Under Locke


By Mariana Zapata

Dex Locke is not a nice guy. Just ask him. He’ll tell you he’s an asshole.

OK, so he’s got a temper. But he’s sexy. And he just might be hiding a heart of gold.

This is my fourth book by Mariana Zapata and so far it’s my favorite. She is a master of the slow burn. She’s got these great heroines who I fall instantly in love with and these complicated heroes who are often gruff and seem completely unlovable. Then slowly our Belle falls in love with the beast. It’s so subtle she may not notice. As you may not notice when you fall for him.

Of course, it didn’t take me so long to fall for Dex Locke. He oozes sex appeal with his inked-up arms and cobalt blue eyes. Dex is a tattoo artist and member of an Austin motorcycle club. He could be an extra from Sons of Anarchy. And all you’d have to do is slap a beard on him and you’d have my dream man.

But for our heroine, Iris? Yeah. Not so much. Her dad was a member of the club and he left her. So trusting guys – especially club members – is hard for her. Plus he’s an asshole. We’ve been over this.

But as Iris gets wrapped up in her dad’s drama, it’s Dex who’s there to help, to protect her. Maybe he’s not so bad after all…..

Like all her books, Zapata takes you on a journey in Under Locke. She makes you wait for it, but the pay off at the end is soooo worth it. And I didn’t mind the road trip at all!

I’d like to read more books set in this world because the secondary characters are awesome! I love her brother, Sonny. He’s tough as nails according to other members of the club. But he’s never been anything less than sweet to his sister, Iris. And then there’s the rest of the crew at Dex’s tattoo shop. I have a deep appreciation for female authors who are able to write authentic “guys speak.” Not all can do it, but Zapata makes it look easy.

I should add that I listened to this book on audio. The terrific narrator, Callie Dalton, probably added to my love of this story. Not only did she make Iris come to life, but also she really captured the brooding sex appeal of Locke. I’ve got to give her credit for making me love the story even more.

To sum up: Zapata=awesome. Under Locke=her best (IMHO). Dex=sexy. You=should read/listen to it today!



  1. […] Mariana Zapata is right up there with Penny Reid as one of my favorite authors. I’ve reviewed one of her books before; I’ve read several. But Wait for It has to be my favorite so far. If you’re a […]


  2. […] For those who like surly alpha males with a heart of gold, our hero Dallas is the perfect man for you. And Zapata may be the perfect writer for you, because that is her specialty. Get thee to a bookstore and pick up one of her books! May I suggest Under Locke? […]


  3. […] Under Locke by Mariana Zapata (or Kulti by Zapata), Beard in Mind by Penny Reid (here the younger lover is male…. interesting) and the oft-mentioned-by-me Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas. […]


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