I’ve never played by the rules. Women don’t run gangs, yet I’m the leader of the biggest one in Liverpool. No one knows I’ve stepped into my father’s shoes and that I’m making changes. Taking on the Royal Bastards MC is not a good idea, but I want the wealth and power they have. I want my family’s legacy to live on long after I’m gone. Doing that means making difficult decisions. I didn’t expect the Royal Bastards to retaliate so savagely.
Now, I’m prisoner of their President, a man who goes by the name of Mouth. He’s dangerous, vicious and he wants to make my father pay for crimes I’ve committed. Can I survive his wrath?
This prissy woman is a thorn in my side, but she’s the only way to exact my revenge. Crossing the Bastards is an instant death sentence, and when I’m done with Genevieve, her father is going to beg for mercy I won’t deliver. I’m not someone to cross without retribution and mine will be swift. I will destroy The Dockland Gang and every person associated with them, including Desmond’s pretty little daughter. She’s a doll I want play with and I will break her down piece by piece, because now that she’s in my control I’m never letting her go.
*Warning : Contains adult content, reading age 18 +. Graphic violence and dark emotional scenes that may trigger some readers.
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 naïve. Now it’s too late to save myself from his clutches.
I belong to him.
• MY REVIEW •
When it comes to Bianca’s and Tiernan’s story, I am officially no longer on the fence! The prologue novella Bad Dream left me emotionally up in the air but after having read Dangerous Temptation, I can without a doubt say, “Okay, Giana, you’ve won me over!” 😄
This book had sex, suspense, intrigue, and corruption all weaved together. The further the story progresses, the more twisted it seems. As they toe the line between right and wrong, good and bad, it not only questions the protagonists’ morals but will have you questioning your own because as much as what is developing between them is all kinds of wrong, it’s also intensely gripping to see play out! 🔥😈
Dangerous Temptation was an intricately well-written storyline. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time constantly wondering where it was heading and how Bianca’s and Tiernan’s relationship would evolve from what was demonstrated in the prologue.
I was apprehensive at first with the distinct age gap— Bianca being seventeen (aka considered a minor), and a thirty year old Tiernan (who not only is Bianca’s love interest but is also the guardian of both her and her younger brother), but as we steadily get to know more about these protagonists, the lives they’ve lived, and once a particular dynamic settled between them, the issue with their ages gradually faded into the background. Yes, there are times that their ages/ mentality peeks out again and blares the obvious differences, but as this story had a handful of ongoing developments, with secondary storylines, diverse range of characters, and unique relationships you no longer focus on the matter of age gaps as much. Especially since Bianca’s and Tiernan’s relationship is far more complex than meets the eye.
If you love alpha-holes, add Tiernan to your “one to watch” list! *waggles eyebrows* Bianca can be passionate about certain things. Her youthful personality often exhibits a mixture of bratty teenager, rebelliousness, and naivety. But both protagonists will surprise you when you least expect it.
There are quite a few romance tropes at play in this story— billionaire romance, enemies-to-lovers, taboo romance… and a touch of erotica. But they all worked well together in creating quite a sexual build-up between Bianca and Tiernan.
This story provided lots of splendid little surprises throughout that honestly left me smiling, giggling, and/or talking to myself (or rather the book) asking, “Why, oh why!?”
You can easily guess the direction the story is heading, but concentrating on the moments (the here and now, if you will) I love the unpredictability of it all, and since Giana is a relatively new-to-me author, I think Dangerous Temptation is a nice introduction to her writing. The storytelling is vivid and well-paced, and transports you to these characters’ surroundings. I was invested in not only Bianca’s and Tiernan’s tumultuous relationship but those in Tiernan’s inner circle— his eclectic band of brothers won my heart over instantly! I’ve mentioned wanting to know more about Ezra after his introduction in Bad Dream, and I was ecstatic to find that my wish has been granted… and I think I may just love him even more now! ❤😍
I love the diversity of the secondary characters whether they are friend or foe, they elevated the atmosphere and overall world-building of the story. Besides the intense romantic relationship, the dynamic amongst the characters in Tiernan’s circle was my favourite feature in this story. I found it unexpectedly heartwarming and added lightheartedness in between the heated moments. There’s a genuine likability and relatability with these secondary characters, and I love the fact that they played such essential and momentous roles.
The underlying reasons behind the chain of events that occur in this storyline are based on old rivalries, vengeance, and pure hatred, but it also strongly centres around familial bonds and unusual upbringings.
The more I progressed through this book the more it grew on me and the characters lingered in my mind. In a short amount of time, you see quite a transformation in both Bianca’s and Tiernan’s characters that ultimately alters the initial plans. It ended on a nail-biting conclusion that will have you needing the next book immediately. With the introduction of Bianca Belcante and Tiernan Morelli, Dangerous Temptation is a fascinating expansion to the Morellis and Constantines, and an engaging addition to the overall world of the Midnight Dynasty.
