Review: Second (Betrothed #6) by Penelope Sky

Title: Second
Author:  Penelope Sky
Publisher/Year:  Barnes & Nobles Press 5/5/20
Length:  198 Pages
Series:  Betrothed #6

Overview

She’s gone.

But the fortune can’t be true because she means nothing to me.

Nothing at all.

But the doubt starts to creep in. My thoughts only focus on one thing. The other women no longer satisfy me.

It starts to drive me crazy.

When I finally confront her, the horror shatters me.

She’s marrying someone else.

My Thoughts

At the end of the first book we had to watch Anna marry her ex husband again – truly believing that he was the right choice for her at this point in time since a future with Damian was off the table and Liam seemed to truly regret and repent for what he did. This of course crushes Damian and we have to wonder what that will mean for the rest of this book.

Throughout this second installment of their story although the sixth of the larger series, we watch Damian try to move on with his life as best he can although that doesn’t mean that he’s really interested in moving on with another woman. Can’t stomach the idea. When one is put in front of him, he uses the situation for what it is, but hates that any time he crosses paths with Anna, it turns to a jealousy thing. He truly wants to find a way to be around her knowing that he walked away from her to protect her. The threat that his lifestyle proved to all of those that were close to him was too much for him to risk, even if it sacrificed his own happiness.

We watch Anna try to be happy – to be the wife and partner that she should be with Liam. She truly believes in the vows of marriage and will do anything to make it work, even though she’s admitted that she’s not over Damian. Liam is willing to take all the time that’s needed in order to get her to love him the way that she used to, but i think that as readers we all know that it’s never going to happen. He promised to give up death fighting to be with her and that’s something that we know will come back to bite him. curious to see if Damian is his opponent.

It’s a rollercoaster of emotions that we go through in this story. Watching Anna and Damian try to figure out how to be friends since they are in the same circle. Watching them both clearly love each other but never admit it out loud or even to themselves. We watch Anna move on with her life and then at the same time we watch Damian go through the motions.

If romance and love wasn’t enough, we also have the Skull King as a pain in our butt through out the story as well. Heath continues to be a thorn in their side and since we all know that he’s a loose cannon even outside of these guys, it’ll be a huge question of when he’ll go off the rails and what that will mean. Damian is adamant about killing Heath but doesn’t have the right plan yet since his only option isn’t in the game before. (you guys will all remember a man named Bones right?)

So….we are left at the end of this story on so many open paths. what’s going to happen with Anna and Liam since there’s definitely no way that he’ll keep up his end of the bargain. At the same time, we also have to wonder what’s going to happen to Damian since we know that he’s a masochist but this is taking things a bit far for even him. And then there’s Heath – what will happen there. Only way to find out is to read on to book 7 now – which i’m going to try to do. Enjoy!

Review: First (Betrothed #5) by Penelope Sky

Title: First
Author:  Penelope Sky
Publisher/Year:  Barnes & Nobles Press 3/31/20
Length:  206 Pages
Series:  Betrothed #5

Overview

Hades retired from the business. 

Now it’s just me. 

Look at me now… Bitter… angry… depressed. I resent my former friend so much, even hate the guy, but I’ve never been the same since he refused to forgive me. 

I meet a woman. She’s like all the others…beautiful, interesting, good at the fun stuff, but I don’t feel anything. 

One woman will love you for you, not your money or your power, but you’ll lose her. And once she’s gone…she’s gone. 

That gypsy wasn’t right about me too, right?

I’ve got trouble on my doorstep when the new Skull King shows up. He wants a cut of my business. 

Like he’s getting anything. This is all I have left. 

Once again I become swallowed by the underworld. 

Will I survive it?

My Thoughts

The way that Ms Sky has evolved this story has really taken us on a journey that makes it both necessary to love Hades and Sofia in order to push Damian forward but also hate them because this story wouldn’t happen if the struggle wasn’t real. What we have here in this first installment of Damian’s story is the path that his life takes now that he’s not in a good place with Hades and likely never will. Maddox is dead, so he’s now the sole owner of the drug business and yet at the same time he’s still partnering with Hades in their bank. Every day is worse for him and all he wants to do is drink himself into oblivion, that is until Anna walks into the bank one day to get his help and Damina’s life is changed forever.

