Review: Mafia Bride by CD Reiss

MAFIA BRIDE
Series: The DiLustro Arrangement #1
Genre: Dark, Mafia Romance
Author: CD Reiss
Release Date: March 16,  2021

 

An epic mafia romance trilogy that sets a new bar for just how dark a hero can get, from NY Times Bestselling author CD Reiss.

 

Some girls dream of marrying a prince, but I never imagined I’d be sold to a king.

Santino DiLustro.

The king.
The monster.
The keeper of secrets.

When he forced me to marry him, I cried for love I’d never know.

When he locked me away, I cried for the freedom I lost forever.

Every other tear I’ve shed is for my soul, because I’m falling for the devil himself.

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I’m a prisoner of a man too beautiful for human eyes and more evil than I can comprehend.

This was the book that I never even realized I was waiting for CD Reiss to write. My obsession with all things CD began with her Songs of Submission series waaaay back. And while I’ve loved all of her books since, they haven’t quite given me the tingles of SoS variety. Until this one. THIS ONE. GAH. This is how you write a mafia romance. You know those traditional mafia romances with the virgin heroine that’s essentially sold to her husband? The books that I don’t typically care for because well…virgin heroine. I am happily eating my words when it comes to this story. Because this story? SO STINKING GOOD.


He is a predator. I am his prey. I am his property, and he is my master.

This story was utterly delicious. Violetta Moretti is a 19 year college student that suddenly finds her life turned completely upside down. Having lost her family at a young age, she’s lived the last few with her aunt and uncle in America. But suddenly finds herself thrust into her Italian roots and the bride of the mafia king, Santino DiLustro, whose mere name sends fear shivering down men’s spines.

A debt that’s to be paid.

A marriage that she never wanted.

A husband that’s determined to own her and her submission.

And a deliciously twisted story full of mystery and secrets.

The story was a bit of a slow start, and I found myself skimming through a few details. But then when it took off, it really took off. I was hooked. Completely captivated. Santino is the ultimate alpha hero. He’s magnetic. Domineering. Uber protective. And has sexual chemistry basically oozing from his every pore. GOD but I loved this man.

Violette for being a young and somewhat sheltered heroine was FIERCE. I loved this woman and her spine. She was spitting fire the entire time and never backed down. You seriously gotta love a female like that.

As for the rest? It was one of the most delicious slow burns I’ve ever read. And when that cliffhanger hits you? MOTHER OF ALL SANITY! I’ll go crazy waiting until the next book.

Review: I Thee Take by Natasha Knight

I THEE TAKE
Series: To Have and To Hold Duet #2
Genre: Arranged Marriage Mafia Romance
Author: Natasha Knight
Release Date: February 23, 2021 

Scarlett

Cristiano is my enemy. He’s also the only man with whom I’ve ever felt safe. Protected.

But I have to remember that he married me with one purpose in mind. Revenge. I would be the bridge to his real enemies.

I can’t let myself forget that he isn’t the hero of this story. His hands are covered in blood. I saw that with my own eyes.

Cristiano

I thought I knew Scarlett’s past, but I didn’t know anything.

I thought I knew the worst of monsters, but I hadn’t seen anything yet.

Sometimes you have to lie to yourself to survive.

Sometimes it’s those closest to you who will bury their knives in your back.

Too many times it’s the innocents who pay for your mistakes. For your refusal to see.

I can’t let Scarlett pay for mine.

But I may be too late to stop it.

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ALSO AVAILABLE

#1 With This Ring


He pulls the blankets around us and I feel safe for the first time in too long to care that I’m lying in the arms of the man who should be my enemy.

Talk about ending on a bang! This was a heart racing, non stop thrill ride that I devoured in one engrossing sitting.

I Thee Take was the epic conclusion to what’s come to be my favorite duet from Natasha Knight! Revenge, betrayal, secrets, and a marriage of convenience? Yes, please and thank you!

I fell hard for Scarlett and Cristiano in book one. Cristiano spent the majority of the first book as the hard and untouchable surviving member of a rival mafia family. And he really showed his ass at the end of the book only to regret it severely in this one.

In this one, we finally get to see his softer, fiercely protective side towards Scarlett. When her life is in danger, he stops at nothing to save her. His single minded intent and devotion towards her really explodes here, and I couldn’t get enough of it. There’s just something about a hard and ruthless mafia boss that has a soft side for the woman he loves that just does it for me. And what I love is seeing that softer side towards Scarlett without having him lose any of his edge. Because he never did.

Scarlett was even better in this book than the first one. The woman is a survivor. SHe’s been through hell and she never stopped fighting, even when all of the odds are stacked against her.

There’s so much to unpack with this book. But while I saw the ultimate reveal coming a mile away, there’s a plot twist that came out of left field that left me reeling and hoping we get more in this world. Because holy hook batman!

