Review by Veronica

“Why are you running from me?” Xavier asked.

“Because I need to get home.”


“Because… home is safe.” Home is where my medicine is.

“Safe is boring.” His hand lifted, and his knuckles slid down her cheek in a gentle caress. “Aren’t you tired of a boring life? I could give you so much more.” He leaned toward her. “I could show you things most people only fantasize about. Give you more pleasure than you can stand. I can rip away the veil, and you’ll see wonders that you will never forget.”

Monster Without Mercy is a quick and fun fantasy romance that you can’t help but love. 

Anyone can be tempted…

Xavier Hollow is the king of destruction. A shifter, a vampire, a demon—every nightmare you have—all rolled into one very smoking hot package. Xavier snaps his fingers, and the world falls at his feet. His enemies tremble in fear. And the women who want him? They tremble with yearning. Life (and death) is one fabulous ride…until a certain very old curse kicks in for him. A curse that threatens to take away all of his dark power. 

He needs someone good…to fall for him. STAT. 

Three days. That’s how long Xavier has to tempt one Mercy Josephine. Innocent, pure, the actual descendant of an angel, she’s all the things that normally give him hives—literally. He’s allergic to good and just can’t stand it. Committing a “good” act causes Xavier physical pain. The bigger the act, the more intense his suffering. But, for Mercy, he’ll have to pretend to be someone very, very different. Someone who is—unfortunately and ever-so-disgustingly—good. 

He’ll corrupt her. She’ll save him. 

A simple enough task. Go to the costume ball. Charm the modern-day princess. Get her to sacrifice her soul for him. Done. He could probably bring her to the dark side with just a kiss. But then he meets Mercy and realizes that he’s not the only one looking to destroy some goodness. Other beasts are closing in, and in order to break the curse that haunts him, Xavier will have to do the one thing he never expected…protect Mercy. Beautiful, brave, and—shudder—good Mercy. 

The plan won’t change. 

By the time the clock strikes midnight on the third day, Mercy will be under his spell. He’ll convince her that he’s a hero, that she’s desperately in love with him. She’ll give up her soul—and her life—for him. The desire that rages between them is hotter than the fires of—well, home. Temptation is his specialty, and he can seduce her like no other. Not like he’s going to change his mind for her. Not like…Not like anyone can teach a monster to love. Because only the good love. And Xavier is many things, but he will never, ever be good. Not when being bad is so much fun. 

I love Cynthia’s books, so when this book popped up on my Kobo as a recommendation, I knew I needed to give it a try. This is the first time I read a paranormal romance written by Cynthia. It’s definitely not as strong in terms of writing and flow as her romantic thrillers, but it was a fun read. This is also a fairly short book, so things move pretty quickly, and there aren’t a whole lot of details. It’s meant to be a fast and steamy fantasy read. It was enjoyable, and I understand what Cynthia was going for here. There are some definite Assistant to the Villain vibes in this story. Xavier’s character is meant to be this all-powerful being that is to be feared by all. His evil empire is kind of run like an organization, and his world is rocked by this sunshine-bubbly heroine. He doesn’t understand these feelings he’s having, and Mercy (the heroine) rocks his carefully constructed world. There is a lot of humour around Xavier dealing with these new emotions. I really enjoyed watching this man flounder a bit.  

The drawback of this story is that the dialogue can sometimes be a bit choppy. It created a jarring reading experience. I think the choppiness comes from Cynthia trying to figure out what kind of humour or tone this book is going to have. Some parts of this book just don’t click with the rest of it. It’s not a big problem; I was able to quickly read over those scenes and carry on with the story. 

You really have to be a fan of paranormal romance in order to enjoy this story that Cynthia has created. She really leans heavily on the paranormal side of things. I liked the world and characters in this story. The romance is fast and steamy. If you like forced proximity, broody alpha males, virgin heroines, and fated mates, then you will enjoy the relationship between Xavier and Mercy. Things move fast between these two, and there isn’t a whole lot of getting to know each other on an emotional level. But it’s not meant to be that kind of romance. I’m not always a fan of third-act break-ups, but in this case, it really worked well with the story, and I liked the fact that Mercy was the one to make the grand gesture at the end of the story. The gesture wasn’t because she needed to ask for forgiveness. It was her way to show Xavier how much she loved him and that he was worthy of that love. 

Monster Without Mercy is a fun and spicy paranormal romance and a great way to escape the world for a few hours.