Beautiful Nightmare by Giana Darling

⚠ This review contains minor teasers!

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



Bianca has finally found her rightful place amid the powerful Constantines. But all is not what it seems in this glittering new world. And Tiernan Morelli refuses to give up her up…

BEAUTIFUL NIGHTMARE is the final book in the Dark Dream duet by USA Today bestselling author Giana Darling.



“She was too good and I was too bad, but life wasn’t black and white, and somehow, together, we made more sense than we did separately. Night and day. Ice and fire. A matched set.”


This was one emotional, drama-filled rollercoaster of an ending to the Dark Dream duet, let me tell ya! There are a lot of parts I enjoyed seeing play-out, but there were also a few that I felt it could’ve done without, or that it was just a smidge anti-climactic.

After the cliffhanger from Dangerous Temptation that left me itching to find out what happens to Bianca and Tiernan next, I had some relatively high expectations of Beautiful Nightmare. I was left with quite a handful of questions that I needed answers to, and a cast of supporting characters I wanted to see more of.

So, did this book deliver what I hoped it would?

Yes… and no.

Whilst there’s character growth from both protagonists with a progressive storyline, I can’t help but wonder if it could’ve been more in-depth? I just wasn’t as gripped with this book as I was with the first one. Maybe this is one instance where it’s more of an “it’s me, not you” situation because I just didn’t get the intensity and edge-of-your-seat vibe that would’ve otherwise had me effortlessly glued to the pages.

Tiernan Morelli is the outcast of his family who’s been tormented physically, emotionally, and mentally throughout his life, and seeing him turn his life around and finally come from behind the shadows of not only his father, but his siblings was one of those fist-pumping moments. But call me bloodthirsty, with how this story was progressing to a gradual build-up, I was expecting to see action-packed scenes that actually packed a wallop! In my opinion, it was a bit of a hit and miss at times.

But in saying that, the more the story proceeded, the more I was hooked on his character development and personal story. More so than Bianca’s— and I think that has a lot to do with her youthful, naïve character. There’s no doubt that Tiernan and Bianca have this intense yet fitting chemistry between them, but Bianca has a lot of adolescent rebelliousness to her that often than not got her into some deep shite. There’s drama, and then there’s eye-rolling drama. 😬🙄

This book ended up being one of those books where I was more interested in seeing the secondary characters. Tiernan and Bianca’s relationship was hot, but I’m not going lie, the brotherhood and camaraderie amongst Tiernan and The Gentlemen of Lion Court was the highlight for me. I love a band of misfits who form their own family, and these guys were just that! Add in the light-hearted comic relief of Bianca’s little brother into the fold, and the friendship within just elevated my reading experience!

With the exception of a few plotlines being a little more fast-paced resulting in abrupt conclusions, for the most part it’s relatively well-paced storytelling. There’s twists and turns, some more predictable than others, but not enough to put you off from continuing. Although it’s told from dual points of view, for a tortured-antihero-loving-reader like myself, Tiernan’s perspective is the one to lookout for. He’s a complicated character with a lot of struggles and battle scars, and getting an insight into his mentality is one of the more appealing aspects of this story.

“The heartless Tiernan Morelli has fallen.”

Side Note: I’ve read the majority of the books in the Midnight Dynasty and all the characters have similar views on their family dynamics with the head of their respective households being the main source of concern. Here’s a silly question— with all the resources, power, and energy these siblings have, why oh why haven’t Bryant Morelli and Caroline Constantine been “taken out” yet?!! 🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️ (Hmm. There goes my thirst for bloodshed rearing its ugly head again). Lol.

This book may not have held the same level of oomph Dangerous Temptation did, looking back at their story as whole (the entire duet) I’m still left contented. The expansion of the Midnight Dynasty world with the Constantines and the Morellis will always have me intrigued. The addition of Tiernan Morelli was an unexpected yet happy surprise. Not only did we get another swoon-worthy Morelli brother in our midst, but he added another layer and contrast to the entire Morelli clan. The world-building is ever-growing and I’m finding the more books are added, the more intricate the Midnight Dynasty world becomes.

I’m curious to see what the epilogue entails *as this review went live, the exclusive epilogue had yet to be released*. But in the meantime, I can proudly say I’ve ticked off “guardian/ward taboo romance” off my romance trope list! 🤭🙌

A contemporary, billionaire romance with an edge of just deserts! This duet is not to be missed if you’re working your way through the Midnight Dynasty books.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

Thank you to Giana Darling and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advance copy! 💛


🕊 Read my reviews for the Dark Dream Duet!

Prequel: Bad Dream by Giana Darling

Book One: Dangerous Temptation by Giana Darling

More Midnight Dynasty reviews!


🥿 Cinderella Trilogy | Book One:

Stroke Of Midnight by K. Webster

🖤 Hearts Trilogy | Book One:

Stolen Hearts by M. O’Keefe

🌹 Beauty and the Beast Trilogy | Book One:

Secret Beast by Amelia Wilde

🔥 Hellfire Club | Book One:

Wicked Idol by Becker Gray

Standalone Taboo Romance:

Lessons In Sin by Pam Godwin

🎨 The Collector Trilogy | Book One:

Dark Reign by Amelia Wilde


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


With This Ring by Natasha Knight

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



When I rescued Scarlett De La Cruz from her tower it’s not like her prospects were looking so great. You’d think she’d show a little gratitude. Thank me for putting my ring on her finger and marking her as mafia property.

My property.

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

Not Scarlett, though.

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

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

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





If you’re ever in the mood for a reaaaaally honest to goodness mafia captor/ captive romance, I can without a doubt tell you to check out any one of Natasha Knight’s books! And after having finished reading With This Ring…? I can easily say it’s become one of my faves! 😍😍😍

The minute I started this book, I didn’t put it down. I read the entire thing in one sitting and I have no regrets! Yeah… I probably should’ve taken my time considering this is only part one of the duet but whatevs! 🤷‍♀️ I’ll read again it when it gets closer to the release date of book two; I Take Thee!

