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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Salvatore: An In Too Far Novel by Cecy Robson


 
A Review by Wendy
3.5 A Conflicted Man Stars
* * * 1/2
 Spoiler Free




I have been following Cecy Robson for years now. I discovered her in 2014 with her Shattered Past series. She captured my interest from the start, each book fully formed with characters I loved. I then followed up with her next series, The O'Brien Family was even more addictive. I couldn't wait to get my hands on each entry. When I saw this new book, I cleared the way to read it right away.

We meet Salvatore and his brothers. We have an understanding of who they are, not choir boys.
Sal has been raising them ever since the brutal murder of his mother by his father. Sal was determined to keep his brothers out of the foster system any way he could. The government, though, was not recognizing him as a viable choice. In order to retain an attorney who had the skill level needed to fight for him, Sal literary made a deal with the devil. Vincent Maggiano, the son of New Jersey’s top crime boss, had been a childhood friend of Sal's for years. With his back to the wall, he has to go to him making Sal "Owe Him".

The brothers and Sal are able to be together and now instead of pursuing the MMA career or working towards owning his own gym, Sal is the bodyguard for the mob's heir apparent girlfriend. Sal has never wanted to be "made" and this job keeps him close to Vincent and under his control. He grew up with this girl and knows she should not be the side piece of this man. He tries in his own way to look out for her as best he can. He had done other heavy lifts for Vincent but tries very hard to walk that line, not crossing it because then he would never be able to walk away.

Adrianna Daniels is concerned. She is a new student counselor and she comes from a very different location from New Jersey. She is a more small-town conservative from North Carolina. She loves looking out for her students and sincerely wants the best for them. She was made aware of Apollo Romero has been skipping school and is about to be expelled. She decides to visit the home and try to connect with his guardian and get this child back in school. She drives to the home, not even knowing anything about the neighborhood, who Salvatore is or how dangerous going alone could be...No she just goes and knocks on the door.

Sal answers, tired from a long night looking out and protecting Vincent's girl from herself. With the girl group drinking and carrying on...Sal had his hands full. When he sees this proper little woman standing in front of him, he is curious as to what would bring her to his door. Aedry introduces herself and explains why she is there... looking for Apollo and how he has not been in school.

Sal allows her in the house and is stunned this woman had the balls or is so clueless to not have come with another person to a stranger's house. Aedry pushes back and says she knows how to handle herself and sal smirks. They do get down to business and in the middle of their talking, Apollo comes into the house and then Sal starts to explode at Apollo but Aedry puts her hand on Sal's chest to hold him back...She was like the lion tamer controlling the wild beast.

This is the start of the story where we have been given a lot of character insight... Sal and his brothers are troubled by what happened with the father and mother...the horror of that event has impacted more then they acknowledged. Aedry offers to counsel the brothers after school on her own time. Sal is amazed someone would be willing to do it and sees this is the type of woman she is. Sweet, Good and Nothing like anyone he has ever met.

Sal is drawn to her, knows he should say far away because of his life and connections with the mob. Aedry is taken by Sal... he is nothing she is used to and knows he could hurt her but in the end, cannot resist. Sal benefits from her and Aedry grows as a woman owning who she is. She has a strong code of conduct and she will not bend to Sal's desires for her. This causes a new chapter for both of them, Sal learning to actually date a woman and have a relationship.

For those who love a gritty dark mob read, there is some of this. There is also the continuing push/pull of Sal's guilt of what he does, hiding it from her, and how to make it right for Aedry. Aedry was blind and accepted what Sal told her about his job. Sal carried the guilt of not sharing the truth of how deep he was with the mob. These were issues which caused me some frustration.

Overall, Sal and Aedry have a love which overcomes all and there is much to enjoy in this story. Cecy Robson takes people who are not perfect and gives them a life which seems real. She also has given us some secondary characters who look likely to have their own tale. I am a solid fan and will be there for the next installment.

A gifted copy was provided by author/publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.



CECY ROBSON is an author of contemporary romance, young adult adventure, and award-winning urban fantasy. A double RITA® 2016 finalist for Once Pure and Once Kissed, and a published author of more than eighteen titles, you can typically find her on her laptop writing her stories or stumbling blindly in search of caffeine.

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