While the summary above reminds me that Damian got a prophecy from the fortune teller years ago, that really doesn’t come up in the context of this story so we almost forget about it. Anna is newly divorced from a powerful man who ironically she wants nothing from aside from getting off of anything that’s attached to him (namely his bank accounts). at the same time she really wants to start a new life for herself which means she needs to clean our her only personal account so that she can buy an apartment. This transaction not only puts Anna fully on Damian’s radar, but that means that we get to be on the peripheral of another guy that we likely do not want to ross (Liam – her ex).

The story that we have from here is one that really results in a lot of pain and suffering. Damian still has lost his best friend, the only person that means anything to him and as a result, he’s also lost Sofia since there’s no way to co-exist there. At the same time, he’s found this attraction to Anna but he knows that he’s neither in a mindset in his life to be a good guy for any one single person, nor does his professional life lend itself to being safe for anyone else. Yet that doesn’t stop either of them from the attraction that’s shared and we have a wild ride come out of it. (Anna’s no stranger to danger given that her ex is a death fighter so the shock is minimal here).

We see positive momentum come from their relationship and then we see it crash and burn when tragedy hits. Some of our favs from other Penelope Sky series come back in this one, in the form of the Skull Kings where we get to see Heath in his role as King trying to take what he feels he’s owed by Damian. Pride of course gets in the way and what we have is a kidnapping, death and fear. Every time i think that we’re about to see something good happen, a truce with the Skull Kings, a change in the trajectory if the relationship with Hades and Damian, hope for romance, another curve ball is thrown and makes us realize that hope really is lost.

We end this first installment at a wedding and then we wonder what the future will bring. So on that note, i’m picking up the next book to see what happens next for everyone! Enjoy!

Review: Committed (Betrothed #4) by Penelope Sky

Title: Committed
Author:  Penelope Sky
Publisher/Year:  Barnes & Nobles Press 4/2/20
Length:  220 Pages
Series:  Betrothed #4

Overview

Hades has done everything for the woman he loves. Now it’s time for Sofia to do the same for him.

I never broke the curse…I just changed it.

Now I’m forced into a partnership with Maddox, and since I can’t kill him, I have to tolerate him every day.

So Sofia leaves me.

I’ve sacrificed everything for her, but it’s never enough. My love for her doesn’t change despite the betrayal. The torture continues.

What am I gonna do?

I have one option. I said no the first time, but I’m not sure I can say no again…

My Thoughts

Penelope Sky is one of my favorite authors these days i think, and getting back into the story of Hades and Sofia is exactly what i needed during these insane times. We left off at a point in the story where it seemed like everything was finally about to go well for Hades and Sofia – they were happily in love, they wanted to be together, and then Sofia was kidnapped by a psycho Maddox, Maddox forces Hades to trade places with her, and he loses his freedom and his business to Maddox. And all during that, Sofia learns that she’s pregnant. She’s not in a place where she’s having a child, her husband is now the ‘bitch’ to a man who will torment him forever, and the unspeakable things that Maddox did to Sofia while he had her means that she can never stay with Hades in Florence if Maddox is part of the picture.

The decision is made and Sofia leaves Hades – which causes the biggest rift imaginable. She asks for a divorce and he doesn’t fight for her to stay, so we now see the story take two paths, one in Florence where Hades is left to a life of misery and slavery basically and then one with Sofia in Rome with her mother, rebuilding her life as she waits for the birth of her son.

Throughout this series, all we have seen is the nature of this relationship, and how there’s literally nothing that will keep them apart since their souls are so intertwined. The challenge now though is that there’s truly so much between them, and the fortune teller never implied that this would happen that all hope and faith is lost. In true form of all men in this genre when their heart is broken, Hades dives into work, and into the bottom of bottle after bottle of Scotch, where nothing makes him feel any better anyway. His friendship with Damian is so far past repair and that likely would have helped him out, but at least on the flip side his relationship with his brother Ash is repaired, which is a bridge between him and Sofia since he’s in Rome and he’s still friendly and in contact with Sofia.

This is a dark and depressing fourth installment. Every time you want to hope that something good can happen, you realize that the obstacles in front of them are far too high. Sofia made her decisions to protect herself and her child, and Hades doesn’t seem to want to come to terms with that. He instead resents her for walking away and that turns into hate. Even though we know that he loves her and can’t live without her, he still does his best to push her away when all she needs is a partner as the baby’s birth comes near.

