The Words Release Day Teaser

Happy Release Day, Ashley Jade!

#TheWords is now live! 🎼💙

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•••

— BLURB —

He was the talented bad boy everyone wanted.

I was the irrelevant geek everyone hated.

He was the sun…drawing all of us in.

I was a black hole…taking up space.

He was destined to be a star.

I was destined to remain an insignificant no one.

Until he made me believe I was special…

And then he destroyed me.

I never thought I’d see Phoenix Walker again after he broke my heart, but fate had other plans.

One tour. Eight weeks. Forty shows.

Countless opportunities to make him pay.

The world thought he was a God…

But I knew the truth.

•••

— TEASER —

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•••

— EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT —

“I take it your little boyfriend doesn’t know about us.”

Gathering my hair, I wrap my scrunchie around it. “That’s because there is no us.”

The tip of his tongue sweeps along his lip ring, and his fiery gaze drifts down my body. “The bite marks on your pussy beg to differ.”

Forcing myself to pay no heed to the rush of embarrassment his statement causes, I survey the stage where George is playing.

Sweet and safe—I tell myself again, like it’s my new mantra.

“Look, what happened last night is never happening again.” Peeling my stare away, I meet Phoenix’s, so he knows I’m dead serious. “I like George. He’s a nice guy.”

Something he’ll never understand because he’s most definitely not one.

He doesn’t say a word for so long, I internally rejoice.

About time the asshole finally got it through his thick skull.

I’m debating walking over to the snack table when he leans down.

His warm breath tickles my ear when he speaks. “Too bad nice guys don’t make your panties wet.”

A wolfish grin spreads across his lips as he pulls something out of his pocket.

The retort I was constructing vanishes into thin air the moment I see my panties.

“We need you up here, Phoenix,” someone calls out.

The look he gives me is so vulgar, I’m glad Chandler walked off to take a phone call.

Relief fills me as he treks over to the stage because the more distance between us right now, the better.

However, it’s short lived.

Shock roots me to the spot—followed by a torrent of dread—when he ties my panties around his mic stand.

•••


— The Words by A. Jade —

TheWords_LiveTeaser

Release Date: January 20, 2022
Genre: Standalone Rockstar Romance
📚 Add to your TBR: Goodreads
📘 Grab your copy now!
Amazon  |  Universal Link

(FREE in Kindle Unlimited)

•••


— ABOUT THE AUTHOR —


A. Jade

Ashley Jade is a Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and top 20 bestselling Amazon author who craves tackling different genres and tropes within romance. Her first loves are New Adult Romance, Contemporary Romance, and Romantic Suspense, but she also writes everything in between including erotica and dark romance.

Her characters are flawed and complex, and chances are you will hate them before you fall head over heels in love with them.

She’s a die-hard lover of oxford commas, em-dashes, music, coffee, and anything thought-provoking…except for math.

Books make her heart beat faster and writing makes her soul come alive.

If she’s not paying off student loan debt, working, or writing a novel—you can usually find her listening to music, hanging out with her readers online, and pondering the meaning of life.

Check out her Amazon page and Facebook page for future novels.

She loves connecting with her readers—they make her world go ’round.

~Happy Reading~

Follow A. Jade on social media!


The Words by A. Jade

⚠ This review contains minor teasers!

booksofthemuggleborn_thewords
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

— BLURB —

He was the talented bad boy everyone wanted.

I was the irrelevant geek everyone hated.

He was the sun…drawing all of us in.

I was a black hole…taking up space.

He was destined to be a star.

I was destined to remain an insignificant no one.

Until he made me believe I was special…

And then he destroyed me.

I never thought I’d see Phoenix Walker again after he broke my heart, but fate had other plans.

One tour. Eight weeks. Forty shows.

Countless opportunities to make him pay.

The world thought he was a God…

But I knew the truth.

•••

— MY REVIEW —


“There’s no one in the world like Phoenix Walker.”


