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    REVIEW: His Brutal Heart by Leighton Greene

    West Coast Mobsters: His Brutal Heart – Leighton Greene

    The ultimate forbidden love: a Mafia Boss and his captive.

    I’m a man without mercy. A Mafia heir.
    Brutality was all that ever made sense to me…
    Until I saw him.

    Unfortunately, he happens to be the sole witness to my latest crime.
    That should mean one thing.

    But one look into those pleading blue eyes, and I lost myself.

    I let a beauty live…
    But – beast that I am – I’ve locked him away.

    Little by little, he charms his way out of his cell and into my bed, until I begin to wonder which of us is the real prisoner.

    After all, I’m the one trapped by my own brutal heart.

    And that oh-so-innocent beauty I took and kept?

    He has secrets of his own.

    Secrets that could destroy me.


    His Brutal Heart is the second book in the West Coast Mobsters series. Follow the men of the Los Angeles underworld in this page-turning romantic suspense series as they find love, danger and mystery in the most unexpected places.

    Each book in this series tells the love story of a different couple who find their happy ending, as well as a resolution to the mystery they’re investigating, but there are cliffhangers to the wider suspense plot for the series.

    Content advisory notes are available to view on the Copyright page via Look Inside or by downloading the sample.

    There’s a Teddy inside all of us.

    Why else would there be an entire sub-genre of romance dedicated to the mafia, bratva, heck, even the damn cartel? Strictly fictional, of course.

    Leighton Greene continues to blew me away with the second book of her spectacular romantic suspense series, West Coast Mobsters. I was tickled pink to learn His Brutal Heart is about Alessandro Castellani and Teddy MacCallum. I knew it would be good, but holyyy hell, I didn’t know it would FUCKING SLAY!!!!

    At its core, the story is a Beauty and the Beast retelling, where the scarred Alessandro considers himself too ugly to be lovable and the adorkably-oblivious-that-he-is-gorgeous Teddy MacCallum was initially held prisoner in Redwood Manor against his will.

    The two were forced to work together when Teddy proved he could be useful in solving the murder of the old Don Castellani. By this time, our boy Teddy practically begged to stay in the manor.

    Teddy owns Cute Crims, a website dedicated to stanning and/or fapping over made men. As Site God, Teddy runs a tight ship, the rules for posting a pic being a.) should be cute, b.) should be crim, and c.) should be Family. He oversees multi-forums worth of information, mostly wild speculations, some surprisingly accurate.

    And if there’s one mafioso Teddy is obsessed with, that is the notorious but elusive Alessandro Castellani. Theirs was a fucked up version of a celebrity meet cute where the Sandro fan boy meets his crush over double crossing gangs and gunfire. Because how else?

    In Book 1, His Lethal Desire, Jack was the main driving force. Here, both Alessandro and Teddy fascinated me. The dynamics is pure delight! There’s a delicate play of power that swings deliciously back and forth between Alessandro and Teddy.

    Alessandro, now the new Don Castellani, finds himself with no trusted allies within their ranks. The murder of the old don demands that it should be solved first and the killer punished before vows to the new don could be made. If they will be made at all.

    Alessandro ruthlessly dominates but questions his value as the new Don and a person worthy of affection. He’s angry, bitter, and lonely. Teddy is inexperienced but completely obsessed and single-minded in his pursuit and adoration of the scarred Alessandro. An angelic marshmallow, Teddy has a surprising amount of steel and resourcefulness. In no time, he has Sandro wrapped around his little finger.

    That our boy Teddy was gutsy enough to pit his wits against a cunning devil like Julian, spoke volumes of Teddy’s intellect and devotion to Alessandro. With his sweet, giving nature, it’s easy to forget he has serious tech skills and smarts.

    Sandro would be the big bad Don Castellani, making hard decisions, being a mean motherfucker, and pushing Teddy away. Teddy only has to say “Alessandro” in a certain way, and BAM, Alessandro melting be like, “I can’t refuse you when you say my name like that.” SWOON!!

    It’s the way he says my name, worshipful, shy, his voice trembling, that destroys the last of my self-control.

    The way Alessandro’s character grew, the way he let Teddy inside his walls, and the way his cold, dead heart started beating again, it’s why hurt comfort holds my heart in a vise and then be DEVASTATINGLY GOOD!

    And it’s not just the romance that was brilliant, the mystery and the rest of the plot were equally riveting.

    I guessed the murderer early on, but such is the author’s storytelling abilities that I enjoyed watching the characters put it all together. The murder mystery is the thread that propelled the plot, leading Alessandro and Teddy to interact with various characters, hash out old grudges, and eventually clear the air.

    Alessandro’s complicated relationship with former-best-friend-now-frenemy Jack kept me hooked. Their friendship was broken by betrayal, bloody and violent. But Alessandro needs Jack because there’s almost no one else to trust, and our boy Jack, honorable man that he is, dutifully watched his boss’s back despite mixed feelings.

    Another complicated relationship is with Julian, Alessandro’s half-brother. Wily, with genius-level scheming skills, and downright crazy, the man spent most of the story behind bars in the manor dungeons but still managed to make quite a presence!

    The resolutions for both of these and the murder conclude the story in a satisfying way while leaving an opening for Julian’s book.

    Leighton Greene excels at creating memorable and compelling characters. Alessandro and Teddy are just two of the many she conceived that were memorable. It’s a huge deal because this series and the Morelli Family, are interconnected, and every time one character makes a cameo, I could still recall scenes from their book. Not many interconnected series can do that.

