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The Body Painter

By: Pepper Winters
Narrated by: Will M Watt,Felicity Foster
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Summary

“Must be slim, able to stand for long periods of time, and be impervious to the cold.”

The headline caught my attention.

“Hours are negotiable, pay is minimal, clothing absolutely forbidden.”

The second line piqued my curiosity.

“Able to hold your bladder and tongue, refrain from opinions or suggestions, and be the perfect living canvas.”

The third made me scowl.

“Other attributes required: non-ticklish, contortionist, and obedient. Must also enjoy being studied while naked in a crowd.”

The fourth made me shudder.

“Call or email 'Your Skin, His Canvas' if interested in applying.”

The final made my heart race.

I should’ve kept scrolling past the advertisement. I should’ve applied for the boring receptionist job at minimum wage. I should’ve clicked on any other job where I got to keep my clothes on. But I didn’t. I applied. My interview is tomorrow....

©2019 Pepper Winters (P)2019 Pepper Winters

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Incredible

Oh Pepper Winters, what you have done to heart! This book has so much of everything in it, I could not stop listening. There is something to be said about second chance romances. The history of a couple builds that foundation and Winters masterfully lets us in on Olin Moss and Gilbert Clark's second chance. With alternating points of view, Gilbert gives us the history of their sweet, budding romance. Both from different sides of the track, yet have a common thread of dysfunctional homes. T Fast forward 7 years, and we get to hear Olin, as she encounters Gil again, answering an ad to be a living canvas for a body painter. The chemistry it palpable and Winters captures every essence of it. Olin is a strong woman, and fiercely loyal. While I love her, I at times wanted to shake her and tell her to move on already, but with that incredible connection to Gil, I just knew she couldn't walk. Gil is so broody and broken, I can fully understand Olin's draw to him. To help him, and make everything better. But there are so many secrets yet to be told. The story is heartbreaking, full of sensuality and mystery. Ending on a cliffhanger, I cannot wait to hear those secrets!!!! Winters is an amazing story teller and I am sure it is going to be mind blowing.

Choosing the narrators for this story had to be quite a mission. Gilbert is strong, passionate, broken. Will Watt finds that place with his voice that brings it all out. You can hear the pain, the frustration and the undying love he has. It's truly amazing. Olin is so optimistic, strong willed, compassionate and loving. With Charlotte Cole bringing her to life, we hear the inflections of love, the constant want in her voice to be there for Gil and just fix it all and make it better. These two narrators have a chemistry that lets us feel the story, then and now and leaves us wanting more.

2 people found this helpful

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Why have I listened this book only now?! Amazing!!

The Body Painter - Pepper Winters
Master of Trickery Duet #1

After reading the Indebted Series, The Ribbon Duet Series, The Fable Series, I had to have more from this amazing author!

Pepper Winters is one of my favorite authors, I'll read books by her without looking at the description! That's how much I trust her❤️
So I decided to listen to the first book in the Master of Trickery Duet.
This duet was on my reading list for a long time, something about the covers and the title of the book just called my name and shouted at me to read it already!!!📢

Throughout the book I get a glimpse from 2 different pov - Olin & Gil.
The book go back and forth between the past (high school period) and the present.
Not everything that appears on the outside is true, Olin and Gil are proof of that.
Gil (Gilbert) Clark is a boy who comes from a broken home, his way of escaping reality is painting and then his eyes land on Olin.
Olin Moss is a girl who comes from a stable home, but what's all the money in the world worth if you're lonely? She wears masks until Gil enters her life and sees the truth through her.
So far it sounds like a lovely love story, but what happens when one day Gil decides to break up and disappear from Olin's life?

Years later Olin comes across a job ad for a painter and goes to a job interview, the last person she expects to meet as the artist is Gil.
And from here the mess just begins - bodies of hypocritical women are revealed, secrets, dubious people, a dark and creepy feeling wraps throughout the plot.
The only thing that bothered me was that Gil always avoided and refused to reveal the truth to Olin, it drove me crazy, I wanted to shake him so and make him reveal the truth that Olin has been begging for for years.
The book ends with crazy Cliffhanger!!!
Seriously Pepper? You trying to kill me here?
My jaw dropped and my body tingles in anticipation of knowing what the hell is going on here?!
I'm continue the second book in the duet, I promise to update!
Until then, I highly recommend this book ❤️

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Captivating!