Thank you Giana Darling and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💛
Maddox – Mad Dog – White hates everything the name Vitiello stands for, after he witnessed his father and his men getting butchered by the Capo of the Italian mob in their territory.
Raised by his uncle, the president of the Tartarus MC, Maddox is destined to follow in his footsteps. Now their chapter is on the rise again, but for their ultimate triumph they need to destroy the Vitiello empire. And what better way to do it than to steal the spoilt Vitiello princess and break her piece by piece until her father begs for mercy.
Known as the spoilt princess of New York, Marcella Vitiello grew up in a golden cage. If your father is the most feared man in New York, people gift you with reverence.
Destined to marry the boyfriend approved by her father, Marcella is sick of being treated like an untouchable porcelain doll.
She resents the life forced upon her by her family until everything she took for granted is ripped from her. Where she’s now, her name doesn’t bring awe, only pain and humiliation.
If you’ve grown up in a high castle, the fall is all the deeper.
Sins of the fathers have a way of catching up…who’s going to bleed for them?
** This book is part one of Maddox’s and Marcella’s story.
• MY REVIEW •
Five chapters in…
Me: “Growl? Where’s Growl? Someone get me Growl!”
(He would’ve ended it all, right there and then!)
😜 I’m just joshing. But I’ve never been one to mince words or sugarcoat my thoughts in my reviews no matter how much I adore an author or the fictional world they’ve brought to readers, and I’m not about to start now. Please remember this is my honest opinion and experience from reading this book. If you find mine are different from yours, please be respectful and don’t take offence. Not everyone’s opinions are going to be the same. ✌❤
I’m in the minority here by saying Marcella Vitiello was one heroine a was never eager to read about. From her brief appearances in past books when she was a child, utterly spoiled and bratty constantly had me eye-rolling. So when it was announced that the first book in Cora’s next gen series would begin with Marcella’s story, well, you can just imagine my thrill.
But when it was known that it would be a mafia meets MC (Motorcycle Club) story, it did have me perking up with interest. Mafia romance and MC romance are like my bread and butter as far as romance genres go. Add in the anti-hero biker, who’s also an enemy to the mob? Finally, FINALLY I was intrigued as fuck! 😅
So now that I’ve finished reading part one, what did I think of it??
With its well-paced storytelling, and multiple points of view, it was gradually winning me over… until it all came to a staggering halt. 🙈 Whilst there were plenty of things I did enjoy about this book, I’m not going to lie, there were also plenty of things that rubbed me the wrong way too.
It can be considered new adult, but make no mistake it’s dark themed romance. Before I get to the nitty gritty of my review, I must mention that this story does contain sensitive subject matter that may be triggering for some readers, such as graphic/ gruesome violence, kidnapping, attempted rape, and animal cruelty. Definitely for mature readers 18+ only. Please keep in mind before you start it.
Before this book, there was very little detail about Maddox, his family, and the Tartarus MC other than what we’ve seen mentioned by Luca Vitiello. There’s a gripping little backstory included that, in my opinion set the atmosphere for the rest of the book and a full understanding of Maddox’s mindset.
It’s character driven and a lot of the situations that transpired were emotion-based. There’s no doubt that there’s a strong attraction between Maddox and Marcella but as the story progressed I felt there wasn’t enough genuine development between them. They’re both put in difficult positions and it constantly tested their relationship. Some big events go down and the actions of these protagonists was ultimately what resulted in my overall conflicted feelings of this book.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading the first half. I was completely absorbed and lusting after the little moments between the two. But looking at the bigger picture, their relationship’s choppy. They go through the motions but I didn’t see any real substance out of it. And if I had to make comparisons with other couples from this world, their relationship is lacklustre. The romance was alright but it was hard to believe the depth of their love with the timeframe they had together. It wasn’t insta-love but it wasn’t exactly a gradual romantic development either.
I wish I could say after reading this story that Marcella eventually grew on me. There was a moment or two I sympathized for her, but it was tough to like her as I didn’t agree with a lot of her actions. She’s a difficult character to get to know or connect with because she’s constantly projecting an image and created a standard for herself that I didn’t even think was wholly necessary. Aria and Luca have always been one of my favourite couples but I question how they ended up with a daughter like Marcella? 🤔😌
Maddox is one of the main highlights of this book. I love the complexity of his story and his character, and I was easily invested in seeing how his story would progress. I often wondered what some of the negative effects the Mafia may have had on people outside of their world and Maddox is a perfect example of the blowback. Sigh. I’m just going to say it— he deserves better.
There’s quite a few secondary characters included that helped elevate the world-building. The different dynamics added dimension and was interesting to see the contrast between Maddox’s and Marcella’s respective worlds. The initial premise was mafia meets MC, and whilst there was strong mafia presence, I had hoped to see more elements from the MC side. There’s not a lot of light-heartedness as it’s a pretty gritty storyline, but appearances from certain characters provided calming moments to break up some of the tension and seriousness of the situation.