If you’re looking for a steamy and thrilling mafia romance, look no further. This one had it all!

Natasha Knight is the USA Today Bestselling author of Romantic Suspense and Dark Romance Novels. She has sold over half a million books and is translated into six languages. She currently lives in The Netherlands with her husband and two daughters and when she’s not writing, she’s walking in the woods listening to a book, sitting in a corner reading or off exploring the world as often as she can get away.

 

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Review: With This Ring by Natasha Knight

Title: WITH THIS RING
Series: To Have and To Hold Duet #1
Author: Natasha Knight
Genre: Dark Mafia Romance
Release Date: February 2, 2021

When I rescued Scarlett De La Cruz from her tower it’s not like her prospects were looking so great. 

You’d think she’d show a little gratitude. Thank me for putting my ring on her finger and marking her as mafia property.

My property.

I’ll keep her safe. And the trade-off isn’t so bad. Most women would jump at the chance to sleep in my bed. 

Not Scarlett, though.

My Cartel Princess has a big mouth and an even bigger attitude. But it’s her furious caramel eyes that keep me coming back for more. That and the way her body bends to mine like it already knows it belongs to me.

Scarlett is my enemy. She’s also the one woman I can’t keep my hands off. 

But if I don’t keep my head on straight, everything I’ve worked for all these years will have been for nothing. 

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Lace falls across my face. It’s yellowed over the years and the smell that clings to it is musty. Old. But it’s my mother’s. The one she wore on her wedding day. Baby’s breath and discarded lilies litter the stone floor as the woman grumbles behind me. She’s annoyed at having to work with the old veil when a brand new, prettier one sits unused in its box. I move my foot, crush the delicate baby’s breath, impaling the fallen petal of a pale pink lily with my heel. 

Funeral flowers for a wedding. An omen. 

Not that I need one. 

The stink of them turns my stomach. This isn’t how I imagined my wedding day. 

“Finished,” the woman announces. 

I stand, the petal sticking to my heel. I don’t care. I look up to meet my reflection in the mirror. 

“He won’t like the veil,” she says. She’s a blur beside me. 

I shift my gaze, letting my eyes focus on her. She’s plump and short and has a wart on the side of her face with a thick black hair growing out of it. Don’t judge a book by its cover has nothing on this one. She is as much a bitch inside as she looks on the outside.

“I guess he’ll have to get over it.” 

“You should wear the one he sent.”

I don’t bother to answer her, although I agree. The veil was a gift from my brothers. 

Gift. 

No, not a gift. 

Just another cruelty to make me wear my mother’s veil for this sham wedding. 

She snorts, turns to gather up the dress, the keys jangling on her belt. I could take them. Overpower her. That part would be easy. It’s the men with the guns outside the door who’d be the problem. 

Noisy footsteps on the hundred stairs announce the approach of soldiers to my tower room. 

A tower. They locked me in a fucking tower. My own fucking brothers. 

From the sound of things, they’re expecting me to put up a fight. They’ll take me kicking and screaming if I do. Besides, I know better than to waste my energy on them. I’ll need it after. For the wedding night. 

A man says something, another one laughs, just before I hear a loud crash, like something smashing hard against the wall.

It’s then that it happens. Gunfire explodes just beyond my room. A bullet splinters its way through the thick wooden door and shatters the mirror, breaking my reflection into a thousand pieces, sending me backward into the stone wall.

The woman with the wart screams.

I right myself. Touching the back of my head with one hand, I somehow still manage to keep hold of the lilies. Suddenly, the door is kicked in, banging against the wall as heavily armed men in military fatigues raid my room. A cloud of smoke follows behind them, seeping into my circular tower.

They fan out, a dozen of them and I don’t recognize a single one. These aren’t my brothers’ men. 

The woman is on the floor blubbering something, sobbing. 

I just stare at the door as another set of footsteps approach, quieter now. This one isn’t in a hurry.  And I know the instant he steps into my line of vision that he’s in charge. 

He’s the one to worry about. The only one who’s masked. 

He stops just inside the room, surveys it, eyeing every soldier, every stone, every cobweb. And when deep blue eyes land on me, a weight drops in my belly, a hundred-pound cement block. 

The woman with the keys stands, tripping over her words as she walks toward him. He looks down at her like he’s irritated, and she doesn’t get far. An echo of bullets shuts her down, splattering blood like paint on my neck, my face. The shots put her back on the floor. 

Fuck.

I don’t spare her a glance. I don’t need to, to know she’s dead. 

The man’s eyes return to mine. They narrow. And when he takes a step toward me, I take one back, knocking the chair behind me to the floor, panicking then. Animated then. 

