05 March 2015

#Throwback: Joseph Fallen

There is a fine line between genius and madness…
Between love and hate,
Between right and wrong.

Joseph had created The Estate for her…
His wife,
The woman he chose to bear his child.
She was beauty unsurpassed;
And her song was unlike anything he’d ever known.

However, their love was a story that would not find a happy ending.

In this prequel novella to the Estate series, follow Joseph Carmichael as he creates a world unlike any other. Because, in order to comprehend The Estate, you must understand Joseph; but, in order to understand Joseph, you must discover how a man falls from light into the pitch black depths of ultimate darkness.

After reading Madeleine Abducted, I was hesitant to read this book because I didn’t want to feel badly for Joseph. I was afraid that by learning about the events which created the madman that I would come to understand him and ultimately forgive him for the sins he committed. It turns out that that was an entirely unwarranted worry. By the time Ms. Willis finishes detailing Joseph’s spiral into madness, I actually hated him more than I did when I finished Madeleine Abducted.

As Joseph Fallen is the story of Joseph Carmichael’s descent from a respectable business man to the depraved leader of The Estate, this is a dark read and contains numerous acts that some readers will find disturbing. Having read book one first, I was prepared for most of them, or at least I thought I was. The scene in which we see Xander’s arrival at The Estate freaked me out until I realized it was Xander. Despite what I already knew about Joseph’s predilections and insanity, what made the book truly horrifying was that everything Arianna suffered was at the hands of her husband – the man who was supposed to love, honor, and protect her, yet he became her abuser. But even knowing that there was no happy ending for Arianna and Joseph and suspecting that her husband was behind her departure from their son Aaron’s life, I was still shocked by what actually happened to her. My only regret was that she wasn’t able to reveal Emory’s duplicity.

Although Joseph Fallen is the prequel to The Estate series, I recommend reading it after reading Madeleine Abducted. Had I been privy to all of the knowledge that I gained from this book prior to reading Madeleine Abducted I think it would have actually diminished its impact. As much as I enjoy Ms. Willis’s style of writing, this is a book that I will not reread simply because I cannot bear witness again to all that Arianna endured, hence the 4-star rating. However, I have added Hope Restrained to my wishlist in hopes that I can read it soon as I look forward to visiting The Estate again – hopefully sans Joseph Carmichael.

M.S. Willis is a romance novelist whose debut novel, Control, was released in 2013.  Although currently writing in the romance genre, Willis has plans to expand her literary pursuits into multiple genres and has no fear conquering difficult subject matters in her writing.  Willis is a native Floridian who is also a photographer and musician.  When not absorbing herself in written, visual or musical expression, Willis is an adrenaline junkie, a ‘closet’ video game enthusiast, and an avid outdoors person and nature lover.


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