Friday, August 5, 2022

Feature Friday ARC Review: Ruthless by Gena Showalter

*Feature Friday ARC Review is a meme hosted by The Tattered Page to review books not yet released.  

*Warning: This review may contain spoilers. Read at your own risk.

Release Date: August 9, 2022
Pages: 415 
Source: ARC 


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.
LINKS: Goodreads |  Amazon




Forbidden. Powerful. Ruthless. 


Five-year-old Viori de Aoibheall raced to her parents' bedchamber, frantic.


I have been a fan of Gena Showalter since reading the Lord of the Underworld series. Her characters are always so dynamic, the smut tantalizing, and the plot the perfect mix of action, tension, and romance. RUTHLESS is the awaited sequel to HEARTLESS, Gena's new adult romance series, Immortal Enemies. Huge thank you to Gena and Naomi for picking me for the ARC Team!

As I said before, the plot of RUTHLESS was the perfect blend of romance, tension, humor, and action to boot. Not to mention the ANGST! Especially from my baby Micah. You could really feel the yearning flow off the pages as you read the inner workings of Micha's mind. The story starts in the past when the two main characters are teenagers--loved this--before continuing the story where we left off in HEARTLESS. After having heard about Viori all throughout HEARTLESS and her being one of the main driving forces of why Kaysar became the Unhinged, I was excited to get to know the missing, mysterious little sister. And I was not disappointed. 

He, the king who made others yearn to peel the skin from their bones, had made a beautiful feral kitten purr. 

Mostly, both Micah and Vee just wanted love. Micah’s greatest wish was to be loved and accepted. He is also big on having a wife and family and wasn’t shy about admitting that. Vee just wanted to be worthy of her older brother’s love—she longed for it. These wishes also brought forth their main source of friction since Micah wanted Vee but Vee wanted her brother’s love. And her brother is Micah’s greatest enemy.

Speaking of Kaysar (MMC in HEARTLESS), he and his younger sister both doted on each other as children. Their cruel separation was incredibly difficult for the pair and a defining moment that shaped the course of their lives. *Chaos ensued* Kaysar became unhinged and hellbent on revenge and Vee became untrusting and hellbent on atonement. But without the terrible events of their outcomes, they would have never met the loves of their lives or had a story to tell.

On that note, like Vee, Micah also had a tragic start in life. As a chimera he was abandoned and left to be found and raised by the only person who ever felt like family—before Vee. After stumbling into a supernaturally guarding clearing where Vee slumbered when he was just 15, he was smitten with her. Separate by circumstance, RUTHLESS is a sexy, smoldering story of their reunion filled with tension, tedious trust, and heartbreaking betrayal. And the impossible choice between true love and the love of the only family you have left.

"I should have offered you a proper greeting when I first awoke, Majesty. Allow me to remedy my mistake." She wetted her lips, and he groaned, the sound reverberating deep in the core. Using her sultriest voice, she said, "Good morning, Micah. I'm very glad to see you..."

Now, on to the annoying. Things were gravy until I was around 44% through. Then all hell broke loose as Vee lost her ever-loving mind—and not in a fun way. Honestly, I was *this* close to wanting to DNF (no, not really lol) because, quite frankly, her behavior convinced me she did not deserve Micah. She went apeshit on him for literally protecting who he thought was his mate and wife as well as the people under their care. The whole time she lied to and plotted against him from the beginning. Which is the reason why they were in their predicament in the first place! Then had the nerve to be rageful and vengeful at him for protecting her??? Girl, no. I would gladly take Michah off your hands psycho. He deserves to be pampered and treated like the fierce cinnamon roll king he is. Vee definitely fell down a few pegs in my book for this.

Vee was toxic as fuck though she hid it good as hell for while. Even after all of the innocents she and her children murdered and harmed, even after she repeatedly hurt him—physically and emotionally—he was still gentle with her, hoping to straighten things out. Then she made him vow to protect her and the children talking about if he had any honor at all in his being—bitch you have some nerve!

Okay, okay. Enough of that. It all worked out in the end as we knew it wouldI obviously read romance for the HEA so it did not disappoint. Vee redeemed herself. I am satisfied. :)

Made for each other. 
"Mm-hmm. I sure did. Maybe we're fated." She fiddled with his tunic.

All in all, RUTHLESS was a fantastic sequel to HEARTLESS and I am so glad I had the opportunity to read it! The two books complement each other well. RUTHLESS was soft whereas HEARTLESS was hard. HEARTLESS was rough and spicy and a little insane (like, have you met Kaysar and Cookie? THey’re both nutzos) whereas RUTHLESS was resilient and spicy and a little more rational.


MICHAH THE UNWILLING: Micah is a fierce cinnamon roll—which just happens to be my favorite type of love interest! He is resilient, kind, loyal, true to his word, a provider and protector—even though not all under his care deserve it. 

Once, Micah had stood among the marriage hopefuls. After several decades of tracking and killing belua, he'd longed to experience the good life--family life. A wife to enjoy. Children to pamper, But the females of this settlement had preferred weak and cowardly mates over chimera.

VIORI DE AOIBHEALL: Viori (a.k.a Vee) is tough on the outside but soft on the inside. I sympathized with her character a lot. We had hardships early on in life and hold tightly onto past guilts we feel we need to atone for. Also, she yearned to have a true friend.

Micah bent, pressed his shoulder against her middle and lifted. Her body draped over his. "You dare to haul me like a sack of potatoes?" she demanded with shock and...amusement? "The indignity!"


Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of over seventy books, including the acclaimed Lords of the Underworld series, the Gods of War series, the White Rabbit Chronicles, and the Forest of Good and Evil series. She writes sizzling paranormal romance, heartwarming contemporary romance, and unputdownable young adult novels, and lives in Oklahoma City with her family and menagerie of dogs and cats. 

Happy Reading!



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