This is the first book in the Master of Trickery Duet, a dark romance. Gil and Olin's second chance to love is emotionally enthralling. The are both amazing characters, well developed. Gil is such an enigmatic character, broken, hunted, angry, and protective. His history is heartbreaking, and very dark. Olin is such a wonderful character, kind, loyal, supportive, and strong. I liked her determination. Their story is passionate and compelling, filled with mystery, danger, suspense, and twists and turns. The storyline is dark, raw, intense, slow paced, and captivating. The back and forth, past to present, is well done and mesmerizing. As expected, the story ends with a cliffhanger, and I am eagerly awaiting the next book in the duet. Will M Watt and Felicity Foster brilliantly bring this story to life. They are two fantastic narrators. Their interpretation as Gil and Olin is flawless, emotional, and grippingly fascinating. This is a great team author/narrators. If you like dark romance, this one definitely is for you. I highly recommend it.

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It IS a dark romance

There were so many revelations and twists in this book, I’ll have to try and write a spoiler-free review. Let’s see.

It’s a second chance story–though the ‘chance’ part is dubious. Hazard, yes. Coincidences, certainly. Chance, meh. In high school, Olin and Gil were close friends, and a little more, though neither of them would take the leap. Gil lived in a whorehouse with his abusive father, while Olin was just neglected by her parents. They were protective of each other. Until something happened and Gilbert rejected Olin, breaking her heart in the process.

Fast forward a decade or so. Alone, in need of money and a job, Olin applies to be a model for a body painter. Who happens to be Gil. Once again, Olin wants to help him, and once again, Gil rejects her. But the attraction is too strong. And the sweet boy Olin loved in high school has become a jaded and ruthless man who takes what he wants. They can’t stay away from each other, but that puts Olin in danger.

There are chapters about the past, and chapters about the present. Though Olin and Gil in high school were kind of cute, their relationship, before and now, is toxic. As teenagers, they clung to each other because they were alone–Gil offered Olin the attention she craved as an abandoned daughter, while she took care of Gil’s basic needs, like food and money and safety. They even talk about them as family. As adults, Olin still has strong urges to protect Gil, but he has changed a lot. He desires her and this time, he has no restraint. It IS a dark romance.

Most of the book, they go around in circles. Gil pushes Olin away, she goes. He goes back to her because he wants to protect her. She sees it as a sign that he wants a relationship, but he rejects her. She goes to him a little later, and they’re right at the beginning. They can’t stay away from each other, but for different reasons–Olin because she still has feelings for Gil, Gil because he wants to protect her. They never are at the same level. It was a bit repetitive, with little variations. And communication isn’t their forte.

Be aware that there are a few triggers. Also, there’s no love making here. It’s harsh, sometimes violent. It can be disturbing.

The narration was quite good. Though the female narrator was very expressive in the dialogs, her reading was a bit dull. The male narrator was amazing, full of raw feelings. The whole thing was maybe a bit slow, but when needed, it picked up the pace.

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Intense and twisted story!

I just finished this audiobook and the performance by both narrators was fantastic. I could feel the emotion in their words. I loved both voices! This story is dark and intense with so many twists. The longing and the angst is palpable. The characters have so much tragic history together. The air almost crackles from the chemistry between them when they touch. Gil is so angry and broken. He is hiding something huge and Olin is determined to find out what that is but will it be worth hurting her own self? I loved the narration and while the story was a slow build, I do recommend this audiobook.

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Terrific Story & Narration🎧 Gripping & Intense!

Wow, this amazing story became my addiction, it grabbed not only my attention, but it took hold of my heartstrings and tugged and twisted them hard, practically tearing my heart out of my chest. Pepper Winters is a gifted author with a brilliant mind, or rather a brilliantly deviant mind, that knows how to build a complex story with equally complex characters that will blow your mind and take it through the wringer and have you loving it. Olin Moss and Gilbert “Gil” Clark may have been from opposite sides of the track, but that did not stop them from becoming the best of friends with the promise of being more. Gil’s home life is not good, but he does not share much of what is going on, Olin only knows it is abusive, both physically and mentally. Her home life is not the best either, she has everything she needs except the love and attention of her parents. But the two make a pact becoming each other’s family, until they are not. Fast forward to the future, by chance they meet again, Olin’s life did not turnout as planned and she is down on her luck desperately needing a job, answering an ad to be a living canvas. When she shows up for the job, it surprised her to see Gil again. Gil was not happy to see her and he wanted nothing to do with her and wanted her gone. But he goes with the job and the commission and doing what he does best, creates a piece of art on her body. Gil is a tormented man and Olin does not want to give up on him, the more he pushes her away the harder she pushes back. She knows he is hiding things from her and he refuses to tell her and when his problem becomes her problem, he must protect her from the evil in his life. This is a dark romance, the story is cleverly plotted with plenty of drama, angst, thrilling suspense, mystery, twists and turns, emotions, some heart-rending and gut-wrenching, some heartfelt, and some steamy sexy times. Pepper Winters, thank you for this mind-blowing story and the intense and sometimes wild, emotional rollercoaster ride. And that ending, OMG, why, why, why, how could you, time will tell, I am looking forward to what comes next for these two in “The Living Canvas”.

