Dark and intriguing…


Burning Desire: The Psychopath and the Girl in Black Prada Shoes, Part I by M. L. Stark


Dark and intriguing…

In Stark’s debut installment in the Girl in Black Prada Shoes trilogy, a middle-aged woman becomes prey to a manipulative psychopath. Fifty-year-old Mary is feeling insecure and unhappy: her husband of many decades Paul is unfaithful and living in Copenhagen with their children.

Alone in Spain, she starts seeing the charming Dr. Drake Lucifer Bates, a renowned doctor of complementary and alternative medicine, for a foot problem. It doesn’t take long for Drake to prey on Mary’s vulnerability. Needy and susceptible, Mary is drawn into repeated visits to Drake’s clinic and soon begins a full-fledged affair with him. As their relationship progresses, it becomes abusive and dangerous. Ignoring all the warning signals, Mary throws herself into the affair. On Drake’s suggestion she begins her divorce proceeding with Paul, unaware of the former’s sinister plan of feeding on her wealth.

Because the story is based on real-life experience, readers will sympathize with Mary and her struggles. The story gains more relevance, considering the fact Mary is not a young girl in her teens or twenties, but a mature fifty-year-old woman who has seen the world. It’s her neediness and desire to feel loved that makes her fall prey to Drake’s manipulative endeavors (their relationship stars after Drake forces himself on her during her first ever visit to the clinic). The novel’s pacing is uneven, and the writing needs polishing.

Sudden shifts in time period as she jumps from situation to situation while narrating her story hamper the flow of the narrative. But Stark skillfully construct a manipulating sexual predator in Drake in whom Mary finds a sympathetic listener who flatters her constantly. She becomes entirely dependent on him, alienating herself from her husband and family, and rationalizing away warning signals that arise. Mary comes out as a slightly unhinged narrator who consistently contradicts herself. Set in Macau, Bali, Spain, and Denmark with Mary at the center, this novel beautifully brings the setting and culture of each place. Graphic scenes of sex and violent rape as well as Drake’s manipulative ways, contribute to the dark atmosphere. Along the way, Stark skewers marriage, relationships, and infidelity. While the novel’s trajectory is predictable, Mary’s over-the-top gullibility and her impulsive actions are entirely believable. Despite its obvious faults, Stark succeeds in demonstrating how easy it is to fall under the sway of a charming predator.

Burning Desire Fades: The Psychopath and the Girl in Black Prada Shoes, Part II by M. L. Stark

Categories: Suspense and Thriller

Tags: amreadingauthorauthorsbook reviewsbooksreadingreview blogreview websitereviewsreviewservicesuspenseSuspense and Thrillerwriting

Burning Desire

The Psychopath and the Girl in Black Prada Shoes, Part I 

By M. L. Stark


Buy now

Pub date February 14, 2020

ISBN: 9781984593597

Price $17.20 (USD) paperback, $34.59 Hardcover, $5.32 Kindle edition


  2. Falling in love with a stop-at-nothing, callous psychopath.
  3. Welcome to my Blog | M. L. Stark| ideas related to my books.
  4. M. L. Stark
  5. Dark and intriguing… – BURNING DESIRE & BURNING DESIRE FADES

Author: M. L. Stark

I am M. L. Stark, and within the pages of "HUGGER MUGGER: The Con Man Smile" and "MAZE AFLAME: Flimflam Man," I pour out the fiery essence of my very soul. These books are not just ink on paper; they are the embodiment of my triumph over the darkest shadows of my past. Through the flickering flames of adversity, I have risen, crafting tales that echo the resilient beat of my heart. Every word penned is a testament to the strength I discovered within myself, a testament to the resilience of the human spirit. I have dared to bare my scars, to expose the rawness of my wounds, for I know that in sharing my journey, I offer hope to those who may tread a similar path. And as I close each chapter, I am reminded of the immortal words of Bob Marley: "The biggest coward is a man who awakens a woman’s love without the intention of loving her." These words resonate within me, fueling my passion to shine a light on the darkness, to empower those who have been wronged, and to stand as a beacon of love and resilience in a world that too often seeks to extinguish the flames of hope. You can follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.  LeaPrivacy Policy