Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Stealing Innocents by Lisa Henry writing as Cari Waites

Those who dare to scratch the surface of ordinary, everyday life may be horrified to find a sick underbelly beneath—a nightmare world populated by villains and victims, predators and prey, where the rules of society no longer apply.

Where you’ll find people like Danny, the boy who sells himself to pay for his father’s gambling debts and ends up in a situation more twisted than he ever imagined. Or Troy, the cop whose obsession with saving a brutalized human trafficking victim turns deadly. Or Drew, the mental patient who begins to suspect his nightly delusions of abuse by his doctor are actually real. Or David, the cuckolded husband who decides the best way to get revenge is to seduce his wife’s barely legal son.

Stealing Innocents is an exploration of our darkest human impulses, where sex is power, love is horror, and there’s no such thing as a happy ending.


This collection contains three edited second editions stories that were previously individually published, plus one all-new story, by Lisa Henry writing as Cari Waites.

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Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
Anglerfish  Press

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

5 depraved, disturbing Stars



Part #1: Gamble Everything – 5 stars.

Truthfully, I believe Gamble Everything would have been an excellent standalone title sold by itself to fans of MM dark and taboo reads. 5 Stars, hands down. It's hard to find a fully developed shorter novella, but this was perfectly executed.

Without knowing how the rest of the titles in the anthology read, Stealing Innocents is well-worth the purchase price just for a reader to get their hands on Gamble Everything. I was floored, and I read a ton of MM, dark, and taboo reads. Hell, I even write some. I basically clicked the pages with my jaw hanging open and my eyes bugging from my skull. “Dayum!” was always on the tip of my tongue. I loved Danny/Daniel's inner monologue, bringing about some ironic hilarity in an otherwise brimming to the max book where everything was just so creepy... C-R-E-E-P-Y.

OMG! That bedroom... the clothing... the teddy bear. The innocent stuff was worse than the enema/fist/sound/cage. So much more mortifying. I need a shower. ASAP. I need to wash my brain. I was seriously titillated by how warped and cerebral this book was. So I worry about coming down from this high to find the rest of the stories not up to par.


Part 2: Crazy – 4 Stars.

Crazy was an interesting read, especially for its short length. I'm rating on my enjoyment level and against other stories of this length and type. While I was floored and frustrated while reading Drew's story, a boy in a mental ward held against his will, being drugged and abused by his psychiatrist, I wasn't blown away. The writer has talent, and if this particular story had been expanded slightly in the character development, it would have been an outstanding read.

However, I do believe it's a worthy part of the anthology. Intriguing and thought-provoking.



First and Only – 5 Stars

In a disturbing, yet oddly enjoyable change, First and Only was written in the predator's voice instead of that of the prey like in the previous stories.

David. David. David. The predator is written in a way that the reader could empathize with him, and wanted him to get his revenge against his cheating wife. Sage was the type of person who is a walking victim, easily culled from the herd, never knowing which is the worst predator to have their sights set on him.

First and Only was very developed for so few pages. The story was complete, leaving a cliffhanger ending for the reader to make of it what they will. Definitely a fitting, disturbing contribution to the anthology.


Falling Angels – 5 Stars

Falling Angels was, without a doubt, the most disturbing story of the anthology, and a punch to the throat way to end the book. Darker than the rest, more sociopathic and taboo, but scarily the most realistic of all the tales.

Instead of feeling skeeved out for being not only physically but cerebrally turned on while reading the predecessors, I was heartsick and sickened while reading Falling Angels.


In conclusion, if you are a twisted puppy who gets off on a mind phuck, Stealing Innocents has 4 stories to warp your already depraved mind. Good luck washing it away for a while, because I fear each and every story has made a permanent impression on my psyche.

Reader discretion advised. This title contains the following sensitive themes: drug use, dubious consent, emotional abuse, explicit violence, heavy kink, non-consent, self-harm, sexual assault, child abuse.

If you don't like reading things of this nature, do not open this book. It's not for you. You will not like what you read. BUT, on the other hand, if this calls to your dark, devious side this is right up your alley.

Gamble Everything – 5 Stars

Danny had to grow up pretty quick, with a dad that is a gambler. Clyde's focus has always been trying to get the big payout. He's more concerned with winning than raising Danny. When he finds himself in debt to the wrong people his only way out is to use Danny to pay it off.

This was most definitely my favorite out of all the stories in Stealing Innocents. I loved the dimension and depth to Peter and Daniel. Daniel's inner dialogue was on point. I loved seeing his view of things, especially the room and his clothing choices. It really had everything you crave in a dark read. The dark humiliation he endures was written in great detail. I can say I love a good dark twisted mind. The ending was unexpected but packed a punch.

Crazy – 3 Stars

Drew falls into a depression. He ends up at a care facility. He's heavily medicated not able to tell what's really happening from what happens in his dreams. He can't be that crazy can he? Surely he knows dreams from reality.

This one felt unfinished to me. Never got deep into the characters. I liked the idea of where it was going but it never really got me there.

First and Only – 3.5 Stars

David finds himself the victim of a cheating wife. He's out for revenge. What's the one thing that will hurt the most? No, not sleeping with another woman, sleeping with Sage...her son.

This one was pretty hot. I didn't see the ending coming, but it was well deserved.

Falling Angels – 4 Stars

Arkady did what he was told to do. He needs a master, needs someone to guide him. Whether it's in the right direction or locked away only being let out to be a dumpster. Troy's job is to watch for this child trafficking. Watch the videos that are being made with these kids on them, but when his job becomes an obsession, he tries to get out. Sometimes bringing your fantasy to life isn't worth it.

I enjoyed this one. The dark depraved view of the underworld. The humiliation that comes to Arkady and his devotion to his master was all very well written.

Overall, a very sick twisted read and I loved it. I think Gamble Everything definitely has the potential to be a strong standalone. All four stories together is a mind boggling good time.

WOW…I don’t even know how to write this review. I am just…wow. All the stories just blew me away. If you like happy love stories, with flowers and rainbows, ummm, you won’t find that here. I find myself thinking I must be messed up in the head because I couldn’t put this down! You see warnings all the time on books and most of the time you think “yeah, whatever” and just read the book anyway. Hope you have a twisted mind because you are gonna need it! Dark and twisted lovers will enjoy!

This is the warning that comes with this book. Take it seriously.

The four stories contained within Stealing Innocents are dark. Pitch black. The author took me to places I never would have imaged and I was completely enthralled by each of them.

That I enjoyed this very dark erotica so much has me feeling a bit like a pervert and I'm fine with that. I loved it and I want more.

CARI WAITES is the evil alter ego of Lisa Henry. To look at her, you wouldn’t guess she has a head full of dirty thoughts.

LISA HENRY likes to tell stories, mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters.

Lisa lives in tropical North Queensland, Australia. She doesn’t know why, because she hates the heat, but she suspects she’s too lazy to move. She spends half her time slaving away as a government minion, and the other half plotting her escape.

She attended university at sixteen, not because she was a child prodigy or anything, but because of a mix-up between international school systems early in life. She studied History and English, neither of them very thoroughly.

She shares her house a log-suffering partner, too many cats, a dog, a green tree frog that swims in the toilet, and as many possums as can break in every night. This is not how she imagined life as a grown-up.

Connect with Lisa

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Stealing Innocents by Cari Waites to read and review.

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