I’m no stranger to Knight’s books, having read quite a few in the last year. She has written quite a handful of captor/ captive mafia romances, and she has perfected the balance of a light and dark atmosphere, the romance, and the suspense. I was completely invested and hooked on Cristiano Grigori and Scarlett De La Cruz’s story. I love the mixture of the mafia and the cartel in this one, with an enemies-to-lovers romance between our anti-hero and heroine.


What starts out as a war between territorial, power-hungry families, turns into a struggle for vengeance. But what’s left of both sides are forced together as bigger unsuspecting threats are on the rise and has taken aim at both the Grigori and the De La Cruz families.

I’m a big fan of Knight’s writing style and she has a way of easily getting you to fall in love with her characters. Cristiano is a scarred hero who is secretly struggling with life, and hates showing any vulnerability. But it’s his sensitive side that makes him all the more human and authentic. He’s not necessarily the most damaged hero I’ve read of Knight’s but he still manages to have an air of intimidation, darkness, and strength to him. And when you discover his story, you can’t help but feel a little protective of the guy (despite the fact that he can kill in a blink of an eye).

Scarlett is broken in her own way and just as tortured as Cristiano. What I like about her is despite what she’s going through, she still has the character in her to be selfless. Her emotions and actions are understandable, and you can’t help but root for her to succeed.

Cristiano and Scarlett are driven, strong-willed characters. Their story is very much family bound. They may be rivals, but they have more in common when it comes to family than they are willing to admit.

There’s a lot of push and pull between these two. It’s hard to pick a side because honestly, you want things to go both Cristiano and Scarlett’s way. The character growth is slow yet gradual, and as their journey progresses they start opening up. Putting aside the sparks between them, it’s the quiet moments where they’re simply learning more about each other that are some of my favourite parts to read through.

As a mafia romance lover, this book ticks every box in my checklist of what I consider an amazing mafia romance book.

  • Storyline with a solid, well-developed plot
  • Vivid, expanding world-building
  • Complex, intriguing characters you can connect with
  • Chemistry between its protagonists
  • Suspense and unpredictability
  • Secondary characters that add another layer
  • Swoon-worthy romance!


What keeps you engaged in this story is the constant unease of what could happen next between Cristiano and Scarlett. They’re from enemy families — one seeking retribution, whilst the other is just wanting to survive, yet both unaware that they share the want and need for freedom from responsibilities that’s been demanded of them. The build-up is 🔥 in this one, people!

Call me cruel, but seeing them struggle with their feelings, and be in constant denial was entertaining as hell to see! 😈😄 I wanna say theirs is a slow burn romance but to be honest I think it’s because I simply wanted more! Knight is skilled at teasing her readers with just enough raunchiness to the point where the anticipation for a full-blown scene will emotionally kill you. Lol. Sigh.

A well-paced storytelling, told from both Cristiano and Scarlett’s points of view. You’ll see backstories to these two families. It’s very modern Romeo & Juliet set in the underworld. There’s a few vital secondary characters who are just as evasive as our lead characters that you’ll wanna keep an eye on. There’s also a few sub-plots that interconnect with the main that’ll have you itching to uncover. As I mention earlier, it’s suspenseful. It keeps you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end and will have you grumbling when you discover how it concludes. Ugh. 🙈🙉🙊

If you love a forbidden-esque enemies-to-lovers trope with tons of heated banter between your protagonists, I think you’ll thoroughly enjoy this read. It does have some sensitive subject matter that may be triggering for some readers but not overly graphic or detailed. I would still advise that with the dark themes included, readers 18+ only!


Overall, another much loved book from Knight that I am happily recommending to my friends and fellow romance readers. It’s such an intense, emotional story of two broken souls who are left to pick up the pieces and fight on! This is the first book in the To Have and To Hold Duet, and I love it so much that I consider the brutal cliffhanger well-worth the pain!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Natasha Knight and Give Me Books Promotions for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!


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


Hate Me by A. Jade

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



A Stepbrother Bully Romance

I’m the whispers in the dark you can’t ignore.

The bully you can’t run away from.

I’m the tormentor who makes your life a living hell.

The villain you love to hate.

I’m the vicious stepbrother sleeping in the next room.

The one who knows all your secrets.

And I’ll stop at nothing to make you pay.

WARNING: This book is recommended for mature readers due to graphic language, sexual content, and dark elements. It is NOT a safe read.



This was one devastatingly heartbreaking story of epic proportions! Whilst it’s a gripping read from start to finish, it’s not for the fainthearted.

“I’m not afraid of anything, Stray.”


There is some seriously sensitive subject matter within that can be triggering for anyone to read. Be aware that it contains violence, abuse, harassment, and sexual content not suitable for underage readers. Although set in a high school backdrop, the target audience is more New Adult and onwards due to the theme of the book and its explicit content.

There’s more to the story of Knox and Aspen, their step-sibling rivalry and their twisted attraction to one another. So much more. It’s complex, troubling, and at times sickeningly disturbing to see what their lives are truly like outside of the façade they show everyone else around them.

The world-building is exceptionally well-developed right along with the characters themselves. This is a dark contemporary romance with thriller and suspense thrown into the mix. There is so much going on at once but it’s easy to follow, will have you second-guessing everything, and have you trying to figure out what everyone’s deal is. It’s riveting, angsty, and unpredictable.

Told from both Knox and Aspen’s points of view with occasional flashbacks to past memories here and there. They’ll take you on a painful journey of struggle, hate, and deceit. Black Mountain Academy can be a harsh environment but it’s nothing in comparison to their household. Things are not what they seem and it gradually unravels.

“Love always leads to pain.”


