Tag Archives: 5 Hearts

The Bad Guy

By Celia Loren

Synopsis

My name is Sebastian Lindstrom, and I’m the villain of this story.

I’ve decided to lay myself bare. To tell the truth for once in my hollow life, no matter how dark it gets. And I can assure you, it will get so dark that you’ll find yourself feeling around the blackened corners of my mind, seeking a door handle that isn’t there.

Don’t mistake this for a confession. I neither seek forgiveness nor would I accept it. My sins are my own. They keep me company. Instead, this is the true tale of how I found her, how I stole her, and how I lost her.

She was a damsel, one who already had her white knight. But every fairy tale has a villain, someone waiting in the wings to rip it all down. A scoundrel who will set the world on fire if that means he gets what he wants. That’s me.

I’m the bad guy.

Author’s Note: This is a dark romance with an HEA and no cheating. 

Review

The Bad Guy is my fifth book by this author and it is my absolute favourite.

The Bad Guy is one of those stories that my god makes me think I need therapy because from the first few chapters I was right there in Sebastian’s corner wanting Camilla for him.  Every step of his “out of the box” way to get her to be with him – well I am sorry I forgave him and was hoping like hell Camilla would fall in love with him.

The author gives Camilla purpose, she is smart, has a passion and i really savoured her individual moments with her plants so thanks to the author for making her more than just a mans obsession.  Sebastian also showed an appreciation for Camilla’s passion and he fed and nurtured her as she did her plants – I loved this part of the story.

Sebastian pulls some questionable manoeuvres to obtain Camilla for some one of one time and well done for making parts of her life available to the fact she can disappear for a week and no one really notices.  The background story of her friends and job actually makes this quite believable and did not have me questioning the what if’s.  I was totally in the moment with these two characters and thoroughly enjoyed them making new boundaries in the agreement.

Now onto the supporting characters, loved his dad and his various talks with Camilla and his total love of his son.  I was glad my gut instincts were right about Link however the ending was a big surprise for me and I never would have guessed so there are some great twists and turns.

My favourite chapters were from 40 to 44, I was shaking and scared and had tears in my eyes, my heart hurt and I felt like I just wanted to hug Camilla – she was so strong and fearless.

The Epilogue made me so happy.

The Bad Guy

My Rating:  

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Fallen Crest Forever (Fallen Crest #7)

By Tijan

Synopsis

Mason Kade is the dream.
He is the promise.
He’s offering what so many would fantasize about, and it’s not that I don’t want it/him/us.
It’s the opposite.
There might be ghosts haunting me, but this man who’s my soulmate is asking me for forever.
How can I say no to someone who already gave me my happily ever after?

The last full-length novel for the Fallen Crest Series!

Review

The Fallen Crest series to me began with Samantha Stratton in FCH and we followed her journey through family breakup and finding her new family and fighting those battles as the “Threesome Fearsome”.    As a reader I was so glad Fallen Crest Forever was in all essence about Sam, her running (that had taken a back seat in the last two books) and all the pieces of her life falling into place both physically, mentally and also repairing so much damage from the adults in her life.   I loved the bond of Sam & Mason and Logan & Taylor growing towards adulthood and Logan was the one to have me tearing up on many occasions.

There were some incredibly hard scenes in this particularly towards the end but they were so needed to develop the characters into the adult world and making life decisions about their futures so to me it was perfect.  All characters to me matured and their inner thoughts upon the pages just tied all the loose ends together.

My comment on the Epilogue, at first I was upset upon reading the last section, I felt left out because as a reader I wanted to know how it all happened as we have followed everything good and bad together but upon reflection Tijan gave them privacy and I am happy they got to that point in their lives, particularly Sam, I feel at peace for her and ready to let her go.

Fallen Crest is just a wonderful series as it has a great group of characters and I really enjoyed all the adults that formed their outer circle.  I would love a book on Annalise and James as their relationship has intrigued me from the first book, James and Mason are such a strong force when upon the pages in the same scene, I would love to get into his head.

Farewell Fallen Crest – looking forward to seeing what other stories lay ahead in the world of Tijan.

