Sweet Devil by Becker Gray

⚠ This review contains minor teasers!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

People like to say the devil made them do it. And they would be right. I can bend anyone to my will. After all, I am the devil of Pembroke Prep. Only one person dares defy me. The one person I’ve ever wanted to be an angel for. But she despises me almost as much as I crave her. Serafina van Doren is the one temptation I can’t indulge, not with the secrets that I keep. But with the clock running out maybe it’s time to tempt her to the dark side.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

Oh sweet baby devil, this was one hell of a smoking hot, yet torturous love story! When it came to Serafina and Rhys I didn’t know whether to fan my face from all the blush-inducing scenes, or cry frustrated tears from all their taunting moments. 🙈 Either way I thoroughly enjoyed every little bit of their story!


“I smiled a little at the opportunity to have Sera all to myself. No friends, no underlings. Just us. The devil and the queen.”


Their romance was a long time coming since they were first introduced in Wicked Idol. Their intriguing dynamic only build-up suspense as more books in the series followed and it quickly became evident that they had quite an interesting history.

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Like all the books prior, this had a zingy atmosphere that crackled whenever its protagonists were in near vicinity of one another. The banter was exhilarating and the constant one-upmanship between Sera and Rhys was as entertaining as it was jaw-dropping to see. 😈🤭

What I hadn’t expected from this story was the emotional rollercoaster ride that Rhys would take us on with his backstory and how much of his past is influencing his present day life. Have tissues nearby, because I have no doubt you will be as emotionally invested in Rhys and his story as much as I was.

The story progression was well-paced, perhaps a little brisk at times. But there’s never a dull moment as it continuously went from one development to the next, gradually turning Sera’s and Rhys’ fiery teasing into something more in-depth and heartfelt.


“Falling in love is not for the weak or the faint-hearted, because you cannot command your heart to do what you need it to do.”


They’re both outstanding individuals, and what I like about each of them is although this is ultimately a romance story, there’s complexity to these characters and they navigate through very real, very relatable life issues. I connected with Serafina’s struggles as a POC no matter her family’s high social standing. I found Rhys’ past and the impact it has had on his mentality understandable but nevertheless hard to swallow.

It was a relatively short read but it was punchy, multi-layered, and by the end left me feeling a sense of all is right with their world— as it should be. Told from dual POV, not only do we see character growth with these protagonists as they come to grips with their emotions, but it also provided insight to each of their lives outside of Pembroke Prep and into their contrasting family dynamics.

The suspense doesn’t disappoint. The band of supporting characters— the rest of the Hellfire boys and the girls who’ve all stolen their hearts have added extra oomph with their strong friendships and at times light-hearted and witty commentary. I ate up the unpredictability that came with Serafina and Rhys.

Overall, I thought it was a truly beautiful, bittersweet ending to the Hellfire Club. The much-anticipated wait for Serafina’s and Rhys’ story was well worth it. It ended up being the book from the series that evoked the deepest emotional outburst *cough* ugly cry *cough* out of me. I loved it and just like the previous books, this is one I will read again and again whenever I miss these charming Hellfire boys!


“Some things are worth the heartbreak.”


It really is the only set of books that had the right amount of pull in bringing me back to reading high school/ NA fiction again. I would absolutely recommend not just this book but the entire series to friends who love reading romance. With Rhys as the devil in disguise and Serafina as his goddess, their story had strong “love conquers all” vibes that was the perfect closer to the series.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you Becker Gray and Valentine PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💙

🔔 Interested in reading Sweet Devil? Grab your copy here: Amazon  |  Apple Books  |  Nook  |  Kobo  |  Google Play

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🔥 Read reviews for the Hellfire Club!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn
Book One: Wicked Idol by Becker Gray
Book Two: Callous Prince by Becker Gray
Book Three: Brutal Blueblood by Becker Gray
Book Four: Ruined Sinner by Becker Gray

•••

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

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A Vow Of Lust & Fury by L.P. Lovell

⚠ This review contains minor teasers!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

My uncle is the boss of the Chicago Outfit, but there’s one man even he fears, Giovanni Guerra. And he just sold me to him —as his wife. For an alliance. For power.

The boss of the New York family is beautiful, and deadly, and he stokes a fire in me that might just destroy us both. Giovanni was sold a submissive little mafia princess, but he’s about to find out that I am no one’s pawn.

The only vow I make is one of lust and fury.

A Vow of Lust and Fury is part of the Underworld Kings Universe. A multi-author series of standalone books filled with mafia families waging war, danger and violence, arranged and forced marriages, angst, love, and everything in-between.

Light or dark, twisted or sweet, the Underworld Kings has something for every reader.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

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Eeep. This is a perfect example as to why I am obsessed with dark mafia romance reads containing broody, excessively intimidating alpha heroes! AVOLAF had all the elements I love from this genre.

The premise was what initially had me wanting to read this story. From the first chapter, the protagonists had me intrigued. As it progressed, the storyline kept me engaged. There’s constant build-up and suspense, a torturous slow-burn between Gio and Emilia, and on top of that, their enemies are practically at their doorstep. Ugh. It’s one savagely edgy dark romance! 😍😍


“A better man would look away. A better man would let her go, but she’d made a fatal error; she’d drawn my attention.”