You’ll see appearances from other characters from Black Mountain Academy, which really interconnects the books in the collection together regardless of each book being standalone reads. The secondary characters in Hate Me are just as complex as Knox and Aspen are. Each one with their own strong personalities and motives to their actions. I don’t think I’ve read a book that has so many secondary characters who all play a vital role in expanding the world-building and maintaining the atmosphere throughout, which in this case is a thrilling, teeth-clenching mood. This is one roller coaster ride with a whole bunch of loops and steep dives. Even if you suspect anything, trust me when I say it’s nowhere near as off-the-wall as the truth when it gets divulged. Your mind will be reeling, you’ll be processing it for some time, and you may possibly be in a confused state too. 

My only critique is that the ending felt a little abrupt in comparison to the the rest of the book. Knox and Aspen’s relationship is a slow and painful burn and I would’ve loved for an extended epilogue. But meh. It’s not a deal breaker. I just would’ve loved more. Lol. 

A steady-paced storytelling with a gradual build-up. Honestly, when I think about this book, the first thing that really comes to mind is how unsuspecting it truly is, because as I mentioned earlier, it’s more than meets the eye. The blurb alone only skims the surface of Knox and Aspen’s story. But on the other hand, that may just be a good thing. The less you know, the better— it’ll heighten the experience. 😉  

Twisted, gritty and psychotic. Perfect read for dark romance fans. I would recommend it.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you to Ashley Jade and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

🔔 Interested in reading Hate Me? Grab a copy here: Amazon US  |  Amazon CA  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon AU


Read more Black Mountain Academy reviews!

📕 Pretty When She Cries by A. Zavarelli

📕 Mr. Heartbreaker by Jordan Marie


The Entire Black Mountain Academy


About The Series

Black Mountain Academy: From the outside, it may look perfect and ideal — school uniforms, exemplary teachers, privileged students. But anyone on the inside could tell you about the debauchery, the scandals, the drama, the forbidden–taboo–romances.

Because where Black Academy is concerned… never judge a book by its cover.

Black Mountain Academy, a multi-author series of standalone books filled with drama, angst, love, lust, and everything in-between. Light or dark, twisted or sweet, the BMA series has something for every reader!

For more details on each book in the series, check out the Black Mountain Academy webpage: Black Mountain Academy


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


The Date Arrangement by A. Zavarelli

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn




A romance anthology with over THIRTY original, never-before-seen stories from bestselling and award-winning authors. Each piece was written for this anthology to benefit firefighters and wildlife in Australia. AUSTRALIA is only available for a limited time, so one-click your copy before it’s gone.

AUTHORS INCLUDE: Penny Reid, Meredith Wild, Carly Phillips, Sierra Simone, Emma Scott, Susan Stoker, Kennedy Ryan, Willow Aster, Skye Warren, Kylie Scott, Aleatha Romig, Willow Winters, AL Jackson, Julia Kent, Rebecca Yarros, Nana Malone, Giana Darling, Emma Hart, Chelle Bliss, Noelle Adams, A. Zavarelli, Jenika Snow, Dylan Allen, Kayti McGee, Robin Covington, Mary Catherine Gebhard, Melanie Moreland, Parker S. Huntington, Nana Malone, Jewel E. Ann, Annabel Joseph, Celia Aaron, Michelle Heard, Brighton Walsh, Tamsen Parker, Pam Godwin, Kayti McGee

All royalties from this project will be donated to relief funds in Australia, with 50% going to a firefighter charity and 50% going to a wildlife charity. We aren’t affiliated or endorsed by these charities. We are simply authors who want to support an important cause.



This review is for The Date Arrangement by A. Zavarelli only!

First off, as an Aussie, I want to say how incredibly kind-hearted and thoughtful these amazing group of authors are for thinking of Australia during the bushfire crisis that occurred the past summer, and for generously donating the proceeds from this anthology to charities.

I may be a little late in reading this anthology (as it’s been sitting in my kindle since last year), I figured one year late and with Australia Day here, it’s no better time to crack it open.

This review is for one of my all time favourite romance authors: A. Zavarelli. Her story The Date Arrangement was the one I wanted to read the most out of the collection… hence this review now.

Let’s get down to the most important detail, shall we? Did I like it?

Yes. Yes I did! 😁


I’ve read a few of Zavarelli’s novellas and short stories in the past and I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed with this one. She has a knack for getting you to feel and connect with her characters in such a short time frame.

This story was no different. It’s technically insta-love romance but Zavarelli effortlessly writes it in a way where you get some world-building, character backstory, and a budding relationship between our hero/ heroine before they hook up.

The Date Arrangement is about Daxon, an Aussie bloke who runs his family’s successful winery. Willow is hired to be Daxon’s date for an event at his estate celebrating his winery. She’s an American actress backpacking across Australia, and whilst this isn’t in her usual job description, she figures why not? She could use the money. It’s just one date. Nothing to it, right? Only, when she turns up to the event to meet Daxton, things are not exactly what they seem.

They’re both apprehensive at first but as they start conversing, they realize there’s a sense of comfort between them. I appreciate the fact that before they took a chance at anything romantic, they got to know each other a little first. It gives this novella some substance. It’s a big reason as to why I enjoy Zavarelli’s short stories as I do her full-length novels. It’s never fluff and you find yourself easily connecting with said characters and investing in their developing relationship.

They’re both instantly attracted to one another but there’s also a subtle but obvious click between the two when they’re talking. The chemistry only gets zingier from there. Both Dax and Willow give you an insight to their upbringing and their lives now. Their conversation felt very organic and realistic.. and if I may say so, had pretty good first date vibes!

It solely focuses on our lead characters, but there’s a few secondary characters that give this story some dimension. The addition of Dax’s grandfather displays his family upbringing, and his two best mates add the Aussie vibe into the mix.

“I’m Dave. This is Bazza. We’re Daxo’s mates.”



Zavarelli did a relatively good job at getting her Aussie slang down pat. I even snort-laughed at the nicknames of her characters. It couldn’t get more Australian with a name like Bazza! LOL.

It’s a cute character-driven romance. A little predictable in the end but who cares? Although, I would’ve loved another paragraph or two just so the ending didn’t feel as rushed as the rest of the story. But overall, it’s a great in-between read and I was left in a happy sigh!