All in all, it’s not what I had expected or how I envisioned the story would play out but nevertheless I was still gripped from start to finish. Although this is only part one, and Maddox’s and Marcella’s story is unfinished, this book doesn’t completely end on a cliffhanger (if that makes sense). Let’s just say if the story happened to have ended here, I would’ve been content with the open-ended conclusion.
Buuuuut in saying that… since I have mixed feelings about this first part of the story, I am curious to see how it will all conclude in the second part. I’m hoping to see build-up, some in-depth development, and more maturity out of the characters.
Cora’s writing as always is easy to follow. The intrigue around her characters and their story is instantaneous that it’s hard to put down and By Sin I Rise was no different. It was refreshing to see some new faces introduced and expand from what is already an existing and vivid world-building.
It may not have ended up being one of my favourites from Cora’s mafia books, but I still think it has positive aspects and a lot of potential. It’s an intriguing introduction to the Sins of the Fathers, and it’s cool (and some getting used to) seeing the original characters I fell hard for in the Born In Blood Mafia Chronicles somewhat pass the torch to their children. I am officially ancient. 💀
Fans of Cora’s and of her mafia world will want to read this one. Romance readers who are still relatively new to this world, I recommend you read Born in Blood Mafia Chronicles first before starting this one. I don’t have any triggers but I must admit there were certain scenes from this book that I wasn’t prepared for and totally bawled my eyes over.
You can expect some plot twists, suspense, and if like me, a good hearty cry. If you like dark mafia romances with a forced proximity, captor/captive romance trope, give this one a try.
Thank you Cora Reilly and Emily Alice for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💛
Mason Hill wants one thing: revenge. When Charlotte Van Kempt walks into his office, all innocence and desperation, he knows the perfect way to get it. He makes a dark bargain. She’ll give him her body to save her family. Little does she know he plans to ruin both.
• MY REVIEW •
After having recently read the prologue, I could not get started on Net Worth fast enough… and it soooo did not disappoint in regards to storyline, character chemistry, and overall flow.
This book gave me twisted Cinderella meets Party of Five meets Fifty Shades vibes. Unusual mix, I know. But once you read it, you’ll hopefully know what I mean. 😅
When Mason’s family was first introduced in the prologue, I didn’t have a strong connection to any of them, but Net Worth gave me a better understanding to their situation and seeing their family dynamic, my impression of them have now somewhat altered. Mason’s siblings all have distinct personalities and all seem to have their own coping mechanisms for dealing with the tragedy that’s surrounded their family— so I’m eager to see how each of their character develops as this story continues.
The introduction of Charlotte in The Proposition, she was instantly the type of heroine I could back due to her sweet disposition, yet determined attitude despite her current standing. Whilst I thought she did lose some of her spunkiness since the prologue, she’s still a likable character. I admit I didn’t agree with all of her decisions and actions throughout this book, but when it comes to Charlotte it’s not hard to look past it and carry-on reading. She’s the light-hearted element within (other than her awesome-sauce of a bestie Elise), that balanced out the sombre atmosphere that usually followed Mason around.
You’ll either love or loathe Mason Hill, or in my case, interchange from loving to loathing and back again all throughout. Seeing the different sides of him whether he’s with his family or with Charlotte was one of the big reasons I ended up emotionally invested.
What immediately struck me in this story was the genuine intrigue and attraction between Mason and Charlotte. There interactions were weirdly addictive to see play out. I honestly didn’t know what to expect each time they were together. I especially wasn’t expecting the slow burn romance despite the fact that almost every interaction had some sort of sexual encounter. I don’t know how Amelia has managed to put some very raunchy exchange, yet still leaves you hanging for more. But she’s done it! 🙈
It’s told from first person, dual points of view, well-paced storytelling, and can be read in one sitting. As the POVs interchange back and forth chapter by chapter, reading from each of their own perspectives, you can see the differences between them and their lives, especially when it came down to the dynamics of their households.
There are quite a few tropes in this story, so if you enjoy any or all of the following in your romance reads, I really recommend you read this one.
Enemies to Lovers
As a romance reader who usually passes up books that include BDSM (just my preference), I was second-guessing whether or not that this particular feature would dampen my reading experience as I hadn’t expected it. But I can honestly say that the minor (and some might say tame) BDSM included didn’t deter me from finishing, and most importantly, from enjoying the book overall.
Amelia Wilde has a unique way of writing her characters and their monologues. If you’ve read enough of her books, you can easily identify her work. If you enjoyed her writing style in the past, I have no doubt you’ll enjoy reading this one just as much. 😊 I’ve always found her writing easy to follow. The setting and world-building are already so vivid and very much present by the first chapter, along with the intrigue of getting to know more about the protagonists.
