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Wicked Secrets by Angi Dawn

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Mystery and murderous mayhem pervade Angi Dawn’s thriller Wicked Secrets, however a logical plot seems to be lacking. When Bella Dawn (not to be confused with Bella Swan of the Twilight franchise) fails to land a post-collegiate job, she falls under the spell of the enigmatic Bianca Lake. Naturally, she agrees to join a “modeling agency” while shacking up in a luxurious manor with people named Rayven, Phoenix, Domino and Viper. While one may initially question the legitimacy of Blue Moon Modeling, Bella does manage to secure a photo shoot, if only to fuel the ridiculous plot. When her mentor Bianca winds up dead and amazingly disappears, the college-educated Bella begins an arduous emotional journey in which she must decide whether it’s best to leave or somehow deal with violence surrounding her. After all, she just might be falling in love with the all-too-dreamy Viper.

If the reader can get past the inconsistent comma usage, and some spelling errors, the over-the-top story has a rather decent flow. Unfortunately, Dawn guides the reader along by overtly incorporating thematic ideas into the dialogue. The lead character often amuses herself by noting her positive qualities, but somehow she can never quite make the conscious decision to leave the manor. Chapter after chapter, Bella reflects on the strange occurrences but proceeds to throw pool parties and extravagant feasts. None of the girls appear to be working, of course, given their boss has been murdered. The backstory of Wicked Secrets is almost non-existent, along with any type of reference to the outside world. The only bit of plot that seems to make sense is the idea that Bella was psychologically brainwashed. Inexplicably, the finale offers little closure to previous plot points, which leads one to believe that everyone was dead to begin with. Why else would an educated woman endure such a fiasco?