AMPLIFY by Anne Mercier: Got a Reaction from Me


 Amplify by Mercier audio coverBook 3 in the Rockstar series
by Anne Mercier
Narrated by Joe Arden, Maxine Mitchell
Published by: Tantor Media Oct 20, 2015
Running time 9 hrs 22 min

Audiobook provided by publisher for review. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.

Sera: He’s my protector, my confidante. Then one night he became more. I want him, I need him, and, if I’m honest with myself, I love him. I just don’t know if he’ll ever see me as more than what we’ve always been: friends. I don’t want to lose him, but it’s getting harder and harder to keep my feelings to myself. Should I risk it all or play it safe?

Cage: She’s my light, my saving grace. The night we came together I knew I could never live without her. I want her to be mine: my lover, my friend. Maybe, if I can get her to see past all the reasons why we shouldn’t be together, she’ll be my forever. It just might be time to turn it up and go for broke.

 Contains mature themes.

My Take Oblong


I have been struggling with what to say about this book for a couple of days now.  It is unusual for me to feel so strongly against a book.  Since I am in serious lust with the Rock ‘n Roll Romance genre, there were some aspects of the storylines  in the series I found interesting, but the bad in this entry in the series so outweighs the good that I do not recommend it. I will definitely not continue to listen to or read this series It’s tricky to justify the strength of my admonishment without using spoilers, but I am going to try.

Something positive: I thought Mercier made a good attempt at how a child would react to finding her parents dead. Also the Narrator does a great job with accents and emotive content.

Why do I feel so strongly?

Sex and Violence:

This book glorifies violence, in particular organized crime violence and it is treated so casually that I was repelled. This only occurs in maybe three scenes, but that was enough.  Then the violence is treated as if it were an aphrodisiac I was stunned, angered even.  I like sexy times in books a lot. Hence what I write about. But the combination of the two int he way it is done is very different from the adrenaline effect of fighting we see in OUTLANDER when Jamie says fighting gives one a “cockstand” after they’re attacked.

Sure, TV shows like “The Sopranos” also showed organized crime violence — and that was why I stopped watching it, but I don’t think it was turned into a fantasy to the degree it is here. 

Of course, a little Domination also gets thrown in for good measure. We don’t seem to be able to have erotica these days with out a power exchange.


There are other ridiculous things, a character has been sick for days and cannot keep anything down but can have sex and give her guy a blow job and SWALLOW. And, that stays down when toast and everything else  had been coming up.  And, when two people are having sex in an unusual location and he enters his partner’s anus with a finger, don’t you wonder how he cleaned the finger off after?

And, ghost parents who can intervene from heaven, but ONLY when it’s really necessary.  I guess in this universe God’s good with the mob.

Loose Ends:

A secondary, but still important character gets hurt but we never find out what happened to him or whether he survived. Also, there is some suggestion that a particular person killed Sera’s parents, but it’s never answered and in the first book it is said to have been solved and taken care of.

Communication Problems:

Stop and talk to the guy for heaven’s sake. Most of the conflicts between the couple are trumped up, mostly on Serrafina’s side,  and her reactions are so out of proportion that it was just impossible to believe. This is a pet peeve for me anyway.

Bad Poetry

I was actually ashamed to listen to the terrible poetry the author was calling song lyrics.

Mostly, I was troubled by the violence in the story; how it was treated as a good thing, and something sexually exciting. Seriously, seriously troubling.  Sure, this is not literature, I am not at all sure it is erotica even, and there’s no requirement that a book send a positive message into the world. But, the message I heard from this book is that violence is good and it’s sexy.  As I listened, I struggled with what words could describe it and I thought written snuff-porn.

I don’t think I have ever recommended completely against a book, so this is a first for me. Almost a month later, I am still haunted by images in the story. Ugh.


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