t like most women. Prove to the world we’re madly in love and follow the rules. Otherwise, he would crush my dreams with the snap of his fingers.

But there was one thing I hadn’t counted on. And by the time I saw him coming, it was already too late.

Haunted by a past that has left him with scars that can never be healed, Cian Blackwood’s bitter rivalry with Ryzen has me trapped in a twisted game where the line between right and wrong was more than just blurred. It was downright sinful.

Possessed by the need for revenge, Cian will destroy anyone who stands in his way.

Including me.

And my heart.



The minute I dragged my suitcase into the elevator, it burst open, spilling out vibrators. It looked like someone had beaten a piñata to death, but instead of candy, a mountain of adult toys had spewed out at my feet.


* Thanks to NetGalley and Victory Editing NetGalley Co-op for an eARC of this book. The following review is my honest reflection on the text provided. *
waste of time:

Venom and Lace is so bad it almost makes me angry.

Nova is the most infuriating character. All talk, no action; she changes her mind based on who spoke to her last. Ryzen, Cian, Juliet – they gaslight, manipulate, and straight-out lie, and she turns around and asks for more. Ignoring the truth right in front of her, Nova always makes the wrong decision and jumps head first into terrible choices like it’s her kink.

If the characters being terrible wasn’t enough to dissuade you, let’s talk about the writing. Simple and repetitive, every chapter is a slight variation on the one before. We go back and forth over the most boring details without making progress and then end on a cliffhanger that should’ve been in the middle of the book, not the end. Venom and Lace is a romance novel. It’s not epic high fantasy, a complicated family saga, or even the mafia thriller it so desperately wants to be. It doesn’t get to have a cliffhanger with no resolution and expect people to pick up another book to go around in circles with this infuriating woman again. Romance series finish with one couple and then move on to a related one in the next book. Or, in rare cases, fast forward in time to an important time/event with the same couple. You don’t get more than one book to figure out a love triangle. Especially not a crime adjacent Pride and Prejudice retelling with less appeal than Mrs Bennet’s scheming.

I should’ve given up after the third time Nova pretended to be sex-positive while judging someone else. Or the fifth time she flip-flopped on who she was going to trust. Or when her ‘very best friend’ is so naive she can’t figure out she’s being manipulated to manoeuvre her friend. Or when she tries to explain that she can’t discuss a contract with a lawyer because it’s confidential and speaking to a lawyer would break confidentiality. I honestly couldn’t make this up. No one should have made this up.

One star. I’d give negative stars if I could.


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