Review: Kingdom Come by Aleatha Romig

KINGDOM COME
Series:
An Underworld Kings Series Standalone
Author: Aleatha Romig
Genre: Mafia Romance
Release Date: November 16, 2021

They say the price of freedom is learning that you have nothing left to lose.

There was a time when I had it all. Money. Power. Love. And in the blink of an eye, it was gone.

Along the road to my new life, I have a chance meeting with Cecilia Abernathy. Born to greatness, this American princess is out of my league. That doesn’t mean I don’t see her for the woman she is behind the headlines. In a rare glimpse I see not only her outward beauty but her inner determination. I’m moved by her in ways I don’t allow myself to ponder.

Time passes and I’m moving forward, persevering beyond my loss, and making a new name for myself. And then I’m given an assignment.

One job.
One quest.

If I succeed, my kingdom will be at hand.
If I fail, there will be no more chances.

Men like me aren’t saviors, and that isn’t my assignment. My mission is to find the daughter of one of the most powerful men in New York, in the country, and maybe the world. Find her and deliver her to her family’s rival.

Cecilia Abernathy has been kidnapped. All I have to do is exchange her current hell for another. And then I can walk away and claim my reward.

Has my taste of freedom made me willing to sell my soul for a kingdom?

Find out the answer in KINGDOM COME, a dangerous forced-proximity stand-alone romance by New York Times bestselling author Aleatha Romig.

AMAZON

My kingdom would never come. A man didn’t fuck two of the most dangerous families and get rewarded.

Now it’s been a hot minute since I last read an Aleatha book. Since Consequences actually. And you know what? I have no idea why. If there’s one thing I know, it’s that this author can write one hell of a romantic suspense thriller. And this book? Oh what an intricate web it was.

Tell me you’re sorry that you woke the monster within me, the one that died when I died. Tell me to back away, Cecilia.”
My breasts throbbed against his hard chest. “I’m not sorry, Greyson.”
Releasing my hair, he reached for my wrists and pulled them over my head. “Oh, you will be.”

This was a slow burn romance full of intricate plot twists, action and suspense. Greyson is a character that’s easy to fall for. This is a broken man with plenty of demons in his past. I will say I feel like I did myself a disservice by not reading Devil’s Deal first. There is definitely some carry over from that story, and I couldn’t help but feel I was missing details of Greyson that would have been covered there. But having said that, there are still plenty of details given here to make sure the reader understands.

Greyson is a man running from his past. He’s an interesting dynamic of unassuming alpha. There’s this quiet intensity to him which I really loved. Cecilia was easily my favorite character in this story. This is a woman that’s grown up in privilege and money, but there’s a strength to her that gets unveiled with every new chapter. The woman is kidnapped, abused, and held to be sold. When all hope seems lost by her, she’s rescued by a handsome stranger. Only she doesn’t quite realize he has an agenda of his own.

There’s a strong mystery, thriller element to this story, which I loved. I couldn’t wait to peel back the layers of this this intricate web of lies and betrayal. Greyson does his best to keep Cecilia at arm’s length, but there’s only only so much he can do to avoid the temptation of the brewing chemistry between them.

My only quibble with the story is I felt like I was missing a large chunk by not having read the Devil’s duet first, but that’s on me. While this did feel like a standalone, I still think I would have enjoyed it even more had I read that duet first. But nonetheless, this was a story I devoured and enjoyed the hell out of. I now need to rectify my mistake of waiting so long to read another Aleatha book and binge on her backlist.

Aleatha Romig is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author who lives in Indiana, USA. She grew up in Mishawaka, graduated from Indiana University, and is currently living south of Indianapolis. Aleatha has raised three children with her high school sweetheart and husband of over thirty years. Before she became a full-time author, she worked days as a dental hygienist and spent her nights writing. Now, when she’s not imagining mind-blowing twists and turns, she likes to spend her time a with her family and friends. Her other pastimes include reading and creating heroes/anti-heroes who haunt your dreams and bring your imagination to life!

