Empire of Pain by JL Beck

Empire of Pain by JL Beck was not worth the pain of reading it.

I am starting to think there is no good way for an author to sell the need for a multibook series for one couple.  When I started the Torrio Family Series I was all in. I was excited for the spice and the forbidden nature of the story.  Even going into book 2 I had high hopes.  But Empire of Pain was a complete let down.  

Book 2 started this slow let down. The story kicked up and the spicy fell flat. There were some story choices made that just did not work for me.  But I had hoped that Book 3 would tie it all up and merge the two to bring a stratifying ending.  IT DID NOT! 

 Empire of Pain was excessively long without any clear purpose. The narrative faltered and failed to recover. However, the realistic portrayal of Bianca’s pregnancy and Charlie’s obsession, as well as Callum’s genuine reaction to danger, were notable aspects of the story.

The central theme of the book revolves around Bianca’s discovery of Callum’s manipulative actions towards her. Unfortunately, the author’s choice of revealing Callum’s wrongdoing seemed reckless and unintelligent, bordering on the ridiculous. Whether it was Bianca stumbling upon the truth about her fertility or the camera placed in her room at her father’s house, which happened to be a cop’s residence, the events felt contrived.

Moreover, Callum’s daughter, Tatum, underwent an abrupt transformation from a spoiled child to an insufferable character. This unexpected shift left me deeply disappointed with the series as a whole.

Had the author condensed Books 2 and 3 into a single volume, the story could have been significantly improved. The excessive length hindered my engagement, prompting me to skim through the last 55% of the book in hopes of a potential improvement. Regrettably, that was not the case.

Book Stats:
Rating: 2/5
Series- Torrio Empire Book 3
Tropes: Age Gap, dark mafia, forbidden,

Previous Book Reviews in the series:
Book 1- Empire of Lust
Book 2 – Empire of Lies