The Kiss of Death duet was the story that introduced me to Lovell, and the dark, all-out gritty mafia world she had created. This book not only lives up to the high standard that that duet had set, but it was a pleasant surprise to see the characters from said duet crossover into Gio’s and Emilia’s story. It’s honest-to-goodness like going back and visiting one of my favourite bookish worlds and seeing the gang together again. 🙌

If you haven’t read the Kiss Of Death duet, I think AVOLAF is a great introduction to their world, and the tight-knit circle of friends within. Not only will you be invested in Gio’s and Emilia’s developing relationship, but the supporting cast included will have you wanting to know their story too! The strong familial bonds amongst Gio and his friends are just as equal a highlight as the addictive push-and-pull romance.

Despite the slow burn, the storytelling is relatively fast-paced and action-packed. Lovell has created an atmosphere of uneasiness and danger surrounding Emilia and you can’t help but feel the dread right along with her. The desperation Emilia exudes has you sympathising her and the situation she’s inevitably been forced into by the lack of options she’s been presented with.

Please note: This book contains sensitive subject matter that may be triggering for some readers, such as graphic violence, domestic abuse, and sexual assault. Explicit mature content intended for readers 18+ only.

I always yearn for a strong, gutsy heroine in my reads as I find the majority never live up to the “fierce, independent heroine” tag they’re supposedly described to be. But Lovell doesn’t disappoint in providing one in Emilia. In a male dominated world, she may not be as physically powerful in comparison, but she’s not one to back down and take brutality either. It’s what makes her a likable character that earns both awe and respect. Her vulnerability is what makes her relatable and genuine, and quite a contrast to the confident, and overprotective men in her life.

Gio is your typical anti-hero who does some questionable things but within reason. It’s hard to turn your back on him — he’s merciless, calculating, danger personified, yet within their society’s Underbelly there’s also an ulterior motive to his power and reputation. I love grey characters and he’s one of a few within this world that I was instantly hooked on. He’s arrogant with a little bit of a cheeky side to him that’ll have you suppressing a giggle or two, not wanting to admit that his charm has gotten to you. 🙈🤭

A mafia romance with an arranged marriage/ forced proximity trope. It’s dramatic, angsty, and keeps you on your toes the entire time. It’s very character-driven and emotion-based. Told from dual POVs, Emilia and Gio are both fighting the sizzling chemistry between them, and as their relationship builds, the intensity only deepens. For lack of a better word, it’s hot! 🔥🔥🔥

As the plot thickens, you see a gradual shift in their relationship. It might seem small in the grand scheme of things but the scenes where they get snippets of each other’s characters when their defences are down only added more dimension and complements the dark and gritty side of their story.


“He was the key to my shackles, and it occurred to me that while I’d been trying to escape him to find freedom, perhaps he was that freedom.”


True to its genre, it has equal parts mafia to romance elements. The antagonists here are legit villains. Lovell has created a diverse range of characters, all of which evoke strong emotions out of you. The writing is high quality, with such vivid world-building that I couldn’t get enough of.

Read the books from the Underworld Kings, they say.

They’re all standalone dark, mafia romance books, they say.

Um well… 🤔😅

At the rate I was devouring this book, I was completely blindsided by this, and I know plenty who considers it to be a deal breaker, especially if there’s no warning in advance, so I have to mention that this book is NOT a standalone. It ends on a massive cliffhanger that had me 😩😭😭 and needing the sequel baaaadly!

But despite the savage ending that leaves you desperately hanging, I still absolutely, without a doubt recommend this book. Lovell has quickly risen to auto-buy author status and AVOLAF has fast become one of my favourite dark romances. I will read this one over and over again. It’s a must read!   

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you L.P. Lovell, the Underworld Kings team, and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

🔔 Interested in reading A Vow of Lust & Fury? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

•••


👑💀 More reviews for the Underworld Kings!

UnderworldKings_SeriesBanner
📷 Underworld Kings Website

Razor’s Edge by Mila Crawford

Tears Of Salvation by Michelle Heard

Marriage & Malice by Trisha Wolfe

Kingdom Fall by A. Zavarelli


•••

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

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Green by Nicole James

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Can a face from my past change my future?

When an invitation shows up out of the blue, I’m reminded of a promise I made to a girl twenty years ago and suddenly my heart is pounding.

Do I dare keep it?

She’s the one girl that ever meant a damn to me, and the one girl that got away. She walked out of my life once and it devastated me. Now life is giving me another shot, but if she walks out on me a second time I don’t think I’ll survive it.

Second chances don’t come around very often. Not for a one-percent biker like me. There are no do-overs in the MC life. Not when you’re staring down the barrel of a gun. Not when you’re deciding whether to pull the trigger.

But love? Maybe for once the luck of the Irish will shine down on me and give me a second chance with the one girl I let slip through my fingers.

Living with regret is a hard pill to swallow.

Living with the same regret twice? Impossible.

Sometimes facing your past can be the scariest thing you’ll ever do.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

📎 Note: I originally read Green’s story in the Twisted Steel Anthology and this was my review. After the recent release of Green’s book (with the new content included), I reread it and have revised my review. 😊

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I’m a huge fan of James’ Evil Dead MC series and this story was a much anticipated one from a very much loved character: Green!