Net Worth is one seductive start to the Wealth Trilogy. The deal that ultimately started the steamy yet swoon-worthy relationship between Mason and Charlotte had me on the edge of my seat the entire time and desperately needing more of their story. With an air of danger, secrecy, and provocation, there’s tons of build-up and suspense to this billionaire romance. It won’t be for everyone but if you enjoy edgy contemporary romance reads with a side of smut, then give this one a try. It has good bones, with tons of potential. The characters are all promising and definitely add an extra oomph to this meaty, multi-faceted storyline.
Please note, as it is part of a trilogy and a continuous storyline, this book does end on a cliffhanger.
Thank you Amelia Wilde and Valentine PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! ❤
Rocker Charlotte Justice longs to escape her hectic life. Her estranged twin sister, Scarlett, owns Badlands, a biker bar outside Vegas, and has always wanted a chance at the limelight she feels was stolen from her.
On a whim, they decide to switch places like they did when they were kids.
What harm could it do?
Charlotte had no idea that the escape she planned would leave her on the receiving end of creepy texts, phone calls and “gifts” left at her door. Flying blind in her new role, pretending to be someone she’s not, Charlotte learns more about her secretive sister than she ever imagined.
On top of all of that, she’s doing everything she can to escape the sexy-as-sin MC President demanding she pay back the debt she owes him–that or sell him the bar.
Could the person stalking her also be the President of the Evil Dead MC’s Las Vegas Chapter? An alpha male who’s come-on to her in a won’t-take-no-for-an-answer kind of way that has her wondering just how badly she wants to say no.
Does he want Badlands badly enough to scare her into selling out?
Or is he the only one who can save her from a madman?
Charlotte will have to solve the mystery if she’s going to save the bar, and possibly her very life.
• MY REVIEW •
“For a girl like you, I’m willin’ to put in the effort.”
I’m flailing my arms in excitement and in desperation of the next book! Eeeep! Nicole James has smashed it again! See, this is why she is an auto-buy author of mine. She never fails at keeping her readers engaged with her stories and invested in her characters— and this little reader right here was hooked from the second Charlotte and her twin sister Scarlett started swapping clothes and spontaneously decided to temporarily trade lives!
Nicole has plenty of books under her belt and all the ones I’ve read so far have had some pretty amazing storylines. This one stood out with its intriguing premise. It’s a trading places storyline weaved into a light MC romance. It has a more contemporary romance feel in comparison to Nicole’s other MC romance books. With its small town setting, the world-building heavily revolves around the protagonists, Charlotte and Daytona. There was an immediate connection between the two that automatically had me sitting up in attention. Despite some serious tension and danger in the air, the story still had an overall light atmosphere to it.
Similarly to Nicole’s other books, this one had plenty of heated banter between its hero and heroine, alongside some lighthearted comic-relief ribbing courtesy of the secondary characters— who so happens to be the brothers from the bright and shiny new Evil Dead MC Las Vegas Chapter! 😍😍
If you’ve read her Evil Dead MC series, then the introduction of a brand, spankin’ new Chapter would make your eyes pop-out-of-its-socket giddy! It practically means new blood, and I for one, am all for it!
Daytona is the President of this chapter but right off the bat I discovered he’s different from the other Evil Dead MC Chapter Presidents. He may be a badass alpha biker, but he’s openly affectionate, straightforward, and doesn’t play games. He knows what he wants, and it’s evident when he first lays eyes on Charlotte.
Charlotte is rightfully skeptical of Daytona and his motives, especially considering she’s currently living life as her sister. I would’ve loved to have seen more character development from both (especially Charlotte) but with how the story played out and especially how this book concluded, I’m hoping there’s a lot more to reveal in the next book.
The story is told from first person, dual points of view, and progressed in a relatively fast-pacing. There’s a lot of things happening that’ll keep you on your toes. It’s insta-romance with a layer of crime thriller added. There’s lots of suspense and second-guessing that it was hard to predict where the story would lead.
Please note, there are certain sensitive subject matters within the story that may be triggering for some readers. Besides the mature sexual content, it also contains violence, stalking, and kidnapping. This book is for mature audiences 18+ only.
The romance elements are swoony and had just the perfect amount of sweetness. It might have been on the insta-love side as far as romantic relationships go but it wasn’t at all unconvincing. They may have gotten together relatively quickly but there’s genuine interest in getting to know each other in more depth. You get Daytona’s backstory and an understanding of his mentality and how he lives his life. And with the arrival of this new Evil Dead MC Chapter, I was instantly curious about all the new club members who were introduced right alongside Daytona in this book. They may have only had minor roles in this story but they definitely made quite an impression! 😊
It’s a relatively shorter full-length novel but it was jam-packed full of detail and dimension, and the story didn’t stray away from its initial narrative. Nicole created a vivid world that I was effortlessly transported to. These characters go through a whirlwind of emotions and a rollercoaster of drama that you can’t help but sympathize. Even though this is fictional and some of the plots are dramatized, the situations that Charlotte and Daytona find themselves in are real-life, relatable experiences. Their lives are complex and their feelings are understandable and seem realistic.
