The Devil’s Bargain by Carin Hart

The Devil's Bargain by Carin Hart
Series: Deal with the Devil #1
Published by Self Published Genres: Romance
Pages: 320
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Purchase on: Amazon// Barnes & Noble// BookBub
Add to: Goodreads // StoryGraph

They say the Devil doesn’t bargain. I’m here to tell you that he does — but sometimes the price is still way too high.

I’m in trouble. Deep, deep trouble.

I never meant for it to happen, but my ex is dead—and I’m the one who pulled the trigger. Whether he deserved it or not… whether anyone will even miss that jerk… it doesn’t matter. Joey is dead, and I have to figure out what to do before I get caught with a corpse on my hand.

Enter Lincoln Crewes.

After the way we ended, I swore I would never turn to him again. But we were kids then, and in the fifteen years since I’ve seen him, he’s gone from a scrappy fighter to one of the most powerful men in Springfield’s seedy underbelly.

If there’s anyone who can help me right now, it’s Link. With his power, his money, and his connections, I could put this all behind me.

And all he wants in exchange is my soul… and my hand.

Ava, Ava, Ava…

She’s the one who got away. The reason I’ve built my entire empire, and the only person I’d burn the whole entire world down for.

I’ve done things I’m not proud of. They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions, and that’s my life story right there. I wanted to show her that I could be the man she wants—the man she deserves—and, by doing so, I became the worst thing for her.

I became the Devil.

So I kept my distance, though I always kept my eye on her. If I can’t have her, I could at least keep her safe, right?

Wrong. She nearly got hurt, and it’s all my fault.

When she comes to me, she has no idea that I’m responsible. I’m not about to tell her, either. This is my second chance. My do-over.

Ava is mine again, and no matter what I have to do to keep her, I will. Even if I have to force her to marry me in exchange for my protection.

But who will protect her from me?

*The Devil’s Bargain is the first book in the Deal with the Devil series, an interconnected collection of standalone dark romances set in the fictional crime hotspot of Springfield, where the gangsters rule, the cops are crooked, and a woman does what she has to to survive...


The Devil’s Bargain by Carin Hart is my second book by the author and the first one I actually really liked! This was another BookTok rec, but unlike No One Has To Know, it actually really hit the mark. Good spice, fleshed out characters, and a narrative that made sense all came together to create a really solid dark romance.

Now, you’ll notice I said a narrative that made sense instead of a sensible plot. That’s because the plot was pretty bare for the most part. Bad event happens, MMC steps in, Please love me for real, Oh no unexpected event!, babe I love you for real. That’s the narrative. Yes, it’s a narrative we’ve seen so many times before but honestly? It’s a well-liked, tried and true trope for good reason. There is a twist (of course there is) toward the end but it isn’t detrimental or anything that really has to do with our main characters. It’s much more of a set-up for the world and series and that was fine by me!

Linc and Ava were childhood sweethearts who moved in different directions in life. Linc, building up a criminal empire with a reputation for being a brutal gangster, still keeps a close eye on Ava, whom he never really got over. Ava, meanwhile, has tried moving on with her life with not so nice consequences. When murder happens, Ava looks to Linc for help who absolutely decides this is his chance to win her back.

I really liked these two because they seemed really well suited to one another. They’re both devoted to one another AND sexually compatible. Ava isn’t the typical virginal FMC we sometimes get in dark romance and Linc definitely isn’t the usual dark romance MMC where some wild event causes him to finally realize his feelings and stop being a jerk. The spice was good. Really liked that it was clear what each character was “good” with, which kept their relationship safe from feeling too skewed.

Overall, The Devil’s Bargain by Carin Hart was a solid dark romance read that really redeemed the author to me compared to previously read No One Has To Know. Characters are compatible and mostly respectful with one another, plus the spice was just kinky enough to hot.


Leave a Reply