The Flesh Cartel #1: Capture by Rachel Haimowitz and Heidi Belleau

Rating: 8/10 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 
Title: The Flesh Cartel #1: Capture
Author: Rachel Haimowitz and Heidi Belleau
Genre: contemporary, thriller, erotica, horror
URL: Riptide Publishing
Price: US$ 4.99
Other Information/warnings: explicit violence, forced incest, non-consent
Summary [from the publisher]:
Sublime service, made to order.

The Flesh Cartel: an international, multi-billion-dollar black market that trades in lost souls. Or more specifically, their bodies.

Highly organized and frighteningly efficient, the Flesh Cartel could teach even the KGB a thing or two about breaking a human mind. Fortunately for their ultra-rich clients, they’re just as skilled at putting people back together again—as perfect pets, well-trained and eager to please.

No matter what your secret tastes or dark desires, the Flesh Cartel—for the right price, of course—will hand-design the plaything of your dreams.
My review:
I never cared for serials, because I couldn’t stand waiting a whole week to find out what was going to happen. Thanks to advances in television, I can now watch my favorite shows whenever I want to. I no longer have to worry about missing an episode if I can’t be home a certain night. I can wait until an entire season is out and spend all weekend watching it.

I am the same way with books, preferring to start a series when it is completed rather than impatiently waiting for the author to finish the next installment. Now that I’ve read the first episode in The Flesh Cartel series, I will have to delay gratification until the next installments are done. And thank goodness for that, because this story is very dark, intense, erotic, harsh and brutal. It is best digested in smaller bites. If you are thinking of reading this, heed all the warnings. This story is definitely not for the faint of heart.

Flesh Cartel #1: Capture is told from the perspective of two brothers, Mat and Dougie. Mat, the older brother, is a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter. He also works as a bouncer to support his younger brother and enable him to complete his PhD in psychology. Unexpectedly, both men are kidnapped from their home and subject to unspeakable terror. They are then carted away in a van where Mat is caged and forced to watch Dougie being brutally raped by multiple assailants. Later they are taken to a facility where they are processed, hosed down, sexually abused, filmed, and soon to be trained in preparation to serve the very rich and kinky clientele the Flesh Cartel caters to.

There are enough loose ends and unanswered questions to make me want to continue reading, despite the fact that I was a trembling mess by the end. Dougie and Mat care deeply for each other and I care enough about them to see how they cope with this unexpected twist in their lives. I am left wondering why the Cartel has targeted Dougie and what will the brothers have to do in order to stay together and survive. Mat has the brawn and Dougie has the brains, but the way things are right now, their situation could only get worse before it gets better. I will definitely be tuning in for Part 2.