Overall, I found it to be a hearty story and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. There was constant buzz and build-up throughout that it was hard not to be gripped by it all. I was truly bummed to see it end and knowing I’d have to wait a little while for the release of book two. It ends on a cliffhanger but I’m relieved to see it concluded in a way where this particular part of Charlotte’s and Daytona’s story was somewhat settled…? Their relationship may be up in the air for the time being but the cat’s outta the bag and now we’ll just have to see how it all plays out from there. *dun dun duuuuun* Eeep.
If you enjoy reading about alpha heroes who have a gentlemanly side to them, and fiery heroines with backbone, then I recommend you give this one a try.
Definitely a must read for any Nicole James fan. I think this story is a great introduction for romance readers wanting to try MC romance books— whilst it certainly contains MC romance elements, it’s not completely MC heavy. It’s also technically an age-gap romance but it’s hardly noticeable, in my opinion.
Evelina has worked hard to get where she is in life. At the young age of twenty-five she became the proud owner of the town’s most infamous café, Wildflowers. Not only does this café make the best cakes in town, but it hosts the most successful open mic nights, bringing singers from far and wide to own the stage and take their dreams to the next level.
Coming from an Italian background, Evelina has a large family, a bubbly personality and the kind of drive that makes her café the best of the best. She prides herself in her witty personality, bubbly demeanor and strength to take her dreams by the horns. She is unstoppable and determined.
That is, of course, until a biker club moves into the empty garage she shares a parking lot with. For years, that garage has been empty and Evelina has had the space entirely to herself. Now, there are cars, motorbikes, parties, half naked women, alcohol and a President that is rude, gorgeous and refusing to keep the noise down.
Her café is going to struggle if she doesn’t do something right away.
The problem is, they are refusing to move.
Evelina is going to have to dig deep and find any way she can to get them to leave…even if things have to get messy.
She’s worked too hard.
This is her lot. This is her town.
That gorgeous biker and his club are going to find themselves in the midst of a war…a turf war.
And Evelina plans to win.
*Contains Adult Content*
• MY REVIEW •
Ooh. Okay. I think this might be the first MC romance book of Bella Jewel’s that I’ve read where it was definitely a lot more lighthearted, less MC and more contemporary romance.
When I first discovered Bella Jewel’s books, she quickly became an auto-buy author for me. Her dark MC romances have been some of my all time favourite reads. I’ve read enough to know what I can expect from her stories…
So it came as a bit of shock that this particular new MC series was a lot more lighthearted, more comic relief added, and certainly felt more contemporary in theme. The MC elements were evident but it wasn’t the complete focus. Biker Schmiker is character driven with 100% full of fiery banter between the hero and heroine.
I admit I have mixed feelings about this story and there was some getting used to in comparison to Bella’s other books. I felt like it was a little choppy— it alternated between a serious situation to lightheartedness, and then back again all throughout that it felt like a stop-start journey. Whilst the banter was entertaining and at times raunchy, the storyline was a little confusing and a bit much. So many plot points were in this one that it felt like one thing after another popped up for Eve and Riggs to deal with.
The story had amazing potential, especially with how Riggs and his club were first introduced into the small town Eve resides in. The chemistry between Eve and Riggs was zingy and kept me invested in seeing where the story would head to next (coz for the love of the book gods it was fucking unpredictable)! 😅
What confused me about this story was some of the crazy plotlines that seemed a little unbelievable. Not to mention some of the characters’ reactions were somewhat far-fetched (specifically the protagonists) in regards to said situations. It fringed on over-the-top madness. But I got to hand it to Bella for giving “crazy” a good crack! 😜
It was well-paced storytelling, action-packed, and full of dramatics. It’s told solely from Eve’s POV, but I really would’ve liked to have seen Riggs’ perspective as well, just so we can get an in-depth insight to his feelings too— especially considering he did some pretty shady things that I was surprised Eve would want anything more to do with him. But in saying that, there’s a good amount of character and relationship development that I grew to like Eve and Riggs more and more as I progressed through their story.
Both the leads are down to earth, relatable characters. Putting aside their cruel plotting to destroy one another, it’s clear they are caring, decent people. The overall atmosphere is modern and lighthearted. If you enjoy heated enemies-to-lovers/ hate-to-love romance stories with MC elements, then give this one a go. There’s plenty of game-playing that’ll have you turning those pages whilst grinning!
But I must point out that Riggs and Eve’s relationship was a bit of rollercoaster with tons of push and pull. For a good chunk of the story, their relationship was on-again-off-again unsteady, in which Riggs hooks up with other women. This type of trope is not a hard-no for me personally but I know it can be a bit of a no-no for other readers when it comes to their romance reads, and it’s why I included this bit of spoiler as a warning for those considering to read this book.
Please also note that it contains sensitive subject matters that may be triggering for some readers. It contains violence, assault, and strong sexual content. Readers 18+ only.
In my honest opinion, it’s a rocky start to a new series but it did hold my attention. Besides the constant sexual frustration coming off of Eve and Riggs that was all-out giddy to witness, the secondary characters were equally entertaining additions in keeping the story and their world appealing.