Aleatha released her first novel, CONSEQUENCES, in August of 2011. CONSEQUENCES became a bestselling series with five novels and two companions released from 2011 through 2015. The compelling and epic story of Anthony and Claire Rawlings has graced more than half a million e-readers. Aleatha released the first of her series TALES FROM THE DARK SIDE, INSIDIOUS, in the fall of 2014. These stand alone thrillers continue Aleatha’s twisted style with an increase in heat.

In the fall of 2015, Aleatha moved head first into the world of dark romantic suspense with the release of BETRAYAL, the first of her five novel INFIDELITY series that has taken the reading world by storm. She also began her traditional publishing career with Thomas and Mercer. Her books INTO THE LIGHT and AWAY FROM THE DARK were published through this mystery/thriller publisher in 2016.

In the spring of 2017, Aleatha released her first stand-alone, fun, and sexy romantic comedy with PLUS ONE, followed by the sweet stand-alone, ONE NIGHT.

Aleatha is a “Published Author’s Network” member of the Romance Writers of America and PEN America.  She is represented by Kevan Lyon of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

Connect with Aleatha Romig:

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Review: Dark Reign by Amelia Wilde

DARK REIGN
Series:
Trilogy
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Amelia Wilde
Release Date:
November 9, 2021

“Dark Reign is sinful, deliciously complex and naughty, with an anti-hero who’s hauntingly addicting.” – Marni Mann, USA Today bestselling author

Wealthy.
Reclusive.
Dangerous.

Emerson LeBlanc doesn’t enter society much.

He only ventures out in pursuit of new art for his collection.

It starts with a haunting painting.

Then he meets the artist…

Innocent Daphne Morelli is more exquisite than anything he’s ever seen. He becomes obsessed with her.

It doesn’t matter that she’s a living, breathing person with her own hopes and dreams.

She’ll be the perfect addition to his collection..

AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO | GOOGLE PLAY

Stop me,” he mutters. “What?” He takes my face in his hand and tilts it up. Those blue-green eyes are all shadows now. “Stop me,” he says again.

Do I love toxic fictional men? Absolutely.
Do I love dangerous toxic fictional men? Hell yes, I do.
Do I love Amelia Wilde’s particular brand of toxic alphas? GOD YES.

Now the woman upped her level of dangerous to stalker level, and I am SO HERE FOR IT.

Emerson is an enigma. He’s known in the art world as The Collector. He’s a connoisseur of fine art. He’s obsessed with the acquisition of it almost as much as his ownership. But his current obsession is a female whose name he doesn’t yet known. He’s fixated on her, and on a scale of 1 to 10, he’s at You level.
So basically somewhere at 175.

Daphne is the younger Morelli sibling and the sister of Leo from Secret Beast. She’s highly protected, sheltered, but not entirely naive. SHe’s also an up and coming artist. And when Emerson discovers that the woman behind the art he’s been admiring is also the beautiful stranger that captivated him when he saw her on the street? Well, all bets are off. He will do anything to get her away from her overprotective brother and have her in every sense.

These two were such dynamic characters. Emerson with his secret demons and stalker ways, and Daphne with her sheltered ingenue vibes. Admittedly this is not the sort of heroine I gravitate towards. She’s a bit too innocent, but you see her rose colored glasses come off with time. And slowly but surely she began to grow on me.

In typical Amelia fashion she closes on a killer cliff that leaves you desperate for the next book and I cannot FREAKING wait.

Amelia Wilde is a USA TODAY bestselling author of dangerous contemporary romance and loves it a little too much. She lives in Michigan with her husband and daughters. She spends most of her time typing furiously on an iPad and appreciating the natural splendor of her home state from where she likes it best: inside.

Connect with Amelia

Website: https://awilderomance.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14671616.Amelia_Wilde

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Amelia-Wilde/e/B01C38CNJ2

Facebook: facebook.com/awilderomance

Instagram: https://instagram.com/awilderomance

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@ameliawildeauthoress?

