Soul Sisters: Charlotte by Nicole James

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

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!

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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.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

🔔 Interested in reading Charlotte? Grab your copy here: Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon CA  |  Amazon AU

•••


💀 Read more reviews for Nicole James’ books!

The Evil Dead MC Series

Evil Dead MC Series by Nicole James
Wicked by Nicole James
The Biker’s Second Chance by Nicole James

The Devil Kings MC Series

Dirty Deeds by Nicole James
Dirty Deals by Nicole James
Dirty Desires by Nicole James

Brothers Ink Tattoo Series

Brothers Ink Tattoo by Nicole James

Royal Bastards MC Series

Club Princess by Nicole James

Kings Of Carnage MC Series

Saint by Nicole James

•••

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

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Heart-On by Bella Jewel

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Ramona knows pain and she wears it behind a perfectly made-up mask of laughter, sass and a personality that makes most men weak at the knees.

Emphasis on most men.

Because there happens to be one man her charm doesn’t work on…Adan.

Member of the gorgeous biker club who took over the garage next to her best friend Eve’s café. Oh, and there’s one more tiny little thing…he’s now her patient.

After suffering burns in a fire, Adan lost the ability to use not one, but both of his hands. Enter Ramona. Registered nurse on her first job since completing her degree. And of course she’s put with the gorgeous, grumpy, rough biker who wants nothing more than for her to leave him the hell alone.

But, alas, she simply cannot.

Stuck together, there is nothing Ramona can do…except her job.

The problem is Adan is making her job very difficult. Not only does he live like he’s running a brothel, but the man refuses to do anything she asks him. He’s irritated and barely speaks, and when he does speak, it’s usually to insult her.

Not going down without a fight, Ramona does everything she can to keep her spirits high, including tormenting the poor man at every chance she gets. She’ll get him to laugh before her time with him is over.

Adan will like her.

And she will complete this job with a glowing review.

Not matter the cost.
No matter the game.

He’ll get a Heart-On for her…and she’ll make damned sure of it.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

Ooo Wee! This was a such an improvement from the first book! So, so much more gripping and hits you in the feels! 😍 I can’t help but think Bella has gone through the reviews for Biker Schmiker and made some tweaks to ensure Heart-On would be better perceived. And boy, just like that, she has made this series loads more exciting now!

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The lightheartedness is still very much present. The contemporary romance aspect is still more prominent than the MC element but it’s still a swoon-worthy MC romance story! Just like in the previous book, this one had plenty of entertaining banter between the protagonists. You get a snippet of their chemistry in Biker Schmiker but by the start of this book, that chemistry has turned electric due to Ramona’s and Adan’s forced proximity.

First off — the premise was intriguing as hell. After Adan gets caught up in a freak accident involving arson resulting in his hands being badly burnt and now in need of constant medical care, in comes Ramona, a newly licensed nurse, and her first job? Yep, being Adan’s personal home care nurse! *mic drop*

The heated exchange from these two were on a level a smidge more entertaining to see than Eve and Riggs (not going lie). They butt heads, are constantly challenging one another and throughout it all they battle the sexual tension between them.

Similarly to Riggs in Biker Schmiker, Adan is a bit of womanizer. He’s not a complete manwhore but he’s definitely indecisive when it comes to who he wants. There’s a bit of love triangle going on here. Some angst. Some drama. And, most certainly some racy scenes!

Please note: It contains violence and sexual content suitable for readers 18+ only!

This book also contains cheating. If you have issues with this matter in your romance stories, then you might want to give this one a miss.

Whilst I enjoyed Ramona’s and Adan’s story a lot, there were some questionable decisions made and situations that had my eyebrows raising and my jaw dropping with disbelief. But don’t get me wrong, it’s all to do with the fact that I got so invested in their story. It was a rollercoaster ride that had me on the edge of my seat eager to see what would happen next because I can tell ya… bomb after bomb just kept on dropping! 😱

Another relatively quick read. I wished it was longer, but on the other hand I like the fact the Bella is consistent in keeping each book in this series a certain length. They’re short but action-packed, full of suspense, and the romantic elements will have you hooked. There’s also a secondary story or two happening simultaneously that adds dimension to Ramona’s and Adan’s story and enhances the world-building.

The rest of the MC members are back to add more fun to this already light, romcom-ish story, and you get to see appearances from Eve and Riggs from the first book too! This may only be the second book in the series but I already adore the friendships and the extra oomph they bring into each story.

I love that with each new couple we get to know a bit about more about their backstory and see their character growth further. Ramona is an in-your-face, independent, and fiery heroine. She’s loud, proud, and confident. Adan is man who’s not only a badass biker, but who knows his strengths. He’s cocky and arrogant at times but in a easy-going funny way that makes you giggle. His inability to read women—or should I say Ramona was a hilarious bonus to see!

They have a quirky hate/love relationship going on there, but somewhat of a caring friendship has formed too where they got to know each other on a deeper level. I thought their emotions were relatable and realistic, and the frustration and second-guessing from Ramona was totally spot-on for the situation she found herself in with Adan.

Ugh. Such a fun read that I will undoubtedly reread over an over whenever I’m in need of a mood-booster! I highly recommend this book, and whilst it can be read as a standalone I would still recommend you start with the first one as the characters are linked and some of the context included do lead up to the next story in the series. You’ll also have a better understanding of how the characters interconnect and the level of their relationships.

If you enjoy hate-to-love romances that have an element of game-playing between the protagonists, then give this one try. The MC element is there but it’s more contemporary romance. It’s well paced, and like the first book, told solely from the heroine’s point of view. Whilst I would’ve liked to have Adan’s as well, in comparison to the first book, the hero’s POV wasn’t as strongly needed in this one. It’s character driven as the majority of the story revolves around Ramona’s feelings and perspective.

