• book,  Uncategorized

    SERIES REVIEW: The Marchesi Family by Silvia Violet

    I wrote off Silvia Violet because of His True Nature, a novella that had the personality of an oatmeal. That was way back 2017. Since then, I never bothered with her works.

    Then Angelo caught my attention. I was in the mood for some dark mafia-themed romance and the blurb intrigued me. So heck, why not.

    The thing with this series is that, for the most part, I really didn’t care for the romance. BDSM is not my thing.

    But the Marchesi family charmed me with their unconditional love for each other and willingness to die for their loved ones. No one could question their loyalty to each other.

    They are portrayed as a typical close-knit Italian family who always have good food at their table. They take breakfast seriously. I almost wish I am a morning person so I could eat the smorgasbord of delights their housekeeper always prepare every morning.

    The books are classified as erotica and there are a lot of sex scenes. You can just skip those if you want (makes the reading go faster too). The plot is substantial enough. There are probably some nuances to the couple dynamics I might have missed but I don’t really care.

    There’s also the mafia politics, something I always loved reading about. This part worked well with romance especially how it brought the couples together. I liked how the various plotlines were integrated.

    Each book features a different member of the notorious Marchesi family and the men they brought into their world of crime and cannoli.

    The overarching arc is the threat to overthrow the Marchesi family by rival mafia families. The Marchesi have their allies, among which, Vinnie, who was a son of another mob boss and who was featured in a short story.

    We’ll start with Lucien…

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    The Marchesi Family: Lucien – Silvia Violet

    I never imagined the protector I longed for would be a mob boss who demanded complete control.
    I shouldn’t have gone to Lucien’s office.
    Once I looked into his eyes, I couldn’t leave.
    He commanded me to kneel.
    I couldn’t help myself.
    One taste, and I craved more.
    Lucien vowed to protect me from his enemies…
    But who’s going to protect my heart from him

    Lucien is the illustrious head of the family. He’s bossy and scary AF. He’s always perfectly put together. He has a sweet tooth. He can drink until he passes out but wakes up the next morning sparkly and fresh. He is, according to Peter, ‘magical‘.

    Peter is a sweet young man struggling to find a job. He was tricked by his cousin to fill in a position as a receptionist at some posh company. Little did he know, the company was own by the Marchesi.

    So at Peter’s first day of work, in walks Lucien, saw the angelic new receptionist and decided, then and there, he was his. It was that insta.

    Stripped of the BDSM elements, this is a whirlwind romantic fairy tale of sorts where the damsel was swept away by the prince to his castle. But instead of the prince, you get a crime lord.

    Lucien is Lucien but Peter was a little to submissive for my liking. Still, you couldn’t really hate on somebody pure like him. He’s not entirely helpless and has quick wits about him. He even helped save Lucien. He was exactly what the mob boss needed in his life.

    3 Stars – not exactly setting my world on fire but I liked it

    Soundtrack: You Belong To me
    Artist: The Boxer Rebellion
    Album: Promises

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    The Marchesi Family: Mob Boss – Silvia Violet

    I let Vinnie seduce me.
    I was an easy mark.
    I would have granted him anything, but I didn’t know who he was. I didn’t know I was setting a man up for death.
    But even now I still want him, and he has no intention of letting me go.

    This is pretty much a condensed version of Lucien and Peter’s story. The difference is that Tom witnessed a crime and Vinnie had to protect him. This is 40 pages of alternate sex scenes and whatever plot there is so there’s really not much of an exploration of their characters and relationship.

    This would have been better as a novella than a short story. All in all, it was kinda okay.

    2.5 Stars – far from hate but not quite a like

    Soundtrack: Safe & Sound
    Artist: Tonight Alive
    Album: What Are You So Scared Of?

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    The Marchesi Family: Angelo – Silvia Violet

    Cameron didn’t realize how much he loved his grandparents’ bakery until Angelo Marchesi, a man he’s hated since high school, threatened to take it away.
    But Cameron owes Angelo a debt.
    A debt he can’t pay…
    Unless he accepts Angelo’s indecent proposal and risks finding out how thin the line between love and hate really is.

    Angelo is more similar to his cousin, Devil than his autocratic brother, Lucien. The cousins are Lucien’s enforcers.

    Angelo and Devil were inseparable since they were toddlers. They were both reckless and bisexual. They cover for each other, especially when one or the other is in trouble with Lucien or the police.

    Angelo and Cameron had mutual crushes on each other from high school but with Angelo’s reputation being what it is, he scared Cameron away.

    Cam came back to his hometown after burning himself out in the corporate world. He inherited his family’s bakery and was determined to make it work. His deadbeat dad had almost run it to the ground. Then he learned the bastard owed the Marchesis money. One day, Angelo came to collect.

    Angelo and Cam’s interactions were antagonistic from the start. Angelo thinks Cam looks down on him for having the kind of family he has. Cam wants nothing to do with the mafia but he was secretly envious the kind of loving family Angelo had.