I turn to run but see a dozen sets of eyes staring back at me. The masked intruder, the biggest of them all, blocks the only exit. I can’t even jump from the window. They’re barred. Suicide was never an option, not for my brothers. They needed me.

But something’s gone wrong. 

And before I can decide what to do, before I can make up my mind to try to charge him, to risk bullets putting me down like they did the woman on the floor, he’s got my wrist in his right hand and he’s squeezing it. 

My hand opens. Flowers scatter to the floor. I watch them, then watch him lift my hand to his face. His thumb comes to my ring finger where the hideous diamond catches the waning sun. For a moment I think he’s going to break my finger. But he twists and forces it off. It’s tight but he manages. He pockets the ring then shifts his gaze to mine again. 

I swallow hard. 

He cocks his head to the side, one hand still locked around my wrist. He spins me around.

I scream as he jerks me to him, his body a solid wall at my back. 

He releases my wrist and bands his arm beneath my breasts. With the other, he pushes the veil off my neck, his hand rough against my skin, fingers digging, bruising. I think he’s going to snap my neck. One quick twist is all it would take. He’s a fucking giant. 

But he doesn’t.

Instead, the moment I turn my face up to his, he squeezes and instantly, my knees give out. My arms drop uselessly to my sides. He shifts his grip and as I slip, he lifts me up, hauling me over his shoulder, turning the room upside down before it goes black.

Are you afraid of me?” he asks more quietly but no more gently. “Yes.”
He leans in close, inhales deeply. “Good. Because you should be,” he says, his lips brushing my cheek, the corner of my mouth when he does. “Because you don’t know what I want to do to you.”

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; Natasha Knight books are my crack. She writes some of the most sizzling and addictive mafia romance and this one may be my favorite of hers to date!

Cristiano is a man set on bloody revenge and Scarlett the beautiful woman that gets caught in the crosshairs of a year old war in the making.

What I love about Knight’s duets, is the way she really sets the stage with book one. The slow burn, the tension, the secrets, the questions that are burning through your brain. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough.

Scarlett has been collateral for ruthless man for almost all of her life. Being forced to marry a man she hates by her vicious brothers is one thing. But being rescued out of the marriage only to see another guided cage is another thing.

Cristiano has been waiting to avenge the murder of his family for years and now the cards are finally falling into place for him. Even if it means a marriage to the woman whose family took center stage in the ruination of his. It doesn’t matter that she’s an innocent. He’ll use her for what he needs.

There’s just enough character development in this book to get you completely hooked on both characters while still leaving you burning with questions on their past. The tension between Cristiano and Scarlett is so thick, you can practically taste it. This is the ultimate enemies to lovers catnip. Scarlett may be young, and her past may be riddled in pain and demons that she tries to forget, but she’s a fighter through and through. She protects her youngest brother with a type of ferocity that a mafia princess should have. But she’s no princess. She’s been through hell, even if we haven’t fully learned the extent of it.

THis story had me eagerly turning the pages well into the night only to be slammed with a cliffhangers to beat all cliffhanger and desperate for my next hit. I can’t wait to get my hands on the conclusion. This had everything I love in a mafia romance; grit with just enough dose of darkness, sexual tension, plenty of action, secrets and betrayal. I need the final book IMMEDIATELY!


COMING SOON

#2 I Thee Take – Releasing February 23

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Natasha Knight is the USA Today Bestselling author of Romantic Suspense and Dark Romance Novels. She has sold over half a million books and is translated into six languages. She currently lives in The Netherlands with her husband and two daughters and when she’s not writing, she’s walking in the woods listening to a book, sitting in a corner reading or off exploring the world as often as she can get away.

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Review: Silver Lining by Skye Warren

SILVER LINING
Series:
Diamond Trilogy #3
Genre:
Contemporary Romance
Author:
Skye Warren
Release Date:
December 15, 2020

Silver Lining by Skye Warren is now live!

 

Elijah North has survived starvation and torture.

 

Now he faces his darkest challenge: the possibility of life without Holly Frank. The woman he loves hangs in the balance.

 

 

The family he found mourns in the distance.

 

And the future he built crumbles in the wind.

SILVER LINING is the final book in Elijah and Holly’s story!

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His eyes are a match, and I’m kindling. I’m ready to burn into a massive flame.

Talk about going out with a bang. I couldn’t have hoped for a better conclusion to this trilogy than Silver Lining.

You can’t fight the demons I fight when you have something to lose.

Since the major cliffhanger in Gold Mine, I’ve been waiting on the third and final book with bated breath. And it delivered on everything I had hoped and so much more. It was an intense thrill ride that I couldn’t put down for even a second. I binge read it in one sitting and was left with a goofy smile on my face.