Concert_Groupies

It’s official… I am a groupie! 😍🤭 I loved the hell of out of this book. Love, love, love! And for that reason alone, The Words has been added to my list of all-time favourite romance reads!

Lennon and Phoenix had their hooks in me and was never going to let me walk away from their intense rollercoaster of a relationship (not that I wanted to, anyways). The ups and downs, the swooniness and suspense. I knew the minute I started their story that I was in for one mammoth of a reading experience, and I was right! Ashley Jade did not disappoint in delivering such a multi-dimensional, emotionally investing storyline alongside a winning cast of characters!

My gosh. I’m still reeling.

I’m going to say it now, if you enjoy rock star romance books, you have got to add this one to your TBR. If you’re new to the romance sub-genre, this is the book to get you hooked! Besides the strong musical backdrop, it had an amazing balance of romance, friendship, and family written-in that made Lennon’s and Phoenix’s stories immensely in-depth and full of heart.

It has a handful of elements, some of which I don’t necessarily openly look for in my books, but when they’re unexpectedly included, it certainly has me perking up. If you like any of the elements below in your romance reads, it’s a good reason to give this one a try:

  • Rock star romance
  • Second-chance romance
  • Opposite sides of the tracks
  • Friends-to-Lovers
  • Hate-to-Love
  • A bad boy hero
  • A curvy, nerdy heroine
  • New Adult

Fair warning, I found this to be one emotional read that constantly had me either in near tears or downright already bawling my eyes out. And what got me with these snot-inducing moments was the unpredictability of certain scenes that totally causes your heart to skip a couple beats.

Ashley Jade certainly knows how to write! Both Lennon’s and Phoenix’s individual life stories will just about give you chest pains with how realistic and relatable their situations are. They’re two opposites that somehow have plenty in common— which they gradually discover the more time they spend together. I thought the pacing was *chef’s kiss* perfect as it felt like you’re getting to know these two intriguing protagonists right along with them in real time. Having dual POVs made their story all the more fleshed-out as we experience events through both their eyes, and see reasonings behind their actions.

The Words is more than a simple love story. It’s heart-wrenching and thought-provoking. It touches on so many real-life topics, some of which I must say are sensitive subject matters. Please note this book may be triggering for some readers. It contains domestic abuse, child abuse, substance abuse, and violence. It also broaches on bullying and the psychological effects it has on one’s own health. It also contains mature sexual content intended for readers 18+ only.

Ashley Jade as put a lot of detail in her characters and their world that it was effortless to get invested in them. I found myself so wrapped up in their lives that the majority of the time I was mirroring their emotions. Whether they were giddy with excitement, dying from embarrassment, or seething with rage.

This book was unputdownable! The world-building was unbelievably vivid, and I adored the character development. Lennon’s and Phoenix’s story spans four years starting from their final year of high school. It’s within their final weeks of school where their lives alter and ends up catapulting Lennon and Phoenix in an angsty and complex second chance of a lifetime.


“Lennon Michael is my biggest craving and my biggest regret.”


Their story could easily have been overly heavy and depressing, but Ashley Jade has brilliantly added some much needed comic relief throughout to break up some of the tension and distress these characters go through. The supporting characters are quite a cast, all with huge personalities of their own. You’re bound to fall for at least one of them… if not more. 😉

I’m not going to lie, there were a few minor things that played out within the storyline that I wasn’t a big fan of. I won’t go into detail as this is one story I highly recommend you to experience for yourself, but when it came time to rate this book I realized in the grand scheme of things, it didn’t change the fact that as a whole I enjoyed reading it and legit did not want it to end.

