Mafia enforcer Rocco De Lucchi is the best in the business.
Cold, hard, and utterly ruthless, Rocco is the most dangerous of men. Feelings are a luxury he cannot afford—until a chance encounter brings him face to face with the only woman who found her way into his heart and touched his soul.
Grace Mantini has spent her whole life running from the mob. The daughter of the boss's right-hand man, she is both a prize and a target. When Rocco walks back into her life, she wants nothing to do with the man who betrayed her and broke her heart. But only Rocco can protect her from the dangerous forces that seek to destroy her family. Can they escape the hands of fate closing around them? Or will love be the kiss of death for them both?
“Castille [gives] readers the compelling romance they crave.”—RT Book Reviews
Review of Rocco by Sarah Castille
Rocco is the third novel in the Ruin and Revenge series by New York Times bestselling author Sarah Castille. Rocco, also known as Frankie, is a hardened and cold mafia enforcer for the Toscanis in Las Vegas. His childhood was devoid of comfort and love, and his future appeared to be heading that direction…until he met Grace, the daughter of a powerful mafia underboss, someone he has sworn to protect. Intense passion and love pulled them together and swept them into a forbidden entanglement that, while strong and fiery, was severely tested in the cruelest of ways, thus forcing them apart and spurring Grace to run.
Years pass and Grace has made a life for herself in Las Vegas, far from the horror that was inflicted upon her physically, mentally, and emotionally. Not wishing to be embroiled in the turbulent life of the Mafia like her father and brother, Grace distances herself and obtains a degree to counsel others, while her secret passion for singing is put on hold. The physical scar she carries upon her face as a result of the night that sent her fleeing and her heart breaking, is a deterrent to her in the novel whenever she finds herself longing to indulge in her passion.
While in Las Vegas, Grace and Rocco run into each other at a funeral and all the passion they have been holding at bay threatens to explode. Their encounters are filled with so much emotion and pain that you can practically feel it leaping from the pages and taking a hold of you. It is quite evident that there is still a lot they needed to say to each other and a lot of feelings they were never able to dispel. When Grace’s life is threatened once more, Rocco steps in and is once again in a position to protect her. He’s given a second chance to prove to her that he can keep her safe, that he can love her.
I loved Grace’s character. She is sweetness and strength all rolled into one. I love how she starts to come to terms with the past and is able to move past her disfigurement. Seeing Grace bring life and compassion back into Rocco, and watching as he did the same to her was a beautiful feeling. The story was a perfect blend of passion, suspense, forgiveness, and redemption. It tugs at the heart strings while steaming up the room!
Five out of five stars for Rocco!! Check it out today!!
It has been thirteen years since the war started, the bombs were dropped, and the central states became a thing of the past. When the war ended, a wall was erected to divide the surviving states from those destroyed. I never expected to go beyond the wall, but unlike all the others who volunteered to go, I wasn’t given a choice.
With a dim knowledge of what I could do, the soldiers came for me. They took me beyond the wall where I learned that the truth is far more terrifying than I’d ever dreamed. Alone, with humans and demons seeking to learn what it is I can do, I find myself irresistibly drawn to the one man I should be avoiding most. One who intrigues and infuriates me. One who is not even a man, not really.
My entire life, I’ve had only one mission, reclaim my throne from Lucifer and put right everything that was torn apart when he was cast from Heaven. It’s a mission I haven’t wavered from, not even when the humans tore open the gates and unleashed Hell on Earth.
Now, I’ve never been closer to obtaining my goal, yet I find myself risking it all because I cannot stay away from her, a human who may be the key to it all.
***There are four books in this paranormal romance series which is now complete. Not all things will be resolved in this book. Due to sexual content, violence, and language, this book is recommended for readers 18+ years of age.***
The Road to Hell Series Complete Reading Order:
Good Intentions (Book 1)
Carved (Book 2)
The Road (Book 3)
Into Hell (Book 4)
Review of Good Intentions
Good Intentions is the first book in the Road to Hell series by USA Today bestselling author Brenda K. Davies. The story follows River, a young woman who shoulders the responsibility of caring for her two younger siblings and mother in post-apocalyptic New England. With the center of the United States considered a dead zone, and a massive wall separating it from the barely surviving outer states, life is filled with dread and speculation about what the wall could be keeping out. Unfortunately, volunteers are routinely asked to join military forces at the Wall to assist in some capacity. In addition to volunteers, anyone who displays odd abilities are asked to come forward- willing or unwilling. Unfortunately for River, she happens to harbor secret abilities that she truly doesn’t understand herself. This secret is brought to light during a moment of bitter betrayal, and River finds herself in the undesirable position of being escorted to the ominous wall.
Kobal is a powerful demon in search of a person with special abilities who is possibly the key to saving the world and defeating Lucifer. Beyond the wall, he and his demon followers help to train the volunteers to protect the wall and fight lower demons who have escaped hell to wreak havoc on the bare remnants of the world. However, what he did not count on was finally finding the key to Lucifer’s destruction within a woman who tempts him.