If you loved Elijah in the previous two books, prepare to seriously fall head over ovaries for the man in this one. Because OMG! Nothing beats an uber protective alpha that will protect his woman at any cost. The only thing better is when that woman is a fierce warrior in her own right. And Holly was FIERCE. Her introduction to Elijah’s world was a baptism by fire, but nothing could have prepared her for everything that was to come. This story really brought everything to a head and then wrapped it up with a bow flawlessly.

I fell hard for Elijah and Holly all over again. There was not one chapter that dragged. And y’all, this never happens to me in a trilogy. Usually either book 2 or book 3 has some slower paced parts. Not this book, though. It was a thrill ride from cover to cover. And the fact that you get a two for one with the conclusion of Adam’s story? Icing on the top!

I live for Skye Warren’s books and this one is the perfect example of why. The woman is a master of combining sexy suspense with just the right amount of grit to make for one unputdownable read.

Skye Warren is the New York Times bestselling author of dangerous romance such as the Endgame trilogy. Her books have been featured in Jezebel, Buzzfeed, USA Today Happily Ever After, Glamour, and Elle Magazine. She makes her home in Texas with her loving family, sweet dogs, and evil cat.

 

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Review: Not What I Expected by Jewel E Ann

NOT WHAT I EXPECTED
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jewel E. Ann
Release Date: December 6, 2020

Are humans meant to mate for life?

After four kids and an unfortunate but fateful end to her twenty-two-year marriage, Elsie Smith meets the new guy in town.

Kael Hendricks is … a little younger, a lot sexy, and too confident for his own good. He also doesn’t believe in marriage and all that goes with it.

And …

He’s just opened a new business that threatens the livelihood of Elsie’s family’s store—just in time for the holidays.

The problem?

There’s an undeniable attraction that leads to out of control situations, a loss of inhibitions, and a lot of small town gossip.

As Elsie tries to redefine herself and convince her family she isn’t having a midlife crisis, she’s forced to answer the biggest question of all …

Can she love an enemy who will never surrender?

 AMAZON 

He made me feel like a horny teenager. He made me feel drugged without a reason to ever be sober again. He just made me feel

Wow. I’m going to get super corny for a second and just say, this book was not what I expected. Ha! See what I did there? Oh whatever! My humor has a COVID delay. Leave me alone. GOD!

It’s charmingly unique, realistically poignant, and triggering in a way any married person would relate to. As a matter of fact, I recognized myself in so many of the hilarious and sometimes hard to swallow situations depicted here. If you’re a female, this book would speak to you in a way that will make you feel both understood and uncomfortable. I loved that Jewel actually pulled from readers actual experiences and you really recognize that here. This was unlike anything I’ve read in a long while. It was so different but yet so relatable. A charming, emotional, and unforgettable story of falling out of love and finding yourself again. It’s about personal growth and inner strength. It’s all of the things and so much more. It’s definitely not your typical older woman younger man sort of romance. Add a little bit of spice to that, and that’s what you get here.

Elsie Smith is a heroine that’s impossible not to relate to or love. Her quirks and insecurities are something any woman has experienced at least once in her life. After her marriage of 22 years comes to an end, she’s left discovering herself. She’s been a mother and a wife, but somewhere along the way she lost herself and her needs and desires took a backseat to her life. She’s a wonderful mother and a loyal friend. But as a woman, she’s discovering she’s grown in what she wants.

Kael is younger and a free spirit. He’s been the complete antithesis to what Elsie’s life has been. He doesn’t believe in marriage. He doesn’t settle in any one place for too long. And he doesn’t deny himself. When he sets his eyes on Elsie, she fights their connection with everything that she’s got…until she can’t deny it anymore.

He willingly became my addiction—the needle, the narcotic.
He fed it. He jumped off every cliff with me. He was my highest high … and my lowest low.

This was not your typical romance. It was more. It was a little raw and a lot real, and oh so good. It’s a bit out of the box and I loved it for that reason. Jewel painted a romance as messy and real as life is, and my god, it just spoke to me.

I loved the banter between these two and their push and pull. I loved Elsie’s inner strength and seeing her grow into her own and allow Kael to help her discover herself. She’s independent and fierce and so relatable. Kael is charming and sweet. Everyone in town loves him. He’s a free spirit and cares deeply, and it’s impossible not to fall for him. I loved watching him bring Elsie out of her shell.

If you’re looking for something unique and different, look no further. This book will speak to you in a way not many others could.

Jewel is a Wall Street Journal & USA Today best selling author a with a quirky sense of humor. When she’s not saving the planet one tree at a time, you can find her role modeling questionable behavior to her three boys, binge-watching Netflix with her husband, and writing mind-bending romance.

