Review: Mafia King (Mafia Royals #3.5) by Rachel Van Dyken


Print Length: 125 pages
Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts Inc (April 27, 2021)

From One of the first rules they give you when you're undercover—never fall for the enemy.
I didn't just fall for the enemy.
I became what I was supposed to hate.
What's worse: I fell in love with one.
I live a double life, and both sides know it's only a matter of time before I'm forced to choose.
Rebirth through mafia blood.
Or death at the hands of the very government I swore to protect.
I have one more job before my time's up.
I just wish it was anything but babysitting a mafia princess who's half my size but knows how to pack such a brutal punch I worry about my ability to have children.
Tin's small but terrifying.
And I'm her new bodyguard while we all go on a much-needed vacation.
I just have to stick to the plan.
And remember rule number one.
And stop kissing her.

**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you'll enjoy each one as much as we do.**


My Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Let me begin by saying that I hate novellas. I never feel like there is enough time for character development, or for the story to progress in a way that doesn't feel like you're being careened about on a speeding train. So I tend to give them a bit more leeway than I do full-length novels. However, I requested this one knowing it was a part of an anthology because I was already invested in these characters and their story. 

That being said, my review of this story is going to be a meet in the middle kind of  thing as I will be speaking on it from the standpoint of someone who knows these characters and as a critique of this story as a stand alone. 

If you 
are familiar with the Mafia Royals series, I believe you will feel as though Rachel did a good job at doing these characters justice in the time constraint allowed. I enjoyed their bickering, and the way they found their way to helping each other heal. I liked the inclusion of the others, showing just how close the family is to one another, and being able to attend the wedding of a favorite couple from the series. 

However, as it was novella, there were parts of this that seemed rushed, and if you didn't already have some background on the characters and their relationship, I don't know that you would feel a connection with them. In that instance, you would probably find it to be more a case of instalove (or lust considering) since you don't see them interact as much as those who have read the other books. 

Speaking as someone who is a long-time reader of Rachel's work, I don't know that this novella will necessarily be enough to entice new readers to the series (due to the things mentioned above). Thankfully though, if there is anyone who is on the fence after reading Mafia King, the first in the series (Royal Bully) is available for free on Amazon to help them make up their minds. 

DISCLAIMER:  I received a complimentary copy of this novel from the publisher. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

                                                                             Mafia King is available from

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