Once Andrew is born, we see this story take a variety of turns. Relationships grown in some cases and fall apart even faster than previously imagined. There’s yet another trip or 2 to the fortune teller and the worst option is the only option in order for Hades to break the curse. That choice means that every path that we want to see at the end of this series is impossible and that’s a direction that i honestly can say i’m surprised to see our author take. I think that the way that this story resolves is one that is worthy of the journey, but the path to get there was very complex and twisted.

My honest thoughts here are wondering why i can’t find a man who’s willing to give up his livelihood and his life to be with me and to make me happy. That continues to baffle me to know that these types of men are only in books, and perhaps that is the biggest reason for my hopeless romantic nature – and this quarantine time doesn’t help much! Anyhow, i’ve picked up First which is book #5 and Damian’s story which is long overdue. I can’t wait to see how this one plays out since he’s left in quite the precarious and down state in this book. So on that note, Enjoy!

Review: Imagine Me (Shatter Me #6) by Tahereh Mafi

Title: Imagine Me
Author:  Tahareh Mafi
Publisher/Year:  HarperCollins Publishing 3/31/20
Length:  260 Pages
Series:  Shatter Me #6

Overview

Juliette Ferrars. Ella Sommers. Which is the truth and which is the lie?

Now that Ella knows who Juliette is and what she was created for, things have only become more complicated. As she struggles to understand the past that haunts her and looks to a future more uncertain than ever, the lines between right and wrong—between Ella and Juliette—blur. And with old enemies looming, her destiny may not be her own to control.

The day of reckoning for the Reestablishment is coming. But she may not get to choose what side she fights on.

My Thoughts

You know, it’s kind of weird thinking that we’ve come to the end of this series – all signs point to that being the case, although i’m sure there are spin-offs that we could get just like we had so much with Kenji, but that’s to be determined i guess. Anyhow, what i thought was a trilogy all those years ago has extended through so many additional installments and the journey that we’ve gone on with these characters has been so intense and complex that as a reader, i’ve had no choice but to dive in head first and see what happens next.

In this sixth book, we are with all of our loved characters, but in a form that’s not the same as previous books. We know that Anderson has a need for Ella/Juliette as a new host to Emmaline since she’s in a body that’s not strong enough for her and is dying, and the goal was always to put her into Ella’s body. Ella however is stronger than anyone ever expected, so even with the attempts for Emmeline to take over her body as a new host, we see a continued need to fight back. We come into this story with Ella in a destructive outburst all caused by her sister transferring powers to her and warner trying his best to keep her alive. While that’s happening, we see Kenji and Nazeerah explode at each other because of the confusion of their feelings for one another as well as their completely opposite views on everything.

If that’s a foreshadow for what we will see in this story – then it’s spot on. The journey that we go on in this final installment is wrought with fear, death, destruction, a loss of hope and a confusion on who is truly on what side.

We know that some of the Supreme kids have been taken hostage by Anderson and the parents, and the hope is that they can be retrieved safely, assuming that they are on the right side of things. At the same time there’s the need to protect the Sanctuary and all the kids that we know are on the right side of the right. All the while, trying to piece together what the future looks like. Warner and Ella were ina. great place, with an accepted proposal, and yet that’s torn from them quickly.

The way that this story is written, we spend a lot of time back in Oceania where Anderson has Ella and they have managed to begin the transfer, turning her into a devoted super soldier who only listens to what he demands of her. Knowing how strong Ella is though, we know that she’s not likely to go down without a fight and stop questioning things, and that’s exactly what happens. She’s confused to how she feels about Anderson now, she’s hearing voices in her head that she can’t quite put her finger on the origin, and she continues to have her own thoughts about things which contradicts all that she was expected to be able to do and yet completely on par with the Ella that we know.

We find ourselves at a cross road where Castle has to find a purpose in this new world, where Warner has to go find Ella since he’s not complete without her, where Kenji can’t let his best friend wither and die, where James is now without Adam and where Adam betrayed everyone. It’s a mess that’s not uncommon compared to what we’ve seen in prior books but still one that is far more complex than we’ve seen as well.

The questions that we’re forced to ask is whether there’s hope, whether there’s any chance that someone who was on the wrong side could be on the right side and help. Whether there’s any chance that the life and relationships that we’ve been fighting for over all these books can be something left standing at the end. I know that i’m not alone in praying for a happy ending, but i think that the ending that we get is not going to be the one that anyone was expecting. There’s no way for everyone to turn out the right side up and it’ll have to be some semblance of that to get us through this series. I don’t know how our amazing author does it, but she’s managed to give us one of the most dynamic stories of what the world could be all while giving us something to hold onto for the sake of love and friendship. So on that note, i’m sad to potentially be done with this series but i think you guys need to read it all….that is if you haven’t already. Enjoy!