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Review: Pretty When She Cries by A. Zavarelli

PRETTY WHEN SHE CRIES
Series: Black Mountain Academy
Genre: New Adult Romance
Author: A Zavarelli
Release Date: October 23, 2020

Your first kiss is supposed to be sweet. Ours was baptized in fire.

I was the new girl trying to find her place.

Landon was the brooding neighbor I tutored over the summer.

I didn’t know he was a legend at Black Mountain Academy.

I didn’t know they worshipped him like a religion.

But I fell for him before I knew those things.

To me, he was just the tortured soul who drew me in like a magnet.

And then he did something so unspeakable, so unforgivable, it shattered me.

I ran away then because I was weak, but I’ve shed my tears.

He stole my heart and my dignity, and I’m here to take it back.

The only problem is… he’s not giving it up without a fight.

 AMAZON

I guess it’s true what they say about forbidden fruit. Kailani is the sweetest poison.

Do you have authors that you don’t even bother to read the blurb from? A Zavarelli is one of mine. No matter what the woman writes, I know I’ll be gagging for it. Because she never fails to create some of the most captivating and memorable characters. And this installment in the Black Mountain Academy series was finger licking good. No joke. I honestly wanted to lick my fingers when I turned the last page. It was that delicious.

An angsty and gritty romance set in high school where the only thing the students have more than money is spite and crazy. GAH. Yasss girl. This was right up my alley. After an incident that turned her world upside down, Kailani ran back to Hawaii. She never quite fit it with the rich and entitled students of Black Mountain Academy. She’s a talented dancer whose mother married into money but for love. Now she’s back to exact revenge on all who took part in the events of that night, including the boy she never got over.

Landon is the infamous bad boy with a reputation that proceeds him. A child actor turned teenage heartthrob, all Landon has ever known is people’s dark sides. Everyone wants something from him, including his own family. He has deep rooted trust issues and a chip on his shoulder that’s a mile long. He’s also deliciously enigmatic, mysterious, and oh so sexy. He once fell hard for his beautiful and shy neighbor, but even she turned out to be not who he thought she was. And now that she’s back, he has a revenge of his own to exact.

This story was a delicious entanglement of drama and angst and I devoured every page of it. Suspend your disbelief here and prepare yourself for Cruel Intentions on crack. These teenagers are CRAZY. Revenge, secrets, and lies run rampant through the halls of Black Mountain. And while Landon and Kailani have their agenda, someone else has theirs, and that amounts for some insane twists and turns. Yes, some of them were high on the realm of believability, but I couldn’t seem to care less. I lived for the drama here. When drama is done right, it can be absolutely delicious, and it was here.

I loved the tension and chemistry between Kailani and Landon. I loved their push and pull and I especially loved the way Kailani gave as hard as she got. The girl spared no punches when it came to her enemies. She certainly wasn’t the naive girl she was before she came back. This girl had claws and she wasn’t afraid to use them.

If you’re looking for an angsty and gritty high school romance with plenty of steam and no shortage of drama, look no further. This will tick every box and leave you wanting more.

A Zavarelli is a USA Today and Amazon bestselling author of dark and contemporary romance.

When she’s not putting her characters through hell, she can usually be found watching bizarre and twisted documentaries in the name of research.

She currently lives in the Northwest with her lumberjack and an entire brood of fur babies. 

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Review: Rifts & Refrains by Devney Perry

RIFTS & REFRAINS Genre: Contemporary Romance Series: Hush Note #2 Author: Devney Perry Release Date: September 29, 2020

From the moment Quinn Montgomery sat behind her first snare and cymbal set, she was destined for fame and glory. As Hush Note’s infamous female drummer, she sets the rhythm for the band’s chart-toppings hits. When people tap their feet to their music, it’s to her pulse. Quinn is content to live in a world away from her family and the cage of her youth. Her only regret is leaving Graham Hayes behind without a goodbye. No matter how many sold-out stadiums she plays, no matter how many crowds sing her songs, his voice haunts her when the music stops. When a family tragedy forces her to return home to Montana, she plans to leave the second she’s paid her respects. But seeing Graham again turns her life upside down. As a boy, he wasn’t able to make her stay. As a man, he might be her future. If they can mend their rifts and find solace in the refrains.