And lemme tell you… it doesn’t disappoint in regards to making me swoon more-so over Green! His story was short and sweet, and shows a completely different side to him that I hadn’t expected (in a good way)! For those who aren’t familiar with this Evil Dead MC brother, Green is considered the guy who doesn’t really take himself or anything too seriously. He’s warm fuzzies and funny to boot but was never into wanting to settle down. Until of course… his story! 😉

He’s older now, most of his fellow MC brothers have settled down and started families of their own, and it’s made him really think about his future. Opportunities to get his life in order come through in the way of moving back into his childhood home, and receiving an invitation to his high school reunion. The possibility of seeing Sara, his old high school girlfriend in this reunion has him reminiscing their time together and how their relationship ended all those years ago. It’s given him the mindset that seeing her in this reunion and catching-up could be their second chance to reconnect romantically.

When I initially read Green’s story in the anthology, I was instantly hooked but felt it was too short and hoped that when the time came for James to release his own book that she would extend his story further. Well… wish granted! 🙏 James included extra scenes with Green and his fellow club brothers, making this MC-lite romance story just a smidge more balanced out with MC elements and romance. The scenes that take place also sets up future stories that I am giddy and raring to read!

It’s addictive and I couldn’t read it fast enough, but I also think there were certain developments between Green and Sara that could’ve been more in-depth. But knowing James’ characters tend to make appearances and crossovers throughout her books, I’m not too phased as there’s a high probability we’ll get to see more of Green and Sara in the future.

I’m not always a fan of flashbacks to the past in storylines as it can get a bit tedious and slow the pacing down but in this case the flashbacks provided in Green’s story elevated the moments and gave his relationship with Sara some complexity. Despite the length of the story being on the shorter side, James managed to get me effortlessly invested in Green’s and Sara’s relationship. I was already a big fan of Green but Sara’s a completely new character. In a short span, I already found myself liking her personality and overall presence.

I do adore the fact that they had history. It makes their relationship believable, especially with how quickly things progressed in the story. Although it’s been twenty years, I love that they were so in-sync with one another like no time had passed.

– MC Romance
– High School Sweethearts
– Second Chance Romance

This was more MC-lite in comparison to the previous books from James’ Evil Dead MC series. I didn’t necessarily mind it because it certainly sets it apart from the other brothers’ stories where theirs had more darker plotlines. Green’s and Sara’s definitely centred more on the romantic side of this MC romance story. I love the reconnecting/ second-chance aspect and that it was Green who ended up having this trope — it provided him with more dimension from his usual light-hearted, jokey side that I constantly saw throughout in the series. He was always the comic relief amongst the brothers in the MC and whenever he made an appearance in any of the books his scenes were instant LOL moments, so his story was much anticipated. Overall, I’m happy to say it lived up to what I hoped it would be. It’s swoon-worthy. We get to learn more about Green outside of the club, and we get to meet the chick who snagged Green’s heart. It held my complete attention from beginning to end! #TeamGreen #TeamIrish 🍀

A sweet and relatively short MC-lite romance story you can easily read in one sitting, and will have you happy sighing by the end. The world James has created and expanded never ceases to amaze me, and this story is a fab addition to her series! It’s a must-read for her fans, and more specifically avid fans of her Evil Dead MC series. It can technically be read as a standalone but your experience with Green and his club would be so much more heighted if you read the series from the beginning.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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💀 More reviews for the Evil Dead MC!

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Books 1-10: Evil Dead MC Series by Nicole James

Book 11: Wicked by Nicole James

Book 12: Shane (Review Coming Soon!)


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

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Kiss To Remember by Anna B. Doe

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Some moments define the trajectory of your life.

Grace Shelton has experienced her fair share of loss and trauma, but moving to Blairwood is her chance for a new beginning.

For Trent Remington, going to college is a chance to break free of his overprotective parents and finally play basketball.

Some moments will change it forever.

When Grace collides into Trent by accident, she sees the last person she ever expected to find – the boy that’s been haunting her dreams for the past three years. Trent might belong to another girl, but he can’t seem to get the redhead with the sad eyes out of his mind no matter how hard he tries.

Together, they might risk everything for a chance at love, but will a kiss be enough to make him remember?

•••

• MY REVIEW •

An utterly thought-provoking, emotional, and heart-clenching journey wrapped up in world-building perfection! I couldn’t get enough of it and never wanted it to end. Doe has time and time again written stories within the Blairwood University series that are so real, so worthwhile that they just stay with you long after you’ve finished reading them. Kiss To Remember is without a doubt an epic addition to the series! I’m still reeling! 😱

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I’ve thoroughly enjoyed each book, but Kiss To Remember evoked the same feels in me as when I had read Kiss Me First. There’s just something extra special about these stories, these characters that won me over so easily.

The world-building is vividly exceptional and I think a big reason to that is because of the prologue Kiss Before Midnight. Not only does it introduce Grace and her personal story, but it gives you a sense of time spent with her. There’s a three year span between the prologue and the main story, and you get a deep view of what has happened within that timeframe. Once you start this book, you’re already invested in Grace and understandably sympathising with her frame of mind.

What constantly had me thinking throughout were the “what-ifs”. There’s a truckload of them, and it’s always lingering near the foreground of the story as it develops. I was constantly second-guessing EVERYTHING! 😲🙈

Other than what the prologue provides this is one of those stories where you need to go in blind to get the full reading experience and to ensure you make up your own opinions about the characters and the situations they find themselves in.

I loved the unpredictability of it all! 👏👏👏 It’s the main factor in why I was so immersed in Grace’s and Trent’s story from cover to cover. It also has a beautiful youthful romance— an air of innocence in their developing feelings which at times I found angsty but still charming nevertheless. It’s well-paced, with a gradual build-up, and told from dual POVs. I can’t fault the storytelling as I thought it was well-written and brilliantly executed. It’s a story that I can go back and read over and over again and never tire of.

