Sins & Needles
Author: Karina Halle
After a scam gone bad, Ellie Watt returns home to Palm Valley, California. Enter, Camden McQueen, and he’s no longer the Goth kid she knew in high school. More muscled and tattooed, Ellie can’t take her eyes from him or his top earning tattoo establishment. Ellie decides that after one more scam she’ll go scot-free on the grifter life. So she stakes out the tattoo parlor and takes every precaution like every time she pulls a job, and it’s easy…too easy, so she didn’t expect to get caught with a gun pointed at the back of her head.
Camden threatens Ellie with two options that aren’t options at all, leaving her no choice but to accept the third option he proposes. Help him disappear, something Ellie is very good at. Camden has to get away from some bad people he got mixed up with because of his ex-wife, but Ellie has her own issues. Both collide causing the two of them to go one the run.
Cons are getting conned in this action-packed story.
Bullets go flying and so do the sparks in this fast paced book. Both Camden and Ellie come from dark pasts, Ellie having grifter parents responsible for the scarring and nerve damage that lines her leg, and Camden whose father is the Sheriff of town, but also abusive. The tension between both of them rises and their shared past finally explodes during their reunion.
Instantly, I was drawn to Ellie’s character because she tough and sarcastic and doesn’t put up with other people’s crap. Camden however, though he is fictional, made me a little wary. He switched between caring and cautious and wild to furious and murderous and possibly psychotic all because Ellie broke his heart in the past. Throughout the book Camden was driven on revenge while Ellie just wanted to survive.
But then admissions of everything, but guilt brings the two of them closer together than ever before.
The narrative of the book was really cool and interesting in the way it moved from the present to flashbacks. Ellie is referred to as The Girl in the flashback sequences. I was fascinated with this because each of the other characters was called by name except for her. Ellie showed a strong lack of identity in these flashbacks and she still lacks one in the present until Camden draws her out.
Now this is only the first in a trilogy so when it came to an end I was sitting on a cliffhanger, wondering if I wanted to continue. There were parts of the book that irked me because it seemed like some of the issues were a bit over the top, but I think I’m going to continue it. It may be a little while before I get to the next one because if any of you bookworms are like me, you have a mass amount of books. I’m talking about libraries upon libraries. So, it may take a while, but I want to see the next part of the journey. The tattoos dragged me in, just kidding, but still, that cliffhanger leading into the next book…
“Do you think because you can’t see my scars that they don’t exist? That’s the trouble with pain, Ellie. If you’re lucky, you can weir it for all the world to see. Most people have their pain deep inside, in places no one ever goes. Not until it’s too late.” (Camden to Ellie, p. 150)
“Damn desert living. Everything turns to dust after a while.” (Ellie, p. 225)
“I felt a hollowness inside, like I was being chiseled out by fear. It was a line from the song…” (Ellie, p. 277)
“Even if we weren’t together. Because we wouldn’t be together. I knew what I had to do, to give him his life back. And to right the wrongs in mine.” (Ellie, p. 338)
More to come soon…
P.S. Song of the day? Post Blue by Placebo.