By: Sarah Brianne
3 ¾ “Jr. Made Man” Stars
Genre: NA Romance; Mafia
Cliffhanger: No, but Book 1 of a series
Price: $3.99 on Kindle
Wine in my Mug: Cupcake Angel Food
This was a buddy read with my sister-in-law (and fellow bibliophile). Despite the cover, which looks like he either is preparing to give someone a stiff fisting or is holding back a demon that has possessed his arm, the book was pretty decent for Sarah Brianne’s first novel. It was short and easy read, though it had some editing issues, but it wasn’t to the point where I got irritated. I think that is mostly due to the nonsense I read yesterday (see Real), and comparing the two made this one almost a literary masterpiece.
This story is definitely in my pile of books that I like despite itself. The plot is pretty thin and almost juvenile at times, but I liked it. I don’t know quite why…oh yeah! Lucca. Sometimes in books, especially in a series where the side characters will eventually get their own book, I come across a character that really pulls me in. Like an appetizer before a meal. Lucca was that for me. What can I say, I like the crazy ones.
This book is about a girl named Elle, who is the school’s punching bag. It isn’t because of anything she has done personally, but that she is protecting her best friend Chloe from the others. The whole school population seemed pretty much comprised of assholes, mean girls, and the lackeys that follow them, which in itself was a pretty unbelievable premise. There has to be at least a couple of non-douche bags in the mix. That’s just statistics, but then I guess the story wouldn’t have the high drama that this author was looking for, so I was like:
She goes to this fancy private school called Legacy Prep (sounds like a high school in a Korean drama) and to help with the cost of going there she works a part-time job as a waitress at a diner. Where it veers off from the realm of a K-drama (Heirs is a personal fav of mine) is when she goes out back to take out the trash and witnesses a murder. I won’t even comment on how if she had minded her business, threw the trash out, and went back inside instead of hiding behind the dumpster and watching the scene before the killing, 95% of the next part in the book wouldn’t even had to happen. She could have went on being the school’s pariah with her only friend and left that town behind upon graduation, but then the book would be boring and no one would have wanted to read that.
So instead of smart decisions that would make a more realistic-yet-boring book, she takes the stupid route. She is young so I can understand her actions and can sit back and enjoy the consequences she will now face without too much overthinking.
Enter Nero, the H (more like anti-H) of this tale, who is then ordered to get close to her. Apparently the mob frowns on killing underage teens even if they witness you blow a man’s brains out in an alleyway. He is tasked with watching what she is going to do, that job being easier since they attend the same school. His status at Legacy Prep, however, is way more elevated. He is not only rich, good looking, and a newly made man, but he is also the King of the school. He is the package deal, and no king is complete without his court, that role played by his two close friends, Amo and Vincent, who have also become made men.
Shortly after their initial introduction to each other, Nero starts to catch a case of insta-love. In the spirit of this author’s style of extreme, over-the-top characters, Nero doesn’t gradually grow feelings for her. No he has a few brief interactions with her and knows that SHE IS THE ONE. They have been going to this school with each other for years but it took her accidentally observing a homicide to get noticed by King Nero.
Good thing that Elle has all the makings of a good mafia lady. She is beautiful, strong, and knows how to keep her mouth shut. I guess she grew up on the street where “snitches-get-stitches” because she carries on with her life after witnessing the murder like it didn’t happen. She may have spent like a solid day of feelings about it until she shook it off harder than Taylor Swift does to boyfriends. She doesn’t go to the police, and seeing that it was a mafia hit, that may had been the wisest course of action on her part. Once Nero is sure that she won’t say anything about it, he claims her as his and that is when we get to to witness some pretty fantastic alpha male moments.
He seems way more mature and intense than his short 18 years would have him being, but then again he was raised in the mob, so I will roll with that.
“I will find out who hurt you today and I will fucking enjoy them screaming with pain.”
“I will fight. I will torture. And I will kill in my line of work. I knew I would join the mob ever since I could remember, and you have to accept that because I am not giving you an option. It’s a part of me, just how you’re a part of me, but nothing—nothing—will ever come before you.”
“I don’t want to see you ever touch another guy again. You can kiss and hug your father and brother, but if I find out you’ve touched another guy—I don’t give a shit who it is—they won’t live to let it happen again.”
He was not only good at his threats and super possessive but he also was a freak with a dirty mouth.
“Then I will enjoy watching you scream as I fuck you because, baby, I will pop that cherry very soon.”
Nero must have read her mind as he gave another tight squeeze to her breasts.
“I give you my word that my dick will be the first and only to slide in and out of your tight, wet pussy, and you will be the one crawling and begging for me to take it.”
Though GoodReads labeled this as a YA read, IT IS NOT! It is most definitely a New Adult read and has some pretty hot moments to go along with the violence and strong (but sexy) language. I especially enjoyed the scene between Chloe and Lucca more than I am willing to admit. It seems like the author will most definitely give us a Amo-Chloe-Lucca love triangle but what is a good
K-drama NA romance without one.
Are there better books out there? Sure, but this one was a fun read. Don’t overthink it and just sit back and enjoy it for what it is. A good way to pass an evening. Now if only Ms. Brianne could write a little faster.