The supporting cast added extra dimension and provided secondary storylines in the background. If you’ve read the previous books in the series, these characters will be familiar to you and it’s always nice to see what they’ve been up to since their own stories were told. Other than the romance, there are genuine solid friendships present. They provided crucial support systems for both Grace and Trent, and I thought their concerns and overprotectiveness were understandable considering what both these protagonists have and are going through in their lives.

Another thing I’ve come to find about Doe’s writing is she creates characters with a distinctiveness to them, whether it be through their appearance, upbringing, personality traits, and/or even interests. Doe is slowly but surely building up her cast of characters as more books are added into the world yet you can effortlessly distinguish them apart from one another. They all have different backgrounds and each one is as intriguing as the last. Full of contrasts and dynamics.

Grace has quite a history and her character is totally fleshed-out as she develops in this book. She’s a likable, authentic heroine who straight-up just seems like a good-natured human being.

At first Trent seems like an easy-going, athletic hero but there’s more to him than meets the eye. Whilst this book has an overall heartwarming atmosphere to it that’ll have you sighing in happy contentment, the characters are complex, so trust me when I say Trent will have you stumped (but in a good, addictive way)! 😉

I strongly recommend it to fellow romance readers. If you like new adult, college romance reads, this one is perfect to snuggle up under the blankets with. It’s the fourth book in the series but it can be read as a standalone novel. If you’re new to Blairwood University, all the books can be read as standalone novels and, in any order, too, although I recommend reading them in publishing order.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Anna B. Doe for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💚

🔔 Interested in reading Kiss To Remember? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

•••


Prequel: Kiss Before Midnight

• BLURB •

From the very first moment, Grace Danielle Shelton laid her eyes on Mason LeBlanc, he stole her breath away, but what will happen now that he sees her too?

Kiss Before Midnight is a New York Knights/ Blairwood University crossover short story.

• MINI REVIEW •

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After having recently read Kiss To Forget with Yasmin and Nixon’s story, I was curious about Grace (an old friend of Yasmin’s) and what her deal was. When it was mentioned at the end of the book that there was a little novella about Grace included in the romance anthology Mistletoe Kisses, I knew I had to read it. And well…?

OMG I need more! 🤗 Adorable young love, first dates and sweet kisses. This little snippet was perfection but nowhere near enough. I hope we got a full novel for Grace and Mason soon! Because I need to know what happens to them next.

Edit: It showed the innocence of young love, possibilities, and just an all-around feel-good atmosphere. Unbeknownst to me, this novella was the introduction to what ultimately ended up being a mammoth journey of star-crossed lovers and second chances.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

🔔 Read Kiss Before Midnight for FREE! Grab your copy here: Universal Link


•••

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

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Best Kept Secret by Skye Warren

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

The secrets haunting Beau Rochester come alive.

He doesn’t deserve happiness, but he holds it in his hands. A woman he loves. A child. The past threatens to rip them away. He risks losing them forever.

Jane Mendoza is determined to protect the people she loves from every threat–the mysterious arsonist, the corrupt police force. The darkest danger comes from a place she never expects.

She risks more than her newfound family. She risks her life.

•••

• MY REVIEW •


“A responsible boss doesn’t get involved with the nanny.”


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Whilst the first two books in the trilogy had an air of suspense and secrecy, I was a little taken aback to find this third and final book was surrounded in such a depressing tone. It’s hard not to be affected by it because Jane, Beau, and the secondary characters all seemed to be in such gloomy moods for the majority of the book.

I found the pace of the storytelling a little slower in comparison to the first two from this trilogy. Although this part of the story is told from multiple POVs, so there’s lots of input and perspectives from different characters regarding the situation they found themselves in.

The first half of the overall story was very much inspired by the classic tale, Jane Eyre, but Warren has given the final leg of Jane’s and Beau’s story her own.

The angst between Jane and Beau is still very much present— if anything it’s amped up further now that their relationship has evolved from their initial guardian/nanny fling. I found their relationship to be drama-filled, tentative, and complex. If you’re looking for a swoon-worthy romance with tons off heat leaping off the pages, you won’t find it with Jane and Beau. There was initial sexual chemistry and zing in the first two books, but I found as the drama intensified, the sizzling romance became minimal. The push-and-pull between them is almost painstakingly angsty, but it can’t be denied that they do have a desperate need for one another.

Other than the relationship between the protagonists, there’s some interesting secondary plotlines occurring in the background that adds an extra element to the story.

As I mentioned earlier there’s a somberness to this book that ultimately became a big decisive factor in how I felt about it as a whole. You definitely have to be in a particular mindset to read a romance story that’s heavy on tragedy and heartbreak, and be prepared for it to seep into your own emotions. I easily got affected by Jane’s insecurities, Beau’s indecisiveness, and especially Noah’s battered heart. He surprisingly became the character in this book that I became the most emotionally invested in, just because his frustration and opinions when it came to Jane and her actions I felt were just. I most certainly felt bad for the guy.

There’s some character growth since Private Property, but I would’ve liked to have seen more in-depth development. The world-building was created and set from the first book but didn’t really expand any further from the small cast of characters and the town they reside in.

