Chapter Reveal

The Wife Breaker by Isabella Starling & Kendall Hawkins

Title: The Wife Breaker
Series: Dark Vows Duet #1
Authors: Isabella Starling & Kendall Hawkins
Genre: Dark Romance
Release Date: September 15, 2021


They call him The Wife Breaker, and I’m his next victim.

He’s the man the rich, corrupted members of the cartel send their wives to.

Using cruel, twisted methods to make women obey, the man is as monstrous as the cartel kingpin I was forced to marry.

He’s the mysterious man who breaks and molds women into the perfect meek companions for their husbands.

But I’m not going down without a fight.

It took my husband eight years to realize he couldn’t break me.

There’s no way some stranger who knows nothing about me can get inside my head and twist me into something I’m not.

I’ll never pledge my submission to anyone, let alone a man who prides himself on cruelly breaking others.

The Wife Breaker will never make me obey.

I’d rather die than kneel for him.

The Wife Breaker is the first book of the Dark Vows duet. It is not a standalone book.





I never meant to kill her. All I wanted was to see her broken to pieces.
The threads that pull us together and push us apart cannot be tampered with. Every person out there has a story of hardships that broke them, and only some, a story of how they put themselves back together again.
Every person, except her. Because I took that choice away from her. Because I tampered with her strings long enough to change the course of her life. I’m the puppet master. I’m the man that dictates which path she’s going to go on with every step she takes.
Our lives have been intertwined in the darkest ways since we were both children. Promised to one another in blood, our bond was unbreakable from the moment she was born. She was meant to be mine. Not just my wife, not just my partner. She was meant to be a prized possession, property. Something to show off, something to treasure.
But then all of that was ripped away from me. From us.
I stare at the thick, dark stain spreading underneath me. My back is soaked in my own crimson blood, my once crisp white shirt dripping with the evidence of what’s just happened.
He took her away from me.
He ripped her out of my arms and left me for dead just like he did before.
Except this time, I don’t know whether I have it in me to fight the light that’s calling me upwards. To a safe space. A space where my parents have been waiting for years. A world with no pain and no heartbreak.
I’m tempted to let it all go. To say fuck it and leave this world broken by the way my strings were set up.
There’s someone below, a voice calling out, demanding I stay with them. But it’s not her voice, not her hands that are desperately clasped over the gaping wound in my chest, eager to stop the blood from escaping my body in thick, scarlet rivulets.
I try to breathe but blood bubbles on my lips, threatening to choke me with its inky darkness. No oxygen enters my lungs, only more mouthfuls of the red blood that only signifies one thing – the end of my life.
“Fight for her,” the voice tells me. “Fight for your woman, don’t let this happen, don’t leave her, she’s doomed without you.”
And I think of everything that’s led up to this very moment when I’m bleeding out on the tiled floor. All the things I did to keep her tethered to me, to keep her as my toy, my possession, my trophy. Was it all worth it?
Or was it all in vain? My efforts to keep her away from the monster that tore us apart seem to have failed.
The darkness turns into light and my parents call on me to join them, their ethereal hands reaching out for me, long, inviting fingers motioning for me to leave my body here and join them in the spiritual world.
But I can’t leave this world behind just yet.
I cling on to the memory of her. My Goldilocks.
Long, flowing golden hair. Eyes as blue as cornflowers. Pale skin peppered with freckles. She is so beautiful. And no longer mine.
I think of the man who took her then. The man who’s ruined my life too many times to count. He stole from me, took what was rightfully mine. I swore I’d have my revenge but now it seems like he took that opportunity from me, letting me bleed out like a slaughtered pig while he took the only thing that matters to me anymore.
I want to call out for her but my lips are dry and my throat is raspy as fuck. Not a single word tears itself from my cracked, parched lips as I await the help I desperately need. Shapes and colors blend into one blurry image through which I can only discern her – my beautiful captive, my prisoner, the reason I live and breathe, now ripped away from me and leaving me bare and bleeding.
It feels as if my life essence is being drained from my body. Consciousness comes and goes as my eyes fly open then close with the heaviness of my limbs. I’m tired of this world that’s been so fucking evil to me, taking everything I ever had and more.
Maybe it’s all a dream.
Maybe my body isn’t lying on the ground, battered and broken, bleeding out.
Perhaps I’ll wake up in the warm, comfortable bed with silk sheets I paid for in blood. Perhaps I’ll be myself once again.
The tall, cruel, dominant man who in no way resembles the boy I used to be.
My childhood was knocked out of me and I was forced into adulthood. Everything was taken away from me, and now here comes my ultimate test. Can I survive against the odds in a world seeped through with dark blood?
Reality fades into the background and I’m caught in a vast inky dark void where every step feels like an effort, as if I’m trying to pull my leg free from the hold of quicksand around my ankles.
I can’t swim through it. I can’t fight through it. I can merely watch it take me, swallowing, eating me alive until only a gasping mouth remains on the surface, desperately drawing in breath after dying breath.
But I cannot die. Cannot leave this world without her by my side. Cannot let myself breathe my last breath knowing she’s back with him, the man I hate most in the world, the man whose blood I’ve sworn to spill.
I’ll kill him one day, but not today. He won the battle today, and the bullet lodged inside me speaks of it just like the dozen of lifeless bodies littering the tiled floor.
I need to hang on to the last threads of vitality that bind me to this world.
Desperately, I cling to the shreds of life left in my body even as my subconscious tries to force me to go under.
I have to live through this.
I have to get through this darkness, this void filled with everything and nothing at the same time. I cannot allow myself to be swallowed up by his black hole. He took everything from me again. I’ll force myself to live through this just so I can have my revenge.
Because I’ll never let him be the one to kill her.
That is my privilege.
Mine alone.


A FREE prequel!



Releasing September 30



USA Today bestselling author Isabella Starling describes her books with three words: dark, dirty and forbidden.


Kendall Hawkins is an emerging author of heart-twisting romance.

Embracing her dark side brought Kendall to write dark romance that leaves you breathless. Since she was a little girl, Kendall has cheered for the villain to get the girl, loved the dark side and adored shocking plot twists. Now, her love of enticing stories fills her days with villainous heroes and the passionate women they love.

Kendall spends her time writing, sculpting and creating in any way she can. Addicted to art, Kendall continues to pour her talents out on any medium available – be it a blank page, a canvas or modelling clay.

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