Zavarelli’s contemporary romances are just as gripping as her dark romances, and if you’re a fan, this one is not to be missed!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

🔔 Interested in reading the Australia anthology? Grab the paperback here: Amazon


A safe and peaceful Australia Day to my fellow Aussies.

Happy reading to all, and as always, catch you in my next one! Xo


Prince Charming by K. Webster

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



Winston Constantine is no prince charming…

I crave him so badly I think I might be losing my mind. He’s right in front of me, but he’s just as remote as my dreams of getting away from my stepbrothers. I keep playing his twisted games, and I want to stay just as distant as he is. But I can’t. I never could. I’ve fallen for him. Hopelessly. Irrevocably.

But Winston isn’t a lover, he’s a business venture.

A way for me to pay for college.

A ticket out.

He’s never pretended to be anything other than that.

I can’t blame him for making me fall in love.

There can be no happily ever after between a maid and a prince, no matter what the stories say.




“I’m the villain and my story doesn’t end with a carriage ride into the sunset.”

Okay. Okay. With the first book (Stroke of Midnight) I was a little skeptical, a little unsure if it was a book I could truly like or not… but after having read the second book? Yeah, I’m sold that yes this book is one hell of an acquired taste but hot damn not only did I binge read it, enjoyed it, but now I’m anticipating the conclusion to the series! Eeep! 🙉

I can undoubtedly say the I am invested in Ash and Winston’s twistedly cruel, yet somehow endearing screwed-up relationship. The constant banter between not only the two of them but with the rest of the Constantine siblings (especially Perry) had me chuckling to myself all throughout (and getting weird side-glances from people as they notice me smiling to myself). 😅

It certainly has a great balance of that light-hearted banter and uplifting moments to the darker, unsettling scenes that occur. As with the first book, this one has sensitive subject matter that may be triggering to some readers. Please be aware that bullying, attempted sexual and physical assault are present.

When I’m not smiling like a loon, I found myself holding my breath at times. Webster has brilliantly set the mood and atmosphere with every scene, making you feel like you’re right there alongside the characters. The build-up, the intensity of some situations had me digging my nails into my palms. It’s one of those stories where you know the pin is eventually going to drop but even though it does, it still takes you aback like you didn’t see it coming… *shakes head* 😲🙈

Such a juicy, entertaining continuance from Stroke of Midnight. It continues right from where it ended and goes straight to Ash and Winston’s full-out complicated kinky relationship. You must read the first book in order to read this one because the series is one whole continuous storyline. With the first book, Ash and Winston were still finding their groove and testing each other’s limits. In this one… they are completely comfortable in each other’s space and have fallen into somewhat of a routine.

As the title has most likely given it away, this book focuses more so on the anti-hero, anti-prince-charming himself, Winston Constantine. Whilst we get both protagonists’ points of view, Winston’s is ultimately what I got hooked onto seeing develop. He’s a businessman — powerful, intimidating, and always get his way. But the more he spends time with Ash, the more his second-guessing his feelings for her.

It’s an interesting contrast to Ash’s young, open book, and usually light-hearted personality. She’s a bubbly teenager, but she also has determination and backbone.


Besides the whole kinky, BDSM erotica weaved throughout this story (which I don’t usually go for in my romance reads), I can’t say an age-gap romance trope is another element I read a lot of. But in saying that, this book (and this entire series in general) has become an exception. I’m not familiar enough with Webster’s writing style, as she’s still a relatively new-to-me author, but based on the two books I’ve read, both of which are from this series, I can say her storytelling is easy to follow, the world-building creative, and the characters are intriguing. These books may be considered guilty pleasure reads, but there not at all fluff. There some depth and progression throughout the story and with the characters.

I adored the push and pull between Ash and Winston, and seeing them battling with their inner monologue. It reminds me somewhat of a soap opera with all the constant drama surrounding the Constantines and the amount of trouble that seems to pop up at every turn. But there are certain situations that are very much relatable that you can’t help but feel emotional about.

The secondary characters in this book are on point! Whether they’re fun-loving, goodhearted heroes, or vile, disturbingly sick villains… they definitely added layers to this modern fairy tale. You’ll either be giggling, or be in a murderous mood. And for those who cry easily like I do, you may just surprisingly get teary-eyed too. Who knows?! Besides the romance, there’s strong familial plot points as well. You get an insight to the Constantine family dynamics, as well as Ash’s one with her father, step monster mother, and (ugh barf!) step-brothers.

Whilst I overall found myself needing to know what happens next. I did get inklings to certain characters and situations that I’m predicting will play out in the third and final book. I don’t want to blurt out names and spoil it for you guys wanting to read this, but a certain friend is looking awfully dodgy that I’m keeping my eyes peeled! *narrows eyes* 🤔        

If you love the classic tale of Cinderella told in a dirty, raunchy retelling — that I wouldn’t recommend reading out in public, then you have got to read this one! If you haven’t read Stroke of Midnight, start with that one first. Grab some good grub and some booze, and discover the world of the Constantine family, of secrecy, deception, and devious plotting.

A dark, contemporary romance that’ll have you reading until the wee hours!    

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you K. Webster and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💙


Read my review for the first book in the Cinderella series!

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

📘 Stroke Of Midnight by K. Webster


Happy reading, guys! As always, catch you in my next one! Xo


The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea by Amelia Wilde

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



A modern-day pirate.

An heiress lost at sea.

And the treasure of a lifetime.

He’s beautiful. Calculating. Cruel. And he’s taken me hostage.

When pirates board my boyfriend’s yacht, I jump overboard to save myself. Drifting asea. Until one man rescues me from the endless ocean.

Except he has plans of his own. I’m worth too much money for ransom. He’ll keep me on his ship and in his bed. The real danger lies in his dark-depth eyes. He wants more from me than money. Than passion. He wants everything.

He rescued me, but I’m far from safe.

There’s an entire sea of danger threatening to drag me under.