    His Brutal Heart is a story of finding self-worth and fighting for family and blood. As Alessandro quickly learns, it’s lonely at the top. It’s even lonelier to have your heart’s desire within reach but you’re too afraid to grab it. Overall, intensely passionate, incredibly squee-tastic, brutally romantic!

    5 Stars – absolutely perfect

    Soundtrack: Scar
    Artist: Joe Henry
    Album: Scar


    West Coast Mobsters should be read in order. The endings are left as openings for the succeeding book. And these mafiosos are worth the shot.

    Witness a hitman dodge bullets, only to be hit by a bullseye straight to the heart in His Lethal Desire.

    If you like my content, please consider using my Amazon affiliate links below to buy your copy of His Brutal Heart. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying Amazon purchases at no additional cost to you.

    HIS BRUTAL HEARTKindle | Paperback

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    REVIEW: Gloam by Lily Mayne

    Monstrous: Gloam – Lily Mayne

    When a strange woman shows up outside our camp in the Wastes with monsters chained up to her RV, it feels like I’m the only one who actually wants to help them.

    That big, grey-skinned monster with the cage on his head and the chain hanging from his back—something is telling me I need to help him. I need to free him. But I have absolutely no idea how I’m supposed to do that, especially when he can’t even talk to me to tell me how.

    Collector Mary is finally leaving our camp to head back to her monster menagerie, so I do the only thing I can think of to help him. I go with her.

    Now, this big beastie and I are traveling companions for the foreseeable future. Now I just have to think of a way to get that cage off his head, which seems like an impossible task. But I’m not giving up. He has no one else, and when I start to discover who he is beneath the cage, my motivation to free him becomes far more than just a desire to help.

    This is so dangerous. The military is lurking. Vicious monsters are lurking. And when Mary turns out to be even worse than we could have ever imagined, my desperate bid to save this monster turns into a deadly game of cat and mouse.

    I’m pretty sure I’m going to die out here.

    Gloam is Book Four of the Monstrous series, a post-apocalyptic m/m fantasy series that features monsters and human men falling in love. It is best to read the series in order. Warning: This m/m love story contains explicit sexual content and is not suitable for young readers. It also contains graphic depictions of torture and violence.

    Monstrous, Lily Mayne‘s brilliant post-apocalyptic series continues the trek through the monster-ridden wastelands of America with Book 4, Gloam.

    Gloam started with a thirsty young raider, Rig, lusting over the muscles of a huge, grey-skinned monster chained to an RV with a cage over his head. The antoran, along with two other beasties, were captives of a sinister human named Collector Mary. Feeling sorry for the big guy, Rig set out to free the beastie, and he was prepared to take all the risks, including leaving the raider camp and going with Collector Mary.

    We know Rig from Book 3, The Rycke, as Ghost’s impulsive best friend. He’s the camp’s mechanic, good at fixing stuff, hence the name. Rig is also naive and doesn’t have much experience outside the camp, so I was looking forward to see how our boy survives the Wastes.

    Risking his life, limb, and sanity, Rig’s pursuit to free Gloam took him through the Wastes, cannibal cults, the military, Mary’s vile thoughts, and more monsters. It was an adventure as exciting and suspenseful as the others, if a bit less action-packed. The story focused more on building Gloam and Rig’s relationship, which developed beautifully.

    At the heart of it all is a pure-hearted young man who is very determined to do the right thing because nobody, not even beasties, deserves to be abused. What gripped me the most was that Rig broke down, bawled like a baby, and blubbered like an idiot, but never, ever stopped trying to free Gloam. Even before Gloam could talk to him, and even before falling in love with the beastie! Our boy is a fluffy marshmallow with a core of steel!

    Gloam spent most of the story unable to speak, but Rig deviced a clever way for them to communicate. The big beastie might be super brawny, but he’s also surprisingly cultured and scholarly. His voice really showed off that gentle side of him! I recommend audiobooking this and the other books because Michael Lesley is giving us his best voices in this series!

    I loved the big guy! Gloam is one of the sweetest characters in the entire series who kept his innate goodness intact despite being betrayed by his own family, and forced to do the worst, most stomach-churning tasks by his captors, like impaling people in spits while still alive. He didn’t even seek revenge! Gloam has a calming energy that grounds Rig. They are a perfect match!

    There are some loose threads that I hope the author will pick up in future books. Something needs to be done about the cannibal cult! These are the assholes who forced Gloam to do the above-mentioned crime. I hope Samson, the reluctant cult member, gets his own book or will be able to escape. He’s another good guy trapped in a hellish situation. I hope we meet the intriguing beasties from Mary’s menagerie again.

    Gloam is an emotional tale of determination and kindness, a rousing dystopian adventure, and a tender romance that beat the odds. Overall, a moving portrait of the worst and best of humans and monsters.

    4.5 Stars – perfection is only half a step away

    Soundtrack: Run Wild
    Artist: John Tibbs
    Album: Dead Man Walking


    Monstrous should be read in order. Fall in love with the cinnamon roll monster and their adorable humans.
    Soul Eater
    The Rycke

    If you like my content, please consider using my Amazon affiliate links below to buy your copy of Monstrous. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying Amazon purchases at no additional cost to you.

    SOUL EATERKindle | Audiobook
    EDINKindle | Audiobook
    THE RYCKEKindle | Audiobook
    WYNKindle | Audiobook
    GLOAM: Kindle | Audiobook

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