Overall, I thought it was decent conclusion. I admit it’s my least favourite book from the trilogy, but after having read and gotten sucked into Jane’s and Beau’s world, I was curious to see how it will all end. If you like Jane Eyre and retellings, I recommend you add this story to your TBR. It’s a contemporary take on a classic with an age-gap romance trope. With the differences in social standings, lifestyles, and familial backgrounds, Jane and Beau are the epitome of “opposite sides of the tracks” that unexpectedly collided together and sparked life-altering moments. It’s a dark billionaire romance; a Cinderella story of sorts, with a smidge of suspense and foreboding. These characters will have you second-guessing everything and keep you on your toes.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐½

•••

Thank you Skye Warren and Valentine PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜

🔔 Interested in reading Best Kept Secret? Grab your copy here: Amazon  |  Apple Books  |  Nook  |  Kobo  |  Google Play

•••


🗝 Reviews for The Rochester Trilogy!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

Book One | Private Property by Skye Warren

Book Two | Strict Confidence by Skye Warren


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

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Dark Reign by Amelia Wilde

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Wealthy. Reclusive. Dangerous. Emerson LeBlanc doesn’t enter society much. He only ventures out in pursuit of new art for his collection. It starts with a haunting painting.

Then he meets the artist…

Innocent Daphne Morelli is more exquisite than anything he’s ever seen. He becomes obsessed with her. It doesn’t matter that she’s a living, breathing person with her own hopes and dreams.

​​​​​​​She’ll be the perfect addition to his collection.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

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That’s what any rational young woman would be saying if this was any other story… or better yet, if this was reality. Lol. But this is the world of the Midnight Dynasty where anything and everything is possible— and where crazy, obsessed stalkers are swooned upon. 😜 If you like dark contemporary reads with a stalker romance trope, oh man, is this the book for you!

I was initially intrigued by the premise, but to be honest after having read it, it wasn’t what I was expecting. Daphne Moretti was a secondary character in Wilde’s Beauty and the Beast trilogy that centred around Daphne’s closest older brother Leo. Her minor appearances made quite an impact that I wanted to know her story. I have no doubt that a lot of romance readers will enjoy this book and be enamoured with Daphne and Emerson, but I found that it just wasn’t my cup of tea. I had difficulties connecting with these protagonists, and where the story was heading.

I had always found Daphne to be a likable, cheery character, but I think it has a lot to do with how she is around her family. The interactions she has with her siblings in this book were my favourite parts by far. Despite the Morellis gritty and brutal upbringing, the bond amongst the siblings (well, most of them) came off so genuine, and there was just something so lovable about their family dynamic even though behind closed doors their family is a lot more complex.

This is the first book in The Collector trilogy and it’s an ongoing storyline. It concludes on a cliffhanger. But long before it ended I was already questioning not only these characters’ thought process, but the situations they put themselves in. Daphne found herself in plenty of situations that I couldn’t help but think could easily have been avoided, or ended up with a different outcome. 🤔 I think it’s one of the main factors as to why I just couldn’t settle into this story as much as I would’ve liked to.

Daphne is an innocent and naïve young woman— who prefers not to draw any attention to herself, yet she’s constantly putting herself in strange and risky situations only to second-guess her decisions.

Ideally, I would’ve wanted to say that by the end of the book I had a fairly good insight into who Emerson is but alas, he’s still a bit of mystery. It’s clear Daphne has attracted his attention, but when it comes to anything else in his life, it’s all so vague. You’re given snippets into the dynamics of his family but just enough to keep you curious.

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Whilst there are a couple of intense moments between Daphne and Emerson and a bond over their love for art, I found the romance side of things a little underwhelming and was hoping to see more of a deeper connection. But in saying that, this is just the beginning of their story, and hopefully further character growth and a more solid development in their relationship will present itself.

It has the beginnings of an interesting world-building, especially with Daphne so immersed in the art scene. It’s a refreshing change from her family’s usual dealings in the corporate world.

Overall, I thought it was a decent story, albeit not completely my taste, but I can see its appeal to romance readers. Especially to those who have been following the books in the Midnight Dynasty, and bonus, who enjoy stalker romances. It’s a relatively short book with steady pacing. It’s told from dual POV and you can just see the differences in Daphne’s and Emerson’s personalities throughout. It’s almost eerie how well Wilde has written Emerson with this obsessive, legit stalkerish vibe from the very first page up until the very last one. He’s definitely different from the other antiheroes introduced in this world. It’s too early to tell, but at this point, his interest in Daphne is most undoubtedly infatuation more so than anything on a deeper romantic level.

The atmosphere is more thriller than romantic. There’s an uneasiness in place that I think elevated Emerson’s character and motives towards Daphne and made Daphne all the more the vulnerable heroine. It’s a stalker romance that emphasizes on STALKER!

Don’t let my personal opinions put you off from giving it a try. Read the blurb and if you’re intrigued by it, start the book. Emerson may not be my type of antihero, but he might just very well be yours. 😉

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you Amelia Wilde and Valentine PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💛

🔔 Interested in reading Dark Reign? Grab your copy here: Amazon  |  Apple Books |  Nook  |  Kobo  |  Google Play

•••


More Midnight Dynasty reviews!

