Sweetest Sorrow by J.M. Darhower

My Rating: 4/5 Stars

” Take a breath, take it deep
Calm yourself, he says to me
If you play, you play the key
Take the gun, and count to three
I’m sweating now, I’m moving slow
No time to think, my turn to go

The first thing that pops in my head when thinking about this book is Russian Roulette. It was inevitable but predictable, because this book portraits our hero playing it from beginning to end.
I loved the first part. I was amazed how well a forbidden love could melt my heart but in the same time froze my blood because of all the tension and twist provided. Matty and Genna were the IT couple and I was kind of disappointed because I wanted more from them, wanted to explore more their relationship, now that there were free to love each other, and the end shattered all my wishes. UNTIL, I found out that there is a sequel.. PANIC,OMG and DANTE!!

“Sweetest Sorrow” pics up after the epic finale of the first book, but now our heroes Matty and Genna are secondary, leaving the main story to be written about Dante, Genna’s older brother, who we know disappeared and was presumed dead. I was very sad when the Barsantis took Dante, and I truly believed he was dead, until reading the blurb and seeing it was not true!

Dante is alive, but not very well, not physically and emotionally. After being tortured and at the bridge of dying by Barsanti’s hands, he is given another chance, but at a dearly cost. Severally injured, he is attended in a local hospital by nurse Gabriella Russo. She was the only one who wanted to take care of him, based on his reputation and the only one who was there for Dante during his struggle to stay alive. His wounds managed to heal, but inside he was empty and a time bomb ready to explode at any moment. Apart from this, Dante was devastated because of his sister’s disappearance.

He was such a tormented soul and after this nearly death experience he began to question his reality and loyalty. He always lived being obedient to his father and his orders, but now he is not sure he wants to listen anymore. He begins a Russian roulette kind of life, being unpredictable and almost suicidal. He was breathing, but wasn’t living. Who brought him back to life? Gabriella did.

She was kind, independent and a match for Dante. She wasn’t intimidated by him, stood determined at everything she thought is was correct and wasn’t afraid to speak her mind. She also protected the ones that she loved, that including Dante. As Dante, she didn’t fit in the actual scenario, she was different, wanting something else, not a life traced by rules and others wishes.
They couldn’t be more alike even if they wanted to.

Their relationship was beside the obvious attraction, a depth one, base of feelings and acceptance. She accepted him as Dante and he loved her for everything, including with a secret that you will discover while reading. Their love erased their past and family history, leaving only 2 people that have strong feelings for one another and were certain they want to be together.

Apart from our couple, we get to see Matty and Genna adapting to parenting and a new life, far from everyone. I loved them. With Matty everything seems to simple and it is so easy to just fall in love with him. He is willing to sacrifice everything to protect his baby and Genna, becoming an ideal father and lover. I appreciated Genna’s efforts in being more sensitive and showing Matty how much he means to her. She really struggled with her past reputation and wanted to show him that the love they share is mutual and they are going to be a happy family, despite always looking behind if somebody wants to harm them. Their relationship clearly evolved, the bond now being indestructible.

I loved this book, our 2 couples and their adventurous road, the story was amazing and kept your attention peek all the time, not knowing what will happen next. Thank you Mrs. Darhower for the steamy scenes, they were hotter and sexier than in the first one and I connected with them deeply. And yes, Gavin! He was amazing as a secondary character, so funny, so serious when situation demanded it and his love/hate relationship with the Galante brothers was delicious. I really hope we will get to read his story as well, he is very interesting and intriguing, and I just hope he will find somebody to make him realize that love is worthy of breaking the rules.

4 stars for this series, all my respect for the writer and the way it managed to absorb me completely into this amazing story.

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