(P.S. That sneaky peek was all too cruel, Ashley. It was barely a teaser. I needs more!) 🤤😭

I should also mention, whilst this is a standalone novel, the ending of this book is not your conventional HEA where everything is wrapped-up and there’s no need for second-guessing. In my opinion, it was more of an open-ended HEA. This book was only the beginning of Lennon’s and Phoenix’s story; an introduction of sorts to their new life. It’s not the type of ending I’m normally accustomed to with standalone novels, but their story is unlike anything I’ve read before, and the ending of this book was fitting, especially after everything that happened between them.

These characters are flawed, slightly broken, with insecurities that you may or may not relate to, but nevertheless sympathize with. You get to witness such growth, maturity, and over time, acceptance. It’s an utterly soul-stealing journey, one that I am so happy to have not missed out on. It’s a must read!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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

🔔 Interested in reading The Words? Grab your copy here: Amazon  |  Apple Books  |  Kobo

•••


Want more Rock Star Romance reads?

I recommend…

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

🎙🎸 The Hate/ Love Duet

Book One: Falling Out Of Hate With You by Lauren Rowe
Book Two: Falling Into Love With You by Lauren Rowe

•••

Want more books by Ashley Jade?

I recommend…

booksofthemuggleborn_hateme
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

Standalone NA/ Highschool Romance

📖 Hate Me by A. Jade

•••

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

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Till Next Time by Cora Brent

⚠ This review contains a minor teaser!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

I met Colt Malene when I was fourteen years old.

And it seems I’ve never recovered.

He became the headstrong star quarterback in a town that idolized high school football titles.

Meanwhile, I was the coach’s dutiful perfectionist daughter, never daring to step out of line.

We should have stayed far away from each other but we didn’t.

And the volatile fallout was unbearable.

More than a decade has passed and now my father is dying.

He wants to make amends.

He wants to be forgiven for the role he played in Colt’s ruinous downfall and my painful heartbreak.

To give a dying man some peace, Colt and I agree to a plan.

While Colt is here in town, we pretend to date.

We pretend to like each other.

We pretend that the past is buried and forgotten.

But with one reckless, passionate act we carve a new future.

Leading to a fate we never suspected.

In the middle of a storm we never saw coming.

And an ending no one could have predicted…

•••

• MY REVIEW •


“I never meant to fall in love with Colt Malene. I wasn’t supposed to. I’ve done it anyway. Again. I couldn’t help it, then or now.”


TVD_Stefan_ShySmile

After reading Till It Hurts and loving the strong trio of characters, I knew I needed more. Till Next Time is utter perfection that completely transported me back to their small town of Arcana, and to the trio who’ve reconnected as adults.

This story centred around Colt Malene and his life story. I couldn’t put it down! Cora has executed in telling his story and getting me emotionally invested right from the first few pages. The writing is effortless and vivid. It’s exactly the type of drama-filled contemporary romance I love to read. Fleshed-out, heartbreaking, yet nevertheless, inspiring.

Memories of past events weaved in between the present day not only gave Colt’s and Susanna’s personal stories so much depth and dimension, but it provided insight to their perspective households, families, and their developing relationship through their POVs.

The characters are complex and their lives are more than your average teenage rebellion against their parents. You see how much certain events that took place in their past have impacted and influenced their adulthood in the present.

You can’t help but feel for Colt. He had very little positivity in his life growing up, and it’s saddening to see his parents failed him as his much needed support system.

Susanna has her own issues and it becomes evident as the story progresses how much her life hadn’t ended up as initially planned.

It’s well-paced storytelling and these protagonists’ lives are not only touching to learn about, but they deal with life-long insecurities, along with some very heavy, realistic, and quite relatable issues along the way. I love the realism that Cora has imbedded in their story (along with Till It Hurts), it’s why I easily felt an attachment to these characters, especially Colt. They’re a likable pair of people, genuine characters with strong polar-opposite personalities.

The world-building is extraordinary— from Arcana; the little town that’s gradually wearing out over time, to the different backdrops that holds so many memories for Colt and Susanna, to the diverse range of supporting characters who all played significant roles in shaping them into who they are now and bring about contrasting dynamics.