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/amelia-wilde

Review: Sinning Like Hell by Trilina Pucci

SINNING LIKE HELL
Series:
The St. Simeon Prep Series #2
Genre: New Adult Romance
Author: Trilina Pucci
Release Date:
November 3, 2021

USA TODAY bestselling author, Trilina Pucci brings you the finale of Sutton and Calder’s heart wrenching love story.

We’ll never run away.

There won’t be stars or a blue sky filled with heaven staring down on us.

All we have is death and destruction.

A life sentence, forced to survive within the absence of our love.

Until five years later.

 


“Death isn’t waiting for Calder—it’s listening for his instruction.”

 


Sinning like Hell is the continuation of book one, Just like Heaven. Book one must be read to understand book two

AMAZON

Catch up with the duet and grab Just Like Heaven!

AMAZON

Death isn’t waiting for Calder. It’s listening for his instruction.”

Wow.
Talk about your all consuming unforgettable reads. This duet was ALL OF THE THINGS. I have no words. I’m actually stunned speechless after sobbing my way through that ending and all I know I that I am NOT OKAY!

This is heaven. And she’s the only version I’ll ever want.

Romeo and Juliet could never! This book was star crossed lovers on crack, with all of the drama, action, grit, and a romance that burrows under your skin and just stays there. I thought I loved Calder in book one, but it was nothing compared to what I felt for him in this one.

Admittedly, the first book was a bit insta for my tastes, but dang, this one more than made up for it with the grit, angst, and the emotion. It was a fiery conclusion with twists that I never saw coming. And damn, it was not afraid to go there. It hurt. It hurt so good.

We’ll never run away. There won’t be stars or blue skies filled with heavens staring down on us. All we have is death and destruction. A life sentence, forced to survive within the absence of our love.

I loved watching Sutton grow into her own. She aged beyond her years with everything she’s been through. And as much as I wished I saw her kick some ass and take names herself, seeing her fiery spirit come through was also enough. This woman goes through hell and back and my heart hurt for her.

Imagine loving someone so much that you’d be willing to stand in the middle of hell and take on the devil just for a chance to be with them again. You’d do unimaginable things…

I binge read this story. I was already rabid for this conclusion when I finished book one. But nothing prepared me for the experience that was this book. Talk about your ending with a bang! SO GOOD!


Trilina is a former professional dancer (you may have even seen her on the MTV Music Awards) and a USA Today Bestselling author who loves cupcakes and bourbon.

When she isn’t writing steamy love stories, she can be found devouring Netflix with her husband, Anthony, and their three kiddos. Pucci’s journey into writing started impulsively. She wanted to check off a box on her bucket list, but what began as wish-fulfillment has become incredibly fulfilling. Now she can’t see her life without her characters, her readers, and this community.

She’s known for being a trope defier, writing outside of the box and creating fictional worlds her readers never want to leave.

AUTHOR LINKS

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Review: Indigo Ridge by Devney Perry

INDIGO RIDGE
Series:
The Edens #1
Genre:
Contemporary Romance
Author:
Devney Perry
Release Date:
October 26, 2021

 

Winslow Covington believes in life, liberty and the letter of the law.

As Quincy, Montana’s new chief of police, she’s determined to prove herself to the community and show them she didn’t earn her position because her grandfather is the mayor.

According to her pops, all she has to do is earn favor with the Edens.

But winning over the town’s founding family might have been easier if not for her one-night stand with their oldest son.

In her defense, it was her first night in town and she didn’t realize that the rugged and charming man who wooed her into bed was Quincy royalty.

Sleeping with Griffin Eden was a huge mistake, one she’s trying to forget. He’s insufferable, arrogant and keeps reminding everyone that she’s an outsider. Winslow does her best to avoid Griffin, but when a woman is found dead on Eden property, the two of them have no choice but to cross paths.

As clues to the murderer lead to one of Quincy’s own, Griffin realizes Winslow is more than he gave her credit for. Beautiful and intelligent, she proves hard to resist. For him. And the killer.


AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO | AUDIBLE | Narrated by: Vanessa Edwin & Jason Clarke

Griffin Eden was tantalizing. Magnetic. Rugged and bold. And naked in my bed.

Devney Perry books are my happy place. There’s just something about them that always feel like a warm blanket on a cold day. Comforting and satisfying. When I need a hit of small town romance with all of the feels and a splash of spice, she’s my go to. So I’m so excited to have this new series from her and if book one is anything to go by, we’re in for a real treat.

This series introduces the Eden family, a founding family of sorts in Quincy, Montana. I will say that I didn’t really get full enemies to lovers vibe here. Generally, I expect a bit more push and pull with that trope, but this one still hit the spot.

Winslow or Winnie comes to Quincy as the new chief of police. She’s got years of experience under her belt, but finds that when her grandfather is the mayor, nepotism assumptions run wild. Plus the town isn’t too keen on outsiders. When she meets a handsome man at a bar, she’s glad to find out he’s not a local before sharing an incendiary night in his truck. Only to later find out that he’s not exactly who she thought. This is where the enemies to lovers bit hits.

Griff is not one for entanglements of the heart himself. He’s certainly not a relationship guy and he doesn’t mess with the locals. So when he finds out that the beauty he shared one night with is the town’s new chief of police, he’s not exactly thrilled. He’s also not entirely thrilled that she is doggedly investigating what is an apparent suicide in a long stream of suicides in the small town.

I loved the mystery element of the story. I love that it’s not predictable and really kept you guessing until the final revelations. I also loved the relationship between Winn and Griff. Winnie is no push over and she doesn’t take any of Griff’s attitude. But it also doesn’t take long for their chemistry to push past all of their boundaries and man was it satisfying to see Griff’s possessive side show through.

I don’t know who you are or what you’re doing, but I’m having a conversation with Winnie,” Skyler said, standing taller.
“And I’m here to give her an orgasm before dinner. Let’s find out which one of us she’d rather have stick around.”

The romance, the mystery, the small town and their charismatic residents, all of it just hit the spot just right for me. We also get a sneak peek into the rest of the Eden siblings, and I can’t wait to learn more about them in their books.

Devney is a USA Today bestselling author who lives in Washington with her husband and two sons. Born and raised in Montana, she loves writing books set in her treasured home state. After working in the technology industry for nearly a decade, she abandoned conference calls and project schedules to enjoy a slower pace at home with her family. Writing one book, let alone many, was not something she ever expected to do. But now that she’s discovered her true passion for writing romance, she has no plans to ever stop.

Connect with Devney

Website | Goodreads | Amazon | Facebook | Facebook Group | Instagram | Twitter | Bookbub | Pinterest 

Review: Dangerous Temptation by Giana Darling

DANGEROUS TEMPTATION
Series: Dark Dream #1
Genre: Mafia Romance
Author: Giana Darling
Release Date:
October 26, 2021

He arrives all dressed in black.

 

Diamond cufflinks.

A watch on his tanned wrist that cost more than we would ever see in a lifetime of work.

He carries a single red rose for my mother.

Months later, Tiernan Morelli lays red roses on my mother’s grave.

That same day, he tells me that he is my new guardian.

I should have known from the very start that he had more in common with the thorns than the rose.

Now I know the truth: I’m a pawn in his dangerous game of revenge.

I was too young and naive.

Now it’s too late to save myself from his clutches.

 

Now I belong to him.

AMAZON

Poor little thing thought I was her salvation when all I intended to offer her was ruination.

Oh.
My.
GOD.

All of the ways that I loved this book. But I can summarize why in just two words. Ready? Tiernan Morelli. Need more words? OK, I got you.

I’m the kind of man that finds pleasure in pain. I’m the kind of man who makes a woman scream and cry because she doesn’t know how to take the intensity of the things I do to her body. I’m the kind of man that would make a woman crawl and beg for me before I deigned to put her out of her misery by setting her on my dick.”