It had so many elements I so truly hoped to find in my romance books:

  • Hate-to-love/ Enemies-to-lovers
  • Romantic Comedy
  • MC Romance
  • Suspense
  • Interesting world-building
  • Gripping storyline
  • Lovable characters

The world-building has expanded a smidge more by introducing Ramona into these bikers world. And with Ramona and Eve already being friends, a nice little girl club has formed as a strong counterpart to the club. Overall, it left me wanting more and excited to read the next book with the next swoon-worthy couple to be! Another amazing read from Bella Jewel!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

•••


🧁 Read my review for the Turf Wars!

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📷 @booksofthemuggleborn

Book One: Biker Schmiker by Bella Jewel


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

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Biker Schmiker by Bella Jewel

⚠ This review contains minor spoilers

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📷 @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

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.

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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!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐

•••


Want more Bella Jewel?

Read my review for her Iron Fury MC series!

booksofthemuggleborn_ironfurymc

📚 Iron Fury MC Series by Bella Jewel


•••

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

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Saint by Nicole James

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Kami—

I’m no longer the little girl he once knew, one who believed in fairy tales.
And he’s no longer the white knight I believed him to be.
How can he be when he shows up on a black Harley wearing leather and biker boots?
I didn’t want this, but the decision is out of my control.
Now I’m his.

I have to remember this is only temporary.
I can’t let the way his predatory gaze sets fire to my body fool me.
Because I’m just a debt he’s paying, and I can’t risk my heart by letting myself believe it can ever be more.

Not with a man like him.
He’s dangerous, and only focused on one thing—securing his place with the baddest MC in town.

He’s no longer the boy I remember when I was nine years old—the one who helped me when I got stuck in a tree. The one who climbed up, wrapped an arm around me and hauled me down to safety, calling me short cake.
He was my savior then—a childish crush—but we’re no longer children.

Now he’s a stranger.

Now he’s my husband.

Saint—

I took her with me because I had no choice.
If I owe a debt, I pay it.

I owed her mother a favor, but I never expected the repayment to include marrying her seventeen-year-old daughter. When she begs me to take Kami with me to protect her, do I have a choice?

Besides, it’s only temporary. Just until she turns eighteen.

Only 90 days to go.

I can resist her that long, right?

•••

• MY REVIEW •

👏👏👏 Nicole James has done it again! Saint is a phenomenal read — one that I will reread over and over again!

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The main thing that stood out the most was the world-building in this story and the further you delve in, the more you get invested in Saint’s and Kami’s story. Not just with the unique situation they both signed on for, but also with their own personal lives. They were heading in completely different directions and all of a sudden they’re thrust into a marriage of convenience. Saint has wanted nothing more than to be a full-fledged member of the Kings of Carnage MC. Having to balance out his duties and loyalties to the club and ensuring Kami is taken care of and protected was what kept me engaged throughout.

Once I started this book it was unputdownable! The storytelling is well-paced and told from dual points of view. I loved witnessing their developing relationship from the instant connection they had to each another. In spite of their situation and the fact that they hadn’t seen each other since they were kids, it didn’t deter from the sense of comfort and familiarity between them, even in the beginning when they first reunite.

I’ve always found James’ writing style to be effortless to follow with her charming (and at times entertaining) characters and hearty plotlines. I just know I’m gonna hunker down and enjoy what’s ahead of me. It’s hard not to get addicted to this book because James has created truly relatable and down to earth characters with a gripping storyline. There’s also a great balance of light and shade within adding comic relief in-between the gritty moments. The atmosphere flowed well from goodness to darkness and back again with ease.

Saint and Kami have a slow burn romance that kept me both in suspense and excitement to see develop. I absolutely adore Kami and relieved to see that although she’s still a teenager, she’s mature and has a sweet nature about her that meshes well with Saint’s personality. He’s got the protective gentlemanly vibes down pat with just the right amount of alpha. To be honest, this entire story gave me such Dirty Deeds vibes, but I think that has a lot to do with the fact that both stories have amazing world-building with a strong and constant structure to its storyline. They both have young, innocent heroines that you can’t hate, and who’ve managed to worm their way into the hearts of these hot-as-sin bikers!

I’m not going to lie when I first discovered how young Kami was, I was a smidge anxious to see how the romance element with Saint would come into play, what level of it I could expect, and how soon? But as I mentioned earlier it’s a slow burn, and whilst I was itching to see them finally reach the romantic stage of their relationship, I adored seeing them get reacquainted first. In my opinion, with Kami being young and Saint only a few years older, the steadiness of their relationship was fitting. It felt substantial and all the more authentic, especially when it came down to their emotions.

Both Kami and Saint grew up in close-knit relationships with their parents, and whilst somewhat of the storyline revolved around Kami’s, I was kind of expecting to see more of those familial moments with Saint’s also — especially considering what they’d ventured into is something his parents have strong values and beliefs over. But nevertheless, I found the conclusion to be a sweet HEA and in my mind, Saint’s family are just as happy as Kami’s with how things played out. 😉

Besides the romance element, there’s a generous amount of the MC side of the story where you get to see Saint’s role in the MC and how much of it consumes his life. As well as meet the rest of the members/ prospects of the club. In comparison to James’ other MC stories, I found this one leaned more towards the lighthearted side of MC romances. There’s some suspense and a few plot twists to keep you on your toes, but I absolutely went nuts for the unexpected but swoon-inducing crossover James has cleverly included into the plot.

