Read Dates: April 2, 2022 – April 8, 2022
Expected Publication Date: July 26, 2022 (hardback & paperback) August 9, 2022 (kindle/ebook)
Source: ARC via Naomi Lane/Gena Showalter for honest review
Forbidden. Powerful. Ruthless.
Micah the Unwilling, fae King of the Forgotten, can tame even the most violent of beasts. Forged on the battlefield, this iron-willed warrior considers his soldiers his family, and he will stop at nothing to reclaim their dispossessed land. Gearing for war with a sadistic enemy, he is disciplined and focused—until a feral beauty he encountered long ago wanders into his camp.
Viori de Aoibheall wields a terrifying ability to sing monsters to life. Having spent her childhood in a forest, raising herself and her frightening creations—the only friends she’s ever known—she’s ill prepared for the scarred royal and his fearsome brutality. Not to mention the ferocity of their connection and the carnality of his touch. But the real problem? Her brother is Micah’s greatest foe. And though the sensual king makes her burn, she must stop him, whatever the cost.
Book 1: Heartless
Book 2: Ruthless
Do no harm to the innocent. Protect what’s yours. Always do what’s right. Never be without a backup plan.”
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First of all, if you haven’t read Heartless, you should go do that.
I must say, Kaysar (from Heartless), wasn’t really my cup of tea. But Micah? Holy moly. Micah is definitely my cup of tea.
I have read many Gena Showalter books and I’ve met many couples I absolutely adore. This one is now in my top three. Easily.
It looks like it took me 7 days to read this book if you consult my Goodreads account but, nay. I read this in two nights. The night of April 2nd and the night of April 8th. It was INCREDIBLY hard for me to put it down that first night. I was immediately entranced by this story and its characters.
Viori and all her wiles and mischief had me from the start. I was intrigued by the life she lived. Running in the wilds being protected by monsters. The fierce protectiveness they had for her and she had for them. Not to mention when she lets out her RAGE. Her past haunts her and she wants nothing more than to make up for it. She’s just not sure if she can. What she’s done is unforgivable in her mind. I was drawn in by her loneliness but also her resilience. Any foe she befell… fell. All except one….
Micah has had a rough upbringing. He was left in a basket in the middle of the woods as a baby and found by a chimera, like himself, who ended up dying to protect Micah. A young Micah stumbled upon a young Viori sleeping in the forest, but he was unaware of her monster protectors. He carries the scars of the attacks those beasts doled out to protect their fiery, beloved Viori when Micah dared to get too close to her as she slept. Now he’s stumbled upon Viori again, years later. He’s the King of his village. Micah the Unwilling. Micah: the one whose chimera makes people want to literally rip their faces off. He has never been wanted. He’s never felt loved. But he’s continued to protect his people from the monsters that dared attack his village and he’s always kept their best interests at heart. His people come first. He’s relentless and willing (despite his nickname) to do whatever it takes to extinguish any threat to his people.
My heart literally just breaks for Micah. He deserves so much better than the life he was dealt. He deserves better than the reluctance he gets from his people. Ugh. I have such a soft spot for him. I think he’s just become my favorite male lead Gena has ever written. I loved him so much. He’s brutal but he’s kind. He’s relentless but he’s loyal. He is willing to protect any innocent. Vanquish any evil. He’s just… ughh.. I just love him, ok? Leave us be.
If you’ve read Heartless, you know the connection between Viori and Kaysar and the event that we all held our breath for that never came at the end of Heartless like we hoped it would. This book was even better than anything I could have ever hoped for. I laughed. I cried. I got unreasonably angry. Sometimes even unreasonably frustrated. I loved this book so much. I fell in love with these characters and I really fell in love with Micah. I’m going to have to rearrange my book boyfriend list.
Pride said, You mustn’t be the one to initiate contact. He must. But more and more she suspected pride was a buffoon. She wanted what she wanted – him – and she wanted it now.”
There were so many elements to this book that kept me on my toes. Viori’s abilities. Micah’s political issues with a particular neighboring kingdom. Side characters that I couldn’t bring myself to fully trust. I so enjoyed this book! (Did I mention that Micah and I are dating?)
Fight for what’s right, no matter the cost, or you’ll be forced to live with the wrong.”
If you love a good paranormal romance with monsters and wild abilities and heart-wrenching romance, this is it. I was feeling all the feels right there with the couple. My husband walked in while I was sitting here balling like a baby at one point in the book. (Don’t worry, he’s used to it.)
Ugh. Gena. Does it. Again.
Alright, Gena, who’s next? Jareth?? It’s Jareth, isn’t it? Can it please be Jareth?
BRB while I go figure out where exactly in my top 3 this couple has landed. I believe they might have topped the charts. 💛✌