Cover Re-Reveal: Crazed by Sarah Darlington



COVER RE-REVEAL!!!
Title: CRAZED (previously titled CRAZY SEXY NOTION)
Author: Sarah Darlington

Mick is in for a wild ride…

Baseball Pro, Mick Jasmine, is the worst at relationships. His most recent ex-girlfriend pitched a crystal vase at his head with such precision, that maybe she should tryout for the Sea Dogs. It doesn’t help that one of his ‘game-day superstitions’ is getting laid right before each game, and that he even has a handful of women on call to help him fill this need.

But Mick is over his lifestyle. He’s done with being a certain type of person. On a whim, he gets in his car and drives halfway across the country for Pecan, Kansas; a desolate town that’s not even on the map. He knocks on the trailer door that used to belong to his childhood best friend. In his entire life, he’s never loved another girl the way he loved her as a child. She’s the one. Somewhere in his heart he knows this.

But what he finds on the other side of the door, he never expected. Raven Malone, all grown up…

Nick is no match for Raven Malone all grown up. She’s going to eat him alive.

**This novel was formally titled CRAZY SEXY NOTION. Sarah Darlington’s upcoming series, the KILL DEVIL INK Series, will feature characters from CRAZED. Meaning, this novel now can be read as a prequel novel to INKED and the KILL DEVIL INK Series.
Available for purchase on…
Amazon and Kindle Unlimited




Sarah Darlington was born in Colorado and grew up all over the United States. These days, she calls Virginia home, where she lives with her husband, two kids, and large dog. The best word to describe Sarah is ‘creative.’ She’s passionate about designing, crafting, and photography. But most of all… she loves creating stories through her writing.

Her romance books are sexy and heart-gripping at their core, guaranteed to make you swoon. Any of them can be read as a stand-alone, but all are connected within the same world. 

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Review: Dirty Rich Betrayal: Love Me Forever (Dirty Rich #10) by Lisa Renee Jones

Title: Dirty Rich Betrayal: Love me Forever
Author:  Lisa Renee Jones
Publisher/Year:  CreateSpace Publishing 5/12/20
Length:  188 Pages
Series:  Dirty Rich #10

Overview

Grayson Bennett returns.

A powerful man, the king of the world to some, but he is nothing without Mia Cavanaugh. She is his life, his heart, the reason he breathes. Shaken by an attempt on her life, Grayson is ready to marry her, love her, protect her, but the threat isn’t over. He has lost everyone he loves before Mia. He will do anything it takes to protect her and call her his forever.

My Thoughts

For some reason i thought that we had completed their story so i was surprised to see that this was a new book, but i guess perhaps it’s because all the Walker stories intertwine into this bigger series as well and there are a lot of different trails. Regardless, we’ve picked up with Greyson and Mia now that they are back together and Mia is alive, Ri is dead but they don’t know where the safety will come from next.

There’s so much dirty business going on trying to get at Greyson and we don’t yet know what angle it’s going to come from. Blake and the Walkers have stepped in to protect them and at the same time try to suss out who’s behind it all now that Ri is dead and they are still at risk. Blake learns that there’s a hit still on Greyson and that means that no one is safe- especially since an underground group has been contracted and they want their price.

Throughout this second piece to their story, we watch the unwavering trust and commitment between these two and we get to see that their love has truly prevailed this time around. There’s nothing that can break them at this point so that’s not the struggle in the story. It’s trying to stay safe and build a new life, while also trying to figure out who’s for them and who’s against them.

Through this story we get to be reminded of the amazing relationship between Reece and Cat who we met in earlier books. He’s called in to help Greyson out in defending him from the insanity that comes from an FBI investigation and at the same time, Reece is able to help step in and help Mia with a case that she’s capable of handling on her own, but could use the support for from his ability and reputation.

This is a shorter story of sorts with fewer worries on the longevity of their relationship, but at the same time we are constantly on edge wondering what’s going to happen next and from whom. Our author Lisa Renee Jones gives us all the elements of her stories that we love – romance and heat, passion and fear, trust and loyalty, and of course a few new people that we can hopefully get to know more about in upcoming stories. There’s an endless stream of new guys coming into the Walker fold that we get to meet so i can’t wait to see what’s next. Enjoy!