This book is part of the Kings of Carnage MC: Prospects series and can be read as a standalone story. It has all the elements I always find winning in MC romances:

  • Lovable characters
  • Vivid world-building
  • Strong storyline
  • Suspense and unpredictability
  • Equal amounts of MC and romance elements
  • Banter and lighthearted humour

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I undoubtedly loved it! It’s now one of my fave MC romances of James’ and I highly recommend it to fellow MC romance readers. I found the story of an MC prospect a refreshing alternative from reading one who’s already a member. James provides a cool and detailed description of what is expected of a prospect, and how much trust, commitment, and loyalty it takes to make it as a member in the club. By the end you’ll not only swoon over the romance, but you’ll feel like you have some know-how of the world of motorcycle clubs. It’s a must read!

“Kings forever, forever Kings.”

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you Nicole James for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

•••


Read more of my reviews for Nicole James’ books!

Evil Dead MC Series by Nicole James
Dirty Deeds by Nicole James
Dirty Deals by Nicole James
Dirty Desires by Nicole James
Brothers Ink Tattoo by Nicole James
Club Princess by Nicole James
Wicked by Nicole James
The Biker’s Second Chance by Nicole James

•••

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

Reparation Of Sin by Natasha Knight & A. Zavarelli

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

My husband hates me. But he’s also the only man who can save me.

Taken by a stranger, Santiago is my only hope. Except that I don’t know if he’s dead or alive. And for as cruel as he can be, the thought he might be gone is unbearable.

But he has nine lives, my monster.

He’s not finished with me yet. And soon I’m back at The Manor. Locked in my room. At his mercy.

I know I am despised.

I know I have become the face of his vengeance.

But there’s something else too. Something between us. It’s a dark and gnarled thing. And it has its claws around my heart.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

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Oooh things have just gotten more complicated! I didn’t think situations could get any more fucked up between Ivy and Santiago…. but man, was I wrong!

Things to consider before starting this book:

  1. This is a continuous story. You will have to read Requiem of the Soul first.
  2. This is book two in this trilogy, so yes, like the previous one, this too will end in a cliffhanger.
  3. There are sensitive subject matters that may be triggering for some readers such as, violence, non-consensual sex, domestic abuse, and attempted suicide.
  4. This is dark romance with adult themes — readers 18+ only!

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way let’s continue, shall we?

There’s a lot of complex and damaging situations going on in Reparation of Sin. Just when you think one fire is being put out, there’s another being fanned by a mystery antagonist(s) — whom at this point could be ANYBODY! 🤔

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Vengeance, hate, and jealousy is what’s driving these characters to take action. Whilst some parts of the storyline I found fairly predictable, one thing I am absolutely clueless on is who the true villain is. This is a dark, gritty romance that is full of suspicion, ulterior motives, and all around shady characters. It’s already 2/3 of the way through the story and I’m still hesitant of Ivy and Santiago. Eeep.

I’m going to be brutally honest… there are a ton of “facepalm” moments throughout. There are a couple of characters who stuck out like sore thumbs in this book that had me wanting to rip my hair out of frustration. But you know what? I commend the authors and their book for evoking deep emotion out of me. Just as Requiem of the Soul, this one held my attention and I was wholly invested in seeing the next obstacle in Ivy’s and Santiago’s twisted marriage. It picks up right after the conclusion of the first book, and ultimately starts the next plot in the story. The devious characters are in full force, and what’s worst is that it seems no one can be trusted in this world. Lots of little things are happening and they’re all interconnected and relating to Ivy and Santiago.

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And throughout it all, you’re witnessing the push and pull in their relationship. The twisted back and forth hate to love to hate mentality with these two has amped up because it’s more than vengeance at stake now. You’ll see Santiago struggle not only with his undeniable feelings for Ivy but with new developments brought on by his family and The Society. His inner monologue ended up being one of my favourite things to see.

Ivy on the other hand is more willing to open herself up to her growing feelings for Santiago but it seems every time she takes a leap, she falls flat on her ass, which I think is a big reason as to why at times she came off pitiful. Not going to lie, I felt disappointed in her decisions throughout this book. I could nitpick certain things that occurred that Ivy could have easily avoided. But funnily enough when I think back on what I’d read, it’s almost as if I just finished watching a turbulent episode of a telenovela. 😅 Hot, cold. Enemies, lovers. Trust, don’t trust. *phew!* There’s so much drama! Even between the sheets.

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Things are escalating and they’re escalating like crazy! Both Ivy and Santiago do some very questioning things. I can only hope that they redeem themselves in the next one. I wish I could say this book won’t leave you hanging like the first one did but I’d be lying. The cliffhanger in this one is torturous. If you had any patience, you’d wait for the third book before starting this trilogy. 🤭

Knight and Zavarelli fans, Ivy and Santiago’s story is not to be missed! If you enjoy dark romance reads, I think this storyline will be right up your alley. It has suspense, chemistry between the hero/ heroine, intense dynamics between a range of characters, and a storyline that’ll have you hooked with its twists and turns.

There’s a lot of intrigue surrounding all the characters in this world not just with protagonists, and I feel like we’ve only scratched the surface. There are a couple of secondary characters from the first book… *cough* “C” and “J” *cough* whom I was hoping to see more of and I’m giddy to say I got my wish! 🙌🙌 Despite having only a scene or two in this book, they played vital roles… aaaaaaand their personal story was divulged (I would love a full length novel on them but if it never happens, I can happily say I’m content with the appearances they made in this book).