    I’m not a fan of the dubcon scenes but unlike Peter who was 100% submissive, Cameron has more fire in him. It also took him longer to accept the mafia part of Angelo’s life but when he finally did, he fit right in.

    3.5 Stars – that place between like and love

    Soundtrack: Thinking Of You
    Artist: A Perfect Circle
    Album: Mer De Noms

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    The Marchesi Family: Devil – Silvia Violet

    Devil is a mobster with a dangerous secret…
    There’s a cop who hates him.
    A cop he caught and released.
    A cop he can’t get out of his mind after the one forbidden night they shared.

    This is my favorite book and Devil is my favorite character in the series. Whereas Angelo was a health buff, Devil relishes a good cigar. Devil goes above and beyond to protect his family but he’s not above keeping his affair with a cop secret.

    I liked the cop/criminal dynamic between Joe and Devil. Joe is actually a forgettable character in any other book, but being paired with somebody as unpredictable as Devil added another dimension to his personality. Plus, the fact that he was attracted to a dangerous man shows he’s not exactly vanilla. He also brought out Devil’s endearing mother-henning side which was fun to see.

    I also liked that both men were dominant so the power dynamics were balanced. It made the tension between the two so much enticing because you’ll never know who’ll come out on top.

    This book wraps the series up. The threat to the family was put to an end for good. Characters for a new series weres introduced. They piqued my interest so I’m looking forward to that.

    4 Stars – minor quibbles but I loved it to bits

    Soundtrack: Me and The Devil
    Artist: Soap & Skin
    Album: Sugarbread

    I guess I was too hasty with this author. She made me care about the Marchesis so much that I read all the books in quick succession. The series is dark but has a lot of heart. Certainly no oatmeals this time.

    If the new spin-off series is as good as this, I’ll probably end up binge reading it too. Moral of the story: Don’t judge an author by one bad story. Sometimes, they could surprise you.


    These Marchesis are a tight bunch so while the books could be read as standalones, it’s best read in sequence.

  • song,  Uncategorized

    SOUNDTRACK: You Belong To Me by The Boxer Rebellion, Safe&Sound by Tonight Alive, Thinking Of You by A Perfect Circle & Me and the Devil by Soap&Skin

    Soundtrack to The Marchesi Family: Lucien by Silvia Violet

    Soundtrack to The Marchesi Family: Mob Boss by Silvia Violet

    Soundtrack to The Marchesi Family: Angelo by Silvia Violet

    Soundtrack to The Marchesi Family: Devil by Silvia Violet

  • book,  Uncategorized

    REVIEW: Prophesy Book II: Bringer of Wrath by A.E. Via

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    King & Alpha: Prophesy Book II: Bringer of Wrath – A.E. Via

    Shifter and Vampire True Mates story.

    Alek’s older brother, Justice—the Alpha Zenith—was the first shifter to mate with a vampire in many generations, and it was believed the rare, fated pairing would stop at him. But, it hadn’t. Aleksei ‘Alek’ Volkov was second beta, next in succession to the most powerful shifter in the world. He was proud of his title and he took his duties seriously. It was all he had. Until his true mate literally showed up on his doorstep.

    While his brother—the overachiever—excelled at having a vampire as a mate, Alek wasn’t that optimistic he would. He wasn’t averse to love, and he’d often thought of how different his life could’ve turned out if he’d ever experienced the emotion. His life was a mess and he’d worn a mask of stability for a majority of that time, only showing his siblings and pack what they needed to see—a strong Volkov alpha. Not the damaged man he was, with a tortured soul and a rogue wolf.

    Alek dropped his heavy head in his hands.Now, for some reason, I’ve been granted a true vampire mate.And not just any vampire.The intimidating Belleron Liatos.Lord High to the King and the leader of his army.

    Belleron ‘Bell’ Liatos had come to the states for one reason—his best friend and Vampire King, Chadwick Bentley. He certainly didn’t come to be pounced on by a wolf that could act independently of its master. Not only was his destined cherished a complicated and confused man; but he was also unaware of the powerful presence that lurked in the shadows of his soul. Bell didn’t know he’d be the key to unlocking an exceptional triad that would play a critical role in fulfilling the prophesy.

    This story DOES NOT contain or even mention MPREG.
    No multiple pairings. No cliffhangers. Ends with a very HFN.

    Warning:This book is M/M paranormal:If you DO NOT like alpha men shifting into large wolves, or vampires feeding from their destined beloveds, than this may not be the novel for you.

    I liked this better. I wanted to like it more.

    The second book of the King & Alpha series brought together the second-in-commands. Belleron is the bestfriend of King Bentley and Lord High of the Vampires. He is always impeccably dressed and strove to excel at all things. Aleksei was the second beta and next in line to the Alpha Zenith. He’s a genuine, down to earth guy who has a lot of inner conflict. Their story had more things happening compared to the first book, starting with Alek having multiple personalities.