This book was my trope crack for me. TROPE CRACK. Age gap. Mafia. Guardian/ward. Revenge. Enemies to lovers. ALL OF THE THINGS. And it was simply finger licking good.
Now I will say that any age gap has to have a strong heroine. If she’s too naive or too sheltered, there’s an ick factor in it for me. But Bianca was a heroine that I instantly connected with. She’s a young woman who was forced to grow up too quick because of her flighty mother who’s been hopping from one man to another since the loss of her father. But when her mother’s new man shows up at the door and spares no niceties, she’s not exactly thrilled. Tiernan is rude, crude, and seems to hate the sight of her. He’s also harboring a dark secret and a revenge plot years in the making.

Now at first I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about a hero that dates the mom first. But those concerns were quickly wiped. It just worked here. Don’t ask me how or why. It just did.

When Bianca’s mother passes, they have no one. She has her sick younger brother to think about and she’s months shy of 18. So when Tiernan shows up and says he’s their new guardian, it’s the devil you know. Doesn’t mean she doesn’t defy him and doesn’t fight him at every turn. But Tiernan is not exactly nurturing himself. He has inserted himself into their life with a dark agenda and his secrets can cost Bianca everything. The chemistry between them is also downright incendiary.

This. This was what I wanted. Rough-edged, teeth-bitten love. A body against mine like a weapon, inside me like an invasion. I wanted to be filled up and used because he couldn’t get enough. Couldn’t help himself. Couldn’t be a gentleman. Now, I understood that love wasn’t soft and warm. It was fire and brimstone and if I wasn’t careful, it would burn me alive.

This story was pure book crack. I devoured it in one sitting. I couldn’t bear to put it down for even a second. It was addicting AF and I couldn’t get enough. And the wait for book two? TORTUROUS.

Giana slayed me with this story and I cannot wait for the conclusion.

Review: Broken Playboy by Laura Lee

BROKEN PLAYBOY
Series: Windsor Academy #4
Genre: New Adult Romance
Author: Laura Lee
Release Date: October 22, 2021

They call me a player.

A joker.

The guy always down for a good time.

But if they knew the secrets I’ve been keeping, they’d call me something else entirely.

For the last two years, I’ve been buried in shame, numbing the pain with various vices. Drowning in self-hatred and concealing it with a smile.

I had a system in place, a surety that no one would learn the truth. Then Sydney Carrington came waltzing back into my life.

She’s the new headmaster’s daughter.
The most beautiful girl I’ve ever met.
The one person on Earth who can expose what I’ve worked so tirelessly to hide:

That I’m the fucking villain in this story.

BROKEN PLAYBOY is the fourth book in the Windsor Academy world. While it may be read as a standalone, as it focuses on a new couple, your reading experience may be enhanced if you read the entire series in order.
Wicked Liars
Ruthless Kings
Fallen Heirs

AMAZON

Enter the release giveaway for Broken Playboy!
​​https://bit.ly/BROKENPLAYBOYRELEASEGIVEAWAY

There’s madness in our kiss. Complete chaos swirled with desperation.

Who read a series backasswards again and started with book 4?
Do I have regrets? Not. A. One.

Well, actually I do have one. And that’s the fact that I haven’t read this author sooner. Clearly I’ve been sleeping on Laura Lee, but I plan on changing this immediately.

But let’s talk about this book. What do we a have? Well, there’s a broody, tortured, and I mean SERIOUSLY tortured bad boy who drowns his demons in drugs, alcohol, and sex. Me? GIDDY. Give me more.

What else we have? A spitfire heroine who is sassy and tough, but not impeccable to our hero’s raw sexuality, no matter how much of an ass he’s being. Me? Slightly annoyed but really intrigued.