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by USA Today bestselling author Amelia Wilde is a dangerously sexy contemporary romance that will blow you out of the water.



My first book from Amelia Wilde, a new-to-me author. Whilst the blurb was short and sweet, it was enough to get me eager to reading this book.


Now that I’ve read it? 🤔 The prominent thought the comes to mind is that it wasn’t completely what I had expected. Not only with the storyline but with the characters themselves.

But before I get into detail with my thoughts on the book, I have to mention first (as I hadn’t realized this until after I had read it) that this book is actually part of a series, and it does end on a cliffhanger. Keep that in mind if you’re considering reading it.

Okay! 👏 Now that that disclaimer is out of the way, let’s get down to the nitty gritty!

Honestly rating this book was more difficult than I thought it would be, and I feel like my rating doesn’t qualify how much I enjoyed reading it overall. But I feel like I have to justify why I couldn’t rate it a solid four stars (as much I wanted to). This story, whilst I truly found the premise intriguing, in my opinion it just fell a little flat on execution.

There’s so much mystery surrounding the protagonist and anti-hero, Poseidon. It took a little while to figure out what exactly he does for a living. The way he’s work is described is relatively vague, and that’s not even the half of it. You get introduced to his brothers (both named after Gods too), which makes you wonder if this story is more than just “a modern-day pirate” story. I found myself wondering if this is also a retelling of sorts of the Greek Mythologies — Which I would actually have loved because I’m a fan of mythologies, but unfortunately his brothers and his relationship with them didn’t go into enough detail for me to get any sort of connection to that part of the story. It’s evident there’s history amongst the brothers but it’s skimmed across and you’re left feeling like you walked into a meeting where everyone is already in mid-conversation and you’re trying to catch yourself up.

Now, I don’t know if Wilde has plans to write the brothers’ stories in the future but if not, I’m at least hoping we’ll get to learn more about them in the next book. I like the idea that these brothers could be a lot more than meets the eye.

This story also starts out with a relatively present day atmosphere with Ashley being introduced as a your typical rich, carefree young woman, holidaying on a yacht, and glued to her phone. But as the story progresses, the backdrop gradually changes into a dark, fantastical world of pirates where any sort of laws or rules are thrown out the window. It’s almost as if it’s in its own little bubble within reality, and Ashley has the unfortunate luck of being thrust into it.


It’s all very intriguing reading through this story as it slowly unravels. I found myself just as captivated by Poseidon as Ashley was. He rarely gives anything away, and you’re left feeling both frustration and anxiety for him to reveal anything about himself or his feelings. I want to say there’s some character development there but I can’t help but assume that this book is only an introduction to this mysterious modern day pirate that is Poseidon, and that we’ll see real growth in the next book. Nevertheless, it’s enough for you to realize that there’s a lot more to him. If you love grey characters as much as I do, who are just a little bit of a complicated puzzle, then I think you’ll like Poseidon. 😄

To be real with you, I didn’t agree with all his actions and his reasoning behind them, but I strongly believe that his character has the potential for growth and improvement.


And Ashley, bless her… She needs some street smarts in her, stat! She comes off as naïve and sheltered, and as much as I really wanted to snap some sense into her on more than a couple of occasions, there’s no denying that she no way deserved the things she goes through in this story. Good thing there’s a few goodhearted people on her side.

There’s nice beginnings of world-building present with a couple of memorable secondary characters in play. It’s not overly in depth or layered but as I mentioned earlier with the character development, I’m hoping we get the “hearty meat” of these elements in the next book.

A good amount of chemistry and zingy scenes between Ashley and Poseidon kept me engaged throughout. I never knew where the story was heading so that was another factor that had me needing to know what happened next and not wanting to put the book down.

It’s a relatively quick read. With an entertaining storyline coolly consisting of pirate wars, a treasure hunt, a damsel in distress, and a smidge of Greek mythology thrown into the mix. I haven’t come across a smexy-as-sin pirate since Killian Jones from Once Upon a Time. Add in Captain Jack Sparrow’s savviness and his quirky but good-natured crew, and you have yourself Poseidon and his men! 🏴‍☠️


If you enjoy dark contemporary romance books with a captor/captive trope, then I say add this one to your list! But be prepared for the cliffhanger! Hopefully the next book won’t be too far along! 🤞 Please be aware that there is some sensitive subject matter included that may trigger some readers.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

Thank you Amelia Wilde and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💙

🔔 Want to read it? Grab your copy here: Amazon  |  Apple Books  |  Nook


Hope you enjoyed this review! Be sure to check out the book if you’re interested! Happy reading. Catch you in my next one! Xo


The Patriot by Jennifer Millikin

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



I’m a soldier.
A cattle rancher.
A Hayden.

My family’s legacy is spread out in front of me, just waiting for me to seize it. If it weren’t for one outdated rule, I’d be the owner of the Hayden Cattle Company and my aging father could retire.

When Dakota Wright shows up to buy and develop twenty acres of Hayden land, I see more than a pretty mouth and strawberry blonde hair. I see a way around the decree keeping me from getting what I want.

And, as luck would have it, Dakota has a big problem of her own. We strike two deals: one for the land, and a second that’ll make both our problems a distant memory.

It isn’t too long before I realize I’m in over my head. I’ve convinced myself the ends should justify the means, but everything begins to fall apart when my birthright is no longer all that I’m after.

I never thought there’d be anything I could love more than my ranch and my country.
I was wrong.

Turns out, I want it all.
Including her.




I’m giddy with enthusiasm… why? Because I’m pretty sure this new-to-me author just caught my attention with The Patriot!

When I initially signed for an advanced copy I assumed (based on the blurb) that it’s a simple contemporary romance set out in the countryside. You know the usual… the cowboy and the city girl meet, fall in love and the rest is history. 🤷‍♀️

Whilst that short summary may be somewhat true, it doesn’t even skim the surface. This story offered so much more than what I had bargained for. The world-building alongside the character development that organically grew throughout is what made this book a phenomenal read in my books. The picture Millikin paints is so vivid and in-depth that I couldn’t help but find myself immensely invested in both Wes and Dakota’s lives.

