Posted in Book Review

Ruthless by Gena Showalter

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

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From Goodreads:
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.

Immortal Enemies

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.”

This book is available to pre-order right now wherever you buy books!

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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. 💛✌

Posted in Book Review

Heartless by Gena Showalter

Read Dates: June 29, 2021 – July 2, 2021
Date Published: June 29, 2021
Source: Kindle ebook

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From Goodreads:

Kaysar the Unhinged One, fae King of Midnight, can drive anyone to madness with his song. A ruthless warrior forged in hate, he lives to force his enemies to their knees. He will stop at nothing to succeed—even abducting and seducing his foe’s beloved bride to ensure his own child one day sits on the male’s throne. Except, his prize escapes to the mortal realm before the first kiss, her heart transplanted into a human beauty with dangerous secrets…

Chantel “Cookie” Bardot is a professional gamer girl great at trash-talking, bad at peopling. After a long-awaited surgery, she begins to morph into a powerful fae princess. Catapulted into a strange land ruled by a cruel but seductive villain, she must battle flesh-and-blood monsters and navigate royal intrigues. But the true danger is Kaysar, whose every wicked touch tempts her beyond reason. Should she run…or descend into the darkness with him?

Gena does it again. She creates another round of characters who are completely unique despite the amount of characters she has already created in numerous past books. Not only are these characters unique but they remain true to their ideals the same way all her other characters in all the other universes she has created have done.

Kaysar is a man obsessed with vengeance. Vengeance for the things he has endured and the things he has lost. He cares not who dies by his hand, unless they happen to be someone he deems worthy of survival so that he might torture them for the remainder of their lives.

…the tattoo on his bicep. A snake curled into a figure eight, eating its own tail, with a sword running through its center. His kingdom’s symbol, meaning “eternal war.”

Cookie is a mortal in need of a heart transplant. Once she finally receives her new heart, she finds herself morphing into a fae princess from the very realm Kaysar is from. Cookie has always had a lust for murder and violence but has always kept it at bay since the mortal world frowns upon that sort of thing. However, once in Astaria, that all changes once she meets the murder hungry Kaysar and gets a taste of life in a fae realm where anything goes.

“Oh, Kaysar. Isn’t this amazing?” Never had she felt so giddy. So alive. “My first actual battle. They threatened us, and now I get to kill them all by myself.”

This book was incredibly enjoyable and I think I might be holding back half a star for things I may end up getting in future books, but bear with me.

I was pumped for this book because it was called an “Immortal Enemies” book. So my head immediately went to “enemies to lovers” which is one of my favorite things to read. It wasn’t really that, though. I guess they were sort of enemies in the beginning, like, the VERY beginning, but they ended up teaming up rather quickly with separate end goals in mind. Still, not the enemies I was expecting.

These two fought, like, a lot. Though, I didn’t mind it because it kept them both true to their characters. They’re both very strong willed and hard-headed, so it made sense that they would be at odds with each other at some point or another. And they are. For most of the book. There’s always something going on with these two. 9 times out of 10, it’s hilarious. But the last squabble they had was a bit much for me. Another reason for my deduction of the half star, the last squabble and it’s resolve didn’t really work for me. Someone who Kaysar has been at odds with for 70% of the book makes one small comment and that is the thing that makes Kaysar rethink his anger and causes him to apologize to Cookie. Meh. Not really true to his character there… BUT, I think we’re going to see more of these two in future Immortal Enemies books and I’m excited for that. There were a couple of things that were left unresolved and a thing or two that never gave us a sense of finality. But I think we may end up seeing some of that unravel in the future if this series is going to be anything like the Lords of the Underworld series. Regardless, I’ll be here for it because I love Gena and I love these characters she creates.

Look at her. His Briar Rose, the embodiment of destruction and the most breathtaking sight in all the lands.

Now, the violence, let’s talk about the violence.

I loved it. And not in a way that I was just cheering on every death and never thinking the people maybe didn’t deserve to die. When Gena gives us a new character, she tells us what they’re like, what their morals or lack of morals are and she ALWAYS follows through. In that respect, I loved the violence in this book. Most books will tell you the characters are ruthless and violent but they don’t follow through. Gena’s characters most certainly followed through. Mind you, some were spared, mostly by Cookie. BUT, Cookie dished out some carnage too. It was really fun to read if I’m being honest. (And I am.)

I have to mention Peal Jean!!! And Sugars!! It’s not everyday you find a book with a 26 year old living with a 62 year old who is also her best friend. And Sugars the cat… I love cats, and the fact that Sugars was thrown into this and described as a “panther” made me picture my house panther throughout the book. Those two were a lot of fun to read and just as combative and chaotic as Cookie.

All in all, this was a good read. Gena’s book are written in a way that they seem like they’ve flown by. You look down and realize you’re suddenly 75% of the way through the book when you literally just started it a couple hours ago.

If you like steamy sex scenes, a couple that bickers but always finds their way back together, 62 year old roommates with a great sense of humor, and absolute, total, unrelenting CARNAGE… this is your book. Go get it. Go read it. Go love it. It’s a good one.

“Sometimes you can’t see the end until you get to the middle.” A trick she’d learned sacking digital fortresses. “Imma go get in that middle.”

✌💛