But in all seriousness, I actually really liked the dynamic. Bentley is a king of his high school. He’s the bad boy every guy wants to be, and every girl wants to be with. He’s also hiding secrets that are slowly eating away at him that not even his best friends know. I really loved the growth his character goes through. There’s so many layers to this guy. So many, that I didn’t even care that he used words like “dawg”. Sydney is the new girl on campus. She’s not the cliche poor girl from the wrong side of the tracks, but she’s not exactly stupid rich like the rest of the school. When she runs into Bentley, he looks familiar and she doesn’t know why. And Bentley? Well he hates her on the spot for reasons unknown to her.

There’s definitely some delicious tension and the enemies to lovers vibes are strong here and I gobbled them right up. I liked how Sydney takes no sh*t, even if she does give in too easily when Bentley turns the charm on and lets him get away too easy for his crap. But did I care? Not even a little. I was to invested.

The story has quite a bit of depth, and I loved how the author peels back the layers there as well. She doesn’t graze over the addiction element, which I appreciated. There’s plenty of background given that I didn’t feel lost having read this without the first three books. There’s definitely some story arc cross over and I greedily grabbed the first three books to learn more.

If you’re looking for a steamy enemies to lovers romance set in high school, this one was a clear winner for me. No cap. Did I use that right? I had to ask my daughter about that phrase. God I’m old.

Review: Window Shopping by Tessa Bailey

WINDOW SHOPPING
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Tessa Bailey
Release Date:
October 19, 2021

A sizzling, standalone, feel-good holiday romance from Tessa Bailey, New York Times bestselling author of It Happened One Summer.

Two weeks before Christmas and all through Manhattan, shop windows are decorated in red and green satin.

I’m standing alone in front of the famous Vivant department store, when a charming man named

Aiden asks my opinion of the décor.

It’s a tragedy in tinsel, I say, unable to lie.
He asks for a better idea with a twinkle in his eye.
Did I know he owned the place? No. He put me on the spot.

Now I’m working for that man, trying to ignore that he’s hot.
But as a down on her luck girl with a difficult past, I know an opportunity when I see one—and I have to make it last.

I’ll put my heart and soul into dressing his holiday windows.

I’ll work without stopping. And when we lose the battle with temptation, I’ll try and remember I’m just window shopping.

AMAZON

I’m not what one would refer to as approachable. In fact, I’m fluent in Fuck Off. Hopefully he speaks it, too. Or at least knows how to read body language.

This is the story I never knew I needed but now I have no idea how I lived without it.

A reverse sunshine/grump trope with a grumpy with an ex convict heroine and a sunshine, Christmas loving and bow tie wearing hero? I. Am. PUTTEH.

I really thought I had a read on this man. He’s a wholesome rule follower who believes the best in people. A man who has a few demons lurking but is innately good at his core. Now we’re throwing a dirty streak into the mix? Good grief.

Oh did I forget to mention that he still has Tessa’s signature dirty talking side? Because holy ovaries, batman! I’m obsessed!

This was one of the cutest holiday romances I’ve read and the perfect book to cuddle up on the couch with on a cold and snowy night. But we’re still in fall, and I made due with a nice cup of tea and a blanket that I enjoyed with a giant goofy grin on my face, because THIS BOOK.

Stella nods, letting her head tip back and hit the wall. “Yes. Anything. Yes.”
Anything.
Permission granted, I reach down and yank up her skirt.

Stella recently moved to NY after serving her sentence and stumbles upon an atrocious holiday window display. Naturally, she tells the bow tie wearing handsome stranger making idle small talk with her on the street how she feels. And naturally he invites her to interview for the window design job. Oh and he may have forgotten to mention that he happens to be the namesake and owner of the store. Whoopsy.

Aiden is the quintessential nice guy I never knew I wanted. I am not generally a reader that likes nice guys. Wow, that sounds bad. What I mean is I want a nice guy in real life, and I love them toxic in fiction. But Aiden? He was just impossible not to love. He’s a sweet man with a dirty streak who is already picking out china patterns in his head the minute he and Stella get together. It takes Stella a hot minute to come to terms of her feelings for her boss, but once she does, it’s all in.