🎧📚🎧 And for the amazing narration, Pepper Winters could not have cast better narrators to bring her characters and story to life. Will M Watt and Felicity Foster are superbly talented narrators and versatile voice artists. They had a complete understanding of the characters they portrayed, gave each a voice that was a perfect fit to that character’s persona, sounding believable in every role they played and just as I pictured the characters to sound. Foster’s Olin was spot on, she grasped her every emotion and had you feeling every single one. Watt nailed it as Gil grasped his tortured soul with perfection and had you feeling his conflict and angst. Both were great performing all the secondary roles too. These entertaining storytellers set the perfect tone for the story and their narration enhanced the story to another level. Thank you for this exceptional listen.

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The Body Painter

Wow, just wow.
After the Faible Of Happiness trilogy I was already hooked on Pepper's books.
So I was really curious about this one.

And it didn't disappoint.

Gil is so mysterious, in his behavior too.
Can't wait how this story continues.

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Terrifying Genius 😁

If you love dark romance, Pepper winters is for you. This novel is another brilliant journey with dark twists and broken characters. Yet still a love story. Definitely recommend 100%. 🥰

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  • KMH
  • 18-12-19

I love Pepper Winters but ...

I love Pepper Winters. I have purchased all of her audiobooks. This one is just very repetitive and seems like she was trying to just add words to fill up the pages. After 15 hours there is still no resolve and I’m still trying to figure out what he is hiding. Olin was ANNOYING and immature. You just can’t be that oblivious. It made it very unrealistic to me. The audio was great no complaints there. I probably will get book 2 just because I love Pepper but the story was just ok.

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  • Pattie
  • 11-10-20

Well, that was messed up.

I don't even know where to start, really. First of all, I'd like to take about the issues I had with it. I need to state that the book was far, far too long for the amount of story provided. There was so much pining throughout the middle of it that I was starting to get bored. The author could have cut out about 1/3 of the book and it wouldn't have changed anything. I get that it shows the bond between the main characters strengthening, but it was still unnecessarily long even with that in mind. Secondly, I would like to warn anyone that has dealt with sexual trauma that these books are centered around it. It's graphic, and when I say graphic, I mean that you hear every detail. It was heartbreaking just to listen to and it tore me up. Lastly, I don't like the little plot twist in the last few minutes of the book. I think this book needs a warning label of the content it contains for people that have trauma related to this stuff. I won't spoil it, but it's something that I avoid reading about at all costs and now that it's become involved, it changes things but I won't be ridiculous and go so far as to say it ruins anything either.

The good things about the book far outweigh those issues above, but they're too numerous to list. The depth of feeling between the characters, the complexity of them, the good writing, all things that made me sit up and take notice when I listened to the book. The plot is just freaking tragic and I like that it's not predictable and obvious but makes us hold onto the edge of our seats. The narration was excellent, and after getting through the unnecessary parts of the story I was on the edge of my seat. I don't know whether I want to scream at O or Gilbert, but I know I want terrible things to happen to their teacher for sure, I was so irritated with Gil's continued secrecy for 14.5 hours, and it made me want to rip my hair out because he knows deep down that he could tell O this information and she would deal with it since the woman is so infuriatingly kind to him. I understand her character is supposed to be the quintessential good girl, but damn does it get irritating some times when she constantly makes excuses for Gil's nasty behavior. That said, hang in there if you don't like Gilbert. Although some of his behavior is messed up, it all gets explained, in painful detail, later on in the book. Again though, it's heart wrenching and it made me so very sad to hear it all, but I guess that's just another indication that it really is an excellent book since it made me feel so much for fictional characters.

