The Trap: Bratva Vows Prequel

The Trap: Bratva Vows Prequel

The Trap: Bratva Vows Prequel by SR Jones

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oooh- my interest is piqued!

This short novella is an excellent prequel leading to the next book, which I can’t wait to start!
This book was a great length to set the scene for the coming books. It introduced the main characters, gave a backstory, provided some foreshadowing that perhaps something isn’t as it seems with Andrius, and ended on an exciting cliffhanger. I am falling all over myself to get to the next book! I love dark mafia romances- gah!

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The Trap: A Bratva Vows Prequel 

I saw a possible threat; he saw a victim in waiting. 

I had a plan. A naïve and dangerous plan. Get the mob boss to notice me, seduce the mob boss, kill the mob boss. Except the elderly mob boss wasn’t the only one to notice me. 
He did. 
Beautiful. Cold. Deadly. 
He’s a monster amongst men. 
I crave him. I fear him. 
Then one day…I’m taken and given to him. 
The trap is set. 

This is a prequel to book one in the Bratva Vows duet: The Gift

Conor (Boston Underworld #6)

CONOR (Boston Underworld Book 6)

CONOR by A. Zavarelli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

All the feels

I love this whole series. Just love it. I was skeptical when I saw the length of this book as I usually find books under 200 pages to feel rushed and underdeveloped, but somehow this one didn’t suffer that fate. Maybe it was because the world and secondary characters were already established? Who knows.
In any case, it worked. I felt for Ivy in the beginning when she was so afraid of everything, of everyone. I felt for her when she and Conor couldn’t get on the same page, and he was breaking her heart. I felt for how cheap it made her feel the first time he took her back to the club. He made so many mistakes with her, but eventually he figured it out.
I LOVED Archer, and the interactions built around him. I won’t say any more than that.
I am so very sad to have reached the end of this series that I love so much, but the word in the author’s reader group is that she is working on a book about Booker and Storm (cameos from earlier in this series), so maybe we will get lucky and see glimpses of our favorite Irish and Russian baddies with hearts of gold. I sure hope so. ❤
Recommended, as always!

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When I stumbled into a mafia-run club seeking a job, I was looking for protection. 

Little did I know I’d need protection from him. 

Conor O’ Callahan was exactly the kind of danger I was trying to avoid. He was gorgeous as sin with an accent hotter than Hades, but that’s where the charm ended. He was also cynical, cold, and downright cranky. 

So, you could imagine my surprise when he gave me a proposition. Marry him or lose my life. 

Desperate times call for desperate measures. I’ve learned to do what’s necessary to survive in this world, and that includes marrying a mobster. Regardless of what he might say, it’s only temporary. 

It’s not like I’m going to fall for him. 

Because that would be stupid, right? 

The Boston Underworld Series consists of six full-length standalones that can be read in any order.

Thief (Boston Underworld #5)

Thief (Boston Underworld, #5)

Thief by A. Zavarelli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series ❤

I just love this series. Not sure what else to say. And this book in particular drove me crazy. I spent the majority of the book feeling like Nikolai could just go to hell, and he didn’t deserve Tanaka. I wanted her to run away and go be free, and leave him to his own miserable existence. But, I’m mean like that.
I’m still not convinced that he deserved Tanaka, but in that world he wouldn’t actually have HAD to try at all. So I suppose the fact that he did is something, even if my mean self doesn’t think it was quite good enough.
But, overall, I just love the hell out of this series! I am so very sad that there is only one more book. Why, A. Zavarelli! What about Mischa? What about Booker and the mysterious Storm? We need more Boston Underworld!

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I’m a good girl. 

I live by a code that can’t be bent or broken. It is my duty to my family to stay innocent and pure. To marry an Italian man. The stars are already aligned. 

But Nikolai Kozlov re-writes my destiny with five simple words. 

You belong to me now. 

He’s Russian mafiya. A thief. A skilled liar with no moral boundaries. He is everything I have been taught to hate. A man who stands for nothing. A man who takes what he wants without a second thought. 

And what he wanted was me. 

He thinks he controls my fate, but what he doesn’t know is, sometimes it’s the good girls you have to watch out for. 

I’m a dangerous man. 