When they’re first introduced, it seems like they don’t have a care in the world. An initial attraction pulls them towards each other and they have one magical night.

Fast forward to the present day, and that carefree night together seems like a million lightyears away. That is until they unexpectedly see each other again and old feelings and memories come flooding back.

I was hooked from the moment they made contact. Lol. I can’t put into words how much Millikin’s writing was all-consuming, addictive, and realistic. It’s a work of fiction that readers can easily connect with because the troubles that both Wes and Dakota struggle with are relatable and effects so much of our population.

Despite their personal issues, I love that they find solace in one other. They may not necessarily be willing to help themselves per se, but it doesn’t stop them from wanting or even trying to help lift some of the burden the other has on their shoulders. You cannot dislike either one of these protagonists. They’re going through hardships, they’re stubborn, secretive, and even closed off at times (especially Wes), but it’s evident that their good people and their hearts are in the right place.

Such a wholesome, heartwarming love story — and one that’s ingrained with strong family bonds and values. In this day and age (and maybe it’s also a generational thing), I find it almost a dying breed to see people who have still have strong morals and beliefs that have been passed on and taught from their parents and grandparents.

Wes is a pure gentleman. Almost an old soul (but maybe it’s due to the fact that he’s already lived such a life in his thirty-plus years). There’s no bullshitting with him. He’s determined, loyal, protective, and what I found most appealing despite his struggles, is he’s still the type of guy who know will have your back.

Dakota is a lighter personality. She’s dealing with her own issues but for the most part, she’s friendly and understanding, and full of potential she doesn’t know she has. She can be bubbly (but not in the ditzy sort of way), and her internal dialogue is a hoot! 🤭

They work so well together. A balance I found so endearing. If you enjoy reading slow burn romances and/or a fake relationships trope, then I highly recommend you give this book a go. I can tell you now, Millikin’s Hayden Family series is definitely one I’m looking forward to continuing.

There are secondary characters in here that are just as intriguing. The Hayden family are seen as enigmatic royalties in their town. Each sibling having strong personalities of their own. As much as I enjoyed Wes and Dakota’s growing relationship, I don’t think it would’ve been the same feels without either one of their families as supporting characters in their journey (not to mention their banter would surely be missed). 😜

This is my first book of Millikin’s so I don’t have any of her previous books to compare it with, but I found her writing style effortless to follow. It’s well-paced storytelling that constantly kept me engaged. There’s a nice break of light in between the darkness so it doesn’t have that overall heavy emotional feeling.

Wes struggles with mental and emotional scarring that I thought was handled with a lot of care and sensitivity. His story brought awareness to these issues and the struggles men and women can go through when they’ve been in similar situations.

Both Wes and Dakota internally struggle with guilt that they’ve been carrying around with them, and through their journey they gradually share and open themselves to finding happiness again. Aw sigh. It’s a truly heartwarming story of love and healing, with strong family ties and friendships. I couldn’t put it down, and finishing it only made me eager to read the next books in the series.

  • Small Town Setting: ✔
  • Cowboys: ✔
  • Slow Burn Romance: ✔
  • Fake Relationship: ✔

It’s books like this one that make me want to read more contemporary romances. Loved it, and I would happily recommend it to any romance reader looking for a good ol’ fashion happily ever after!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you Jennifer Millikin and The Next Step PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

🔔 Interested in reading The Patriot? Grab your copy here: ​Universal Link


Happy reading, guys! Hope you’re all well. Catch you in my next one! Xo


Fugitive by K.E. Osborn

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



The club took me in.

Even though I was a cop.

The moment I handed in my badge, I knew becoming an outlaw would change my life forever.

As an ex-cop turned biker, my job is to stay loyal. To the club and my brothers. That is my sole purpose. Even though the reason I joined is no longer with us.

Losing love is hard, but life must go on.

Especially for my kids.

Even if they’re just out of reach.

Now I’m a fugitive, an outlaw, a ghost.

But I’ve run into someone I didn’t see coming.

A ray of pure sunshine.

Just when I’d given up on family, now I’m ready to stand and fight.

But perhaps the battle is not where I think it lies.

Maybe my ray of sunshine will warm my life.

Or maybe the darkness surrounding her will freeze me to my very soul.

** From International Bestselling Author K E Osborn comes the highly anticipated third book in the Houston Defiance MC Series. **




Ooo-wee! Kevlar’s book did not disappoint. Cop turned biker?! Yeah you know there’s going to be an interesting story there. 

The first two books in the series gave little snippets here and there of Kevlar being an ex-cop and leaving it all behind for his wife, and to join the Houston Defiance MC. This story delves into detail not only with how that all came about but what’s gone down since becoming a biker.

I kid you not, not even three pages in and Kevlar’s story made me tear up. Totally unexpected. But it sucked in me in deep. Right off the bat it focused more on his personal story than the MC — which I normally would be bummed about, but I adored how different this book is to the previous two that were more on the darker side. Maybe it’s because Kevlar came from a policing background, unlike Zero and Wraith who both had a harder upbringing, who knows? But whatever it is, it’s giving Kevlar that protective, badass outer shell with an oh-so deliciously, ooey-gooey sweet as sin center personality! As much as I love Zero, I can’t deny Kevlar is a more level-headed and balanced person. 😅     

Let’s do a rundown of Kevlar real quick, shall we?