 AMAZON 

You were supposed to let go when your first love ended. You were supposed to look at the past and smile at the memory. You weren’t supposed to hold it so close that it wound into your very existence, making every moment impossible to forget.
I’m a sucker for a second chance romance, and no one delivers on those feels quite like Devney Perry. A refreshingly different take on the rockstar second chance, Quinn and Graham’s story stole my heart. Unlike the typical rockstar books, we get a female rockstar that walked away from her love this time around. But Quinn didn’t walk away. Her path was riddled with plenty of pain. Growing up a preacher’s daughter was never easy for Quinn. Not when her dreams were bigger than the small town she lived in and not when her parent’s stifling expectations boxed her in. She ran to pursue her dreams but it cost her her family and the boy she loved. Now a famous rockstar, she’s forced back home for the funeral of her beloved Nan and the only family that kept in touch with her while she was away. Her only connection and person who always believed in her now gone, she’s forced to deal with the resentment and anger left behind. Facing her family may be hard, but facing her childhood sweetheart and his anger is almost impossible. Graham never forgave Quinn for leaving and he never moved past not being enough for her to stay. But the longer they’re forced together by the wishes of her nan in her will, the more they’re forced to realize things. Graham begins to see beyond his own anger. The connection between them is just as potent, even after all of these years. Neither Quinn nor Graham ever got over the other. But there’s plenty that was left unsaid. This book was a one two punch straight to the feels. I spent the entire time reading going from tearing up, to goofy smile, to tearing up again. There was so much depth and emotion that’s packed into this story, I never wanted it to end. I loved the small town setting but I loved Quinn and Graham even more. Quinn and Nix’s connection was so incredible too. I love these two friends. The way Nix is so messed up but is always there for her just melted my heart. I can’t wait for his book next. As for this one, if you love an emotional and steamy second chance romance, you need this book in your life!
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.

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Review: Out Of Love by Jewel E. Ann

OUT OF LOVE
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jewel E. Ann
Release Date: September 27, 2020

Conspiracies. Corruption. Serial killers.

You name it–I’m fascinated by it. My mom always blamed my overly curious and highly suspicious mind on my dad.

My incredibly overbearing dad.

Mr. No One Is Good Enough For My Daughter has been terrifying my dates since I turned fifteen.

College is my chance to be free from his control and date any guy I want.

I’m absolutely certain he would hate Slade Wylder–almost as certain as I am that I do too.

Since when have I shied away from trouble?

Slade fascinates me. He lives in a house I’m certain is haunted. His dog is trained as well as any guard I’ve ever seen. Rumor on campus is that he deals drugs. It would explain a lot.

But it doesn’t explain why he saves me from my darkest moment.

It doesn’t explain why I can’t stop thinking about him.

And the explanation I finally discover is far more dangerous than any rumor.

 AMAZON 

After their kissy-huggy greeting ended, they walked toward the house with Jericho in tow. I waited for him to glance back at me. He saw me. There was no way he passed me a few seconds earlier on the street and didn’t see me. Yet, he made no attempt to acknowledge me.Until …

My boy Jerry stopped abruptly and turned like he caught whiff of my scent. All the warm fuzzies filled my chest. A dog gave me more feels than any man had given me in a long time. Maybe ever.

Jericho liked me. Hell, maybe he loved me.

He protected me.

He smiled when he saw me—tongue out, tail in a low wag. I continued my way up the sidewalk, feigning surprise when he trotted toward me in spite of Slade barking his own command.

“Hey, Jerry.” I squatted down to give him double the love Miss Sophisticated gave him … and I had a treat in my pocket because part of me anticipated—hoped for—a chance encounter. “Oh, buddy … I love you too.” I closed my eyes and turned my face side to side while he showered me with kisses.

Slade cleared his throat.

I opened my eyes—noticing his friend must have gone inside. “Sorry.” I stood, sliding a treat into Jericho’s mouth along the way. “I know it’s hard for you to know he likes me more.” On a shrug, I bit my lips together to keep my shit-eating grin under control.

“Inside,” he said to Jericho while looking at me.

Jericho turned and headed to the back door.

“If you have a job to do … Jerry can hang with me tonight. I’m alone this evening.”

“Jericho. And he doesn’t need a babysitter.”

“Maybe I do.”

His brow tensed a fraction, contemplation settling into a slight frown for a few seconds, before he whistled and Jericho came running. “Send him home when your friends get back.”

Why was the only word that sat on the tip of my idle tongue? Why protect me?

“What are you going to do?” Okay, apparently “why” wasn’t the only word on the tip of my tongue after all. Six other words were in line first.

“Does it matter?”

Letting my gaze settle over his shoulder to the firehouse and images of Miss Sophisticated waiting for him, I lifted a single shoulder. “No. Just curious. Is she your girlfriend?”

“Does it matter?”

“I hate you.” I rolled my eyes. “Worst communication skills ever.”

“Good. Hate me. I prefer it.”

I recoiled. I didn’t really hate anyone. It wasn’t my personality to be hateful, vengeful, or hold grudges. Why did Slade Wylder want me to hate him? It was a joke. I hated his lack of sharing information.

“If you’re selling her some shit that will ruin her life, may I suggest you rethink that? Not cool, Wylder.”

“Noted.”

Tipping my chin up, I gave him several tiny nods. “Okay then. I’ll take Jerry to my house and spoil him. Maybe he comes back to you … maybe he doesn’t.”

