Book Reviews, Dark Romance, Mafia/Gang/Secret Society Romance, Suspense/Intrigue Romance, Year of Reviews - 2021

Review – Rapture and Ruin by Julia Sykes

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Rapture and Ruin; Rapture and Ruin #1 
(#1 within a series)

Publication Date: September 14, 2021

Genre/Tropes: Book Duet/Suspense/Mafia/Dark Romance

Author: Julia Sykes

Review Rating: 5 Gold Stars



I  loved how this book began. Max, was looking for justice by kidnapping the mayor’s daughter, Allie, but when that ran south he actually let her go. Max believed the mayor was behind sending his family to jail. While he believes his family is guilty of the crimes, he also believes the mayor isn’t the saint he portrays to the world either. I wasn’t quite sure what Max wanted, but I still liked the concept that he wanted to take some form of justice out on Allie, but one thing leads to another and soon these two become more entangled and feelings get involved.

Allie wants to prove that her father is innocent so when she tracks down Max she only seems to dive deeper into his world and as these two spend more time together she sees the man behind his beastly mask. His gentleness with her is so different to what he wants to portray, it draws her in, but how could it ever work between them?

If there was one thing that bothered me, it was Allie, Max pointed it out plain as day to her over and over again that she is horribly naive. I understand that her father sheltered her, but in this day and age she lives in a world with social media and she clearly has a phone and her best friend is an influencer, so coming off as clueless as she does is a hard pill to swallow, at least as often as she does.

Aside from that, there is a lot of chemistry between Max and Allie, which helps move the book right along. Also, perhaps it’s in Allie’s naivety that helps keep blinders on to Max and the mafia world he comes from which keeps that chemistry brewing.  Although it doesn’t help their budding romance for the big cliffhanger and now we all wait…what’s going to happen?? Will Allie find the truth or will Max become the monster he claims to be?


“I am a monster out of your worst nightmares.”

Max Ferrara is a madman and a monster, but it’s not his scarred face that makes him a beast. He kidnapped me and tied me to a chair in his basement. He asked me crazy questions about my father, the mayor—insane ramblings about how my dad worked with the Russian Bratva to destroy his Italian Mafia family over a decade ago. Max thinks I know something about this conspiracy, but he’s wrong; my dad is a good person.

Once he lets me go, I’m determined to prove to him that my father is innocent. I have to put a stop to his misguided vendetta. But the deeper I dig for evidence, the more dangerous my life becomes.

Max tells me there are other monsters lurking in the dark, and he intends to protect me from them. Whether I want him to or not.

The scariest thing? I’m starting to think that Max Ferrara might not be so monstrous, after all…

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Book Reviews, Erotic Romance, Suspense/Intrigue Romance, Year of Reviews - 2021

Review – The Dom Identity by Lexi Blake


The Dom Identity; Masters and Mercenaries #23, Reloaded #2 
(#2 within a series)

Publication Date: September 14, 2021

Genre/Tropes: BDSM/Suspense Romance

Author: Lexi Blake

Review Rating: 5 Gold Stars



Family, intimacy, spies, and all the loveable sarcasm I adore while reading my favorite series. Everything right and perfect was in The Dom Identity, including talk about body positivity….YESZZZZ…and finding joy before life passes you by.

Lexi Blake has never shied away from strong women or the leading men who bring out confidence in their partner or partners. In this newest addition to one of my all time favorite series, Michael Malone and Vanessa Jones crack open body image, self esteem and how it all ties in to how a person projects what they feel and what others actually see whether they are in person, on stage, in the tabloids, etc…

It’s hard enough for an everyday person to navigate the world and enjoy the body we live in, but for people like Michael and Vanessa, who live more in the world’s eye, criticism is an everyday occurance. These two also circle what is involved being a couple in the eye of the public. Love is work for a normal couple, but elevate it with paparazzi and constant social injustice and a relationship seems almost impossible.

Michael Malone comes from a world of money, he’s no stranger to what the media can get wrong, but he’s also tried to live apart from it. Having a career outside of the oil business where the Malone name is tied too Michael sometimes feels disconnected from his blood relatives and the family he’s tried to create. Some days he’s so alone in the fact that he walks the line between two worlds he often wonders if he made the right decision, that is until he meets Vanessa Jones and sees that same loneliness in her.