Fallen Crest Forever (Fallen Crest #7)

My Rating:  

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Emilia: Part 1 (Trassato Crime Family #3)

By Lisa Cardiff

Synopsis

Freedom and a meaningful life away from the violence of the Trassato Crime Family is all I ever wanted…

But what I want doesn’t matter now that I’m caught in a tug of war between two men in the dangerous world of organized crime.

Marcello Masciantonio is the man my father expects me to marry. He wants me because I’m the daughter of Dominick Trassato, New York’s most powerful crime boss. He says he’s my future, and I want to hate him, but I can’t deny the spark that burns between us.

Salvatore D’Amico is perfect. He supports me. He understands me. He’s willing to betray my father and give up his family to have me. He doesn’t care about the power that comes with being part of my family. He wants me for me.

My choice is simple, right?

Wrong.

Everyone has an agenda, including Salvatore and Marcello, and just when I think I have everything figured out, I realize I don’t know a damn thing.

Truths are lies. Freedom is lonely. But worst of all…

My love triangle is actually a hate triangle.

Review

Firstly, another great cover for this series, I love them all.  I have read Kon and Gian (Trassato Crime Family #1 & #2) and I highly recommend you read these aswell as although not linked I think you will understand the underlying mafia connections.

Emilia’s story I devoured, I had knots of fear and hurt in my throat, there were times I put the book down took a breathe and dived back in.  Emilia has so many people controlling her life, making decisions and at Chapter 21 I too felt so desolate with her.

The author wove the love triangle/hate triangle together perfectly, I was torn as to who was the good guy and bad guy, I changed corners like Emilia did and I too believed the lies and secrets and felt betrayed towards the end of this story.  This also answered questions and explained to me more in-depth the relationship between Emilia and her father as I had so many questions after completing Kon (Book #2).

When all is revealed at the end I was shattered and was willing Emilia to make her hardest decision of her life.

Now onto the ending, personally some readers will think it is a cliffhanger and yes in a way it is but you do get some answers but I still have so many questions and my god will Emilia: Part 2 have some explosive revelations?  If Emilia: book 2 was available I would have one clicked and downloaded that bad boy and continued my trip with Emilia to the point where she gets her justice.

I am actually going to go back and read Kon again as Emilia returns to the family fold and I want to go back and see if I missed anything.

I cannot wait to see what twists, turns and secrets the author is going to reveal in the next instalment of the Trassato Crime Family.

Quote:  You’re my reward… Brought me to you…

Emilia: Part 1 (Trassato Crime Family #3)

My Rating:  

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Lethal Lies (Blood Brothers #2)

By Rebecca Zanetti

Synopsis

Revenge. It’s the only thing that will help Anya Best sleep at night. The serial killer who murdered her sister is on the loose, and Anya will stop at nothing to put him behind bars-even use herself as bait to lure him out of hiding. But she can’t do this alone.

Private investigator Heath Jones’s job is to bring bastards to justice. This time it’s personal. He knew the Copper Killer’s latest victim so when her sister asks for his help, he’s all in. But when Anya uses the media to taunt the killer, she exposes Heath’s identity, putting them both in jeopardy. Now, secrets buried long ago are coming to light and the forces determined to destroy him are watching Heath’s every move, waiting to exact their own revenge. And they’ll use anything and anyone to get to Heath.

Review

Lethal Lies is book 2 in the addictive Blood Brothers Series.  In Deadly Silence we learned that more than one experiment was performed by Dr. Isobel Madison (aka Sylvia Daniel).  Three boys were placed in a boy’s home and they quickly became family for each other.  Lethal Lies is Heath’s story and the revelations that he uncovers.

I love Heath.  Rebecca Zanetti wrote him exactly the way I imagined him to be.  He has a kind of vulnerability that instantly draws you in while he is protecting everyone around him.  He is loyal to his brothers and to those he respects. When he finds out that the agent he has a contact has been kidnapped by the Copper Killer he knows that he has to help her and her sister.

Anya is a bright and she says anything that comes to her mind.  She knows the one thing that will bring the Copper Killer out into the open. In her grief she puts together a plan to get him to expose himself but that involves Heath. She is willing to sacrifice herself if it came down to it. Anya brings out the best in Heath and she needs him to help in stopping the murders.

