American Yakuza is the first novel in a series focused on Luce Potter, who happens to be not just a high powered corporate woman, but also the new leader of the Yakuza. Though her grandfather is still alive he has chosen to pass on his title of Oyabun. In this role she must make life and death decisions that impact an entire organization, while also maintaining her image has a legal business owner. Brooke Erickson was an investigative journalist who now works at a financial magazine, but when her editor decides she is the best fit for an article about Luce that she finds herself drawn into a web she thought she had escaped from when she returned to the states.
Luce had never known about her grandfather’s criminal background and the role he played in the Yakuza, but she is the natural choice for his heir to the title of Oyabun. Her mother died when she was young and her father, JP, is now an enemy to his daughter and father-in-law. They both blame him for her death and beyond that he has chosen to actively work against their organization. A surprise letter from him reveals to Luce that he is back in town, but there is a twist she doesn’t immediately know about. At the charity event where Brooke is supposed to be a fly on the wall and gain some insight into Luce she notices men she recognizes from her work investigating the Russian mob. This element connects the women in the world of crime, but there is so much more to connect them as the story unfolds.
Isabella has written a number of books in this series as well as other works for Sapphire Books. Her work is always remarkably sensual and includes scenes that often tie into BDSM culture. Luce may appear to be a straight laced woman, but she indulges in sessions where she is bound and later on during the course of Brooke’s work she learns about these desires. This leads Brooke down a path she had never considered before. This new knowledge reveals a new world to her and Luce is remarkably interested in Luce and her reactions to things going on around her. As they begin to spend more time together tension rises and a relationship begins to develop that both aren’t sure they should allow, solely because they are both trying to be professional. American Yakuza is a well crafted crime novel with beautifully crafted scenes of sensuality and sex. You can find out more about American Yakuza and the full series on the Sapphire Books website.