MANGA: Nirameba Koi
Nirameba Koi – Yukue Moegi
Apart from the fact he’s in the student council and has quite strange tastes, Shima is an average, low-profile, quiet high schooler. Therefore, he doesn’t understand why Ryuunosuke, a sports student, always glares at him every time they cross paths. Shima doesn’t want to draw the punk’s attention, but the instinctive hostility of Ryuunosuke towards him troubles him, and he wants to know why the other boy hates him…
This is a super cute collection of stories that explores the juvenile delinquent uke trope. It’s always fun to see these tough boys get all blushy and flustered.
Glare At You Because I Love You is the title story. Told from the point of view of student council member Shima, the story follows how he fell in love with Ryuunosuke, a notorious juvenile delinquent who always glares at him.
This is one of the most adorable falling in love with a tsundere story. Shima is wonderful. He’s the type of guy who finds cats with weird faces cute. I loved how he slowly get to know the secret sweeter side of Ryuunosuke’s personality. I especially liked how he notices the little things Ryuu does that show he really has a kind heart. It was a joy to witness him slowly falling for the intimidating punk who’s really a big softie underneath all that scowl.
Ryuu fell in love at first sight with Shima. He had a really good reason for doing so. The reason and the way he said it was so full of hope and longing you really had to feel for the guy. Don’t judge a punk by his death glare.
There were a couple of other stories in this 2-volume collection.
The Dragon Of Memories is a one chapter, age-gap story of a troublemaker who frequently had run-ins with his school’s new janitor. Unbeknownst to him, the older man was someone from his past and was trying to jog the young man memory. I wasn’t feeling this story. This had a huge dub-con scene.
Notice Me Because I Love You is a childhood friends to lovers story starring Ryuu’s kohai, Reiji, and Akira, the twin brother of their mutual friend, Osamu. Reiji is an uber dense high schooler who failed to notice that Osamu’s twin brother, Akira is in love with him since forever. The three are neighbors and had been friends since they were little kids.
I liked this one as well, though not as much as the main story. The characters were familiar mostly because I have read other stories with similar character types. But I enjoyed the way straight A student Akira was pining for his twin brother’s spectacularly oblivious friend.
SERIES REVIEW: Vigilance Books 1 & 2 by Silvia Violet
Vigilance is the spin-off series of The Marchesi Family. It’s about a group of men who take on crime in order to right the wrongs the usual law enforcement authorities couldn’t or wouldn’t handle. I was excited to read this series when I met some of the members who were backing up the Marchesis in rescuing Devil’s boyfriend, Joe.
Vigilance members might not be related by blood but they had a great found family thing going on and undying loyalty to each other much like the Marchesi’s. The series as a whole had a similar feel to the original series. It started with me not feeling the first book that much but stayed on because I was super intrigued by their group’s cause and their leader.
The relationships in each book showcase different BDSM-type dynamics. The romances are insta-lust turned insta-love. I’m more of a slowburn person so I’m not particularly enthusiastic about the them. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t.
My usual complaint with the Silvia Violet stories I encountered is that she always had this nice overarching plot as well as interesting characters but tends to focus too much on the sex. I know this is her thing but I think it’s a wasted opportunity to create a nicely balanced action/suspense romance instead of an erotic romance that happens to have some action/suspense.
I’m saying this because the taking down human traffickers plot was a great overarching thread, especially when they had to go against a high-ranking politician who was so damn hard to catch. However, it was unfortunate that this side of the story was minimized in favor of the romance. The books had such rushed endings. They could have had great action scenes right there.
This is my review of the first two books, Giorgio and Niall.
Vigilance: Giorgio – Silvia Violet
I’m a sniper. A trained operator. A bodyguard. A member of the elite private security force known as Vigilance.
When my boss’s son acquires a stalker, of course I’m the one he calls to keep the guy safe. Mr. X’s one rule? Keep my hands to myself.
Not a problem.
At least, not until I meet Lane Porter.
He’s gorgeous. Flamboyant. Fascinating. He makes me want things I can’t have. He stretches my self-control to the limit… and then breaks it.
As the threat to Lane intensifies, we’re forced to hide out in a remote, one-bedroom cabin with danger stalking us from all sides, but suddenly keeping the boss’s son safe isn’t enough.