The friendships felt genuine and downright fun to see. There was plenty of comic relief within, but the banter, jokes, and little chats amongst the friends were some of the highlights.
The overall execution fell a little short for me, but it had a budding world-building and enough likable elements that by the end of the book I was looking forward to reading the next one. It’s a relatively short but sweet read. Bella’s effortless writing style and talent for creating quirky and engaging characters was delivered in this one no matter how complicated the storyline was.
As I mentioned earlier, tons of potential. I’m looking forward to seeing where Bella takes this series and how she plans to expand their world. An overall lively and playful MC-lite romance story between two fierce, strong-willed people!
When I signed up for the nanny agency, I didn’t expect a remote mansion on a windswept isle. Or a brooding billionaire who resents his new role.
His brother’s death means he’s now in charge of a moody seven year old girl. She’s lashing out at the world, but I can handle her. I have to. I need the money to finish my college degree.
As long as I can avoid the boss who alternately mocks me and coaxes me to reveal my darkest secrets.
• MY REVIEW •
Hmm. 🤔🤔🤔 This is a tough review to put down into words that makes relative sense. But here it goes…
First things first— did I like it? Yes. Yes I did. At the time of reading Private Property, I hadn’t realized that it was a modern retelling of the Brontë classic; Jane Eyre. As I hadn’t read that story either, looking back I’m glad I went into reading this one with no expectations and with an open mind. I can’t help thinking if I somewhat knew the storyline (based off of the classic) I probably wouldn’t have been in suspense and kept on my toes as much whilst reading it.
Another thing I should point out is I haven’t read much workplace romance stories that specifically revolve around a nanny and her boss. Add in the age-gap between Jane and Mr. Rochester here (and yes, for those who’ve read Jane Eyre, after googling, I realized that Warren has kept the initial character names for her story), and it felt like a story I wouldn’t normally go for. But there was something so intriguing about the blurb that had me wanting to. And after reading it, I’m glad I did!
When it comes to the world of romance books, Warren has been around for some time. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone in the indie, dark romance world who hasn’t heard of Warren or read any one of her books. Whilst I haven’t read all of hers, the ones I have read have always left me feeling sucked into the world she has created and really invested in the characters. Private Property is no different…. especially with how the book concluded. This is only the first book in the trilogy but it has already dropped a jaw-dropping bomb that I am anticipating the next book.
It’s well-paced storytelling that had an air of mystery and doom from start to finish that leaves you never really feeling at ease because you know something is bound to happen to rock Jane’s world and put another twist to this dark romance. The first half of the book is told solely from Jane’s POV so I felt like you really get a sense of her hardships and why she’s come to be at the mansion working as a full-time nanny.
Trigger Warning: This story contains sensitive subject matter that may be triggering for some readers such as abuse, sexual assault, and drug use. Please keep in mind before starting this book.
Once you reach the halfway mark of the story, you finally get some insight from Mr. Rochester — although frustratingly limited insight. I wish I could say that by the end of the book you have full understanding of him and his family, but sadly no can-do. 😅 Whilst I was totally mesmerized by the unusual yet erotic interactions between him and Jane, if someone were to ask me to tell them more about Mr. Rochester, I honestly wouldn’t know what to say. By the end he was still as enigmatic and surrounded by uncertainty as when Jane first encountered him at the beginning.
Warren toes the romance boundaries within this story by stirring up a little bit of adventure and erotic excitement in the young and innocent Jane. The world-building is well created and the continuous cold and gloomy atmosphere almost transports you to the stormy cliffside backdrop the story takes place in. The beginnings of character developments is evident as the plot thickens and you get glimpses into both their pasts.
Overall, this book has good bones— a dark romance with a chunks of thrill and suspense. There’s a lot of secrecy surrounding these leading characters and the circumstances that brought Jane to the Rochester family in the first place. It honestly leaves you wanting more.
It’s an interesting story that peaks at your curiosity. If you’re an avid fan of Skye Warren, then you won’t want to miss this. If you’re a fan of dark romance reads and/or modern retellings of historical romances, add this to your TBR and give it a go.
Thank you to Skye Warren and Give Me Books PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! ❤
I’ve tried to like Adrian Savage, the mercurial frontman for Fugitive Summer, while serving as his band’s opening act on tour. We’re stuck together for three months, after all. And I’m well aware I’m lucky to be here.
But it’s proved impossible. He’s far too rude and dismissive a guy to get along with. And way too good at getting under my skin. In fact, at this point, I think it’s fair to say I downright hate his guts.
Global thirst trap that he is, though, I’m finding it extremely difficult not to want to jump Savage’s bones, despite how much he infuriates me. I hate myself for it. But my body is going rogue on me. It doesn’t matter, though. I’m determined to resist him.