MidnightDynasty_Banner

🥿 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

🕊 Dark Dream Duet | Book One:

Dangerous Temptation by Giana Darling

•••

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

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Climbing The Ranks by Nicole James

Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

“No knight in shining armor is coming to rescue me. If I want to get out of this revolting place, I’ll have to save myself. He was supposed to be my escape, but now he has my heart under lock and key.” -Isabella

TREZ-

I’ve climbed my way back from the bottom rungs of the hell I once lived. I’ve treated the symptoms, my drug addiction, but have yet to forgive myself for the cause. I’ve buried it six feet under, but I know it’s there haunting me. I killed my mom, even if it was an accident.

Now it’s time to prove myself to my father and my club, the Royal Bastards MC. He put me in charge of a deal with the Hell’s Bandits MC. Now I must prove I can handle the responsibility. I must convince them I can do it. But can I convince myself that I deserve it?

That won’t matter, if I can’t even manage the deal. A sexy little vixen whispers secrets of betrayal and suddenly the problems keep piling up. She’ll give me the information I need in exchange for her escape. She has me questioning everything and wondering if I’ll be willing to free her from my grasp when the time comes. Is she the thing I so desperately need to finally be rid of my demons?

•••

• MY REVIEW •

Nicole James just keeps on surprising me with how effortless she changes up not only her storylines but her bikers as well. Trez is the epitome of a badass biker who is a true-blue gentleman! Chivalry isn’t dead, folks! What sets him apart from all other bikers from other MC romance stories is how forthcoming and accepting he is of his feelings when the right woman comes along. There’s no game-playing… no ifs, buts, or maybes. He makes it so easy to fall head over heels for him! 😍

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Although a relatively quick read, the storytelling itself was well-paced and immediately had a sense of danger lurking right from the very start. It set the atmosphere for the entirety of the story. There may have been plenty of lighthearted moments throughout, but the feeling of uneasiness and waiting for the other shoe to drop was always lingering in the background. I loved it— it’s a meaty romance story with an angsty, suspenseful vibe.

I initially had a different perception of Trez in Club Princess (book one) but he has grown so much as person since, and this book is a definite redemption story filled with healing, acceptance, and new beginnings.

There’s a nice balance of romance, friendship, and MC elements that made this story so in-depth. It’s action-packed, never a dull moment, and just like the first book in the series, the story is told through multiple POVs, which is a refreshing change from the usual dual perspectives you see in a lot of romance books.

Both Trez and Isabella are such likable characters who haven’t had it easy in life. I was emotionally invested in their stories and my heart went out to both of them the second their backstories were shared. The slight slow-burn development of their relationship was one of the sweetest things about this book and made their connection all the more genuine.

This story is gritty at times and broaches on subject matters that maybe triggering for some readers. Please note it contains matters such as drug abuse/ addiction, attempted suicide, sexual assault, kidnapping, graphic violence and abuse— all causing physical, emotional, and mental scarring. Intended for readers 18+ only. 

Nicole James is so consistent with her writing— it’s always effortless to follow, she always manages to lure you in by the first chapter with her intriguing characters, and by the end of the book with the little teaser she provides you’re itching to get your hands on the next one. 😱 Climbing The Ranks is an exceptional second book in Nicole’s RBMC Durango, CO Chapter. I enjoyed reading it! The world-building has certainly become more complex as more characters are introduced and we get to see more and more of the club. It can be read as a standalone novel but I highly recommend reading Club Princess first as it show Trez’s history in detail and gives you a better insight of how far Trez’s relationship with his family has progressed since.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

Thank you Nicole James and the entire RBMC crew for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💙

🔔 Interested in reading Climbing The Ranks? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

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💀👑 More from the Durango, CO Chapter!

booksofthemuggleborn_clubprincess
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

📓 Book One: Club Princess by Nicole James


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

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Marriage & Malice by Trisha Wolfe

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Rapture, desire, need – the yearning for our passions is the reason we strive, the reason we breathe. I’ve devoted my entire existence to the pursuit of my passion for dance. Ballet is my escape from the dark underworld I was born in to. As a Carpella and the daughter of a made man, I’ve accepted certain traditions. Yet, having just been promoted to principal within a prestigious dance company, I’m so close to being free…

Until a devil with blood on his hands and an Irish curse inked into his skin tears into my world, now passion holds a whole new, sinister meaning. With ruination in his steel-blue eyes and me in his crosshairs, Lucian Cross traps me in his gilded cage and uses me to deliver his retribution.

Forced to sign a marriage contract to unite two warring families, my father traded my life to save his own. Now I’m bound to Lucian, owned by a monster who swore an oath of pain and suffering to the Carpellas.

Lucian’s passion is revenge.

And because my family destroyed what he loved, he’s vowed to destroy what I love. Every night he forces me to dance until my breaking point. He wants to condition me to loathe the very thing that once gave me hope.

I can’t let him break me, but the closer we get to the wedding date, the more entangled I become in his dangerous, tempting world, and I’m losing myself in this man.

His vow is my pain.

My vow is not to fall for the enemy.

But how can I dance with the devil himself and not be singled by his fire?

•••

• MY REVIEW •

I have never read a romance story with a slow-burn romance that tortured me as badly with how sluggish it developed than this book right here! My gosh, it was like a gradual teasing build-up that led to more teasing and a whole lot of sexual frustration and torture for both protagonists… and *cough cough* me. 🤦‍♀️😅 If you enjoy angsty, SLOOOOW slow-burn mafia romance reads, this story might just be for you!

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Trisha Wolfe is a new-to-me author and this was my introduction to her writing. Marriage & Malice sets a gritty almost squirm-inducing atmosphere right from the opening scene. I was instantly immersed, needing to know what’s to become of Violet and Lucian in this all-out mafia war and enemies-to-lovers story.