Slade let his gaze slide down my body, a slow and easy trip. He didn’t do that when we met. Somewhere along the way, he decided it was okay. I wasn’t sure what reaction he desired from me.

Maybe nothing.

Maybe he did it out of pure selfish desire.

“I’m only allowing this because I love Jerry.”

Curious eyes met mine, slightly squinted.

I smirked. “Stripping me with those eyes of yours.”

Moments …

I collected moments in my mind, my heart, my soul, like Aubrey collected rare coins—my mom dying, my dad spending a few years thoroughly drunk. Mostly bad moments—permanent scars.

That moment I tucked into my memory forever as one of the first truly great moments.

Wylder …

The corners of his mouth quirked into pure sin. If Satan was hot as fuck, his name would have been Slade Wylder, and I would have been in a whole helluva lot of trouble.

Either you die, or you’re born again. But you’re never the same.”

Actual footage of me while reading this book:
Holy mother of all plot twists, what did I just read?!

So first of all, confession time. I’m a little nervous here because I know I’m going to get side eyes from all of you judgy jundgersons, but it is what it is. It’s been years since I’ve read a Jewel. E. Ann book. *hides* I’ll give you a minute to contain your shock. I know. I know. I don’t even know why myself. But just know that I’m already kicking my own ass for this sin. Because that’s what it was if this is the kind of books I’ve been missing out on.

Now I did go back and rectify it by reading the Jack and Jill series. Which is the world this book is set in. But that’s the only thing I’ll tell you about the connection. You’ll have to read the rest for yourself. Trust me on this.

Livy is one of the most vivacious, sexually positive heroines I’ve had the pleasure to read recently. This is a woman that’s not afraid to want what she wants and to go after it. And the second the grumpy and mysterious Slade and his dog appear in her orbit, nothing will ever be the same. Sade hates her at first sigh. He doesn’t exactly hide his hatred either. He barely spars her a glance and calls the cops on her on one occasion. This was enemies to lovers on a whole other level, people.

Slade Wylder reminded me of the Grim Reaper—minus the scythe—cloaked in black, right down to his car and its windows. Eyes so dark they appeared hollow from a distance.

But Liv is nothing if not determined, and she’s determined to wear the man down. What begins to unravel is one jaw dropping page after another. There’s plenty of secrets buried and when they begin to surface, you won’t have time to pick your jaw off of the floor before another one comes at you.

Live was this beautiful free spirit that loved and loved hard. Her over protective father did nothing to deter her from her boy chasing ways. But Slade is definitely not a boy and he’s certainly not at all what he seems.

I don’t even know what else to tell you about this book aside from the fact that I couldn’t put it down. The angst, the secrets, the suspense. All of it masterfully crafted and interwoven between one unforgettable romance that should have never happened but did. I’m desperately hoping that we’ll be getting more books set in this world because there’s one thing that is left hanging that I need a resolution for. Not even need. DESPERATE for.

Jewel is a Wall Street Journal & USA Today best selling author a with a quirky sense of humor. When she’s not saving the planet one tree at a time, you can find her role modeling questionable behavior to her three boys, binge-watching Netflix with her husband, and writing mind-bending romance.

Connect with Jewel 

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Review: Gold Mine by Skye Warren

GOLD MINE
Genre: Dark Romance
Series: The Diamond Trilogy #2
Author: Skye Warren
Release Date: September 15, 2020

Holly Frank is in trouble. The deadly kind.

She and her sister must evade the authorities and the criminals who want them dead. Including Elijah North. The man who took her heart in Paris, her body in a prison cell, and her trust without remorse.

He’s determined to keep her safe. Even if that means losing her forever.

Adam Bisset has his own dark agenda.

She’s caught between the two men, torn apart with every sensual push and pull. Each touch is a lie, each whispered tenderness a trap—but she can’t resist them.

Their lies are tearing her apart. Her enemies are catching up with her. And when she’s taken captive again, she finds out secrets to unravel it all.

AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO

You can pretend you’re disgusted with me when I make you come so hard you see God.

How many times have you been able to say that book two in a trilogy was even better than book one? Because I can count how many times I’ve felt this on one finger. Yes, I said it. Because it never happens for me. Usually book one hooks me, and then book two is slow paced filler. Not this time. Gold Mine was EPIC. It was a deliciously erotic, heart-pounding thrill ride of one jaw dropping plot twist after another. And this girl gobbled it right up!

…I take what I want. It doesn’t have to be more complicated than that, Holly.”
“Have you heard of dating?”
He gives me a small, private smile. “This is better. I don’t want to ask you out. I don’t want to give you the illusion that you can say no, Holly. You’re mine.”