My new mission is to make Lane mine.
Giorgio was one of the guys who helped the Marchesis thus earning him their friendship and loyalty. He was tasked to guard the son of X, the Vigilance boss. He was explicitly told to keep his hands off the young man. Said young man was also the guy he hooked up with the night before.
I didn’t care much for the two MCs. Giorgio’s character was supposedly a grumpy, protective, alpha male but he’s so domineering he became one-dimensional. I didn’t like the way he treated Lane. Lane, fabulous and sparkly, did his best to shine. He would have but his appeal was dimmed by his instant capitulations and Giorgio’s looming presence.
There’s not much going on here and most of it was Giorgio and Lane having sex too much too soon without protection. Also, I’m not a fan of the dom/sub kink so I was meh on the romance.
However, this book set things in motion and introduced the various mainstays of Vigilance who each have their own books. I pushed on because I was invested in the rest of the vigilantes.
2.5 Stars – far from hate but not quite a like
Soundtrack: You Can Dominate Me
Artist: Andy Samford
Album: You Can Embrace Eternity’s Cosmic Truth
Vigilance: Niall – Silvia Violet
I’m a former FBI agent. Now I’m on the opposite side of the law as part of an underground vigilante organization. When the fight to stop a crime ring pairs me with a pawn shop owner, it’s hate at first sight. Fun fact: Hate and desire aren’t mutually exclusive. To further the investigation, Marcus and I must pretend to be boyfriends. Too much time spent in close proximity has me wondering if Marcus might have the power to thaw my icy heart.
Niall was also another member who was involved in helping the Marchesis. That’s where he met Marcus, the pawnshop owner who was assisting as well. They hated each other, hooked up once upon a time ago and now had to be fake boyfriends in order to infiltrate the human trafficking ring in an exclusive island estate.
I liked this one much better. Niall and Marcus had more personalities. Niall tends to be more uptight and wears fancy suits that instantly pegged him as a fed. Marcus is more laid back, snarky and likes being control.
Their relationship felt more like that of equals. They had a fun thing going with their antagonistic interactions. And Marcus was all protective dominant alpha male without trampling all over Niall
This book was also better balanced in terms of various elements. Unlike Giorgio and Lane, Niall and Marcus were actually doing their jobs instead of boinking all the time. Also, Giorgio was more likable here now that he’s out and about.
We are introduced to some bad guys and some whose motives are not yet clear. Their undercover investigation really moved a lot of things forward. And they were so close too. But the evil villain is one slippery mofo.
3.5 Stars – that place between like and love
Soundtrack: Surrender Your Heart
Artist: Missing Persons
Album: Rhyme & Reason
Vigilance might not have the strongest openings but once you get past that, it’s easy to get hooked. It a fun, escapist series that’s light on drama and heavy on the action. Recommended for those looking for steamy BDSM-flavored romance with a side of crime-fighting.
I also recommend reading The Marchesi Family to get the most out of the experience. Characters from that series appear here as well. Vigilance is best read in order. Leo’s and X’s stories are next. X is the one I’m most looking forward to. He’s so mysterious we don’t even have his real name yet.
Check out my series review of The Marchesi Family here.
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GIORGIO | NIALL | LEO
SOUNDTRACK: You Can Dominate Me by Andy Samford & Surrender Your Heart by Missing Persons
Soundtrack to Vigilance: Giorgio by Silvia Violet
Soundtrack Vigilance: Niall by Silvia Violet
You Can Dominate Me is Lane letting Giorgio have his wicked way with him.
Surrender Your Heart is Niall giving in to the inevitable that is Marcus.
It’s not my imagination
It’s a no win situation
There’s no way to get away from
From my love
I’ve got you cornered with my devotion
I’ve got you captured by emotion
It’s impossible to go on
Surrender your heart to me
Surrender your heart to me
Surrender your heart why can’t you see
It’s the only way that it can be
Surrender your heart I don’t know why
But you never give in to me
My decision is a strong one
And I know that I can hold on
How much longer can you go on
MOVIE FEATURE: Beyto
NEW RELEASE: The Right One by Felice Stevens (Excerpt)
NEW RELEASE BLITZ: Artifacts by Bailey Bradford (Excerpt & Giveaway)