It’s told from dual points of view and although it has slowed down a little in comparison to the first book, I still consider it to be fast-paced, and the world-building is lush! I’m talking quality atmosphere, dimensional storytelling, and complex characters! 👌 It’s definitely elements you would expect from both authors. Looking forward to the next book!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Natasha Knight, A. Zavarelli and Give Me Books PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

🔔 Interested in reading Reparation of Sin? Grab your copy here: Amazon Universal Link  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo  |  Apple Books

•••


💀🌹 Read my review for The Society Trilogy!

booksofthemuggleborn_requiemofthesoul
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

📕 Book One: Requiem Of The Soul by Natasha Knight & A. Zavarelli


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

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To Have And To Hate by R.S. Grey

booksofthemuggleborn_tohaveandtohate
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Marry a man I barely know to save my family from ruin.

It might’ve been simple, if my betrothed were anybody else.

On our wedding day, my husband-to-be arrived at the courthouse like a black cloud rolling over Manhattan. Walt didn’t crack smiles or pepper in pleasantries as we exchanged hollow vows in front of the judge.

His disdain for me was so palpable I assumed we’d walk out of that ceremony and resume our regularly scheduled programming. But then fate was like, Hold my beer. I got this.

In desperate need of help and with nowhere else to turn, I had no choice but to ignore a crucial rule in our contract: I shall only contact Mr. Jennings II in case of emergency. But hey, what’s a little fine print between husband and wife?

Turns out, Walt’s a stickler for legalese—I think it might be his love language. Oh, and his attitude at the courthouse wasn’t a put-on. My so-called husband is a jerk. He takes what he wants without giving any consideration to other people—specifically ME, his blushing, contractually-obligated bride!

I knew life with Walt would be no honeymoon, but a marriage of any sort should still come with a few standard guarantees:

To have and to hold.

For richer or poorer.

In sickness and in health.

But after experiencing Walt’s version of wedded bliss, I say let’s forget about all that lovey-dovey crap and just take me straight to death do us part.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

PPL_AriaHappyDance

Well now… I stand corrected. Guys named “Walt” can be someone very hot, very appealing, and very dreamy! *fans self* 😉😅

When I first read the blurb I was expecting a full-blown hate-to-love/ enemies-to-lovers romance story weaved through an arranged marriage. What I ended up getting was actually a miscommunication between two self-conscious individuals who don’t know what to do with their developing feelings. I found it adorable to see play out that I’m not even in the slightest bit disappointed that there was hardly any witty banter. Because I tell ya… seeing bumbling characters trying to not get in each other’s way was too entertaining to put down. Hehe.

Grey never seems to fail at lifting my mood up with her light-hearted, good natured plotlines and quirky characters! A very chick-lit, romantic comedy atmosphere that’ll have you smiling from beginning to end. Although in my case with this book, there were a couple of times I did get teary-eyed. It’s so easy to get invested in Grey’s characters. They’re always full of hilarious inner monologues that give you such insight to their lives and the type of people they are. Their mannerisms, personality traits, and reactions to things are so relatable and at times eerily realistic that you can’t help but LOL. As the oh-so wise Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory once said, “It’s funny because it’s true!” —and it is soooo friggin’ true when it comes to Elizabeth and Walt and their unusual arrangement! 

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Grey also has a knack for getting her readers to fall for her secondary characters too, and I was no exception. There were a couple of prominent characters in this story who had me perking up. This is a standalone book, but I do wish one guy in particular would get his own story. I’m not going to lie, I was a little bummed to see that by the epilogue a few things were left unanswered (at least in my opinion). Whilst I adored seeing where Elizabeth and Walt’s life had ended up, some things were not mentioned at all—for example; the current status of certain relationships, situations regarding their careers, things like that. It just felt like whilst some things wrapped up beautifully, there were certain aspects (that were strongly focused on in the storyline) that were left up in the air by the end.

Nevertheless, I love the gradual development between Elizabeth and Walt. From complete strangers, to an odd sort-of friendship, to finally being intimate—all whilst trying to navigate through their arrangement, of course. Although it’s a bit of a slow burn, so be aware. 

The world-building took off with a bang right from the get-go putting you right alongside Elizabeth and the situation she’s gotten herself into with Walt. From there it gradually grew as the characters and their new life together developed. It’s a character-driven storyline. They don’t stray too far away from one another so the majority of the world-building is within Elizabeth and Walt’s little bubble. But this is not some sappy fluff read, there’s some hearty moments included, accompanied by a range of personalities to really give the overall story some depth.

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Without giving too much away, I have a love/ hate relationship with the families included. Seeing how they interact with our protagonists was quite a sight. Elizabeth and Walt are likable characters, but I do wish at times that Elizabeth didn’t back down so easily. But there is an overall sense of balance between these two leads. They’re complete opposites yet they complement each other’s personalities so well and it’s evident throughout. 

What started out as duty that needed to be carried out, became one full of growth, independence, love, acceptance, and such heart. You can bet there’s always a good ol’ life lesson to be learned from one of Grey’s books! 😊 

Overall, such a quality read! *chef’s kiss* Perfect for hopeless romantics and contemporary romance fans. Great escapism that’ll have you happy sighing by the end. It’s well-paced storytelling, told solely from Elizabeth’s (first person) point of view. It’s a New Adult/ Adult romance book with some saucy scenes. Nothing too raunchy but it brings some heat! 🔥

If you love the whole arranged marriage trope in your reads, then I highly recommend this to you. Bonus! Elizabeth and Walt have a bit of an age gap, so if you also like an older man/ younger woman trope, then you definitely need to grab this book!   