  • Ex-cop turned Biker: ✔
  • Single Dad: ✔
  • Kindhearted: ✔
  • Protective Alpha: ✔
  • Thoughtful: ✔
  • Loyal as they come: ✔

I absolutely enjoyed reading the hell out of this book as a whole, but there are certain things either said or done that I didn’t completely agree. All very minor. It’s no way a deal breaker or even something that has put me off said characters involved. Believe me this book is just as riveting, just as nail-biting as its predecessors. I actually think I might love it more than Explosive. Eeep. 🙈🤫

Such a character driven storyline, and one full of growth. I truly appreciate Osborn for pacing Kevlar when it came to his feelings, to moving forward, and giving him time to sort out his emotions in regards to Em and Jovie. It made it all the more authentic. A beautifully told story of love, finding peace, and new beginnings. You instantly feel connected to Kevlar. He’s relatively open about his thoughts and apprehensions. It’s one of the reasons why he’s just a little different from the rest of the brothers in the MC. He may put up a tough front when needed but he can switch it off just as easily and simply be a man who’s heartbroken, a little lost, and who can admit that he wants a change but doesn’t know if or how he can achieve it.    

From all the couples that have been paired so far in this series, Kevlar and Jovie are by far the most harmonious and dare I say, whose journey is soothing to the soul to read about. There’s just something so calming about their relationship that had me feeling so at ease whenever they were together. Jovie couldn’t have been more perfectly suited for Kevlar and his family.   

Combine that with the most understanding and supportive secondary characters who are Kevlar’s in-laws and Jovie’s bestie Savanah that just assisted in making their budding relationship as effortless as possible (putting aside Kevlar’s own hang ups, of course).

Honorary mention to Kevlar’s children too. Not gonna lie, I haven’t read many books that included children I didn’t find annoying as hell. 🙉😅 His however, were adorable as fuck. They’re young, mischievous but it’s obvious they were raised with manners. Hallelujah!   

Well paced. Told from dual points of view. Yeah okay, a few predictable plot points but the suspenseful atmosphere is steady throughout with plot twists that WERE surprising to see — which may or may not provide a segue to future storylines. Nevertheless, the possibilities are exciting to think about! 🤩

There’s an obvious dynamic between the families in this story— not only within the Houston Defiance MC, but with Kevlar’s own. You can see the significant difference between the two worlds Kevlar is connected to that was never intended to mesh together… that is, until all hell breaks loose and common ground is found.

*happy sigh* A completely gripping MC romance story full of depth and such heart. Not only has Osborn created such a vivid world that’s expanding with each new book, she’s included relatable, imperfect characters you can’t help but love and root for. It’s become one of my favourite second-chance romance books to date! Although part of a series, it can be read as a standalone, but I still highly recommend you read the previous books first to get the full picture of their world.   

An amazing addition to the Houston Defiance MC. Already looking forward to reading the next one!  

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you to K.E. Osborn and The Next Step PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜


Read my reviews for The Houston Defiance MC series!

Book One: Explosive by K.E. Osborn

Book Two: Addictive by K.E. Osborn


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


For Love And Honor by Jody Hedlund

Another old review I never posted. 🙈 But better late, than never!

This was one of the very first historical romances I ever read (before I even knew it was considered “historical romance” because at the time I was clueless about sub-genres). But anywho — I borrowed it at my local library on a whim. Glad I did too!




Lady Sabine is harboring a skin blemish, one, that if revealed, could cause her to be branded as a witch, put her life in danger, and damage her chances of making a good marriage. After all, what nobleman would want to marry a woman so flawed?

Sir Bennet is returning home to protect his family from an imminent attack by neighboring lords who seek repayment of debts. Without fortune or means to pay those debts, Sir Bennet realizes his only option is to make a marriage match with a wealthy noblewoman. As a man of honor, he loathes the idea of courting a woman for her money, but with time running out for his family’s safety, what other choice does he have?

As Lady Sabine and Sir Bennet are thrust together under dangerous circumstances, will they both be able to learn to trust each other enough to share their deepest secrets? Or will those secrets ultimately lead to their demise?

*** This is Book 3 in the An Uncertain Choice series (aka Noble Knights Series).



As mentioned earlier, I borrowed this book from my local library on a whim liking how the blurb sounded. But I hadn’t realized at the time that this was part of a series… and the last book too (check the edit below)! What were the chances?!

(But note to self — Get onto Goodreads first and research before borrowing books!)

I’m usually not a fan of reading books out of order in a series, despite the fact that they can all be read as standalone. I’m obsessive compulsive that way, but I didn’t want it to go to waste before I had to return it so… I read it! 😄

Thank goodness each book in the series has different protagonists with completely separate story lines. The thing that connects each book is that the characters all know each other one way or another.

I feel like I’ve been reading YA fantasy fiction with so much detailed romance (that it should technically be in the NA category), so this was a nice, simple change of pace. This book was quoted as “clean” historical fiction and I absolutely agree. It has the cute, lovey-dovey, hallmark romance going for it that still makes you grin.


Sabine is a spunky, strong-willed protagonist who has her moments of teenage rebelliousness. But you gotta love her for it. Her lighthearted banter between her grandmother and especially with Sir Bennet is what made this story all the more enjoyable. Yes, they were stuck in the middle of a dangerous battle with secrets up in the air but boy, I couldn’t help but swoon during the scenes where Sabine and Bennet were together and wondering how the other truly feels about.

There’s a little bit of magic and curses wrapped around Sabine that’s affected her ability to trust and open herself up to new people. Things are not what they seem.

An overall nice, steady developing romance with just a little bit of suspense and secrecy thrown in that’ll keep you engaged. There’s a simple little world-building here, enough to keep you picturing castles, pretty dresses, chivalry, and with it — seedy minions! 😜

RATING: ♥♥♥½


This was an enjoyable read! 👍 If you have a few hours to kill and looking for a quick read, I highly recommend this one! Ooh and the rest of the series too!


Side Note: After checking Goodreads, there’s apparently a fourth book; A Loyal Heart to be released sometime this year! I hope it does get released, I’m liking this series so far.

**EDIT: Since this is a super old review that I never got around to posting, my guess is the fourth book HAS been released. Although I can’t say for sure as I never did get around to finishing this series (and I hadn’t looked at on Goodreads since). 😅 But I still would recommend it though. It’s clean, adorably sweet, clean romance books. 