I live by a code. The Vory code. It is my duty to my family to protect the brotherhood. To destroy anyone who threatens what we stand for, including her. 

She’s a dancer. A beautiful little doll. My prisoner, and my new favorite puppet. This mafia princess thinks she has me under her spell, but in the end, she is simply collateral. 

It’s a shame to destroy precious things. 

But this is what bad men do. 

Note: this book contains dark subject matter, please read at your own discretion. This is a full length standalone that can be read in any order within the series.

Saint (Boston Underworld #4)

Saint (Boston Underworld, #4)

Saint by A. Zavarelli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Love this series!

What can I say? Another winner from this author!
I’ve been tearing through this series. I thought this book started a little slower than the others, and it took me a few chapters to get into it. Luckily it isn’t the first in the series so I knew the goodness was a comin’.
I loved the dynamic between Rory and Scarlett. As badass as he is, he has no idea what to do with Scarlett’s unpredictable behavior and volatile mood swings. But I loved that he tried so hard to figure it out. To be there for her in a way that no one else ever had in her entire life.
I also loved the antagonists. I loved that there were several of them, and loved how terrifying the main villain (Alexander) proved to be.
I enjoyed the mysterious latecomer to the party as well. I am looking forward to finding out more about him, and seeing if he accomplishes in future books what he set out to do in this one.
I was on the edge of my seat blowing through this book, just as I’m sure I will be for the next two books.
Winner winner, chicken dinner. Recommended!

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When going to war, there are three very simple rules one must abide by. 

1. Know thy enemy 
2. Be prepared to sacrifice. 
3. Always wear good shoes 

After all, revenge is a dish best served in stilettos. 
I’ve got an eye for it, and nothing’s going to stand in my way. 

Not even Rory ‘The Saint’ Brodrick. 
He’s a fool if he thinks he can change me. By the time I’m through with him, I’ll make his mafia look like child’s play. 

Cross me, Mr. Brodrick? 
You better cross your heart and hope to die. 


I’m a fighter. A hustler. A mobster. 
I’ve seen a few things in my day. 
But I’ve never encountered anything like her. 
She’s a beauty with a beast of a heart. The poison apple I just can’t resist. And in her trail she leaves a wake of men crawling on their knees. 
What she doesn’t know is that I like my women wild. 
It only makes it that much more fun to tame them. 

**This is a DARK mafia romance. A full-length standalone novel with HEA and no cheating.**

Ghost (Boston Underworld #3)

Ghost (Boston Underworld, #3)

Ghost by A. Zavarelli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Edge of my seat!

Wow, what a ride! This story had suspense, mystery, personal growth, and heartbreaking moments.
Alexei and Talia are both broken people who have been mistreated by their families, and betrayed by nearly everyone who ever got close to them. It makes for an interesting dynamic. Alexei brings Talia into his home under the belief that he will not/cannot ever love her, a belief which he shares with Talia, much to her dismay.
I really liked the backstories of why the characters are they way that they are. They are sad, no doubt, but they felt thought out.
I loved the character of Magda. She gave Talia an anchor, a safe place when things between her and Alexei weren’t going very well. She was the mother figure Talia never had. And she was the same for Alexei.
Franco was an excellent character as well. He was one of the only people that Alexei trusted, and he looked out for Alexei time and again. I also enjoyed the overlap with the previous books both in stories as well as characters.
I am really loving this series, and am so glad to have discovered it! Can’t wait for the next one!

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I have always been a bird. Caged by one prison or another when the only thing I ever wanted was to fly away. 
Sold. Beaten. Starved. Drugged. 
Nothing scares me anymore. 
Until him. 
He makes the numbness go away. 
He is hazardous to me. It has nothing to do with his mafia lifestyle, and everything to do with what he offers. 
A gilded prison. 
A retreat from everything that I once knew. The reality I have no desire to return to. 
He thinks he’s caged me, but soon… 
I’m going to fly. 

I live by a code. The Vory code. 
In this mafiya world, there are traditions. 
She does not care for these things. She does not care about anything. 
She thinks she has me fooled with her haunted eyes. 
What she can’t know is that I see her better than most. 
She wants to fly. 
But I’m going to clip her wings. 
And make her my wife. 