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RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Rachel and Inkslinger PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💗


•••

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

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Twisted Cravings by Cora Reilly

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Mafia meets illegal street racing in this action-packed standalone in the Camorra Chronicles!

As the youngest brother of the notorious Falcone clan, Adamo grew up surrounded by blood and violence. Drugs soon became his way of coping.

Becoming a Made Man like his brothers was his destiny but never his passion. When he becomes the organizer of his family’s successful illegal street races and one of their thrill-seeking drivers, he finally asserts his own path in the harsh mafia world.

His purpose isn’t the only thing Adamo discovers on the fuel-soaked roads he calls home…

​Dinara Mikhailov is the only female race driver and hard to ignore. Not only because of her flaming red hair and ruthless driving style, but also because the Bratva princess is allowed to drive in enemy territory.

Soon Adamo and she find themselves entangled in a passionate game that goes beyond the race track. Yet, both haunted by events in the past, their dark cravings put everything on the line.

As what they crave the most, comes with a brutal price.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

My my. Adamo’s quite a bad influence… 🙈🙉🙊

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I wanna say it’s what I was anticipating… but it wasn’t. Well… not completely. I was of two minds during and after reading it.

Whilst I was giddy with the initial premise of the book — I mean c’mon, mafia meets illegal racing?? Umm. Yes please! It wasn’t what I had expected. Yes, there’s the mafia side of things and elements of the illegal car racing but it felt more or less a means of bringing in the Bratva more so into what was initially the Italian mafia world, as suppose to having the majority of the storyline center around Adamo and that race world he found solace in. Don’t get me wrong, I’m as intrigued by the Russian mob as much as the next fan of this world, but I just would’ve loved a lot more of that racing scene… and in detail.

It started strong with an opening scene to Adamo’s world since we last heard of him in the previous books and to be honest I was wondering if I was going to see him as all grown, broody and oh so swoon-worthy… orrrrrr if I was still going to picture him as an adolescent, still reckless, and still finding his place in the Camorra.

I’m going to be in the minority here but I definitely did not see him like I do Remo, Nino or Fabiano… or even Savio. 😅 Despite now being a young man, I just couldn’t believe it… ugh… he just wasn’t believable enough to be all grown up and a full-fledged Made Man in my books. He didn’t completely come off as a Mafioso. Put aside the Camorra and his family, you would think he was just a wealthy guy with connections, who runs illegal car races and who happens to be a nifty driver. The darkness the supposedly surrounds him wasn’t obvious. I didn’t feel it, it didn’t leap off the pages, and I wasn’t convinced whenever it was demonstrated. Which wasn’t as much as I thought it would have been considering the brutal events of his past.

I really wanted his story and his struggles to be delved into a lot more than what was provided. There was just something missing that didn’t give his story the oomph I was hoping for.

But! In saying that…. do I love Adamo? Yes. No doubt. He may not be as gritty and yeah okay… not as hardy as his older brothers but he certainly had remarkable qualities that I was happy to see a Falcone brother possess. Traits in which I did find myself grinning at seeing whenever Adamo effortlessly displayed it. (And I’m not talking about his talents with his hands, mouth or dick).

In some ways I think Adamo’s personality is one of my faves from the Falcone brothers. He seems to have a lot of the traits I loved from all of his brothers within himself. And in general I loved seeing the contrast of relationships Adamo had with each one of them. Not to mention his relationships with the extended Falcone clan.

Now—What can I say about Dinara Mikhailov? She’s spunky, I’ll give her that. If you know me or have read any of my past reviews concerning heroines in Mafia worlds, that I would absolutely pick a chick who’s independent, can stand up for herself, kicks ass, and doesn’t back down easily over a meek, damsel in distress type any day… (Ooh wait now that I think about it… there is one exception though). *waggles brows*

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Dinara caught my attention right after she stole Adamo’s. 🤭 Her style alone is winning! *chef’s kiss* Add in her determination and how she holds attention, and next thing you know, you’re hooked and invested in seeing her story unravel.

As someone who’s read quite a few DARK reads, what you discover about Dinara in this book can so easily be tough to get through. I don’t know what level of darkness Cora had intended for Dinara’s story (and I can’t speak for others) but in my opinion her story wasn’t difficult to read. There was a sense of detachment—I don’t know if it was me and I couldn’t quite connect with it, or if it was Dinara herself and how she came across whenever her past was brought to light. Either way, it didn’t come across as dark as some of Cora’s previous mafia books.

Individually, both Dinara and Adamo are likable leading characters. For two people who knows nothing else but the mob life, they both have such softer personalities in comparison to the other couples. There’s an evenness in their relationship that was somehow calming to see. There was no sense of dominance with either one of these two, making it seem like they’re on equal footing with one another. But of course, things are never all that simple. Adamo and Dinara prefer to keep their turmoil to themselves, hence why they seem less blaring, and why they have a pull towards one another. Twisted Cravings is definitely a bang-on title for their story. They feed each others’ cravings that they can’t find anywhere else or weren’t being provided for by the people who were closest to them. As much as I perked up every time they danced around each other and their feelings, the further their relationship developed, the more I questioned: How healthy is their relationship? 🤔

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Dinara and Adamo are similar in so many ways having similar vices and coping mechanisms to get them through and connecting that way. Their relationship is a seesaw of emotions where it could go very bad, very quickly with just the smallest trigger. You can’t help but be on edge seeing how things will go down between them.

This book had some new elements that were thrown into what I consider staples of Cora’s in her Mafia world, and I was digging it! It was both refreshing at times and at other times unsurprising yet simply comforting. I always love seeing how Cora will expand her already vivid world building, and one thing that never fails to get me hooked for more are the secondary characters that make appearances or ones she introduces that seem to hold my attention as much (if not more) than the characters in the foreground. This book was no different. It was also interesting to see how certain dynamics and environments have altered over time.

