Book Review: The Kiss Thief – L.J Shen

synopsis single

They say your first kiss should be earned. 

Mine was stolen by a devil in a masquerade mask under the black Chicago sky. 

They say the vows you take on your wedding day are sacred. 

Mine were broken before we left church. 

They say your heart only beats for one man. 

Mine split and bled for two rivals who fought for it until the bitter end. 

I was promised to Angelo Bandini, the heir to one of the most powerful families in the Chicago Outfit. 

Then taken by Senator Wolfe Keaton, who held my father’s sins over his head to force me into marriage. 

They say that all great love stories have a happy ending. 

I, Francesca Rossi, found myself erasing and rewriting mine until the very last chapter. 

One kiss. 
Two men. 
Three lives. 
Entwined together. 

And somewhere between these two men, I had to find my forever.

 



 

My Thoughts 2

 

Oh, my expectations were set high for this one. I´m talking sky high. And because this book has been so hyped and praised I was also terrified of being disappointed.

Beautiful cover and a decent synopsis? I just had to give it a go.

To make a long story short: I wasn´t as disappointed as I thought I´d be. I´m truly not mad at this one because the story almost has everything I want in a contemporary romance novel.

Personally, I thought the story was a tiny bit less dramatic than the synopsis suggested. I was thinking there would be an open Chicago love triangle war in `The Kiss Thief` by L. J. Shen. I didn´t have the impression there was one at all.

The Kiss Thief

That´s not to say this book didn´t have other qualities. `The Kiss Thief` had many things I usually appreciate when reading romances.

 

What I Appreciated Most

  • Character depth. For me, there´s nothing worse than having to read about characters who don´t offer something that makes them special. Wolfe Keaton and Francesca Rossi are powerful main characters who are entertaining from start to finish.
  • Unpredictable actions. I´d be lying if I said the book was unpredictable, because… Well, the ending was sort of a given. But some of the events were actually unpredictable. I certainly never saw certain scenes happening but I´m really glad they did.
  • The dialogue. Very intelligent and quick. I like when characters have something to say to each other rather than having them repeat their thoughts.
  • Enemies to lovers romance. I´m a sucker for this trope.

 

What I Would Have Liked

  • It says in the book description

“… mine split and bled for two rivals who fought for it until the bitter end.”

“One kiss. Two men. Three lives.”

This is not entirely misleading but I did feel like it suggested there would be an actual love triangle going on. There wasn´t. Yes, there were two men involved in Francesca´s life but one of those men wasn´t present enough to be considered as a third party.

  • A more powerful ending. After so much that went down in this book I did expect a little more CRASH BOOM BANG in the end. There was a really fantastic build up and at some point there was a constant and stable peak. Then the nose dive.
  • More graphic scenes. This isn´t, by any means, a necessity but for a mafia romance I would have appreciated more mafia brutality.

 

All in all I can´t really complain, though. `The Kiss Thief` is a mafia romance that has lots of angst, a decent amount of sex, and drama.


 

Would I reread this book? Sure. Why not? The parts I loved are definitely worth a reread.

Would I recommend this book? I would. `The Kiss Thief` is well written and the story is full of surprises.


 

The Cover – 5 Stars:   Hands down- I´m a fan.

The Story – 4  Stars:   Not too shabby. It´s ruthless, unforgiving and also romantic.

The Characters – 4 Stars:  While I did love Wolfe´s ruthless side and Francesca´s strength I missed a little of Angelo and would have liked to have seen some more engagement from the sub characters.

My emotional state after finishing this read:  Happy.


 

This book can be purchased on Amazon.com

 

Book Review: Vicious ( Sinners of Saint #1 ) – L. J. Shen

synopsis single

 

Emilia

They say love and hate are the same feelings experienced under different circumstances, and it’s true.The man who comes to me in my dreams also haunts me in my nightmares. He is a brilliant lawyer. A skilled criminal. A beautiful liar. A bully and a savior, a monster and a lover.

Ten years ago, he made me run away from the small town where we lived. Now, he came for me in New York, and he isn’t leaving until he takes me with him.

Vicious

She is a starving artist. Pretty and evasive like cherry blossom. Ten years ago, she barged into my life unannounced and turned everything upside down. She paid the price.

Emilia LeBlanc is completely off-limits, my best friend’s ex-girlfriend. The woman who knows my darkest secret, and the daughter of the cheap Help we hired to take care of our estate. That should deter me from chasing her, but it doesn’t. So she hates me. Big fucking deal. She better get used to me.

 


 

My Thoughts 2

The book isn´t the problem. I AM THE PROBLEM.

No. I don´t even see myself as the problem. It´s the type of story that didn´t do it for me.

And what makes this review extra painful is: I bought the book because of the gorgeous cover image. Dear heaven´s above… The cover is something beautiful. But that´s where the beauty ends for me.

Even the tagline is fantabulous.

He´s bad news wrapped in a good suit…

`Vicious`( Sinners of Saint #1 ) by L. J. Shen is one of those romances where the Hero terrorizes the Heroine without a logical reason. The idea of romanticizing over a vicious asshole is not my idea of a romance.vicious

It goes without saying that I felt no sympathy for the story or the main characters what – so – ever. And the main reason for that is because I´m not interested in romances where the Hero is a fucktard and the Heroine has no backbone.

It´s not my goal to put this book down. It´s not even my goal to hate on the characters, either. But what choice do I have if I found absolutely nothing remotely great about this book?

Vicious, a.k.a. Baron Spencer, also known briefly as Vic, has every negative quality a fictional character can possess. I´m going to gingerly ignore the fact that Vicious is drop dead gorgeous. They always are, so there´s no point in putting it out there. What bothered me was that I encountered yet another filthy rich asshat who had it all and much more. His only fault is that he´s an exaggerated vicious prick and he´s specially cruel to the girl he has a crush on / has had a crush on since the teenage years. How flattering.

Fast forward 10 years and we see the crush, Emilia, working herself tired in New York and she bumps into Vicious. He offers her a job with a great salary and VOILA! She accepts.

By all that´s pink and fluffy… I can´t stand a Heroine who doesn´t have a backbone. It´s actually painful to know how airheaded a character can be, even in 2016 ( when the book was published ).

The couple´s romance was built on nothing. The romance progressed into something weird. I couldn´t wrap my head around the idea of this book being anything romantic.

The Hero lovingly nicknamed the Heroine Help. No man would be able to walk anymore after calling me that.

I was annoyed and frustrated and slightly pissed off becauseI let the cover distract me from checking out reviews before buying this book.

The only good thing this book had going was the writing. Meeh. But that doesn´t make up for the rest.

I think it´s safe to say that I won´t be continuing the series.


 

Would I recommend this book? No. I wouldn´t.

Would I reread this book? Uugh, no.


 

The Cover –  5 stars:    Beautiful cover.

The Story –  2 stars:    No.

The Characters – 1 star:  A definite no.

My emotional state after finishing this read: Annoyed in the worst way.

2 stars

Should you still feel the need to buy this book then I won´t be holding anyone back. Just click here and order your copy.