River and Kobal’s chemistry is sizzling! Kobal takes River under his wing and personally sees to training her how to fight. This allows for ample opportunity for the characters to become acquainted and to navigate the emotions erupting within them. You can practically feel the sexual tension and interest leaping off the pages in some of their more heated encounters. I also love how a young, mostly human woman can bring out the good aspects in a demon notorious for his savagery and strength. Kobal is not a demon anyone would wish to cross- as was demonstrated, in such a graphic and decidedly uncomfortable way, with a former flame who should have thought twice before making the move they did.
The vivid imagery, the passion, the adventure, and heart-pounding action makes this book a MUST-READ!! I was thoroughly engrossed in Good Intentions…completely and utterly engrossed. Maybe even a little obsessed? Can’t wait to snag the next two novels in the series!!
Searching for her missing brother, Grace Carlyle never dreamed she would discover a secret world populated by mythological monsters—or find herself facing a sword-wielding being whose looks put mortal men to shame.
But there he was, Darius en Kragin, one of a race of shape-shifting warriors bound to guard the gates of Atlantis, and kill all travelers who strayed within its borders.
Now Grace's life was in his hands, and Darius had to choose between his centuries-old vow and the woman who had slipped beneath his defenses and stolen the heart of Atlantis's fiercest dragon.
Heart of the Dragon Review
Heart of the Dragon is part of the Atlantis series by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Gena Showalter. The story follows Grace Carlyle, a young woman who braves the wilds of South America in search of her missing brother. Unfortunately, Grace stumbles upon a cave leading her to the mythical world of Atlantis- and straight into the presence of Darius en Kragin, a dragon king sworn to protect the mythical realm. Darius has spent the past couple hundred years keeping his promise to protect Atlantis- even taking the lives of the possibly innocent people who unwittingly stumbled upon the world. This difficult task led to Darius suppressing his feelings and forced him to maintain a cool indifference in his demeanor and life. However, his emotions become fractured, and his impulses less controlled, when he comes face-to-face with Grace.
Darius and Grace build a rocky and unstable alliance in their quest to find Grace’s brother, while contending with their undeniable attraction to one another. Grace’s time in Atlantis, while short lived in the beginning of the book, was fraught with wonder and entertainment. I greatly enjoyed getting to know the other dragon warriors under Darius’s command. I was slightly disappointed when Grace had to flee Atlantis (though I understand her fear for her life since Darius was intent on killing her- though with no great deal of enthusiasm for the task). Luckily, I got to experience more of the mythical realm through Grace’s brother.
The chemistry and attraction between Grace and Darius was palpable and undeniable- so much so that I found myself irritated whenever Darius went on about how he still had a duty to kill her. I was more than three quarters of the way through the novel when Darius had an epiphany about his relationship with her and decided not to kill her. His insistence on ending her life throughout a majority of the novel (despite getting to know Grace and realizing she would never lead people to Atlantis to kill everyone) would be my biggest complaint. Other than that, the characters were delightful and the story was fun and fast-paced. I was so entertained that I finished it in ONE evening!
Embyr tends her tavern while keeping her dangerous parentage a secret, until she's attacked by a hellhound and saved by one of the most feared men in history.
For the last eight hundred years, Ryder McLennon, the infamous leader of Death's Horsemen, has used his army to hunt the vampire who killed his wife. He's earned a reputation as a murderous madman. But in Embyr, he discovers something that could turn the tide of battle in his favor. Her control over fire can reduce an enemy to ash and her flippant disregard of him heats his blood in ways no one else ever has. She's beautiful, powerful and completely different from her violence-loving brethren.
Embyr finds herself thrust into a war she wants no part of, targeted by a vicious vampire because of her cooperation with Ryder. As she learns to wield her demonic powers without letting the madness of her race overcome her, she also has to fight her attraction to a killer bent on her seduction.
By: April Hughes
Fire’s Kiss is a standalone, paranormal romance novel written by author Brittany Pate. The story follows Embyr, a half-demon tavern owner, who hides on the fringes of society afraid to reveal her ominous parentage. Embyr lives a quiet life on the edge of the town Al’Din, her parents have perished, and she is close to only one person- a former female assassin with a fondness for ale. However, this all changes when the leader of the formidable Horsemen shows up in her tavern one evening wearing a grotesque mask made of animal’s skins. This leader, Ryder McLennon, rumored to be a heartless savage, convinces Embyr to assist him in his war with the vampire named Atrarius.