I loved their journey. The highs and lows. It had the right amount of angst, drama, and suspense to keep you reading with bated breath, but also had moments of lightheartedness to keep it from veering towards an overly depressing atmosphere. Colt and Susanna come full circle by the end of the book that leaves you not only happy sighing with complete contentment but a little bittersweet knowing that with Till It Hurts and now, Till Next Time, all three friends have had their story told and we bid adieu to their world.

This is only my second book of Cora Brent’s but after having back-to-back exceptionally quality storytelling, I’ll be looking into her backlist of books for sure. Till Next Time is a must read along with Till It Hurts. You can definitely read them as standalone books without missing a beat as events and relationships are well explained… but I do highly recommend reading the pair!

Colt’s and Susanna’s story was one big “Sliding Doors” moment full of missed chances and what-ifs? The road to their HEA wasn’t an easy feat, but it’s an epic second-chance romance that was a long time coming and well worth the wait!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Cora Brent and Candi Kane PR for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

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

•••


🏈 Where it all started! Read my review!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

📘 Till It Hurts by Cora Brent


•••

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: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

•••


💀 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!)


•••

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 •

LilyCollins_InSnow

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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Worth The Pain by J.L. Leslie

booksofthemuggleborn_worththepain
Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Allie…

I let him break me. Shatter my heart into a million pieces. And I took the coward’s way out. Only the drugs didn’t help. Didn’t make me forget him. I still remember every thing about him. The way his piercing blue eyes looked right through me. The way his perfect lips danced over my skin.

The way he rejected me so cruelly.

And now I can’t escape him. Couldn’t pretend he doesn’t exist even if I tried. Because every single day I wake up to a beautiful reminder of the devastating pain he caused.

Hunter…

My club thinks I’m losing my mind. My sister prays the old me will return. And my best friend…well…I’ve cut ties with him.

I’m on a path of self-destruction and I have no intention of changing direction. Not until I find out the truth. Not until I find the missing girls.

I thought she was one of them. Thought she’d been taken. But she was simply hiding away from me.

I don’t blame her. I was cruel to her. Caused her undeniable pain.

But she’s hiding more than herself. She’s hiding a kid. A kid who has piercing blue eyes exactly like mine.

And after everything I’ve put her through, I need to prove that I’m worth the pain.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

I know this is only the second book in Leslie’s RBMC series but it felt like I’d been waiting for Hunter’s story for—ever! He was the secondary character from Worth The Risk (book one) that I was most eager to read more about, and now that his story is here, I have to admit it’s not at all what I had expected. 🤔

SOA_Jax_NoddingSmirk

It’s a relatively quick story for a full-length novel and I was able to finish it in one sitting. The storytelling is fast-paced with constant developments coming one after the other. It’s emotion-based, told from dual points of view with both Hunter and Allie being of second mind for the majority of the story. With all the craziness and the push-and-pull within their complicated relationship, you’ll question whether or not they’re truly suited for one another.

The premise is what initially intrigued me but the flow felt a little choppy for my liking, and the development in their relationship didn’t feel as in-depth or come off as authentic as I was hoping to see. They had a one-night stand and prior to their reconnection had spent time apart so I was expecting plenty of character growth and maturity from both protagonists but it seemed like time hadn’t altered their mindset and they’re stuck in this repetitiveness with their feelings, never quite moving forward. I am relieved to say it eventually improves and they do finally get their act together but I’m contemplating if it happened just a smidge too late in the story.

Hunter is not at all how I remembered him from the first book. From that time to the present his character has clearly shifted because he’s become a hard man to love. The only redeemable quality I could see in him within this book is that he eventually saw the light and wanted something more out of life, and knowing Allie had to be a part of it started to make amends. (I would’ve loved to have seen some more groveling from him though).