🤐 If I could, I would shout it from the rooftops who I was swooning over in this book, what scenes had me ooh-ing and ahh-ing, and the eye-catching tidbits I noticed here and there where the Falcones are concerned. All in good time. All in good time.

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Twisted Cravings is as much Dinara’s story as it is Adamo’s and told from both their points of view. It’s a slower-paced story, in comparison to the previous books in the series, and despite the sensitive subject matter and trigger warnings this book contains, it’s nowhere as gritty either. With Adamo and Dinara being young, this had a lighter, more NA vibe to it… although the smuttiness is very much present.

I wanna say it’s a pretty straight forward storyline. The first part gripped me, it slowed down in the middle, but by the final third of the book it picked back up and finished strong! There wasn’t much plot twists, but there were a couple of moments that had me taken aback. Look forward to some lighthearted banter, some Falcone charm, and vodka! 🙌

As much I thought I would come away from reading this book loving all the romance. I actually ended up loving the family interactions more. There’s such strong family bonds in this one that I couldn’t get enough. In a cruel world like theirs it was so satisfying to see somewhat of a normal familial relationship included.

Overall, a great addition to the Camorra Chronicles. Adamo’s story has been very much anticipated and in terms of seeing him finally have his happily ever after, it certainly doesn’t disappoint! This book can easily be a bit too topsy-turvy, but when it did reach those highs, those moments were completely epic! This book has such heart. And there were parts that had me sitting up in attention and daydreaming of the future and what’s to come!

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I don’t think I need to say this but I will anyways—It’s a must read for any fan of Cora’s and the Camorra Chronicles. If this was to be the absolute final book in the series, I can happily sigh with contentment that all my Falcone babes found their haven.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you to Cora Reilly and Emily Alice for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

🔔 Interested in reading Twisted Cravings? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

•••


Read my reviews for The Camorra Chronicles!

booksofthemuggleborn_camorrachronicles

📕 Book One: Twisted Loyalties by Cora Reilly

📕 Book Two: Twisted Emotions by Cora Reilly

📕 Book Three: Twisted Pride by Cora Reilly

📕 Book Four: Twisted Bonds by Cora Reilly

📕 Book Five: Twisted Hearts by Cora Reilly


•••

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

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Bound By Blood Anthology by Cora Reilly

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

— BLURB —

Born in Blood
Sworn in Blood…
…isn’t only the motto the Famiglia lives by.
Bleeding for love is something every couple in this book has experienced. Through hardships their love morphs into something even more beautiful and resilient. A love each of them is willing to fight for.

This anthology contains stories for the following couples:

Aria & Luca
Romero & Liliana
Growl & Cara
Mauro & Stella
Matteo & Gianna

•••

— MY REVIEW —

First off — I am so fucking ecstatic that we get more updates from OG couples from the mafia world that started it all, Born In Blood! 

Warning: Lots of cussing ahead! And minor teasing!

Okay. Here we go. First up?

*drumroll*

📖 1: Luca & Aria

What can I say about these two other than I love them, and seeing even a snippet of their lives whether it be past, present or future always leaves me with a buzz of happiness. Their short story pulls at the heartstrings — not only with how much they’ve come a long ways in their relationship since they first met, but with how much their world has evolved. It’s also a nice breather from the gritty, mafia side because this story is focus more so on their private life together.

Luca was my first love from this world, and I honestly don’t think I could ever tire of reading about him.

I’d like to see one person come away from reading this little novella without a smile on their face. C’mon. Prove me wrong! You’ll smile, you’ll giggle, you’ll flail your arms, and you’ll sigh with happy contentment! 

😜 Not a surprise but I know a lot of readers are looking forward to this:

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Next up? Fresh meat!

📖 2: Mauro & Stella

Ahhhh. Mauro and Stella. Two new characters that I didn’t realize I needed until I read their story. Now I am in desperate need of a full length novel! *Looking at you book gods. Make it happen.

Who loves a step-sibling romance trope in their reads? I’m not embarrassed to admit it’s a trope I can easily be iffy about just because of the whole cringe factor that can be displayed if the story or characters are written in a weird incest sort of way. Uuck. But Forbidden Delights had none of that whatsoever!

Gripping, edge of seat chemistry. The build-up of sexual frustration was both adorable as fuck and intense. Add Mauro to your book boyfriend list? ✔✔✔   

Since I had already read this novella when it was initially released in the romance anthology; Love In Lockdown, I’ve already written and posted my full review. To read my thoughts on Mauro and Stella, you can find it here: Forbidden Delights by Cora Reilly

😳 Here’s something to look forward to:

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Things are heating up. Next one up is the couple that is “made for hell.” 🔥

📖 3: Matteo & Gianna

*exhales…*

Okay. This one is a little tougher to review. Whilst I was on the edge of my seat the entire time reading their novella, I did have mixed feelings about the developments. I wouldn’t be surprised to see their novella divide a lot of the readers who love Matteo and Gianna. When it comes to Gianna, you either love her or hate her. Just so you know, I’m on #TeamLoveGianna (I definitely prefer her more than Aria), and whilst their situation was all kinds of WTF?, her decisions are understandable, her feelings are relatable, and I, for one have always accepted her… opinionated attitude and all! 

