Tuesday, October 20, 2015

review || RIP by Rachel Van Dyken

Van Dyken Enterprises INC | October 20, 2015 | Mafia Romance


Pretty things aren't meant to be broken.
But I broke her, and now we both have to pay the price.
I'm her nightmare.
I'm her savior.
And now that I have her signature on an ironclad contract, I own her body and soul.
She doesn't remember me.
She will.
It's inevitable.
Because as much as I know I need to stay away, for fear of unlocking the memories I helped her father bury--I can't. She was the apple in the Garden, dangled in front of me, her core so tempting and sweet. A voice whispered. Just. One. Bite.

I bit.

I tasted.

I fell.

Welcome to the world of the Russian mafia, where death, is your only future.

{ about rachel van dyken } .

Rachel Van DykenRachel Van Dyken is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author of regency and contemporary romances. When she's not writing you can find her drinking coffee at Starbucks and plotting her next book while watching The Bachelor. 

She keeps her home in Idaho with her Husband, adorable son, and two snoring boxers! She loves to hear from readers! 

Want to be kept up to date on new releases? Text MAFIA to 66866! 

You can connect with her on Facebook or join her fan group Rachel's New Rockin Readers. Her website is www.rachelvandykenauthor.com

{ review } .

...I've come to accept RVD reviews (and Cristin Harber, on that note) are long reflections. I can't manage to dwindle them down to a few lines in a couple of paragrahs.

For whatever reason, when I did the cover reveal for this puppy I didn't connect with who, exactly, Nik and Maya were.

I was just happily reading RIP after seeing it was release day and knowing I've not picked up a bad RVD book. I bought it without a look at the reviews. I'm reading, and reading, then for some reason or another, I do my epilogue thing, and then I jump somewhere else and see Maya's reference to "those crazy Italians and their large guns and their lack of censorship".

Obviously she was talking about those Eagle Elite boys, because they certainly do like to bring their firearms to the table.

A little more jumping and BAM. There she was.


And all of a sudden, it came together. This Nik and Maya were Andi's Nik and Maya. So naturally, I opened up ELUDE and started bawling my eyes out (because the part my copy was digitally earmarked to was the sunset scene). Then I was searching for Nik references and was reminded of what he offered Sergio, so I was going back to RIP and finding Sergio scenes...

No worries, eventually I read this book forward to back.

I really loved reading this book. Yes, I loved reading Andi scenes, and seeing Nik's thoughts and actions where she was concerned, and watching Sergio mourn and his friends come together. My goodness, the tearjerker of the year award definitely goes to Andi and Sergio, because I was ugly crying all over again while reading this book.

"I'd rather feel..." he whispered. "Because that means it happened. And she deserves to be remembered in the most raw way possible. So, today, my answer is no. Tomorrow, my answer? It will still be no."

But Nik and Maya... This book was theirs, and I truly did enjoy reading them.

If you haven't read EAGLE ELITE, no worries, it's not necessary. You should, but you don't have to.

If you have, well, like I said above, you get to see all your favorite Italians but more than that, we get to see Andi's friend Nikolai and the half-sister she didn't know about, Maya.

Like those crazy, gun-wielding Italians, Nik has quite the mafia ties. First and foremost, man's a genius. He graduated Harvard in his teens and is a doc -- if you read ELUDE, you already know this, but this is the man who takes away your memories. At the hand of the Russian mafia, he does so with the use of pain, but he's extremely good at what he does.

Some years ago, he was given a job and he performed it, as was his duty. When he's faced with Maya as an adult, he fights hard to keep her away but he fails -- it certainly doesn't help that her father sent her to him. Like Luca's need to keep Andi safe from her father, Maya is in desperate need of being kept safe from her father, because if there's one thing Petrov doesn't care for, it's loose ends.

"...you've done nothing wrong. Except, you were born, and that... according to your father... is a problem."

Nik and Maya's story was beautifully written. Where Rachel comes up with her ideas, I've no idea, but she takes them, builds them, and then runs far and long with them. Each story is crafted so well. In this mafia world she's created, no two stories are alike, but the way the mold into one another feels real. As RVD is prone to do, she brings us through an emotional ringer but pulls out the comic relief, both in mentioning of seeing lovers in baseball bats, and in accidental poking at night.

There are some little twists in this book that connect Maya firmly in this world and give a little bit more reason to Phoenix's care and concern, if you will, of Sergio in ELUDE.

And with a bit more than her typical mafia-suspense, there's the added element of a typical romantic suspense in this book, paired with headlines and the ever continuing question -- who's doing the killing?

Yet another wonderfully written mafia story by RVD; I do hope she continues on this leg of her mafia world but I have no doubt we'll be seeing more of Nik and Maya in the Italian world.

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