By the way, who names their main character GILBERT?! That's just about the least sexy name one could possibly come up with, so it made me laugh to think of this hot mysterious dude named Gilbert, the un-sexiest name to ever exist! I got over it eventually, but that choice is one made by the writer that I don't think I'll ever truly understand unless he's named after a real person or something like that. Anyway, a very messed up, terribly freaking sad story that isn't over at the end of the book. There is a second half to the story and I'm about to start it right now!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sherry Buckowing
  • 26-12-19

Leaves You Hanging

Fantastic story, beautifully written and narrated but it leaves you hanging at the end, which I am not a fan of.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jennifer Cox
  • 19-05-22

So many twists and turns!


The narrators were great both did a fantastic job of getting you lost in the book. I often was so into the story I did not really notice what I was doing while listening.
The book was heartbreaking. I felt as lost as Olin for a long time with all the back and forth between her and Gil. He pushed her away but she would not give up on him. He needed that but boy was it hard to see on both sides. As the information starts to come to light (I had predicted it but man my heart!) I felt hopeless for Gil and just felt so bad for the horrible life he had to endure. It drove me insane that he would not let people help him though! I wish he would have been stronger but I understand why he did what he did. Also think they both were still stuck in their younger years like almost like they never grew up because of the unfinished business and their bad home life’s.
That was a heck of a cliffhanger so I need to read that next book asap!

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  • Ilikebooksbest
  • 14-05-22

Second chance romance between two broken people

The following ratings are out of 5:
Narration: 🎙🎙🎙🎙🎙
Romance: 💛🖤💜
Heat/Steam: 🔥🔥🔥
Story/Plot: 📕📗📘
World building: 🌏🌍🌏
Character development: 🤒😌🙃

The heroine: Olin - She is a former dancer who lost her career aspirations when she was in an accident. The used car lot where she worked most recently had closed down two months ago and she has been out of work ever since. She is getting desperate for a job and applies for a position as a living canvas for a popular body painter.

The Hero: Gil - he has become popular as the hooded figure on YouTube that is seen painting the bodies of naked women. He is gruff, grouchy and bad tempered. He has a commission to paint something specific and needs a new model to work on.

The Story: When Olin goes to interview for the job as the model for a popular body painter she is stunned to find her former high school boyfriend Gil. He seemed to hate her and wanted her gone immediately. There was a time when they were in love and he just disappeared from her life. He now seems to be a monster who wants nothing to do with her.

The book was told in dual points of view and narrated by Will M. Watt and Felicity Foster. The book takes place in Great Britain and both narrators have British accents and pleasant voices. Each narrator read their own parts within each chapter, so the male narrator didn’t have to do female voices and vice versa. That is my favorite kind of narration.

The story was told partly in flashbacks to when they were in school, when they first met and Gil watched Olin and fell in love with her. He came from a bad background where he was always worried about where he was abused and he was held back in school twice by their teacher who had it out for him. He saw Olin as such a good and honest person and was surprised that she wanted to be friends with him.

The blurb didn’t indicate that this was a second chance romance. I usually stay away from those because I don’t like it when the main characters have a whole history together that took place prior to the story beginning. So my rating reflects that a bit. I do love Pepper Winters writing though, especially her captive romance works. I still plan to read a few more of her series that I haven’t gotten to yet.

Though the story was good, especially if you like dark romance romance between two broken people and secrets that take time to come to light. Personally I like a Hero that is more put together and I just didn’t get why Olin put up with Gil and pined after him given that he treated her like crap, both when they were young and again when she meets him seven years later. I get that she wanted to know why he left her the way he did, but really does it matter? He treated you bad, why should the reason matter? Even if he had a good reason, should you give him another chance to hurt you again?

I voluntarily read & reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts & opinions are my own.

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  • 💙 Nanda 💙
  • 12-05-22

Great narration, and lots of questions unanswered!

This book left new with more questions than answers!
I've saw a couple of reviews claiming that it was darker than Pepper Winter's usual shades of dark, so imagine my surprise when the only "dark" thing was the mention of abuse? (Not that this isn't bad... But I was actually scared of what I would find here 😂)
There are a few things to be considered dark, but all on the lighter side... At least on this first book.

Gil is definitely tormented by his past and his abusers, but everything is so closed up with him, that until the end, we don't know who is his tormentor in the present... It's just a guess that it's still the same as in his past memories.