In fact, what I’ve decided is that, as long as I’m here and stuck with him, I’m not only going to give Savage the sound tongue lashing nobody else around here has the balls to deliver, I’m going to bring that bad boy to his knees.
• MY REVIEW •
Wow. Just wow. I honestly wasn’t expecting to get sucked into such a vivid world of rock stars, wild parties, and stereotypical groupies but I did… and hey! I could go again! 🙌 I can’t wait to get stuck into book two!
Lauren Rowe just showed me what I was missing out on with this book! I can’t believe I haven’t discovered her and her books earlier but with how much I enjoyed this one, I’m kinda chuffed it was my introduction to her work!
Right off the gate, you’re thrown into Laila’s and Savage’s world, schmoozing with celebrities and other artists in the music industry. Going in, there were a lot of details to get through, which at first I thought would be overwhelming, but once you start getting the feel of the atmosphere, the pacing, and start remembering who the secondary characters are by name the world kind of envelops you.
The blurb practically tells you this is a hate to love romance story and when you’re first introduced to Laila and Savage and see how their story starts, you quickly realize how it has become that situation… and I’m not going to lie I found their escalating banter mixed with their constant sexual frustration HILARIOUS! I’m talking belly-laugh funny! 😂🤣
I’m not going to give plotlines away (because duh, that would be a spoiler), it’s really one of those storylines you really have to experience for yourself. But just know it’s romance full of substance and feels!
And there’s no doubt about it, Laila and Savage have chemistry and spark. It can be difficult for that type of chemistry to leap off the pages and be believable but Rowe nailed it! I was constantly on the edge of my seat, all eyes on what would happen next between the two. I also adore the secondary characters that played a big part in making each situation, each scene all the more entertaining and intense.
This is what you can look forward to with this book:
A complex rock star hero
A sweet and sultry heroine
I admit I haven’t read much rock star romances in the past because I found the few I did read, the hero almost always was too arrogant, too cocky, and alpha in an off-putting way that did not make me swoon. But Savage is different. He does have the arrogance, and the cockiness, but it was in a jovial, good-natured way that you can’t help but smile at. It also helps that as the story progresses you get more and more insight to his personality and his life both in and out of the music industry. There were moments where you’ll find him to be the hot rock star that he is, but then there’ll be moments you see Savage turn that side of him off and he becomes so relatable and down to earth.
Laila on the other hand is a firecracker! Lol. I’ll admit my thoughts on her changed with each new situation. But overall, she’s still very personable. Laila is this up and coming young star who’s still a little starstruck herself. In my opinion her reactions and her somewhat immaturity to certain things felt authentic. She’s out there, a little childish at times but I’m considering it as just another layer in what makes her character.
Rowe has created some complex characters here. I love that they’re those more-than-meets-the-eye type of characters and the further I read, the more I was invested in seeing both their individual stories and where their unusual relationship was headed.
Such a fun, entertaining read set in a behind-the-scenes backdrop of the music biz with a cool, steady-paced storytelling and told from first person, dual points of view. Besides learning about our protagonists, you get snippets of the secondary characters as well. I gathered relatively quickly that these minor characters have their own stories, and despite not having read them (yet), I didn’t get the vibe that I was missing anything in regards to the relationships these characters have with one another. Rowe has amazingly provided enough backstory that it flows with Laila’s and Savage’s own, yet at the same time has you intrigued to want to check out their books next.
This is book one in The Hate-Love Duet but it doesn’t (thank the book gods) leave you in a painstakingly cruel cliffhanger. It actually concludes quite nicely — almost like finishing an episode of a really cool, addictive tv show that has a continuous storyline, and you’re just waiting for the next one to air. Luckily you guys won’t have to wait too long for book two!
Other than my own teensy issue with Laila’s attitude at times that I was not a fan of, this book was hard to fault! If you’re a fan of contemporary romance books with rock star heroes, or if you’re new to this sub-genre and looking for your next read, then I highly recommend you give this one a go.
It has a strong, detailed storyline, easy to follow, and doesn’t stray from its premise. The characters have unique personalities and will certainly hold your attention. There’s dimension and a great balance of romance, friendship, and musical elements within the story that makes it a genuine rock star, contemporary romance. There’s tons of funny moments throughout that keeps the overall atmosphere light-hearted.
There’s also a little surprise addition towards the end that I thought was an ingenious touch by Rowe that makes it all the more believable that these are singers you’re reading about. Falling Out of Hate With You is a winner in my books!
Thank you Lauren Rowe and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💚
Hope you enjoyed. Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo
The flare of a cigarette and the handsome Irishman in the shadows–I wanted it all, but I wasn’t allowed to want.
Ronan was danger and beauty, murder and mercy. To me, he was a mystery, but he was also the only man who ever knew me.
In that single stolen moment before I had to give my life to someone else, I imagined myself with him, the man with scars and bruises. The one who knew what hurting meant far more than I did at that time.
Instead I was given to another man, one who broke my soul right along with my bones.