Italian mafia vs the Irish syndicate, and caught in the crossfire is Violet who spent most of her life outside of it, training as a ballerina. The premise of the two worlds merging was what initially had me interested in reading this story and it doesn’t disappoint in terms of seeing a nice balance of both elements. There’s an obvious dynamic between Violet and Lucian the minute they meet and it only intensifies the longer they’re in forced proximity.

I did enjoy the build-up to their relationship and the suspense surrounding them. I only wish it didn’t take as long to admit their feelings for one another, and because of that I felt like by the time they were in it for more than the initial arranged marriage and Lucian’s vengeance, the emotions they were feeling wasn’t as in-depth or believable as I was hoping for.

For the most part it was steady-paced storytelling, only occasionally slowing down in certain parts. It’s told from dual POVs and gives you excellent insight into both Violet’s and Lucian’s pasts. Their romance is undoubtedly steamy and their growing attraction for one another is one of the most tantalizing things you can expect to see.

Overall, it had suspense, some unpredictability, and the secondary characters helped create layers in the world-building. It’s a pretty grim and dark atmosphere throughout and putting aside the romance aspect of the story, it has subject matters that may be triggering for some readers. It contains attempted sexual assault, graphic violence, abuse/ torture.

Whilst both protagonists have some character growth, it’s Lucian, in my opinion who had the most development. The further you delve into the story the more you see the subtle changes in not only his demeanor but his mentality towards Violet as he struggles with keeping his revenge. It may be a love story (albeit a dark one), but Lucian is the central character here and the story revolves around his agenda.

As much as I like this book, I do however feel an epilogue is very much needed, whether or not Trisha decides to revisit this world in the future. The ending just didn’t feel complete for a story that’s supposedly a standalone and I was left wanting more for their HEA. 🤔

Nevertheless, I think it’s a great addition to the Underworld Kings. It certainly brings in the darkness, the world of Made Men, along with complexity, villainous characters, and ulterior motives one can hope for in a romantic suspense read. The scenes with Violet dancing were beautiful, and such a contrast to the death and violence that consumed a large portion of the storyline. Lucian is Irish and a real alpha-hole… but for good reason. Violet is thrust back into the world she was born into and discovers she has more grit in her than anyone (including herself) could’ve ever imagined.

If you enjoy reading hate-to-love romances with a dark mafia backdrop to them, give this one a read.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

Thank you Trisha Wolfe and the entire Underworld Kings team for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜

•••


💀 More reviews for the Underworld Kings! 👑

UnderworldKings_SeriesBanner
📷 Underworld Kings Website

📖 Razor’s Edge by Mila Crawford

📖 Tears Of Salvation by Michelle Heard


•••

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

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Dangerous Temptation by Giana Darling

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

He arrives all dressed in black. Diamond cufflinks. A watch on his tanned wrist that cost more than we would ever see in a lifetime of work. He carries a single red rose for my mother.

Months later, Tiernan Morelli lays red roses on my mother’s grave. That same day, he tells me that he is my new guardian.

I should have known from the very start that he had more in common with the thorns than the rose. Now I know the truth: I’m a pawn in his dangerous game of revenge. I was too young and naïve. Now it’s too late to save myself from his clutches.

I belong to him.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

When it comes to Bianca’s and Tiernan’s story, I am officially no longer on the fence! The prologue novella Bad Dream left me emotionally up in the air but after having read Dangerous Temptation, I can without a doubt say, “Okay, Giana, you’ve won me over!” 😄

This book had sex, suspense, intrigue, and corruption all weaved together. The further the story progresses, the more twisted it seems. As they toe the line between right and wrong, good and bad, it not only questions the protagonists’ morals but will have you questioning your own because as much as what is developing between them is all kinds of wrong, it’s also intensely gripping to see play out! 🔥😈

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Dangerous Temptation was an intricately well-written storyline. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time constantly wondering where it was heading and how Bianca’s and Tiernan’s relationship would evolve from what was demonstrated in the prologue.

I was apprehensive at first with the distinct age gap— Bianca being seventeen (aka considered a minor), and a thirty year old Tiernan (who not only is Bianca’s love interest but is also the guardian of both her and her younger brother), but as we steadily get to know more about these protagonists, the lives they’ve lived, and once a particular dynamic settled between them, the issue with their ages gradually faded into the background. Yes, there are times that their ages/ mentality peeks out again and blares the obvious differences, but as this story had a handful of ongoing developments, with secondary storylines, diverse range of characters, and unique relationships you no longer focus on the matter of age gaps as much. Especially since Bianca’s and Tiernan’s relationship is far more complex than meets the eye.

If you love alpha-holes, add Tiernan to your “one to watch” list! *waggles eyebrows* Bianca can be passionate about certain things. Her youthful personality often exhibits a mixture of bratty teenager, rebelliousness, and naivety. But both protagonists will surprise you when you least expect it.

There are quite a few romance tropes at play in this story— billionaire romance, enemies-to-lovers, taboo romance… and a touch of erotica. But they all worked well together in creating quite a sexual build-up between Bianca and Tiernan.

This story provided lots of splendid little surprises throughout that honestly left me smiling, giggling, and/or talking to myself (or rather the book) asking, “Why, oh why!?”