Allie is a likable character but she doesn’t necessarily make the best choices. She’s the type of heroine that I think readers would either love or loath. Although some readers may find her and what she’s been through relatable. She’s indecisive and uncertain about a lot of things but she also knows what she wants for her future, and I think it’s easy to identify with that.

Similar to the first book I was left with some unanswered questions that I’m guessing will either be left unsettled or will hopefully be addressed later down the track in future books. There are quite a few different plots happening at once and if you haven’t read the first book, you may find it a little difficult to understand the history amongst these characters. Although you can technically read this one as a standalone, I highly recommend you read Worth The Risk first.

For the most part a grey atmosphere but with this being the second book in the series, the world-building is gradually evolving. I do like that there’s a nice amount of both romance and MC elements. It has plenty of suspense and unpredictability. The violence is detailed but not overly graphic, and I thought there was enough lightheartedness brought on by the MC and the friendships to keep things from getting too gritty.

The storyline touches on drug abuse/addiction that some readers may find triggering. Including adult themes such as violence and strong sexual content, be advised this story is intended for readers 18+ only.

Overall, it was a bit of a mixed bag. Whilst I was already hooked from the opening scene and invested in seeing their story unfold, it did take a while to grow into liking Hunter’s and Allie’s relationship. But I can’t deny that it was the little moments they had throughout that ultimately kept me engaged. With the addition of the brothers from the MC and their comradery, I thought this was a pretty decent read.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

Thank you J.L. Leslie and the RBMC team for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💙

🔔 Interested in reading Worth The Pain? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

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👑💀 Read my review for Worth The Risk!

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Original post from my IG @booksoftheluggleborn

📒 Book One: Worth The Risk by J.L. Leslie


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

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Razor’s Edge by Mila Crawford

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Ellison

My parents moved our family to a new town when I sixteen years old. The first person I met was local bad boy, Calvin Montgomery. His father was president of the local MC, but despite his reputation, Calvin had a heart of gold. We were a perfect match until one violent night destroyed the future we’d envisioned together.

Calvin

I lost Ellison and the dream for our future when I locked up for a decade. An act of violence I will never forget. It’s been ten years without her, but a day hasn’t gone by where I haven’t thought about her. But Ellison isn’t the same girl I left behind. They say time heals all wounds, but nothing cuts as deep as your first true love.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

I was expecting a dark, suspenseful romance story and was surprised to find a sweet contemporary, coming of age story instead between two next-door neighbours. 😊

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“We were on the razor’s edge and that’s where our love lived.”


Mila Crawford is a new-to-me author and this was my introduction to her writing. I can’t make any comparisons, so I don’t know if her writing style in this particular story differentiates with her other books, but this one definitely had a mixture of different romance sub-genres in one. Whilst the overall setting is contemporary, it had elements (albeit more in the background) of both MC romance (Motorcycle Club) and Mafia romance. The majority of the book is also set in a high school/ NA narrative.

It has a steady enough pacing, and whilst it was detailed in certain areas, in my opinion the aspects that required in-depth detail were the parts that actually lacked it. I also found the story to be choppy at times for my liking. For example, it would start out with a gradual development of an event just for it to end abruptly. Next thing you know, time has passed and the next event in their lives takes place. The flow has a start-and-stop feel to it that I was finding it difficult to really settle into the story because it doesn’t quite give you enough time to absorb events before it moves onto another development.

Whilst I thought Calvin’s and Ellison’s adorable meet cute and the sweet developments in their relationship throughout their teen years interesting to see play out, once the story hits the pivotal turn of events and time has fast-forwarded to their adulthood, there was a visible atmosphere shift. It was hard to keep the connection with these protagonists (especially Ellison) as it felt like I was reading a brand new story. The past may have altered both their futures but Ellison’s character development headed in a direction that had me a little taken aback to be honest.

The vibe is almost a separate one from the first 2/3 of the story. I think the main reason as to why their past and present, and the overall story ending up coming together is because one particular secondary character ended up playing a bigger role than expected. Not only was he the link to both Calvin and Ellison in both timelines, but he was the bridge in merging (or should I say re-merging) their lives together again.