**This is a DARK mafia romance. A full-length standalone novel with HEA and no cheating.**

Reaper (Boston Underworld #2)

Reaper (Boston Underworld, #2)

Reaper by A. Zavarelli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Thank god this is a series of six books because I sure can’t get enough of these sexy, swaggerific Irish men. This book had not only suspense and maddening misunderstandings (❤), but even made me laugh out loud until my eyes watered. I don’t believe that has happened to me before with a romance novel. It’s the scene where they need tape. That’s all you’re getting out of me- you’ll have to read it yourself.
Loved Ronan and Sasha together. Both are so damaged in their own ways that it just… kind of works, somehow. They understand each other (eventually). Their own damage probably works in their relationship’s favor in that capacity. It gave the story some tug-at-your-heart moments that I don’t recall experiencing in the first book. And I like that when the books in a series are quite different.
Overall another great read from this author, and I can’t wait to dive into the next book in the series.

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He’s dark and mysterious. Quiet and lethal. 
An Irish mobster. 
Pure sin wrapped up in a beautiful package. 
But there’s also something off about him. 
He doesn’t feel anything. He shows no emotions. 
Sometimes I question his humanity. 
He hasn’t spoken to me in two years. Not a single word. 
But we share a secret, he and I. 
And if it ever comes out, I have no doubt in my mind… 
He won’t have a problem killing me too. 

I’ve slain for her. I’ll do it again. 
When it comes to Sasha, there isn’t a line I won’t cross. 
I watch her. She doesn’t know it. 
She thinks I hate her. Sometimes, I think I might too. 
But I’m always there, lurking in the shadows. 
Craving her. Trying to keep the beast within at bay. 
I’ll keep her safe. I’ll slaughter anyone who tries to hurt her. 
The only thing I can’t do… is protect her from myself.

Crow (Boston Underworld #1)

Crow (Boston Underworld, #1)

Crow by A. Zavarelli

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Started a bit slow, but then… wow!h
I struggled to get through the prologue and first couple of chapters (inner dialogue: keep going- the reviews are good!) and MAN, am I glad I did.
Once this book got going it rode along on greased rails- couldn’t put it down! Suspense, mystery, super hot sexy times, a take-no-prisoners heroine, a hot hero that had me picturing Colin Farrell circa 2003 (as in his S.W.A.T. days). ALL the… cold showers.
All in all, although skeptical about it in the very beginning, by the end I was obsessed with this story and these characters.
Five enthusiastic stars- can’t wait to read the rest of the series!

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An Irish mobster. A missing friend. Two loyalties, ripping me apart. 

I had a plan. 

Get in, get my information, and get out. Easy, right?

Turns out, infiltrating the Irish mafia isn’t exactly what I thought it would be. I just wanted a soldier. Someone I could flirt with to get me in the door. 

That’s when Lachlan Crow noticed me. Problem was, he wasn’t a soldier. No, he was next in line for the throne of the Irish underworld. And he was determined to hate me from the outset. My sob story about needing a job? Yeah, he wasn’t buying that either. 

Too bad for him, I won’t let anyone get in the way of my mission. 

Who cares if we have some kind of crazy chemistry? He’s the worst kind of wrong- and I would never in a million years be with a guy like him. 

Because they took her from me, and I’m going to make them pay.

The Benefits of Bad Decisions

The Benefits of Bad Decisions

The Benefits of Bad Decisions by Lisa Suzanne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Holy wow- I did NOT see that twist coming. And let me tell you- I ALWAYS see them coming. So bravo, Lisa Suzanne- you got me!
This was my first read from this author, but I definitely see myself reading the other books from these characters. I’m glad I went into this book blind so there would be no chance of guessing the twist. I still can’t get it over it- very rarely do I not see a twist coming a mile away.
It was heartbreaking to read about the feelings Brody and Zoey were experiencing while they were apart. I definitely wanted to shake them both. “You both care about each other, fools! Fix your lives!”
But I digress… I really liked not only the main characters, but the supporting characters as well. On second thought, maybe not Jessa. She isn’t particularly likable. But, that was the point of her character. She wasn’t meant to be likable. So again, bravo!
There were a couple of spots I thought lagged a little, but overall the book kept the story moving, and I couldn’t wait to find out what happened. Mid-book I honestly wasn’t sure who Zoey would end up with at the end- it could have gone in a number of directions from there. I am happy about the way it all shook out, and so thankful that I won this ARC and found this author!