Social media has given the world a way to project a very one dimensional view of any subject. People see what they want to see and let’s face it, a lot of people are extremely harsh. Vanessa Jones, also known as Vanessa Hale on screen, hasn’t had the best of luck when it comes to her career. Well, she has and she also hasn’t. While she became famous with her looks, those looks also brought her criticism when it came to having a brain in her head as she sought out different roles. For her beauty, she must have used it to get ahead, probaby on her knees. If she asserts herself, then she’s a cold, calculated b**ch and has emotional issues and her career suffered. Some days being a woman is not easy. It’s lonely and becomes hard to trust those around you and Vanessa gives an excellent view into this life that many crave, but perhaps isn’t all it’s cracked up to be once you reach a high level of fame. Everyone thinks they know you, but do they really? Vanessa meets her other half and being with Michael is like coming home, until she learns the truth about why he’s with her.

Michael is hired to investigate Vanessa, initially for Julian Lodge because Vanessa is working for his wife Dani. Michael should be honest and tell Vanessa why he’s there, but once he gets to know her, the real her, he doesn’t want to chance losing her. Where is Ian’s inner monologue when he needs it, aside from the one telling him to wear a condom.

I loved returning to Julian’s world and revisiting a lot of the members there while Michael and Vanessa are visiting The Club. Plus the younger generation, like Kyle, attend The Club because they don’t want to see their parents parading around naked at Sanctum. It’s too funny to hear them talk about it and fake gag, I giggle every single time. AND, the ongoing feud and frenemy status between Ian and Julian is always hilarious.I can’t get enough of the sarcastic ribbing, so many good things in this reloaded series.

While the Malone family has been present in the last few novels and novellas, we get to know them even more along with the rambunctious grandchildren. The growing families is super exciting on every level and I wish I was better at keeping track of all the children, since I know there will be match ups within the McKay-Taggart agency or interconnected worlds. I can hardly wait to see each dad freak out when that happens.

Lasty, since I know I’ve already gone off tangent, while I still love Ian and his outlandish, yet honest, remarks “Michael did what all of my idiot employees do and fell for the client. Trust me. I’ve seen it a thousand times.” As a secondary character, it was truly Kyle who stole the show in this book. Kyle reminds me of a young Tag, so I can’t say Ian isn’t far from my mind or still my favorite, but Kyle is sneaking up on Ian. Kyle is full of the Taggart sarcasm (most likely because he is the stepson of Sean Taggart and spent time with the entire Taggart clan as a child), but Kyle also has a very similar background to those he now works with. He’s carrying a dark secret, which makes him hold back on friendship, love, deep connections of any kind, but he has these moments of honesty that are leading up to what will be a fantastic book. I can hardly wait!


A man with everything

Michael Malone seems to have it all. A wealthy, loving family. A job that fulfills him. Friends he can count on. But something is missing. He’s spent years watching his brother and close friends get married and start families, but it hasn’t happened for him. When an assignment comes up to investigate fallen Hollywood star Vanessa Hale, he jumps at the chance. She’s gorgeous and potentially deadly. Playing the spy game with her might be just the thing to take his mind off his troubles.

A woman with nothing left to lose

Vanessa Hale had big dreams that ended in scandal. She returned home with nothing but heartache and the desire to find her mother’s killer. The trail points to someone at Lodge Corp, so taking a job with Julian Lodge’s mysterious company is her best option for finding the truth. While she hunts for a killer during the day, she hopes to find some solace at night in The Club. Meeting the gorgeous, sexy and seemingly kind Michael Malone, their chemistry sparks in a way she’s never felt before, and Vanessa thinks maybe her luck has finally changed.

A love that might save them both

When Michael’s true motives are revealed, she will have to find a way to forgive his betrayal. The killer has made Vanessa their next target. Working together and stopping this monster is the only chance for them to have the real love they both deserve.

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Blog Tour - 2021, Contemporary Romance, LGBTQA+, Year in Releases - 2021, Year of Reviews - 2021

Blog Tour – Doctor Daddy by Misty Walker

We’re on tour with Doctor Daddy by Misty Walker!

Download your copy today:




About Doctor Daddy

At forty-one years old, I shouldn’t just be figuring out I’m gay.

Especially since I’m married, have my dream job, and a cushy apartment in New York City.

But here I am.