    Alek has his human self, his wolf self and something much darker within him. He can transition seamlessly between all three if they so willed. This created an interesting dynamic with his mate. It was, in a way, an MMMM love story involving two individuals. I totally loved how Bell embraced all of Alek’s selves unconditionally. Though, I kind of suspect his favorite is the dark one because that’s my favorite too.

    Back in book one, Prophesy, Alek lost control of his wolf and latched on to Bell when the vampire showed up at their doorstep. Alek was filled with shame and was too embarrassed to meet Bell again. The second book started with Alek and Bell trying to get to know each other.

    The first quarter of Bringer of Wrath was the exciting part. Bell had to go on a mission to London to apprehend rogue vampires raiding their tombs. His troops were overwhelmed and he was captured. Alek decided to go rescue him despite his natural shifter fear of flying. His younger brother and sister went with him. Things were pretty intense here.

    I liked that this first quarter brought focus to bigger issues in the vampire/shifter world. But sadly, the rest of the book fell short. I wasn’t exactly bored but I wasn’t that excited either. It wasn’t a Mating 101 thing, like Wick and Justice. The romance was actually sweet and enjoyable but it took over the book and completely overshadowed the politics and the world-building.

    Some work could have done to make the world-building much more solid, like providing more details on what exactly are these antagonists fighting for? Because for all appearances, Wick was a good king and so is Justice as the AZ. What is the say of humans in this scenario? Since gods were mentioned, what kinds of pantheons exist and how do they influence the world? And that damn prophesy. The book only paid lip service to it. You can take it out of the story and it would still work just fine. I’m guessing there’s a huge endgame in store so here’s hoping the prophesy aspect will be put to good use.

    The strength of this series lies on the characters. Many characters stood out. I liked them all enough to make me want to follow their stories. The villains were throwaways though but I’m okay with that.

    I was disappointed with the ending. I wanted Bell to have his moment but sadly his much awaited revenge was pre-empted by the introduction of a new character. Said character had the third brother, Mac’s hackles up. Their butting of heads almost made up for Bell’s lost moment.

    Overall, Bringer of Wrath is a much improved sequel to Prophesy. It has similar issues when it comes to balancing the elements of the plot but it has more substance and more developments. I do wish the author strengthen the plots and the overarching threads because the backbones of the series is interesting. I want to find out more about what’s happening in the King & Alpha world so I’m still here for the next one.


    Prophesy review here

    3 Stars – not exactly setting my world on fire but I liked it

    Soundtrack: You Belong To Me
    Artist: Cat Pierce
    Album: CP1

  • Uncategorized

    The moon follows me home, I’m never alone
    Hangs like the shine in my sweet baby’s eye
    Sings to me nightly, sings to me brightly
    Tells me the secrets of the sky
    Mmm-mm, mmm-mmm-mm
    Lips burrow so deep, give me good sleep
    Pour a little sugar on my wound
    Musical master, play harder and faster
    Spinning me up in your silky cocoon
    Mmm-mm, mmm-mmm-mm
    Feels like we’re dreaming, we’re tripping and reeling
    Just say that you belong to me, (You belong to me)
    I could get lost in the feelings we’re feeling
    Just say that you belong to me, (You belong to me)
    Do you want more of this? Isn’t it glorious?
    I can’t believe that it’s free, (You belong to me)
    I will adore you, I’ll only live for you
    Just say that you belong to me
    Crawl into my heart, take me apart
    Do what you please to me, I won’t resist
    Find what you’re seeking, I am not leaving
    ‘Til I am drunk loved up in your kiss
    I’ve heard allegations ’bout your reputation
    I’ll show you my shadows if you show yours
    Let’s get it right dear, give a good fight dear
    We’ll keep it all up behind closed doors
    Feels like we’re dreaming, we’re tripping and reeling
    Just say that you belong to me, (You belong to me)
    I could get lost in the feelings we’re feeling
    Just say that you belong to me, (You belong to me)
    Do you want more of this? Isn’t it glorious?
    I can’t believe that it’s free, (You belong to me)
    I will adore you, I’ll only live for you
    Just say that you belong to me
    I must confess to you, I want to posses you
    Feels like we’re dreaming, like tripping and reeling
    Just say that you belong to me
    I could get lost in the feelings we’re feeling
    Just say that you belong to me
    Feels like we’re dreaming, we’re tripping and reeling
    Just say that you belong to me, (You belong to me)
    I could get lost in the feelings we’re feeling
    Just say that you belong to me, (You belong to me)
    Do you want more of this? Isn’t it glorious?
    I can’t believe that it’s free, (You belong to me)
    I will adore you, I’ll only live for you
    Just say that you belong to me
    Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Ohhhh-oh
    Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Ohhhh-oh
    Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh, Ohhhh-oh