Through it all, there was always that memory of the man in the shadows, the one who said–not in words–that I was strong, that I could endure, that I was more than just a princess in a ballgown.
Now Ronan is the only man who could keep me safe from two warring families that wanted my blood. The spark that started two years ago burned brighter with each touch, each glance, each kiss. He woke me from the nightmare, giving me life with soft touches and sharp words.
Two years ago, Ronan gave me strength, but he took something in return. I never gave him my heart, but hearts like mine are made to be stolen.
• MY REVIEW •
“One thing was clear — he was the danger. Ronan was the unknown.”
👏 Ronan. 👏 Ronan. 👏 Ronan.
Okay, Constantines… Morellis… you’re gonna have to scooch over because Ronan is here to stay! My gosh I loved every little bit of Stolen Hearts! This is my introduction to O’Keefe’s writing, and it has honestly made me eager to check out her backlist of books right alongside the next books in the Hearts Trilogy.
(For those of you who aren’t familiar, this is part of the world of the Midnight Dynasty. Two powerful warring families with each character’s story told by a different romance author. All can be read separately and in different order, but I highly recommend you read them all for an expansive experience of the world. More info below).
This story is about Ronan, the mysterious Irish right hand man of sorts to Caroline Constantine (the matriarch of the Constantine clan), and Poppy who was taken under Caroline’s wing after a family tragedy. What started out as two strangers connecting one night, only to see each other again two years later. With instant attraction and intrigue, a forbidden romance develops.
“What do you want, princess?”
It’s a relatively short first book (having easily read it in one sitting), and it leaves you with such a jaw-dropping cliffhanger. So many things were running through my mind by the time I finished the last chapter. Although this is a contemporary romance, it has a smidge of darkness surrounding it due to the characters that have been introduced. They’re all keeping their cards close to their chest and all seem to have ulterior motives that you never know who to trust. Yes, even Ronan.
He is the (anti)hero in this story who reveals very little of himself, and when he does seem genuinely sincere, it’s followed by actions that’ll have you second-guessing him again. It’s hard to turn away from his enigmatic persona. Maybe it’s the Irish charm! 😉😍 O’Keefe has brilliantly written him as a protagonist who can effortlessly hold your attention. Every time he walks into a room, sound fades out and you’re left anxious to see what he’s about to do next.
I came into this story not really expecting the story I ended up getting. It’s unpredictable, full of plot twists, and left me wanting so much more. Yes, for the most part the story is about Poppy’s and Ronan’s complicated, slow-burn relationship. But weaved in and out of it are lies, danger, and secrets that’s itching to be uncovered. There’s honestly so much to look forward to when reading this book—drama (and lots of it), suspense, and a thrilling mystery. Not to mention the intense chemistry all throughout between Poppy and Ronan whenever they’re near one another, and the dynamics the secondary characters bring that give this world more dimension.
Poppy can be described as bit of a damsel in distress— which I can usually roll my eyes at. But Poppy is a likable character. Despite certain insecurities, and personality traits stemming from the struggles she’s had throughout her entire life along with her more recent battles, she still comes off as good-natured, tenacious, and quite relatable.
Please note this book contains sensitive subject matter than may be triggering for some readers. It contains domestic abuse, child abuse, violence, and mental/psychological disorders. It also contains sexual content suitable for readers 18+ only!
This story is told solely from Poppy’s point of view. Whilst I would’ve loved Ronan’s as well, I still enjoyed seeing everything through Poppy’s eyes and how she interpreted certain situations and her inner monologue in regards to Ronan. Poppy’s backstory gets revealed early on as it sets the entire atmosphere for the rest of the book along with flashbacks here and there adding depth and an understanding to her present day situations and concerns.
“My blood was up. And I was ready for a fight.”
She’s so fascinated by Ronan that her curiosity leaps off the pages and almost transfers to you whilst your reading. The few snippets that Ronan divulges to Poppy makes him all the more swoon-worthy in that his-sexy-but-his-also-bad-news kind of way. Who doesn’t love a complex, bad boy with a gritty past, though?!
Overall, such an eye-popping start to the trilogy. It’s short, at times sweet, and most definitely packs a punch! It’s a romance story that I think would appeal to a lot of romance readers no matter if you prefer dark romances or lean more towards the contemporaries. It’s a bit of both along.
Stolen Hearts is set in a world where the Constantines and the Morellis can either be an ally or an enemy— image, power, and connections are key. Poppy is an outsider, and still navigating through her new life within, and she has a strong attraction to Ronan. But he’s practically part of the inner circle, and has a working knowledge of how things operate in their world. Can she trust him when it really counts?
“No man had ever made me so curious. Or reckless.”
It’s gripping! You’ll fall for Ronan even though you might not completely trust him and you’ll root for things to fall Poppy’s way. In my opinion, it’s a must read! Bring on Broken Hearts!!
Thank you M. O’Keefe, Dangerous Press, and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read a review copy! 🧡
Midnight Dynasty is a brand new world where enemies and lovers are often one and the same.