I thought I loved Elijah in Diamond in the Rough, but I was simply not prepared for the full dose of everything that is him in this one. Oh. My. GAWD. This man. He’s so incredibly complex but with a vein of darkness that pulses through him. And this time we finally get a peek beneath that mysterious curtain. The layers are peeled back and it made me fall even harder for him.

There’s also a delicious underlay of taboo here with a splash of dub con that I was drooling over. Elijah is a man that likes it hard and dirty and did I say OMG? Because OMG.

Holly is just as fierce as she was in the first book. She’s fiercely protective of her sister and she’s slowly coming to the realization that there’s something between her and Elijah when he finally catches her again. That something is a little dark, a little depraved, and a lot delicious. It’s unconventional and they’re both definitely struggling trying to understand it. Elijah’s cravings may run on the dark and depraved side, but Holly craves everything that he has to give.

There’s a lot more that gets revealed about the North brothers, so of course I’m already salivating for Josh’s book. But then the jaw dropping revelations for Adam happen and I’m absolutely desperate for his book too.

This installment was a non-stop trill ride that I couldn’t set down for even a minute. I devoured this book in one sitting and now I’m going through withdrawals until my next fix.

Skye Warren is the New York Times bestselling author of dangerous romance such as the Endgame trilogy. Her books have been featured in Jezebel, Buzzfeed, USA Today Happily Ever After, Glamour, and Elle Magazine. She makes her home in Texas with her loving family, sweet dogs, and evil cat.

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Review: Unholy Intent by Natasha Knight

UNHOLY INTENT
Seroes:
Unholy Union Duet #2
Genre: Dark Romance
Author: Natasha Knight
Release Date: September 15, 2020

Cristina

In this house of lies and liars, behind every locked door is a monster in wait.

Forced to marry a man I hate, I am now bound to Damian. There’s something between us that needs to be played out. I don’t know what it is. I don’t know that he does. But he and I are locked together for some strange, grim purpose.

Will we survive it?
He may since he’s the one pulling the strings.
But will I?

Damian

My brother will tell you that I usurped his throne and maybe I did, but that’s too bad.

I built our family up from the ashes. I put us back at the top of the food chain. And marrying Cristina was as much to cement my place as it was to keep her safe.

She doesn’t believe that last part yet, but I see how she clings to me in the darkness. And the lock on her door is as much to keep the monsters out as it is to keep her in.

I told her one lie, though. I made her a promise I’m not sure I ever meant to keep. I told her I’d let her go once I had what I wanted.

But in a world of monsters, I need her like man needs air. And I have no intention of letting her go.

 AMAZON

Even as I hate myself for it, I cling to him, my enemy. This monster who doesn’t hide in the dark. The one in whose bed I’ll sleep. My monster.

Raise your hand if you stayed up way past your bed time binging on this book and could barely function at work the next morning and no amount of coffee helped but yet you still couldn’t find two f’s to rub together because this book was totally worth it….
No but seriously though. I think this may have been my favorite from Natasha Knight to date. We already know that her antiheroes are my favorite sort of book crack. But Cristina and Damian’s story was simply on a whole other level.

First of all, I love when an author makes an antihero’s fall believable. And Damian was certainly no knight in shining armor in the first book. Heck he wasn’t even a knight in tarnished armor. He was a straight up villain with a devilish smile and unholy intentions. See what I did there? HA! But I digress. What I’m trying to say, is that Cristina and Damian are very much a slow burn. And where the first book develops the chemistry between them, this book sets that chemistry on fire that’s so hot, it practically singes your fingers with every turn of the page.

What I loved the most is how believable it was. Their relationship is turbulent at best and toxic at worst, but it’s also entirely addictive. Cristina is a fierce heroine. She’s not naive and sheltered as you may thing an eighteen year old would be. Though she may not have been fully privy to her reality and what her father was, she doesn’t take her situation as a victim. She fights tooth and nail and I loved that about her. This is a female that gives as good as she gets.

Damian was just…GAH. I loved him. He’s deliciously wicked. He may be a bad guy, but beneath the sexual depravity there is a hidden heart, and I loved seeing that get revealed more and more in this book.

This was a jaw dropping and unputdownable conclusion to one of the most addictive duets I’ve read. If you like dark romance with a fierce heroine and sinful antihero, you need this on your TBR. Trust me.

USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance, Natasha Knight specializes in dark, tortured heroes. Happily-Ever-Afters are almost always guaranteed, but she likes to put her characters through hell to get them there. She’s evil like that.

 

Connect with Natasha:

Website: http://natasha-knight.com

Bookbub: http://bit.ly/29Cb7vD

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2kg2fRX

Facebook: http://bit.ly/29q3s4b

Facebook Group: http://bit.ly/2xvnZO5

Newsletter: http://natasha-knight.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/natashaknight13

 

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