⚠ This review contains a minor teaser!
• BLURB •
Do you believe in love at first sight? In a love so strong and bright, it ignites you even in your darkest hours? Do you believe that somewhere in this world there’s someone who’s destined to be your other half? Your soulmate?
Until I met her.
The Camorra’s protected mafia princess. She’s forbidden to me.
My love for my family and my animals was all I needed. I never thought I’d fall in love. Until I met him.
Amo Vitiello. Future Capo of the Famiglia. Cruel and cold. The smiles that he has only for me quiet the chaos in my head.
What if you find your soulmate at the wrong time?
I knew the cruelest men, and yet nothing could ever be crueler than fate itself.
• MY REVIEW •
“You’re meant to be Capo.”
“I’m also meant to love you.”
Would you take a leap of faith for the unknown? Would you sacrifice one love for another?
This story just about broke my heart. As much as I thought I was coming into it slightly prepared for some heartbreak, it was nowhere near enough what with the emotional onslaught that smacked me page after page. Reilly really pulled out the big guns with this one. I couldn’t stop reading even if I needed to. This may have been one of Reilly’s longer length novels, but it definitely didn’t read like one with the constant developments, nail-biting suspense, and jaw-dropping plot twists.
By Fate I Conquer is reminiscent of Bound by Honor and Twisted Pride combined. It brought about the gritty atmosphere, complexity, and well-developed narrative that initially had me falling in love with the Born In Blood Mafia Chronicles and The Camorra Chronicles alike, (and more specifically with my favourite Made Men of this world). It was the book I was so hoping and wishing Sins Of The Fathers had been from the get-go, but nevertheless Amo and Greta’s story was well worth the wait, and in my opinion breathe new life into the series.
Seeing the relationships, contrast and dynamics between certain characters was intriguing to say the least and in some cases devilishly amusing, leaving me with giddy excitement to see what Reilly has in store for future books.
I’ve seen how this world Reilly has created has divided readers in regards to the actions her characters have taken. I personally, had no issues with the events that transpired in both Remo (Twisted Pride) and Luca’s (Bound By Blood) books and the roads taken, and I didn’t have issues with Amo’s either. Reilly’s characters are flawed and complex. This story undoubtedly struggles with morality and you’re going to have to leave your moral compass at the door if there’s any chance of liking (and more importantly accepting) Amo and Greta’s story.
Having said that, in my opinion trigger warnings should be openly shared whether it contains spoilers or not. It would take a lot for me to be triggered by dark and/or sensitive content from a book I’m reading, but if I had any, I’d like to know ahead of time if a book I was considering reading had any that I might be opposed to. Out of respect for Reilly’s wishes I’m not sharing specific TW, but I will say this: By Fate I Conquer is graphic, probably more graphic, more detailed than any of Reilly’s past mafia books. The violence is disturbing, brutal, and can be traumatic for some readers. There’s a lot to unpack with this book, the violence is just one of many. Take caution if you’re squeamish.
This story is undoubtedly debatable and thought-provoking. It brings up real-life issues. I applaud Reilly for trying to add diversity to her characters and to their circumstances, however I’m on the fence about one particular turn of events. I initially liked the idea and thought it was a refreshing change of direction, but sadly it was short-lived, as Reilly reverted back to a predictable route that majority of her fanbase no doubt are favourably expecting.
In spite of everything, this book is hefty. I thoroughly enjoyed the backstories and the constant interactions amongst the cast of characters. There are bonds that I was all-in for and hope to see more of in upcoming books. The vast relationships presented and series crossovers alone made this an outstanding story to read through. Star-crossed lovers is a premise I’ll never tire of reading, and this was very much a modern-day Romeo & Juliet narrative. Amo and Greta have an interesting contrast of personalities that suited one another and I was immediately invested in seeing how things would progress. The saying “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree” has never been truer than with the Falcones and the Vitiellos, and they certainly know how to evoke emotion out of you. The ratio of romance to dark mafia elements was well-balanced and honestly kept me on the edge of seat. The budding romance is swoon-worthy with tons of eroticism thrown in.
The world-building expanded tenfold with this book through the epic cast of characters that appeared. If you’re not familiar with the pre-existing characters from Reilly’s extensive mafia world, then you’ll probably feel overwhelmed by all the relationships and connections involved. I recommend checking out Reilly’s backlist of books to ensure you’re up-to-date (preferably before starting this one).
Overall, it’s well-paced storytelling and I enjoyed seeing it told from multiple POVs. Whilst I found particular scenes predictable, there were still plenty of surprises throughout that made it unputdownable. I only wish certain events that took place weren’t mentioned in passing. I’m curious to know all the gory details. But I’m in happy contentment that this story gave a sense of new beginnings and in some instances a sense of closure too. Although I still can’t wrap my mind around my favourite OG characters having gotten older, I’m chuffed to see their fiery dispositions are still very much alive and kicking. 🤭😜
Amo and Greta have come a long way from their days as littlies. Despite their dark and gritty surroundings, I have second-hand pride at seeing how well they’ve both turned out. I will definitely be reading this one time and time again, and I highly recommend fans of dark mafia romance books add it to their TBR!
Thank you Cora Reilly and Emily Alice for the opportunity to read an advance copy! ❤
🔔 Interested in reading By Fate I Conquer? Grab your copy here: Kobo | Apple Books | Barnes & Noble
✝ Sins Of The Fathers
Book One: By Sin I Rise: Part One by Cora Reilly
Book Two: By Sin I Rise: Part Two by Cora Reilly
Book Three: By Virtue I Fall by Cora Reilly
💀 More books by Cora Reilly!
The Camorra Chronicles
Book One: Twisted Loyalties by Cora Reilly
Book Two: Twisted Emotions by Cora Reilly
Book Three: Twisted Pride by Cora Reilly
Book Four: Twisted Bonds by Cora Reilly
Book Five: Twisted Hearts by Cora Reilly
Luca Vitiello by Cora Reilly
Sweet Temptation by Cora Reilly
The Dirty Bargain by Lylah James & Cora Reilly
Bound By The Past by Cora Reilly
King Thrushbeard by Cora Reilly
Forbidden Delights by Cora Reilly
Bound By Blood Anthology by Cora Reilly
Not Meant To Be Broken by Cora Reilly
Only Work, No Play by Cora Reilly
Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo
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