Review: Where Willows Won’t Grow by Lia Black

Where Willows Won't Grow




Undercover agent Alex Kley is a long way from home. Six months of investigation have brought him to Willow House, a high class brothel on Omanai Station, as beautiful on the outside as it is corrupt on the inside. Sold into sexual slavery to infiltrate an illegal prostitution ring, Alex must find the evidence he needs to bring down the leader of a powerful criminal cartel—a man who may not even be human.

Illythe, the manager of Willow House, is a long way from freedom. The jet-skinned beauty with the face of an angel walks the halls of Willow House with serenity and authority, but underneath his cold and beautiful facade, Illythe is as much a slave as any of the young men working in the brothel.

In an undercover operation, falling in love is the worst thing an agent can do, but Illythe is a mystery that Alex can’t resist.

It doesn’t take long for Alex to realize that Illythe is not in his role by choice. Yet Illythe holds the holds the information Alex needs. The more Alex learns, the clearer it becomes, that when the cartel falls, Illythe will be buried in the rubble.

In the end, Alex must make a choice: save Illythe and forfeit the mission, or leave him behind in a place where willows won’t grow.

Important Note to Readers: This work of fiction is for adults only. Please see content warnings in “story info” front matter before download.
This story was written as part of the M/M Romance Group’s 2014 “Love’s Landscapes” event, and is available for free download from the M/M Romance Group site and to members of the GoodReads M/M Romance Group.
All proceeds from the sale of this book before Amazon price-match will go to the Ali Forney Center charity, which protects LGBTQ homeless youth in New York.




I loved it. This was a great book. I read for a challenge, and the part that I didn’t liked was exactly the one that was related to the theme of the challenge, which was pushing boundaries. There was with public sexual activity that I didn’t liked, but I’m so glad to wnet through it, because it was a really great story.

I loved the characters, or most likely one of the characters, Illythe. He was magnificent, I loved everything about him, the description of how he look liked, the way he speak, so control and polite, his feelings that were so palpable. There wasn’t a single thing about him that I didn’t liked. I didn’t felt the same way about Alex, he wasn’t as good as Illythe to transmit emotions but he was ok.

The relationship between them was nice, I liked how it developed, it felt realistic. And the plot was also very interesting

There are some dub-con and non-con scenes, for which I think it might be not suitable for every reader, but, for the ones that are comfortable with dark theme stories, I would recommend this one without a doubt. I just can’t believe I haven’t read it sooner, It’s really good.

This entry was posted in M/M.

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