Determined to not hide anymore, I walk away from my carefully constructed life.

I accept a hospitalist position at a small facility in Brigs Ferry Bay, Maine and start my life over again.

Ten months later, I get a phone call that changes everything.

My ex-wife died giving birth to a little girl named Lane.

And I’m the father.

Suddenly, I’m drowning in diapers and bottles.

I’m overwhelmed and have no idea what I’m doing.

Until Boaz Dixon, a nurse at my new hospital, drops by to check on me.

He recognises a man out of his element and takes pity on me.

Somewhere between feedings and naps, I fall in love.

Both with a little girl who has my eyes, and a sexy nurse who has my heart.

Boaz and Lane are my perfect forever.

That is, until a life-changing phone call from back in New York threatens our future together.

In order to have them both, I have to risk everything.

But they’re worth the fight.

***Doctor Daddy is a 25,000 word novella originally published in the Knocked Up anthology. While the story is the same, I included a brand-new epilogue that will have you swooning.

Read Kay’s Review: Doctor Daddy

Meet Misty Walker

Misty Walker has been writing stories, articles, and poems since junior high. Preferring to stay behind the scenes until now, she has been an avid romance reader, a blogger, and an audiobook proofer for the last fifteen years. Growing up in a nomadic household, Misty has lived all up and down the western USA, but recently settled in Reno, Nevada. Misty is a mom to two kids who are slowly trying to kill her, but they are cute, so she will keep them. She just celebrated her sixteen-year anniversary with her computer geek husband and has two dogs, Dunkin and Dutch, that are her constant companions while she happily reads and writes her life away.

Author Links:





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Bully Romance, Dark Romance, New Adult, Release Day/New Release, Year in Releases - 2021, Year of Reviews - 2021

New Release – Poisoned Paradise by Lucy Smoke

𝐏𝐎𝐈𝐒𝐎𝐍𝐄𝐃 𝐏𝐀𝐑𝐀𝐃𝐈𝐒𝐄 a Forbidden, Enemies to Lovers, Taboo, Dark Romance by Lucy Smoke is LIVE!!

❝𝒯𝓇𝓊𝓉𝒽 𝒾𝓈 𝒻𝒶𝓇 𝒸𝓇𝓊𝑒𝓁𝑒𝓇 𝓉𝒽𝒶𝓃 𝒻𝒾𝒸𝓉𝒾𝑜𝓃…❞

Six years ago, I made a mistake. The worst mistake I could have ever possibly made. I fell in love with the wrong person and … I told him.

Ryan’s always been with me ever since I can remember. It’s been the two of us—side by side. Through every new beginning, every new ‘family’, and every failure. Is it any wonder that the love I had for him turned into something different—something deeper? Something utterly rotten? And is it any wonder that he hates me for it now?

I’m a damaged soul, and she’s the only thing that’s ever held me together. But the one woman I want is the one woman I can never have.

She thinks I hate her for her confession, and maybe a part of me does. What I hate more, though, is that I have to push her away to keep her safe. That I have to pretend like I don’t fucking want her when she’s all I’ve been able to think about for the last six years.

We’re no fucking Romeo and Juliet. We’re much worse than that. A love like ours was doomed from the start.

☠️ Taboo
☠️ Dark Romance
☠️ Forbidden
☠️ Enemies-to-Lovers

US ↪ http:ebook/dp/B094L79X6S

Warning: This is a dark taboo/forbidden romance, and contains dark and very taboo themes which some readers may find uncomfortable or upsetting. A detailed warning is provided at the beginning of the book. If you do not enjoy these themes, or have triggers, please do not read. Recommended for 18+ due to sexual content and adult situations. Please read responsibly.

This book is a part of the Black Heart Romance presents Heaven & Hell series.
**This is a STANDALONE book.**

About the Author:
Lucy Smoke, also known as Lucinda Dark for her fantasy works, has a master’s degree in English and is a self-proclaimed creative chihuahua. She enjoys feeding her wanderlust, cover addiction, as well as her face, and truly hopes people will stop giving her bath bombs as gifts. Bath’s get cold too fast and it’s just not as wonderful as the commercials make it out to be when the tub isn’t a jacuzzi. 

When she’s not on a never-ending quest to find the perfect milkshake, she lives and works in the southern United States with her beloved fur-baby, Hiro, and her family and friends.