Lethal Lies is action packed from beginning to end.  We learn so much about Dr. Madison and what she was doing and how insane she really is.  There are so many revelations in this story. There is also a twist near the end that adds to the suspense.  The brothers work so well together and are always willing to sacrifice for each other.  This series is so addictive.  I can’t wait for Denver’s book.

Lethal Lies

My Rating:  5 Hearts

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Sovietnik’s Fury

By V.F. Mason

Synopsis

Vivian
Terrified at what my family wanted to do to me, I ran away from them straight into the arms of a gray-eyed stranger.
The man taught me how to love, creating a cocoon around my heart that nothing could break.
I thought my old life was behind me, but my dreams didn’t come true.
They had found me and manipulated the situation in their favor, destroying my life in the process.
To save the man I loved, I had no choice but to betray him.
He was out of prison now.
He would come for revenge.
All I could do was pray for mercy.

Sovietnik 
Five years.
That was how long I had spent in prison for the crime I didn’t commit.
My life, my status, my woman were stolen from me.
So many people due revenge from for the injustice done to me.
But I’d start with the one who betrayed me the most.
The woman I loved, the only woman who occupied my thoughts all those years, from the moment I’d met her.
The only woman I used to live for.
Vivian.

Warning: 18+ due to sexual content, profanity, abuse, graphic violence, and adult subject matter. Standalone, although connected with Pakhan Duet series.

Review

Firstly, I love the cover, yes I too wanted his beard to run between my legs just like Vivian, wow their passionate scenes were H.O.T.!

Sovietnik’s does have immense fury, anger, betrayal but his ultimate love for Vivian and the need to protect her made him the champion.  The way the author told their love story between the past and present seemed to entwine without breaks, it simply flowed perfectly for me.  I do not normally like going backwards and forwards but I found in this story I was hungry for everything, their history, the plotting and I had questions and all were answered.

Well done to the author, I did not pick The Director, I had a hunch but until it was revealed I was still second guessing myself which in the end provided a great twist.  There are also other great small stories within this suspenseful journey especially with the Sovietnik’s family, Vivian and her sister and parents too that I loved.

The Sovietnik does get his revenge, it is at times dark, raw and gritty but done with total relevance to the story and I was with him every step of the way considering the injustice served to him.  I did also enjoy the friendship with his group of men and I found the Russian mafia story easy to follow.  I also really loved the endless protection and moments of humour given particularly between Vivian, Jake and the Russian men.

I literally picked this up and could not put down, it had me gripped to the pages, second guessing myself and then falling in love all over again with Vivian and the Sovietnik like they did 5 years earlier.

The Epilogue is brilliant and left me totally satisfied with the conclusion to their love story.

Sovietnik’s Fury

My Rating:  

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Kon (Trassato Crime Family #2)

By Lisa Cardiff

Synopsis

Once upon a time, I was the woman you envied.

I had it all. A wonderful family. The perfect fiancé who also happened to be my best friend. Money and resources. The power and influence that came with sharing the Trassato name.

One night my fairytale became a nightmare, and I’ve been living in Hell ever since.

A rival family killed my fiancé. My father succumbed to cancer. In the middle of it all, I bargained away my future to Konstantin Trincher, a member of the Russian mafia. It seemed like the perfect solution at the time—my brother’s girlfriend in exchange for me.

Only things weren’t that simple.

I promised myself to Konstantin and my family promised me to Nico DeAngelo, the underboss of the Trassato Crime Family.

Konstantin and I form an alliance to unravel our bargain. The only problem? We didn’t expect to fall for each other in the process.

Now I’m forced to choose between love and loyalty.

One choice will break my heart and the other will break my family.

Review

Firstly love the cover, that is definately Kon, I could imagine him and I also recommend that you read Gian first as he does feature quiet heavily in this story.  Kon is the brother-in-law to Gian who has married Kon’s sister Evie, they are estranged in part of this story.

Kon, book 2 of the Trassato Crime Family definitely has lots of drama, some mystery and also answered some questions that I had from Gian book 1. I loved Kon and Carmela as a couple, they were passionate, stubborn and had great banter with each other.

Carmela I loved as a female lead character, she has experienced heartache, betrayal and also learns how to stand up and fight for who she loves.  Carmela was very different to Evie and another new female character introduced was Emilia. I cannot wait for Emilia’s story, wow she is one big black sheep of the family, I think her story is going to be great and I hope she eventually gets some reconciliation with her father.  What she has gone through has me asking so many questions.

