Hidden Beauty by Amelia Wilde

⚠ Warning: This review contains minor teasers

booksofthemuggleborn_hiddenbeauty
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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• BLURB •

Haley Constantine traded her life for her father’s safety. Now she’s trapped in a castle with the Beast of Bishop’s Landing.
 
Her own family wants her dead.
 
The only man who can save her is the one she can’t trust.
 
Dangerous. Tortured. Furious. Leo Morelli wears a mask of cruelty to cover up a lifetime’s worth of scars. He’s been injured, but that only makes him fight harder. The only thing he cares about more than revenge is the woman he’s come to love.
 
HIDDEN BEAUTY is the second book in the Beauty and the Beast trilogy from USA Today bestselling author Amelia Wilde.

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• MY REVIEW •


“True love doesn’t have boundaries. It isn’t rational or kind. True love is brutal.”


Eeeeep! We’re two thirds of the way, people! The second book in Amelia’s Beauty and the Beast trilogy, and boy has the suspense and the air of doom and gloom amped up a notch! 🙉

This entire story makes me giddy with happiness. I loved the first book Secret Beast, with Haley’s and Leo’s twisted hate-to-love chemistry. It had such an electric shock generating atmosphere. With this book, it made me want to bundle myself up in layers upon layers of blankets, sip hot chocolate, and read it again. There was a veil of melancholy over the entire story that had me really taking a beat to soak up everything that transpired.    

It has just the right amount of darkness in the romance, with plenty of dimension, thrill, and excitement. The characters are complex and ever-developing right alongside their blossoming relationship. I adore the initial hate-to-love/ enemies-to-lovers trope between Haley and Leo that gradually built into something a lot more than either of them expected. Seeing them navigate through their feelings — especially since they both come from two warring families and already have pre-conceived notions of each other was a highlight to see. 

In this particular part of the story, not only do they try and get a handle over their feelings but they deal with the repercussions brought on by years’ worth of battles, and for Leo personally, the demons from his past that are very much still haunting his life.   


“She touches me softly. Like I’m not a monster.”


When I first read the title for this book, I had assumed it was going to focus on Haley (considering Secret Beast seemed self explanatory that it was introducing us to Leo), but after reading it, I realized that Hidden Beauty might actually be a nod towards Leo as well, at least from my perspective. 

This had a very different feel in comparison to the first book. It’s a very revealing chunk of the story. It delves into Leo Morelli’s life and I guarantee by the end it’ll have you seeing him in a whole new light. I was already pro Leo, but seeing the amount of effort he has put in for his family throughout his entire life, and the reasoning behind his actions had my heart cracking and double thumping at the same time. Is that even possible?    

I also wasn’t expecting to see dynamics between Leo and his family, but surprisingly, it ended up being one of my favourite things to see in this book. I love that he has this hard shell of a façade but it can’t fool his siblings. Those scenes despite the reasoning behind their get-togethers, also brought upon some lighthearted, authentic moments that I truly hope we’ll get to see a lot more of in the future. 😊       

It’s a character driven storyline and told from dual points of view. The storytelling itself has great pacing. The majority of the backdrop is set in one location, but not once did it feel restrictive or lacking a change of atmosphere. The secondary characters that are included play a big part in keeping things interesting — that is, whenever Haley and Leo are not fogging up windows together… *fans self*   

There is no doubt that you will see some headway in Haley’s and Leo’s relationship. There’s no beating around the bush with these guys the second their walls are down. I was utterly there with my feels seeing their us-against-the-world stance. With a sense of dread in the air right from the get-go, it was gripping from start to finish. 

Plot twists. Betrayal. Pain. These are just three of the things you can expect from Hidden Beauty. The rest you’ll have to discover for yourself!

Before I conclude my review I am adding my favourite quote from the book. It’s not a spoiler but for those who haven’t read the book yet will probably be confused (possibly even curious) about it. This line completely caught me off guard and made me laugh…. hard. 🤭🤭 It also made me love Leo more so! #TeamMorelli   


“I want the soup. It’s my fucking favorite soup.”


I’m seriously digging these books within the world of the Midnight Dynasty because it gives you different perspectives to both the Constantines and the Morellis depending on whose story is in the foreground. Seeing the villain, an antagonist, or a morally grey character such as Leo through their own eyes is always insightful and a big reason as to why I always prefer them to heroes.

It’s a hearty book that not only discloses true identities and an understanding of the bigger picture, but displays one’s willingness to not lose. Wilde has created such soulful, perfectly imperfect characters who I effortlessly connected with and found genuinely compelling. Families play a vital role in Haley’s and Leo’s story, and they are the definitive reason in how things have played out so far and no doubt will continue to do so. Just like Secret Beast, this one leaves with a frustratingly overwhelming cliffhanger, but also leaves you looking forward to the next installment. I know I can’t wait to read the next book!  

(P.S. I also liked that Amelia added a little snippet that was a nod to another character from one of her other book series’. I haven’t read it but it certainly has me wanting to add it to my TBR!) 😉

I recommended Secret Beast to friends and fellow romance readers. Now I’m recommending everyone to continue on with Hidden Beauty! If you haven’t started this trilogy yet, you must! It’s a continuous storyline so you’ll need to start with Secret Beast. It’s the most devious, most scrummy contemporary beauty and the beast retelling I’ve read! 

Another book of Amelia’s I loved reading! It’s an exceptional addition to the expanding world of the Midnight Dynasty.

  • Contemporary
  • Dark Romance
  • Fairy Tale Inspired
  • Hate-to-Love   
  • Forbidden Romance

There’s moments here and there that reminisce scenes from Disney’s version that honestly made me smile. So if you’re a Disney fan, love your fairy tales, and also love them on the dark side, then I truly think these books will be for you!  

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you to Amelia Wilde, Candi Kane PR, and Dangerous Press for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜 

🔔 Interested in reading the Beauty and the Beast Trilogy? Grab your copy here:

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🌹 Read my review for the first book in the trilogy!

booksofthemuggleborn_secretbeast
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

📔 Secret Beast by Amelia Wilde


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Hoped you enjoyed! Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo

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