Genre: Contemporary Fiction; Drama; Dark; Family Fiction
Tightening His Grip’ is Book 2 in ‘The Main Man Trilogy’. A contemporary novel for the NA/crossover market, it has a Nature or Nurture theme, laced with suspense and black humour.
Darren is now studying PPE at Oxford University, and although continuing his amoral lifestyle, he dreams of a future at Westminster – assuming that he can keep his murky past (and present) buried.
Joel – still living in their home town, and married to Darren’s ex-girlfriend Grace – expects to be free of his adversary at last. But when he approaches the local building company for the interior design contract, he finds that Darren has inherited the business from his late father. And Darren has no intention of helping to advance Joel’s career. There are too many scores still to be settled, and revenge is uppermost in Darren’s mind. And then a secret is revealed about Joel’s parentage.
The enemies become locked in a power struggle.
But who will emerge as the Main Man?
This sequel is just as hard-hitting as the first. The author continues to draw an eerily realistic web of treachery as she portrays the manipulative nature of a narcissist (Darren) by showing glimpses of his humanity and the easily spun lies that ensnares those around him.
However in this installment, one of his victims begins to come to an understanding of his false friend’s nature and takes steps towards removing themselves from his grasp. While this inspires a bit of hope, it also leaves the audience fearing what will happen to the third friend (and others) when Darren realizes he is losing control. And will they even be able to leave at all, now that they have become a major part of Darren’s schemes and evildoing? or will trying simply cause their life to crumble…again?
The plot of “The Main Main Trilogy” becomes even more intricate in book 2. I had thought most of the histories and secrets had been set into place in book 1, but the characters’ paths continue to take twists and turns that keep the reader hooked on the drama, needing to know what will happen next.
These events aren’t solely that of the main three’s interaction with each other, but of their relationships with their families and other characters in the story. It is though, Darren’s placement in their lives that has the greatest impact on their present and future, even in their relationships with others.
I cannot wait for book 3 to come out. This is one of those stories where both a positive end and a negative one are equally possible, leaving me with no real predictions about what will happen. The author has taken great steps to ensure the story’s route and conclusion are unpredictable which is a fantastic feat that furthers the depth of these books.
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~Sahreth ‘Baphy’ Bowden
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