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After a bad decision lands me a role on a reality show, I expect it to be my big break as a TV star. Despite getting kicked off the first night, I land on my feet again when a talent agent who saw the show offers me an audition as back-up dancer for a popular rock band.

Knowing this could be my stepping stone is exciting, but the real thrill is watching Brody bang on his drums every night. It’s a bad idea for a dancer to hook up with a band member, but after he kisses me, I can’t stay away.

Facing the consequences was inevitable, and it only takes one scandalous mistake from my past to cause our complete destruction.

Bad decision or not, I always manage to come out on top… until I don’t.

Bound by Vengeance (Born in Blood Mafia Chronicles #5)

Bound by Vengeance (Born in Blood Mafia Chronicles, #5)

Bound by Vengeance by Cora Reilly

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Not my favorite from the series

I love this series, but this book seemed- watered down. The story dragged in places, and I agree that switching between 1st person and 3rd person, combined with the grammatical errors, was distracting. It took me out of the story. I think this could’ve been much better with some editing, maybe another element of conflict. Perhaps a discovery that the whole betrayal had been orchestrated by Anastasia in order to steal Cosimo due to some deep jealousy/feeling of rivalry? Or maybe Growl hadn’t known who his father was until it was revealed toward the middle or the end of the story? There were some tethers of additional layers, but I felt like they could have been explored a little further.
Still love the series, and still going to read the final book along with the spinoff series.

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He’d never had something to himself, never even dared to dream about owning something so precious. He was the unwanted bastard son who’d always had to content himself with the leftovers of others. And now they’d given him what only a few weeks ago had been out of his reach, someone he wasn’t even allowed to admire from afar, one of their most prized possessions. Thrown at his feet because he was who he was, because they were certain he would break her. He was her punishment, a fate worse than death, a way to deliver the ultimate punishment to her father who had displeased them so greatly.

She had always been the good girl. It didn’t protect her.
She didn’t know his real name. People called him Growl to his face, and the Bastard behind his back. Both were names he couldn’t possibly have chosen for himself. His eyes were empty, a mirror to throw back her own fear at her. He was a brutal hand of the Las Vegas Camorra.
And now she was at his mercy.

Ruckus (Sinners of Saint #2)

Ruckus (Sinners of Saint, #2)

Ruckus by L.J. Shen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Oooh- I was about to be MAD!

This book does a great job of building frustration- at Dean, at Rosie’s parents, at Rosie herself, at Dean’s parents… if I were a person who yelled at books, I would have been yelling at this book. Additionally, there is a part in the book that is… let’s call it a misunderstanding. And it had me ON FIRE until it got resolved. On FIRE, I say. But, everything in the book got resolved by the end. Thank goodness.
Overall, a really good read. Not my favorite book from L.J. Shen, but honestly ALL of her books that I’ve read thus far have been good.
Recommended, as always!

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They say that life is a beautiful lie and death a painful truth. They’re right. 
No one has ever made me feel more alive than the guy who serves as a constant reminder that my clock is ticking. 
He is my forbidden, shiny apple. 
The striking fallacy to my blunt, raw, truth. 
He is also my sister’s ex-boyfriend. 
One thing you should know before you judge me; 
I saw him first. I craved him first. I loved him first. 
Eleven years later, he waltzed into my life, demanding a second chance. 
Dean Cole wants to be my bronze horseman. My white knight has finally arrived. Hopefully, he isn’t too late. 


They say the brightest stars burn out the fastest. They’re right. 
She sets my mind on fire. 
All smart mouth, snarky attitude and a huge heart. 
In a world where everything is dull, she shines like fucking Sirius. 
Eleven years ago, fate tore us apart. 
This time, I dare it to try. 
Getting to her is a battlefield, but man, that’s why they call me Ruckus. 
Rosie LeBlanc is about to find out how hard I can fight. 
And conquering her will be the sweetest victory.