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|ROME by Jay Crownover|
(Marked Men #3)
Genre: New Adult
(contains mature language, sex, alcohol)
Source: eARC from publisher for Honest review
Cora Lewis is a whole lot of fun, and she knows how to keep her tattooed bad boy friends in line. But all that flash and sass hide the fact that she’s never gotten over the way her first love broke her heart. Now she has a plan to make sure that never happens again: She’s only going to fall in love with someone perfect.My Review:
Rome Archer is as far from perfect as a man can be. He’s stubborn and rigid, he’s bossy and has come back from his final tour of duty fundamentally broken. Rome’s used to filling a role: big brother, doting son, super soldier; and now none of these fit anymore. Now he’s just a man trying to figure out what to do with the rest of his life while keeping the demons of war and loss at bay. He would have been glad to suffer it alone, until Cora comes sweeping into his life and becomes the only color on his bleak horizon.
Perfect isn’t in the cards for these two, but imperfect might just last forever . . .
I am such a huge fan of this series. There is just something about the characters that Crownover has created that makes me want to hang out with them and be a fly on the wall of their lives. Fortunately, though Rome is a companion novel to Rule and Jet, it also continues with the same characters, giving us even more insight into what is still going on with Rule, Jet, and the rest of the gang. While some might consider Rome a standalone, there are many things going on that were introduced in the previous books that a new reader will be unfamiliar with. But, there’s enough referencing that a new reader can definitely love Rome, and then perhaps want to read the previous books, as there is still plenty of story that is unexplained left to read.
Rome is a slight departure from Rule and Jet in that he is not a tattoo artist or rock star or heavily pierced or tattooed. But he is a military man, giving him his own brand of hotness. Rome is a man redefining who he is in the world and with the people around him. He is lost and frustrated. He is seeking and fumbling. But he is loyal and admired and loved by those close to him, despite his recent actions. Plus, he’s a huge, buff, block of manliness, who will fiercely protect what he loves but can also be a gentle giant. I loved getting to know Rome. He's my new favorite.
Insert Cora, the heart-broken skeptic who, unlike everyone else, doesn’t have a history with Rome and doesn’t want to put up with his attitude. She has her own messed-up past and is looking for the “perfect” guy, and Rome is nowhere close to fitting that description. But because Cora loves her tattoo shop boys, she is still somehow placed into Rome’s path and circumstances bring them together. Cora is the perfect firecracker to shake Rome up. And Rome is the perfect guy to bring Cora back to reality.
Their story is not simple or straight-forward. Their relationship is far from “perfect.” But Crownover creates a journey with them that I thoroughly enjoyed. Of course I was expecting a HEA, and would have been disappointed without one, but for me the important part was watching these characters grow, learn, bond, communicate, heal, and love. And of course, they fought, made mistakes, did idiotic things; but that made the journey all the more sweeter. I loved Rome! And I not only want, but need, to see Rome and Cora's journey continue. This is my new favorite of the series.
If you haven’t had a chance to start this series, I highly recommend it. These are unconventional characters, but a group of friends and family that I have fallen in love with. Crownover has created a continuing journey through these novels that grabbed me from the start and continues to hold strong. I loved Rome and I look forward to the rest of the journey to come in future books.
READING ORDER AND BOOK LINKS:
About Author Jay Crownover:
I’m supposed to share interesting details about myself so that my readers get to know me so here we go in no particular order: I’m an natural redhead even though I haven’t seen my real hair color in years, I’m a big fan of tattoos and have a half sleeve on either arm and various other pieces all over the place, I’ve been in the bar industry since I was in college and it has always offered interesting insight into how men and women interact with each other, I have 3 dogs that are all crazy, I live in Colorado and love the snow, I love music and in all reality wish I could be a rock star not a writer or a bartender but I have zero talent so there is that.
I love to write, love to read and all I’m interested in is a good story with interesting characters that make the reader feel something.