This was one of those feel good type of romances that will put a smile on your face and keep it there. It wasn’t angsty. It wasn’t full of drama. It was opposites attract in the perfectly cute holiday romance with plenty of dirty talk thrown in and all of the warm and fuzzies. The warm blanket of romances that is cozy, comforting, and heart warming.

Review: The Lost Fisherman by Jewel E Ann

THE LOST FISHERMAN
Series:
Fisherman #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jewel E Ann
Release Date:
October 14, 2021

It’s been five years since I’ve seen him.

 

An unexpected event takes me back to the place where it all began.

But I’m no longer the naive young woman he once knew.

 

 

And he’s no longer the man who took nearly everything from me.

 

Can this be our time?

 

Or is it too late?

 

Did I find myself only to lose him?

AMAZON

I love you today.

Did I feel like I may pop a blood vessel in my week long wait until book two? Yes.
Did I start this book the second it landed on my kindle? Yes.
Did I stay up until the buttcrack of dawn finishing it? Also yes.
Do I have any regrets? Absolutely not!

I thought we were strong enough to make it through. I thought it was finally our time. I thought wrong.

So how do I even begin to review this book when one of the most integral parts of the story is a huge spoiler? Well, I don’t. I’m not going to tell you much details beyond what you can gather from that blurb, and you’ll thank me for it. Trust me.

What I can tell you, is this book takes place five years after the first one. It’s one of my now favorite second chance romances. And I devoured it in one sitting.

I fell hard for Fisher and Reese in The Naked Fisherman. I loved Fisher and his unapologetic crudeness. I loved the way that Reese got to see a side of him that no one else saw. Fast forward 5 years, and I think I loved these two even more. Reese is now a young woman rather than the naive child she first met Fisher as. She’s seen the world. She’s lived. She’s experienced. She knows her mind and isn’t afraid to speak it or go for what she wants. Her personality really shone through this story. She was more self assured. She also just grew into her own in a way that she never could have as an 18 year old girl.

The romance element was one of my favorites. It still echoed a bit from the forbidden parts of book one, but in a different way. I lived for the angst. I loved the emotion. And I died for the chemistry.

So why not 5 stars even while I clearly loved it? Well, I couldn’t help but feel like there was just a little something missing for me. I wanted to know more about Fisher, and while I get the POV is constructed the way that it was for a very specific reason, I still couldn’t help but wish for more. Yes, we got to learn him through Reese, but I would have loved to be in his head just a bit more than what we ultimately got. Now the part that we did get was extremely potent, but still.

That very minor detail aside, I loved this duet. I loved the feels, the chemistry, the once in a lifetime love. It was as beautiful as it was painful and I devoured every page.

Review: Mafia Queen by CD Reiss

MAFIA QUEEN
Series: The DiLustro Arrangement #3
Genre: Dark, Mafia Romance
Author: CD Reiss
Release Date: October 12,  2021

What doesn’t kill you makes you a killer.

Santino DiLustro changed me.

You can’t spend time in bed with the devil without getting addicted to the heat.

Before him, I was a girl.

Innocent and weak.

Now, I’m a woman.

A fighter.

A killer.

I’ll burn the world down for him.

Shatter the sky.

But I will not break.

No.

I will rise up and destroy whoever dares to threaten what my king has built, because I am forever his queen.

AMAZON

Between us, he rules me with love, and my love for him rules my life.

Talk about ending a trilogy with a bang. What a twisty, action packed, high octane ride this book was. My head is still spinning.

Love rules without rules. You are outside expectations. Bigger than the law or tradition. A filthy sinner like me can never reign over a woman like you.”
“The only place I want to be reigned over is the bedroom…”
“This, I can do.”

Each book in this trilogy brought a little something different. And in this one, as the title already implies, is the full evolution of Violetta. She started out as a bit of a petulant child bride in book one. We saw her evolve a bit and come to some hard realizations in book two. But this one truly brought her in full force. We get to see this young woman grow into the queen that she is, and man was it satisfying.