The intensity and chemistry between Ryder and Embyr remains consistent throughout the novel. It never dims, not from the moment Ryder first corners Embyr in the tavern, from when he spirits her way to his castle and helps her unlock the power lying dormant within her, or when he leaves for an incredible length of time and returns to win her heart again. The story was rapidly moving and constantly kept my rapt attention with the interesting barrage of characters- half-demons, Horsemen, vampires, knights, dark mages, assassins, and even a Hellhound shifter. Embyr constantly grew as a character- she started off as a fearful, reclusive young woman merely experiencing life in small doses on the edge of town, only to blossom into a formidable half-demon that did a fair share of turning foes into dust and morbidly roasting the flesh off her enemies. While Embyr grew tougher, Ryder learned to soften up a bit-though it took six years for him to do so (probably the only time in the book where I was slightly disappointed in him- though I understood his reasoning…well, a little).
Honestly, I didn’t know what to expect when I first started reading Fire’s Kiss. The author was a new one for me, and the story sounded a little like the romantic version of Dungeons and Dragons…boy was I surprised! I finished the novel in ONE day- I clutched onto my kindle like I was afraid someone would rip it from my hands and read till my eyes burned. I haven’t been this engrossed in a novel in a LONG time. FIVE stars for Fire’s Kiss!
Do yourselves a favor and pick up this thrilling and fast-paced novel today!
Brittany Pate lives in Texas with her husband and son. She is a longtime lover of all things fantasy and romance. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys narrating audio books and drinking entirely too much coffee.
The mafia men of New York Times bestselling author Sarah Castille’s Ruin & Revenge series are hard, hot, and ruthless. They show no weakness and take no prisoners. But the right woman can soften their stone cold hearts and make them come alive with dark desire.
Luca Rizzoli was nearly destroyed by a brutal betrayal that cost him his family. Now a ruthless crime boss in Las Vegas, he lets nothing touch his frozen heart...until a smoldering encounter with a beautiful stranger ignites his passion. One night isn’t enough for a man who takes what he wants—and Luca will do whatever he can to possess his mysterious temptress...
Police detective Gabrielle Fawkes lives for revenge. She lost everything at the hands of an unforgiving ruler of the Vegas underworld. Now she wants to see him six feet under. But when a near-fatal attack leads her into Luca’s arms, what was meant to be one night of unbridled passion becomes something forbiddingly more. Luca has his own agenda, but when strong, determined, kick-ass detective Gaby sets her sights on her target, Luca feels compelled to stand by her side and protect her at all costs. However, pursuing danger comes at a high price—and both Gaby and Luca must work together in order to eliminate the dark enterprise that threatens them, in Luca by Sarah Castille.
Review of Luca by Sarah Castille
Review by: April Hughes
Luca is the second novel in the Ruin and Revenge series by New York Times bestselling author Sarah Castille. After reading the first novel Nico, and being completed awestruck by how amazing it was, I had high hopes for the second one…and I was not disappointed. Luca continued its fascinating dive into the dark underworld of the Las Vegas mafia, with its charismatic characters and ominous rules and “guidelines”. Luca’s intensity, wickedness, and deep sense of loyalty and family made him an instant favorite of mine. In fact, I believe Mr. Luca Rizzoli- a Toscani crime boss- has the honorary position of being my current book boyfriend *sigh*
As for Gabrielle Fawkes- a narcotics (and theft) detective for the LVPD- well, I simply adored her. In fact, should I ever create a book bestie list, she would be right there near the top. Gabrielle, still recovering from the violent murder of her husband David, starts the story off by getting herself shot during her quest for revenge against the drug lord who killed him. Thankfully, this near-death experience places her in the hospital right next to the equally indisposed Luca Rizzoli. So, this cop and a mafia boss are wheeled into a hospital room…sounds like the start to a joke, right? You couldn’t be more wrong. It’s the start to an explosive, fiery, and all-consuming story of tragic loss, quests for revenge, fierce loyalty, and heart-stopping passion.
Despite being on opposite ends of the law, Luca and Gabrielle are clearly perfectly matched. Luca is feared and respected in his line of work- he has no qualms about decimating his enemies and protecting his family. Gabrielle is equally fierce about protecting those she loves- this is seen multiple times throughout the novel. She didn’t hesitate to protect her best friend from a threatening altercation with a man twice her size, and she didn’t hesitate to throw herself into a precarious situation to protect Luca (probably one of my favorite scenes in the whole book). It’s clear these two are meant to be together. They make one badass couple.
As for the rest of the novel- the secondary characters contributed wonderfully to the story. I enjoyed getting to know the unique and dynamic members of Luca’s crew. I was also intrigued by the mystery behind the drug lord Garcia, and found myself anxious to put all the pieces together with Gabrielle and the Toscani mafia.
And- I just love a good surprise ending!
All this story has done is make me hungry for the next one titled “Rocco”, which is scheduled to be released January 2nd of 2018. Do I have this book pre-ordered? Why yes, I do.
I discovered my love of reading at an early age and spent a great deal of my time devouring novels from mysteries like Nancy Drew, whimsical fantasies like Harry Potter, and eventually the turbulent and passionate stories in the romance genre, I found myself engrossed in a completely different world than this one. I believe it is through my experiences and the books I read, that I have developed a keen interest in a myriad of things. For that reason, The Vagaries of Us represents multiple areas of interest
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