Kon entwines the Russian and Italian famlies and the ending I loved however I do wish they announced everything about their relationship but perhaps we get to see and hear it all in book 3 – I hope so.

Kon (Trassato Crime Family #2)

My Rating:   

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A Change in Tide

By Freya Barker

Synopsis

What impact would it have when everything suddenly faded to black?

For Mia, a crowded subway ride changes her entire life. Retreating to the wilderness helps her cope with a world that is suddenly too loud, too turbulent.
Her existence safely contained to the small cottage on the lake, she is unprepared for the neighbor that moves across the bay

A career-ending injury has Jared permanently benched. His reputation as The Enforcer won’t survive the unanticipated responsibilities awaiting him.
Away from the public eye, he adjust to his new reality, under the quiet observation of the intriguing hermit on the other side of the water.

Review

A Change in Tide is my first book by this author and will not be my last, her writing style, the way she interconnects the characters, their emotions, passion and humour was just fantastic.

As I got towards the Epilogue my eyes started to well with tears, I was simply not read to say farewell to this group of characters, I will be reading this story again and again, it is a beautiful story of hope, family and new beginnings.

The cover is pure and simple Jared, all masculine in that outdoors way, yet someone who would engulf you in a big bear hug and fight your demons.  I also am happy to say I loved that Jared was shy of 40 and Mia was slightly older, it was wonderful to read a mature love story of second chances and changing your life’s direction.

The story is told from both Jared and Mia POV and it switches with ease and we also get an entwining story of Jared’s sister, now I could read a whole novel on her running parallel to this story as so many scenes I was like, I want to know what is being thought, felt and whispered, but that is just me.  The humourous scenes around Jordy and Ole made me laugh many times which provided relief and John was a wonderful character and perfectly included – I was so in his alpha corner all the way.

Mia’s condition is written with heart and soul and it was respectful and as a reader you too were feeling the helplessness and loneliness.  I was with Mia every step of the way in her fighting through and deciding to embrace life again and to go with the flow of the tide.

A Change in Tide was a simply beautiful romantic story and upon finishing the last page I had a smile on my face and tears in my eyes – my soul was nourished.

Quote:  But if I truly want a new beginning – a total change in tide – I have to start with me.

A Change in Tide

My Rating:  

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Resurrecting Hope

By Jane Anthony

Synopsis

~Hope~
I’m broken.
I’m hiding.
I’m not the woman he claims he loves.
Hope Moon is a figment, a fairy tale. A single mom with sunny smiles on the outside, but whose pitch-black insides are riddled with demons.
I can’t look him in the face, can’t tell him who I am.
If I let my guard down, Jack will find me.
Jack’s wrath left me bound in hell.
Can Hank’s love set me free?

~Hank~
I’ve been hurt.
I’ve been used.
I’ve been betrayed.
But Hank Lawless isn’t a man to be trifled with.
Hope Moon has caught me like a fly in a web. Her gaze is haunted, her moves calculated. There’s more to the dark haired beauty than meets the eye. She’s hiding something.
I need to find a way to break down her defenses.
I vowed to walk beside her through her own personal hell.
But is my love enough to free her from it?

**This book contains mature content and is meant for adults 18+. It contains a trigger warning for graphic scenes of domestic violence and rape. It’s a story about second chances and overcoming your shattered past by any means necessary. Please take this into account before reading.**

Review

Resurrecting Hope was a beautiful read, my first by this author and I loved her writing style as it kept me glued to the pages, I could not put this story down.  Hope’s journey is hard, dark and yes dangerous at times but Hank when he joined the story you just knew he was with her all the way.

I devoured this story, I was hungry for more of Hank and Hope and also knowing that Hope and her past was ultimately going to catch up to her.  Hank and Hope’s passionate scenes were well written and give you plenty of heat and emotional connection.

So  many times I was shaking with fear, when we returned with Hope in her memories and nightmares to her life with Jack, the build up continued to the point of no return and you knew we would be facing him again as this story is about her resurrection.

The elephant in the room was funny to watch, the realisation and the new beginnings, I was in love with the optimism of a new start. Kira was a beautiful character and showed you more of the depth of Hope, her strength and dreams of a future of making a new life for herself.