In saying that, Matteo has and always will be my adorable shark-grinned cinnamon roll! Seeing him wrack over his emotions just about gave me chest pains. The guy just has so much heart! This may be a novella but it packs a punch and gave a much needed update to the next chapter in their lives. Not only has this story showed how much Matteo and Gianna have gone through in their relationship, but it reminded me of how much time has passed, of how old I am, and how long it’s been since Bound By Hatred! 😅 But phew… What a journey! Have tissues at hand.

(Oh, and I knew there was a very good reason as to why I love Luca and Matteo’s brotherhood!) *sigh* 🤗        

🙈 What you’re getting yourself into with this one:

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Up ahead: Sugar and spice, and all things nice!

📖 4: Romero & Liliana

I don’t know why Romero and Liliana are underrated. I loved Bound By Temptation to bits and Romero is such a refreshing change from the arrogant, alpha type Made Men who enjoy the blood and grittiness. If you’re in need a true gentleman, who’s caring, protective and adorably romantic — Romero will not disappoint. And neither does this story. It was just straight up sweet! 

Besides their intial book, for the most part Romero and Liliana haven’t been in the forefront, and this short story pretty much sums up their quiet life. They’re practically living the dream with having found a balance between the Mafia world and their own little heaven outside of it. It’s cool to see that there’s at least one couple in this world that doesn’t have too much drama going on around them constantly. Such an effortless coupling.    

But not to worry, Romero will still bring out the raaaaawr!

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And finally… the feels!

📖 5: Growl & Cara

I’m gonna admit it right here, right now — this couple’s story was the one I was anticipating reading the most! Why? Well, as much as I have a lot of love for Matteo, at least we got snippets of him in previous books. But with Ryan? The most we got was a name drop here and there. 

And now? 

Fuuuuuuuuuck! This story completely punched me in the gut. I felt like the rug was ripped right out from under me and it resulted in me bawling my eyes out! Ugh. As much as this story shattered my heart, it’s still probably my favourite one from this collection. I didn’t think I could love Growl anymore than I already do but he wormed his way in deeper into my heart! 

Tissues! Where are the bloody fucking TISSUES!!!!? 😭😭

Their story was full of sorrow, but one of family, peace and healing too. Even if we don’t get another full length novel from Ryan and Cara, I think this novella will leave fellow Growl fans satisfied with the open-ended conclusion. When one door closes, another opens.

💘 Something not to be missed:

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🖐 Fantastic stories! A great compilation from couples I so lusted after from the Born in Blood Mafia Chronicles. Great seeing little snippets of what-ifs and possible teasers for future book storylines. A must read, and must have for all Reilly fans! 

RATING: ♥♥♥♥½

Thank you to Cora Reilly and Emily Alice for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💕


•••

Happy reading, guys! Thank you so much for stopping by and as always, catch you in my next one! Xo

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Date Me Like You Mean It by R.S. Grey

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

— BLURB —

I’m good at hiding my feelings.

Having to pretend I’m not in love with my best friend?

Pfft. That’s child’s play.

Here’s how I do it: I avert my eyes when he walks out of his room, shirtless in all his toned glory. I squash the butterflies that fill my stomach every time he slowly unfurls a dimpled smile. And, most importantly, I keep an arsenal of “personal massagers” in my bedside drawer. Wink.

Not to brag, but Aiden Smith isn’t hard to resist if you’ve been doing it for as long as I have. In fact, we might have continued as best friends forever if not for the fact that I needed him to play the part of my fake boyfriend.

Date me like you mean it, I told him. Nudge nudge. C’mon, just go along with a little lie, help a girl out, and then we can all return to life as we know it.

Except he veered from the plan.

He crossed the line.

Flirting with me when no one else was around? Pinning me down and kissing me like that? Okay, how exactly is taking off my bra part of the ruse, Aiden?!

I’d ask him about it if I could, but well…things got ugly and we’re not best friends anymore.

In fact, we’re the exact opposite.

Now, I have to play nice even though I want to crush his heart in the palm of my hand.

Pretending not to love Aiden was the easy part.

Pretending not to hate him?

Well…I might need a little more practice.

•••

— MY REVIEW —

Ahhhh. Grey has done it again! DMLYMI was deviously good! I obsess over a good secret crush, but what’s even better? A secret crush turn enemies to lovers. *evil laugh* muahaha! 🤭

Just the book I needed to escape the reality of adulting for a little while. Lol.

Grey has the inate ability to get you invested with the ever-so Grey trademark characters who seem to talk (and think) a mile a minute — those who’ve read her other books know what I’m talking about! Her characters are instantly lovable with their humorous ramblings and random thoughts that it’s hard not to get invested in their story right off the bat.

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DMLYMI has now been included in my list of fave books of Grey’s right along with The Allure of Dean Harper and Arrogant Devil. All of which had a similiar hate to love romance. What can I say? When it comes to this tried and true trope, Grey writes some of the best!

But question… this was supposed to be a romantic comedy, right? I read that correctly, yes? So why the hell did I blubber and get teary-eyed so many damn times throughout reading this book!!? 😢😅

I loved the concept of a secret crush in this storyline because it’s almost all from Maddie’s POV for at least the first half. As a reader, you get on this ride of unrequited love with her, the hopeless dream of having your best friend mirror back your feelings. I think that’s why I got so emotional reading this book. The further it developed, the more I felt for Maddie. You can’t help but sympathize with what she’s going through. I’m not going to lie — I was crushed by some of the scenes. If you cry just as easily as I do, make sure to have tissues nearby. You’re bound to get into a snotfest!

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It’s full of heart. There’s a sweet balance of friendship and love, good ol’ banter and game playing to keep things lively. It’s what will keep you anxious to see how things will play out between Maddie and Aiden. There’s no doubt they have zingy chemistry. You can feel the years of their bond leap off the pages.