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


The Hunted by Bethany-Kris

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn



Let the hunt begin …

After witnessing the murder of his mother by a mermaid, Prince Eryx Bloodhurst of Atlas makes a deal to sedate his need for vengeance: they’ll catch the mermaid who did the deed, but he’ll pay for it with his crown.

Arelle, third princess of the Blu Sea, has never known the true cruelty of the forbidden lands firsthand, but she will soon. The halfling prince with murder in his eyes and the sea’s songs in his blood will make sure of that.

He should kill her.
Perhaps, keeping her might be worse.

Two kingdoms are falling. One king is losing it all and another threatens to ruin everything. The rules of the land and sea are changing. Secrets of the past are spilling.

And all because of a prince and his little mermaid—whether they live or die—nothing in the realm will ever be the same.

In The Hunted, Bethany-Kris opens a new world—the 9INE REALMS—for readers with a dark fairy tale retelling, and pulls inspiration from the cult classic favorite and the Hans Christian Andersen original to redefine what it means to be The Little Mermaid.

#thehuntedrelease #bethanykristhehunted #9INERealms #darkfairytaleretelling #bethanykrisnewrelease




Oooooh man. Lots of thoughts are swimming (no pun intended) around in my head after finishing this one. The first one being… what a way to end it. Although this was the start of Bethany-Kris’ new fantasy series.. for some silly reason I had it in my head that it would be a series of standalones. Doh!

This book, despite finishing on a nice enough ending–it is in no way over! To be honest, these days I don’t have the patience or motivation to read books that leave its readers hanging. It’s plain mean and downright depressing and it’s highly unlikely I continue with them… but The Hunted left me needing to know what’ll happen next! NEEDING! ASAP!

But I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let’s go back a second. The Hunted is a dark and most definitely an adult retelling of the fairy tale classic; The Little Mermaid.


No Disney Prince Eric here. Nuh-uh. Prince Eryx is gritty, unyielding and possessive! After witnessing his mother’s murder, at first I could understand and sympathize with his need to exact revenge.. but along the way he becomes swayed and second-guessing sets in in regards to his plans, and I ended up just as as confused about his actions as he was.

There were times I seriously wanted to slap him upside the head, shake him, anything to snap him out of it and to make up his damn mind. I had ongoing love/ hate feels for Eryx. There were times I found him to be protective, sweet and heartfelt, but then he does something that completely has me taken aback that I question whether or not I actually want Arelle with the guy.

Although I can’t say Arelle’s attitude is any better. Haha. My first impressions of her was that she was sensible, reliable and smart enough to know better. But that quickly evaporated after her encounter with Prince Eryx. She became rash, rebellious and well… careless.

The funny thing is despite some of their actions rubbing me the wrong way, I couldn’t help but enjoy the anticipation of seeing further developments between the two.



I know I’ll have to reread the book again at another time to really let everything sink in. For the time being though, my thoughts and feelings towards Eryx and Arelle individually are a mixed bag. I haven’t completely warmed up to their personalities yet. But together? Their chemistry is palpable. The sparks between them is what kept me reading 😀 And this may be weird and I’m sure I’m in the minority but I actually enjoyed the scenes where they just talked. Or the moments when they were apart and just thought of each other.. *mumbles* More than when they were hooking up.

Don’t get me wrong, I like a good bump and grind scene in my romance books just as much as the next romance reader, but I also like my characters’ relationships to have substance deeper than lust; a deeper connection. Eryx and Arelle undoubtedly have the potential to have an epic love story.

This retelling has a Romeo & Juliet/ enemies to lovers vibe about it, which I loved. The complications of having a forbidden relationship is always a juicy romance trope–one that I can never get enough of!

If you enjoy slow burn romances or characters that dance around their feelings and not willing to admit it out loud in your fantasy/ romance books, then this is definitely a story worth checking out.

Besides the two main protagonists–you have disgustingly, evil villainous characters that’ll get your blood pressure up. Secondary characters that are just as shady–with ulterior motives. And an entirely different world that’ll have you wanting to be a part of… yet… not. Hehe.

This is the first book in the 9ine Realms series. I’m not sure how many books there’ll be altogether but as this one is an introduction of sorts.. I did find it wordy and somewhat detailed (I’m guessing to ensure the reader pictures Arelle’s world and how the people of the land and sea differentiate in culture and beliefs). It was a slow start for me. I didn’t get into it until about five or six chapters in. But I tell ya.. after that little hiccup, it was smooth sailing from there onwards. I couldn’t get enough of it! The story picked up pace relatively well once the mood was set and you get a gist of the characters.

This is my first Bethany-Kris book (although I already have a handful more on my kindle ready to be cracked open), so I didn’t have any expectations, comparisons or ideas on her writing style. But one thing I did realise whilst I was reading, is that I became invested… real quick! I was hooked and on the edge of my seat. Arelle and Eryx’s story is a complicated one. There’s so many people involved, there’s a war brewing and there’s definite plot twists–some of which I was not a total fan of, mind you 😛 If you could picture me now, I’d be the girl with her fist up in the air, a frown on her face, and saying “why oh why!?” to the book gods. Lol.

As much as I wanted this to be a standalone and to have a HEA, it was just too big of a world and storyline to be wrapped up in one book. Normally I would advise anyone who’s eager to read this to wait until the sequel is released to avoid the chance of a hangover buuuuuut… it’s too good to not read now! Not going to spoil it, but there is one pivotal moment in The Hunted that solidified my rating for it. It’s a moment that had me releasing a breath I didn’t even realise I was holding. It was an “oh my” moment and quite possibly my favourite scene in the book.

The Hunted is haunting, heartbreaking and brutal. You won’t believe half the things you’ll read but you won’t be able to look away from it either.

A magical start to a dark retelling. Bring on book two! Pleeeeeease!


Trigger Warning: Contains sensitive subject matter that may be triggering for some readers. It contains rape, abuse, and violence. Explicit sex scenes included. Readers 18+ only!

RATING: ♥♥♥♥/5

Thank you to Bethany-Kris and Enticing Journey Book Promotions for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜


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