This story ended perfectly and I also love the cover of this book.

Resurrecting Hope

My Rating:  

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Physis (Phoebe Reede: The Untold Story # 4)

By Michelle Irwin

Synopsis

Finding a new normal is never as easy as it seems.

Phoebe Reede has suffered unimaginable tortures at the hands of her captors. Now home and safe, she can’t let go of the things that happened to her. No amount of therapy or coaxing by her parents can draw her from her shell.

How can she learn to live again, when everything she loved about herself is gone?

**Due to strong language and sexual content not intended for anyone under the age of 18. Some books in this series contain content, including sexual assault and violence, that may trigger emotional distress in some readers.**

Review

I’m going to start this review with a warning that PHYSIS is not for the faint of heart.  What Phoebe endured during her three month captivity is not pretty, and you will read about most—if not all—of it in this book.

I’d gone to America broken-hearted and had come home broken everywhere.

The story takes place two months after BEASTLY, which ended with Phoebe being taken back to Australia by her father, Declan, and leaving Beau behind.  At home with her family, she doesn’t feel safe and is haunted by nightmares, flashbacks and gentle touches.  Most of this story is focused on Phoebe and how she’s trying to live with what happened to her, but it also showed how Phoebe’s ordeal is affecting those close to her.

I didn’t survive three months imprisonment.  My body might have, but the girl I’d been was dead.

Without trying to give too much away, Beau does appear in this book and he’s still as sweet as ever.  He makes his presence known to Phoebe but lets her know that any and all contact with him will be on her terms.  That helped Phoebe heal more than anything else since she got home.

“I didn’t think I’d ever find anyone who I thought was worthy of my Pheebs, but he’s proven himself to be the best man for you.”

PHYSIS is told only in Phoebe’s POV and⎯I think for the first time ever⎯doesn’t end in a cliffhanger.  There are still more books to come in Phoebe and Beau’s story, but for now we ended on a happy note.  To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about that.  I’m so used to Michelle’s cliffhangers leaving me on the edge of my seat feeling shocked, scared or angry, that this turn of events has me nervous.  Is this just the calm before the storm?  I read PHYSIS in one day and I’m greatly looking forward to PHANTOM, which comes out in June.

Physis (Phoebe Reede: The Untold Story # 4)

My Rating:  

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Phoebe Reede: The Untold Story Series

Blade Bound (Chicagoland Vampire #13)

By Chloe Neill

Synopsis

Since the night of her brutal attack and unwilling transformation into a vampire, Merit has stood as Sentinel and protector of Chicago’s Cadogan House. She’s saved the Windy City from the forces of darkness time and again with her liege and lover, Ethan Sullivan, by her side.

When the House is infiltrated and Merit is attacked by a vampire who seems to be under the sway of dark magic, Merit and Ethan realize the danger is closer than they could have imagined. As malign sorcery spreads throughout the city, Merit must go to war against supernatural powers beyond her comprehension. It is her last chance to save everything—and everyone—she loves.

Review

Blade Bound is the final installment for Merit and Ethan.  For me, it was the perfect way to end their journey.  It brought their story full circle.  I loved how it had references to when they first met and how their love evolved. I couldn’t put this book down and even though I loved the ending, I still didn’t want it to be over.

Merit has grown so much even though it had only been a year.  She had discovered what she was capable of and found the love of her life.  She has an inner strength and loyalty that really matches no other.

I love Ethan.  He has also grown since meeting Merit.  He had learned how love affects people and how it effects everything in his life.  Ethan has always known what Merit is made of and made sure that she had the opportunity to become the person she was meant to be.

Blade Bound also had all the characters that we have grown to love throughout this series.  From Luc and Lindsey, Jeff and Merit’s grandfather to Catcher and Mallory.  And yes Catcher is still tying to get a Lifetime movie made out of their story.

This story has everything in it that makes the Chicagoland Vampire Series so great.  I really like how it highlights that fact that the humans and vampires still do not have a great relationship but the vampires will find a way to save the city.  I also couldn’t get enough of their wedding.  It touched on everything that makes them so great together.  I’m sad that this series has ended but I’m looking forward to the spinoff series and hope for some cameos.

Blade Bound

My Rating:  5 Hearts

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