The synopsis initially had me intrigued and after having read it I thought it was a nice storyline overall, but I did think there was some repetitiveness. Plot twists and additional plotlines were also either too vague or lacked further development after it was first mentioned, which I’m not going to lie frustrated me because those points could so easily have added extra dimension into the story but unfortunately was never elaborated on and leaves you with unanswered questions.

Despite it all, there’s plenty of heartwarming moments between the two which lightens the overall sombre mood of the book.

Calvin is a unique character with an eclectic range of traits from caring and protective, to cocky and hot-headed. I liked the fact that he knew what he wanted from the very beginning and his mindset never wavered. His loyalty and willingness to break away from a toxic lifestyle had me rooting for him.

Mila created a diverse and complex heroine in Ellison and because of that had me curious in knowing her personal story. What she ended up divulging added realism and relatability within the overall storyline as it raises sensitive subject matters that people don’t necessarily or easily discuss openly but are topics that one may relate to.

This book may be triggering for some readers as it contains matters such as domestic violence/ abuse, kidnapping, sexual assault, attempted suicide, and mental health. It’s intended for readers 18+ only.

Although I have mixed feelings about certain things, I did enjoy reading this book as a whole. The highlights are definitely from their teen years as most of the story development and the growth of their relationship takes place during that time. Calvin and Ellison are both likable characters but I must admit Calvin’s brother Fox won me over right from the very beginning. 😍😍 There’s a range of secondary characters who all added complexity as they played predominant roles in both Calvin’s and Ellison’s lives. I thought Mila brilliantly created characters that evoke strong emotions out of you and you’ll find yourself truly sympathizing for both Calvin’s and Ellison’s personal struggles.

I think Razor’s Edge is a great book for romance readers who are transitioning from reading contemporary to more darker romance stories, as it has a blend of both worlds. It’s heavy on the contemporary setting but also has dark elements in between to give the story a bit of bite. The romance between the protagonists is insta-love but nevertheless sweet, full of heart, and just how you would imagine first loves to be. It’s a story of second chances with underlying lessons in not taking anything for granted and learning from one’s mistakes.

**This book is a standalone in the Underworld Kings author collaboration series. 

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐¾

Thank you Mila Crawford, the entire Underworld Kings team, and Ardent PRose for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💜

🔔 Interested in reading Razor’s Edge? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

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💀 More on the Underworld Kings! 👑

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✨ Website: Underworld Kings


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

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Stolen: Dante’s Vow by Natasha Knight

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

•••

• BLURB •

Five years.

That’s how long it took me to find her.

Five years after my world shattered, leaving me a scarred and broken man.

By then, the girl I knew was gone. In her place stood a woman. One who looked like an angel. An impossible, beautiful angel.

I killed for her. Soaked my hands in the blood of those who hurt her and rescued her from hell.

But hell has a way of following you. Becoming a part of you. Maybe the only part you recognize.

I had every intention of bringing her home. Setting her free.

I swear I did.

But the men who stole her all those years ago weren’t done with her yet. They’d stop at nothing to get her back. And I’d kill any man who tried to take her from me.

She calls me her avenging angel.

But I know the truth.

I’m no angel.

Because even as I tell myself I’m protecting her I know one thing for sure.

I am a monster, too. No better than them.

Because just like them, I’ll never let her go.

Author’s note: Stolen is Dante Grigori’s story and although a standalone, would be better enjoyed after reading With This Ring and I Thee Take.

•••

• MY REVIEW •


“I like the kill. But I won’t hurt her. Ever. And whether she likes it or not, I’m hers now. Her protector. Her monster.”


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Mara, the little girl who went missing all those years ago, along with Dante’s life since the tragedy with his family are two stories interconnected that I was intrigued to know about since the To Have and To Hold duet.