The book is told between past, with Gil's POV, and present, with O's POV.
The past is were the truth lives, but the present is were Gil is still chained to his abusers secrets... One of them is delivered at the end, but that was not a surprise at all, after so many breadcrumbs.

I loved the writing and the secrets, and I couldn't stop listening, cause I needed to know what was going on as much as O needed, But there's lots of repetitive scenes with the push and pull between Olin and Gil that could've probably been reduced to half of it.

Anyway... I can't wait to see how this tangled mess will be solved in the next book!

🎧 About the Audiobook Narration 🎧

Narrated by Felicity Foster and Will M Watt.
I adored this narration!
It's my favorite type of dual narration, when they exchange places even on dialogues!
No one needs to make different gender voices. They switch even on the other character POV.
Both narrators are British, and it was really well done!

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  • S. Abrams
  • 09-05-22

Engrossing listen!

4.5 stars
Looking to listen to a dark, romantic suspense, then this is one for you. I will caution those with triggers to proceed with caution. Once again Ms. Winters delivers a storyline that will hold one’s attention from beginning to end. The dual narration is flawless! Will M Watt will have you drooling over his accent as he mellifluously brings the written words to life. Felicity Foster took a little getting used to but nailed Olin’s character. Olin is down on her luck and needs to find a way to generate some income. After looking incessantly for a position, she manages an interview with “The Master of Trickery.” Upon her arrival, she gets one heck of a shock when she realizes that "The Master" is none other than her high school love, Gilbert. Is this their chance to rekindle what once was? The author has done a remarkable job weaving the past and present as listeners glean the nuances of their lives. It is a slow build with some areas that seem repetitive and ends in a cliffhanger but with everything that is contained within, it is one that is needed to add to your collection. I recommend this audiobook.

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  • Karin Gesell
  • 06-05-22

Engrossing!!

This was such an engrossing story that just completely enthralled me. I wanted to keep listening to the tragic and all encompassing feelings of these two people and all that they’ve been through. I just couldn’t couldn’t stop listening! But that’s what Pepper Winters does to you. She writes these amazing books that blow you away. And Will M. Watt & Felicity Foster were amazing. Of course, I didn’t realize going in that there were two books. Something I’ll have to take care of. I need to know what happens next

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Joy Avery
  • 06-05-22

Absolutely amazing!

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆    Narration Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

Spice/Heat: 🌶🌶🌶

Angst: 💣💣💣💣      Plot: 📚📚📚📚📚

Cliffhanger? ✅️

Do I recommend? ✅️ 

Trigger Warnings: ☠️ ☠️ ☠️ please educate yourself! 

Tropes: dark romantic suspense, second chance, enemies-to-lovers 

This book was absolutely amazing! I listened to the audiobook. I was blown away by the dual narration by Will M. Watt and Felicity Foster. This was the best audiobook I've ever listened to. I am officially in love with Will's ability at narrating. I've already added every audiobook he's worked on to my wishlist. 

When Olin shows up at a warehouse after answering an ad to work for The Master of Trickery, she’s shocked when the boy she loved in high school answers the door. Gilbert was the bad boy in school when he actually had a sadistic home life. He used to watch Olin in school because she wore her heart on her sleeve. They grow close until one day he breaks up with her and disappears with no explanation. All she ever wanted was answers and now's her chance. Mrs. Winters takes us from past to present with a great deal of suspense thrown in. There's even a serial killer on the loose. The cliffhanger may possibly kill you but thankfully part two is already out. I couldn't recommend this duet more, especially if you love romantic suspense. This is my honest opinion, freely given. 

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Erica Rogers
  • 05-05-22

Captivating

Gilbert was Olin’s first love and they have a chance encounter years later through an advertisement Olin saw. Talk about fate and destiny always bringing people back together that are meant to be. They have a broken past though, Gil left her and and broke her.

There is also a very suspenseful element to this story that keeps you engaged in totally different ways.

I will start off by saying I was extremely intrigued by the premise of this story. I did not realize that I would be left on a cliffhanger. However, as much as I want to know what happened next I was not pulled into the story as much as I needed to be to jump right into it. I think I had a harder time with the accents of the narrator’s. Though they did grow on me, it took a while to get used to them. I have listened to other audios where I loved the accents off the bat but this one was a bit more dry for me.