4 out of 5 Stars
*I was gifted a copy of Little Doll by the author. I am not compensated for my honest opinion.*
Twenty-five-year-old Laila has no family left except her brother, so when he goes missing, she’ll stop at nothing to find him and bring him home. Unfortunately, Laila’s not the only person looking for Ethan. On the first day of her search, Laila is kidnapped and taken to Mexico by the same people Ethan betrayed—a drug and human trafficking cartel.
Aiden grew up with every luxury imaginable but surrounded by people with no morals. When Laila becomes the next girl in line to be sold to the highest bidder, something inside of Aiden wants to protect her. He’ll have to go against his adoptive family if he wants to keep Laila safe, but with Laila not knowing who she can trust, she doesn’t make things easy for him.
Little Doll is a thrilling tale that deals with a lot of dark subjects including kidnapping, rape, human trafficking, and abuse. It is part one of a series, and although there are plenty of open issues left at the end of Little Doll, it does leave the reader at a satisfying place even if it’s not exactly a happily ever after. It is intriguing right from the start with Laila’s missing brother and her kidnapping, and it is well written, keeping the reader wondering what is going to happen to her next.
Laila was a strong character, and I liked that she never gave up. Although the situation she found herself in wasn’t very realistic, most people would have given in instead of continuing to defy her captors. Unfortunately, her stubbornness became a wedge she drove between herself and Aiden because she didn’t trust him. All of the signs were there for her to understand what he was doing, but she refused to see them.
I loved Aiden’s character. He was the strong, silent type, always taking everything in and able to hide his emotions from those around him. He did drop his guard with Laila, resulting in a hot and heavy scene between the two, but his refusal to tell her what he was up to played a part in her inability to trust him. This will clearly be an issue to overcome in book two. We didn’t hear very much from Aiden, so at times the reader had to guess what he was up to right along with Laila. There is still quite a bit of information about Aiden’s plan to be discovered in the next book.
The book had lots of small editing mistakes like the occasional missing word, incorrect punctuation, and tense changes. A few times an incorrect homonym was used, and there were some small inconsistencies, like saying Laila was pulled to her feet when she had already been standing. There was also some inconsistent formatting within the book, and I noticed an overabundance of exclamation points.
Overall, I enjoyed the book and its dark themes, and although it could use a little better editing, I’d be interested in reading the next book in the series.