This is a standalone story with a relatively steady-to-slow pacing. It can be wordy at times and filled with details but I found the shorter chapters kept the story rolling along. If you haven’t read the duet, you may find it a little difficult to understand or connect some of the events that happened prior to this story, and unfortunately it only skims through the details in this book. Whilst you can still read this one without having read the duet first, in my opinion you’ll be missing out on the backstory between Mara and Dante, and the history between their families.

There is a blend of worlds and within it particular characters who play significant roles in both Mara’s and Dante’s stories. Knight has written in some great anti-heroes, straight-up villains, and lighthearted characters. The combination of worlds colliding along with these secondary characters provided a contrast of group dynamics and dimension to the overall storyline.

This might sound a little strange but I found the struggles that both Mara and Dante faced throughout and their difficulties moving forward the most interesting to see. Mara especially, has been forced into a particular hellish world for most of her life and it’s clear from day one that not only has it taken a physical toll on her body, but worst, she’s been mentally brutalized. Her mindset is a jumbled mess and seeing Dante (who is broken in his own right) make an effort to get her adjusted and to overwrite her current mentality had me sympathizing them both. There’s a strong sense of unfairness surrounding these two and a saddening realization that their lives could’ve been so different. I don’t think either one of them would’ve survived if it hadn’t been for their strong-willed determination.

It’s a story of second chances, complexed, tortured souls, and a war that’s bigger than either of them could have ever imagined.

With the enormity of the situation surrounding Mara, I was expecting tons of suspense and build-up, so I was surprised to discover that the atmosphere stayed pretty much one level from beginning to end. The premise had piqued my interest, and I was curious by Mara’s character development and Dante’s evolution from the man he was to the “monster” he is now, but I found a lot of the plot twists were predictable losing grittiness and a slight edge. 🤔

The connection between Mara and Dante is evident despite their age-gap and being apart from each other for so long. But I did however wonder at one point when their relationship started to develop romantically if Mara’s feelings didn’t stem from some type of hero-worship. Having suddenly be rescued by Dante from the constant torment— is she of sound mind having romantic feelings for him? Same goes for Dante. With what Mara has been through, is his romantic pursuit of her justifiable? It’s a thought-provoking story and certainly has you questioning some of their behaviour. I’m glad to see Knight has considered this and included her characters to have similar doubts, but it also helped reiterate that Mara and Dante are truly connected on a deeper level. What it lacked in suspense, made up for in the complexity of the characters, their development, and the drive behind their set goals. In plenty of ways I found the characters, their emotions, thought-process, and actions fairly understandable and relatable at times.

Told from first person, dual points of view, this is a dark mafia-themed romance. It contains sensitive subject matters that may be triggering for some readers such as kidnapping, human trafficking, graphic violence and abuse. It also broaches on psychological trauma and effects of captivity. This book is intended for audiences 18+ only.

Overall, I liked reading their story and there was a sense of contentment finally knowing what had happened to Mara since her disappearance, and knowing that despite all she has suffered she gets her HEA with Dante.

Knight has created quite a world-building with tons of potential to expand. She’s introduced characters and as mentioned earlier interconnected worlds, one being from The Society Trilogy, making the crossover seem effortless. I found the setting intricate and with certain secondary characters standing out a little more than others, you can’t help but wonder if there’s more to their story than what is mentioned in this one (and if it will ever be told).

If you’ve read any of Knight’s dark romance books in the past then what you’ll have a pretty good idea of what features you can expect from this book— effortless, easy-to-follow writing, multifaceted characters that instantly have you intrigued, and a great balance of dark elements and romance.

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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

🔔 Interested in reading Dante’s Vow? Grab your copy here: Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon CA  |  Amazon AU  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo  |  Apple Books  |  Google Play

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💍 Read reviews for the To Have and To Hold Duet!

Book One: With This Ring by Natasha Knight

Book Two: I Thee Take by Natasha Knight


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

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