Full of what-ifs, secrets, missed chances, and unexpected opportunities. Both Maddie and Aiden are forced to navigate through all the events in their lives and the consequences of their choices. Their journey is one of growth, pure determination and acceptance that things may not work out the way they hope or expect it to. At times it’s a bittersweet pill to swallow.

It’s a fictional story of a couple struggling to find a balance in their lives that can very well mirror any relationship real life.

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What I love about Grey’s books (and this one was no different) is that her characters are fairly relatable. The relationships and life experiences are some that many of us can relate to. Whilst I adore Maddie and her usual happy-go-lucky personality, I had hoped she had more backbone where Aiden was concerned, and that she followed through and executed her plans because I can’t help but think that would’ve been a real kicker!

Aiden doesn’t have as much of the spotlight that Maddie initially has when it comes to their perspective of things but it doesn’t mean he didn’t make an impact. Putting aside the good looks Grey has bestowed upon him, he’s charming, sweet as hell and is just a pure care bear at heart! I couldn’t really fault the guy. Yeah, I might have smacked my forehead and shook my head mumbling “no, no, no…” at a couple of things he does but it no way means he’s crossed off the book boyfriend list! Not happening!

I may not always agree with these characters’ actions but I can see how others may, or even be doing the same thing if they were ever in the same situation. Either way Grey always manages to put realism into her characters and their world, which I’ve always liked about her writing.

If you’re a fan of friends to lovers, hate to love, and secret crush romance storylines, then this will certainly be a treat for you folks! I enjoyed it immensely and there are parts of this book I’ve already reread multiple times over because they’re still reeling in my mind.

The steamy scenes are indeed hot, yet tasteful, and just enough to keep you swooning over their relationship. I’ll leave it at that. 😉

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Overall, a well-paced storytelling, developing easily enough in the first half of the book. Although in my opinion, it did pick up speed in the second half making it feel little rushed but not to a point where it’s off-putting. The ending is still as sweet as when the story started. It has a beautiful wrap up that’ll have you sighing in happy contentment. Nothing was left unanswered (at least from my point of view).

Another not-to-be missed standalone romance from Grey! An amazing journey of love, friendship and sacrifice. It’s mostly lighthearted with moments of fluttering-butterfly-induced nerves. You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll cruelly enjoy the banter, but secretly hope things will work out between Maddie and Aiden.

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Highly recommend for fellow romance readers to add this one to their TBR, asap!

RATING: ♥♥♥♥½

Thank you to R.S. Grey and Ink Slinger PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!


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If you’re interested in more, make sure to check out my reviews for R.S. Grey’s other books. Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo

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The Biker’s Kiss by Glenna Maynard

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@booksofthemuggleborn

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— BLURB —

One kiss is all it takes to bring him to his knees and have him asking for forever.

Roane Connors doesn’t do relationships. He’s been burned before and isn’t looking to repeat past mistakes. All he needs is a warm body in his bed for the night. Someone to ring in the new year with. Julie Wilson ticks all his boxes. She’s back in town, hot, and single. When the clock strikes midnight one kiss ignites a spark this royal bastard’s not ready for.

The Biker’s Kiss is a Royal Bastards MC holiday novella.

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— MY REVIEW —

Glenna Maynard is new-to-me author and when I saw Tempting the Biker — which is the third book in the series, I initially wanted to read it first but Glenna noted that it was best to read from the beginning of the series.

I figured since the first book is a novella, I might as well read it and get a better a idea of her writing style, her MC world, and see if it was something I was willing to continue with. Well? I’m so glad I did! 🙌

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It’s second chance, insta-love romance, and ended up being a cool little novella to kick off the series!

Roane and Jules were high school sweethearts but life happened and they parted ways. Both having been burned from their shitty marriages and both now trying to move on from their exes they never expected to meet up again after all these years. Sparks immediately fly and they both wonder if this is their second chance at love.


“You’re not slipping through my fingers a second time, baby doll.”


All I can say is Roane is not one to beat around the bush. What he wants, he certainly will do everything in his power to get. This MC romance is full of alpha vibes! Roane is one assertive biker. But he’s also a protective bear of a man who would do anything to ensure Jules is happy.

Jules has lost a bit of her spirit but the more time she spends with Roane, the more her confidence returns. She has a likeable personality and isn’t one to rush into anything without at least voicing her concerns.

I’d say this story focuses more on Roane and Jules’ rekindling relationship with the Royal Bastards MC is the background. You get introduced to a couple of the other brothers that gives you a little insight to the club and their bond. Whilst I would’ve loved to have seen more, I understand that this is a novella and only so much can be shared. What was revealed was definitely enough for me to be intrigued about the next couples stories’ in the series. *waggles eyebrows* 😉😉


“Hate to break it to you, baby doll, but you’re in The Devil’s Playground. Normal rules don’t apply.”


One highlight for me in this book (other than the hot and heavy romance) is Pam, Jules’ older sister. She is a hoot and a half! 😂 A great addition to the story to keep it lighthearted and you giggling at her random commentary.

There are some sensitive subject matter included in this story that may trigger some readers such as domestic abuse, sexual assault and substance abuse. Please keep that in mind before considering to start this book/ series.

Overall, whilst this book took on a faster pace storytelling (since it’s a novella), and how our protagonists’ relationship progressed at a relatively breakneck speed, I still enjoyed it. I got invested in their world and I’m looking forward to reading the next books!

If you’re looking for more MC romance books, I’d consider adding this series to your TBR!

RATING: ♥♥♥/5


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Hope you enjoyed! Happy reading, and as always, catch you in my next one! Xo

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