Santino and his uber alpha qualities were always my favorite thing about this story. I loved his cold detachment almost as much as I loved his singleminded obsession with his wife. But what I appreciated was finally seeing his true devotion and feelings come out in this installment and seeing a different side of him. A softer side that did nothing to take away from his savage one.

There’s a lot that happens in this book, and at times it always felt a bit much with all the twists and turns. The pacing at times felt a little bit off for me as well. There’s so much happening, and some of it felt like it was happening all at once, that it was hard to wrap my mind around it. But that didn’t stop me from devouring this book. It was a bloody, violent bang of an end, and I was so here for it. What I loved the most was seeing Violetta’s savage and ruthless side come out. This is a mafia queen that doesn’t shy away from pulling the trigger when it comes to protecting those she loves. There’s twists you never see coming, and turns that leave your mind reeling. There’s also a hook for a new book with a secondary character that I’m practically salivating to get my hands on.

I’ve missed this side of CD’s writing and I lived for it with this trilogy. I’m even more thrilled to see we’ll be getting more in this world. If you’re looking for a sexy and gritty mafia romance with bite, look no further! Read this one!

Review: The Naked Fisherman by Jewel E Ann

THE NAKED FISHERMAN
Series:
Fisherman #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jewel E Ann
Release Date:
September 30, 2021

It’s official.

I’m eighteen and a young woman with endless possibilities on my way to reunite with my mom in Colorado after five years apart—she had a little weed incident in Nebraska.

At the airport, she springs the news on me … she’s leaving for a month of job training.

And me?

 

I’m left on my own in the basement she’s renting from the fisherman, aka her landlord who lives upstairs.

 

He’s ten years older than me. Never wears a shirt.

 

And makes it hard to remember all the things I learned at Christian Academy.

 

Did I mention he’s also my new boss?

AMAZON

I thought you were a gentleman,” I mumbled, making the walk of shame to the stack of drawers and hunching down instead of bending over to retrieve a towel. “Why did you think that?”

So first of all, this cover is incredibly deceiving, I swear. I love it, don’t get me wrong. But this is so much more than a cute contemporary and I fell head over heels for Fisher and Reese. It’s not often I get a heroine who by any other author I would quite honestly hate to read about, but was totally in love with in this book.

Reese is an 18 year old girl who has both experienced a lot and nothing in life. Her mother went to prison 5 years ago. Her father passed 3 years ago. And she grew up with her deeply religious grandparents knowing not much about life outside of the preaching she got at home. Suffice it to say that this girl is the epitome of naive ingenue. And yet, where this normally would have annoyed me, I loved this in her. I loved the way that Jewel packed so many layers into her character. This is a young girl that’s hungry for life and also scared to experience and ask for what she wants. She has a chance to reunite with her mother now that she’s out of prison, yet she feels so removed from her because of what her father and grandparents made her believe about her.

Fisher Mann, yes, that’s really his name, is her mom’s friend and landlord. He’s handsome, charming, cocky, and known womanizer. They shouldn’t have anything in common. Yet when her mother leaves them alone to travel to California for work related trip, these two realize the one thing they have in common is undeniable chemistry.

I loved Fisher’s unapologetic personality. He’s not afraid to push every button Reese has. But this is also a man that clearly has many layers, and with each one that slowly gets peeled back, you fall more and more for him. This book definitely spent more on the development and growth of Reese. Though there’s clearly only so much growth she can have in this book. I’m super excited to see what book two brings. What I really loved is the chemistry between these two and how they both try to fight it in their way, Reese definitely more than Fisher.

There’s a bit of a forbidden element because Fisher is older, more experienced, and her mom’s friend. He’s 28 to her 18 but in life experience he’s definitely even older.

I devoured this book. I loved the build up these two had. I loved the growth that Reese had, though I have a feeling it would be much more satisfying in book two. Now to just gather up the patience in my rabid need for conclusion.

Copyright © 2015 · Dirty Girl Romance

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