You can easily guess the direction the story is heading, but concentrating on the moments (the here and now, if you will) I love the unpredictability of it all, and since Giana is a relatively new-to-me author, I think Dangerous Temptation is a nice introduction to her writing. The storytelling is vivid and well-paced, and transports you to these characters’ surroundings. I was invested in not only Bianca’s and Tiernan’s tumultuous relationship but those in Tiernan’s inner circle— his eclectic band of brothers won my heart over instantly! I’ve mentioned wanting to know more about Ezra after his introduction in Bad Dream, and I was ecstatic to find that my wish has been granted… and I think I may just love him even more now! ❤😍

I love the diversity of the secondary characters whether they are friend or foe, they elevated the atmosphere and overall world-building of the story. Besides the intense romantic relationship, the dynamic amongst the characters in Tiernan’s circle was my favourite feature in this story. I found it unexpectedly heartwarming and added lightheartedness in between the heated moments. There’s a genuine likability and relatability with these secondary characters, and I love the fact that they played such essential and momentous roles.

The underlying reasons behind the chain of events that occur in this storyline are based on old rivalries, vengeance, and pure hatred, but it also strongly centres around familial bonds and unusual upbringings.

The more I progressed through this book the more it grew on me and the characters lingered in my mind. In a short amount of time, you see quite a transformation in both Bianca’s and Tiernan’s characters that ultimately alters the initial plans. It ended on a nail-biting conclusion that will have you needing the next book immediately. With the introduction of Bianca Belcante and Tiernan Morelli, Dangerous Temptation is a fascinating expansion to the Morellis and Constantines, and an engaging addition to the overall world of the Midnight Dynasty.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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

🔔 Interested in reading Dangerous Temptation? Grab your copy here: Amazon US  |  Amazon INTL  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Apple Books  |  Kobo  |  Google Play

•••


🌹 Read my review for the Dark Dream Prologue!

booksofthemuggleborn_baddream
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

📒 Prologue Novella: Bad Dream by Giana Darling


•••

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

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Bad Dream by Giana Darling

⚠ This review contains spoilers!

booksofthemuggleborn_baddream
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Bianca is trying to survive in the small Texas town. Her only goal–to keep her younger brother healthy. Everything changes when Tiernan shows up at her mother’s door in a suit and tattoos.

His dark world is all-consuming, but she doesn’t want his money. Or his secrets.

Until her mother dies.

Then she has no choice but to turn to the only person who can help.

** Bad Dream: A Dark Dream Prologue to Giana Darling’s upcoming release Dangerous Temptation set in the Midnight Dynasty.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

*Ding! Ding! Ding!* 🎙 Let’s get ready to ruuuuuuuuuumble! 👊

My, my, my… Bianca and Tiernan both came out swinging! It’s not even the good type of banter. I’m talking all-out hate and spite between these two. So far, I can’t wrap my head around the thought that they’ll eventually become romantically linked— and there’s a few reasons why…

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a) There’s quite an age-gap between these two protagonists. Tiernan is thirty, whilst Bianca is seventeen. Age-gap romances don’t put me off as much as they used to, and I’m sure Tiernan and Bianca won’t hook-up until she’s older (let’s hope), but I’m still a little iffy on the fact that Bianca is still in her teens. 😬

b) And there’s the matter of Bianca’s mum, Aida having dated Tiernan (before her untimely passing, that is). There’s also a particular scene that clearly implies the two having slept together (I’m putting it mildly, here), and well, it’s hard to wipe that little image clean from my mind. Hm.

c) After the death of Bianca’s mother and things become a little clearer on Tiernan’s real motive with her family, he amazingly enough ends up having legal guardianship over Bianca and her younger brother, Brandon. Yeah… that’s not random at all. 

But in saying all that, I have to admit I am weirdly curious to see how this will all play out between them. As of right now, Tiernan is a right prick… and Bianca is a frazzled, naïve teenager who looks to be in way over her head, but this novella planted an air of intrigue and thrill of the unknown that has me eager to jump straight onto Dangerous Temptation (especially with how this prologue concluded).

Is it weird to say that at the moment I’m more interested in knowing more about the secondary characters?? Well, one in particular. 😅 Ezra. Like… woah who is he?! It’s the quiet ones you gotta watch out for— and it’s never been more true with Tiernan’s right hand man. Do we know if he gets his own story? Anybody? Any news?

And on the opposite end of the spectrum is Bianca’s little brother, Brandon. It’s still early days but he seems like an upbeat, likable character. No signs of brattiness, so that’s already points in his favour! 😁

Overall, a nice little introduction to Giana Darling’s world within the Midnight Dynasty. The novella is told solely from Bianca’s POV but I’m hoping once we get to the main duet that, that changes to dual perspectives. If you love dark billionaire, taboo romance books, then check this one out. It’s quite a teaser for what’s to come in the Dark Dream duet. This story is certainly making Lucian and Leo look like small-fry, and only time will tell on how cruel, how cold-hearted, how villainous this Morelli really is in comparison.

Readers and fans of the Midnight Dynasty, dust off your gloves because it looks like we’re having another Morelli/ Constantine fight-off!

*Ding! Ding! Ding!* 🎙 Fighters! Back to your corners! 🥊😈

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

🔔 Interested in reading Bad Dream? Grab your FREE copy here: Amazon  |  Amazon INTL  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo  |  Apple Books  |  Google Play

•••


More Midnight Dynasty reviews!

MidnightDynasty_Banner

🥿 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

•••

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

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