Review Tour: Scandalous Prince: Rachel Van Dyken

by - Thursday, September 24, 2020

Scandalous Prince
(Mafia Royals #2)
Rachel Van Dyken
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Release Date 
September 22, 2020

A mafia romance about secrets and soulmates by Rachel Van Dyken, the number one New York Times bestselling author of the Eagle Elite series.

The Woods are Lovely, dark, and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go, before I sleep —Robert Frost

I was born under fire and swore to protect her until my dying day, I just never knew that one day, I'd be the very monster I was protecting her from.
She didn't know it was me.
She didn't know that I had no choice and would do it again and again to save her.
I may as well have given her the mark on her finger.
The one that shows where her loyalty must lie.
Because we don't sin in silence.
And eventually, you have to pay up what you owe.
My need to protect her turned into a lie to save her.
And when she found out—I turned in to the very monster I was trying to protect her from.
Watching Violet Abandonato walk out of my life was like a knife to the chest, a wound that refused to heal.
The bosses sent me to protect her, to watch over her even though I was the demon she fled.
We both carry scars.
But if all I can have is her hate for as long as I breathe.
I'll take it.
Because at the end of the day, I should burn in Hell forever thinking Chase Abandonato's perfect angel would pick me—over her perfect life.
"I broke you," I confessed.
"The worst part… is that you liked it," she snapped right back.

Welcome to the second generation of the mafia, may the best man or woman, be left standing.
May God bless our tainted souls.

“I wish you were mine to love.”
“I wish you were mine to keep.”

It always takes me a bit to get back into this crazy mafia world and settle into the story. These stories are so layered and interconnected that I have to get my bearings each time. And I am going to make this as spoiler-free as possible because there are so many surprises and twists.

Breaker Campisi and Violet Abandonato. Oh my. These two poor souls. Son of Tex, the Capo, and daughter of Chase, one of the scariest monsters of them all. Best friends. Star-crossed, wanna-be lovers. Trapped in various ways due to the rules and politics of the families. 

Breaker has secrets...big ones. But it is a poorly kept secret that he loves Violet. He has always been her protector, but sometimes he fails and then beats himself up over it. Violet struggles with being the perfect and pure daughter of a politician and a mafia underboss. She is uptight and a perfectionist and feels the need to show off an immaculate facade. But she is also willing to sacrifice for her family and the stakes are getting higher. 

Their cousins, Junior and Serena started breaking the rules and lived to tell about it and now are allowed to be a couple. Breaker and Violet would like to follow suit. They have a bond not easily broken, but also not supposed to be anything but friendship and protection. But the heart wants what the heart wants and it could cost them everything. Their situation has some even bigger complications and could mean dire consequences. And Violet only knows part of it. When another would-be suitor begins to push into the middle of it, it becomes even more complex and dangerous. 

"There will never be anyone else...for as long as I have breath, Violet Abandonato will forever own my soul."

There are so many powerful people in these stories with their own agendas. We have Italians and Russians and the parents and the new generation of mafia kids. And their lives are spinning because of it. 
All of these people are tough, violent, strategic, menacing, and do not hold back. They often enjoy bloodshed at gatherings and are not afraid to actually fight each other...with fists or weapons. 

Lies and secrets will be revealed. Loyalties will be tested. Families and friendships will be strained. Hearts will be broken. Lives will be on the line.  
Sometimes there are choices that could literally mean life or death, and there are no easy answers. When trust is shattered, forgiveness is not guaranteed.

But can Violet and her true scandalous prince rise from the ashes?

This is a raw, intense, heartbreaking, passionate, and suspenseful story of friendship, forbidden love, secrets, and deceptions. It is told in multiple points of view so we are privy to various angles of the story and the inner monologues of these troubled characters. 

I can admit that I figured out the major twist early on, but it did not take away any of my enjoyment. This story is very well crafted, layered, and full of both subtle hints and red herrings. I had several theories running through my head early on as the author took me on this mysterious and intriguing journey. I loved all the moving parts in this and how the pieces were weaved together at times and changed course at others. There is so much going on in this book. 

I was intrigued and invested in the main characters and all of the side characters and their stories. The intertwined relationships between all the kids (and their parents) are forged in blood and in their hearts. Everyone in this group has issues and seems to fall for the people they are not supposed to and it will certainly bring more problems and drama in the future. I am looking forward to more with Ash, Annie, Izzy, Maksim, Tank, Kartini, and King. We also meet a new intriguing man who we will see again in a future spin-off story. As long as she keeps writing in this crazy mafia world, I cannot resist jumping back into it...even when sometimes they shock me and take me out of my comfort zone. I am helpless to resist the pull of RVD's mafia. 
Blood in. No Out. 
Breaker Campisi swore to protect Violet Abandonato’s life. Her life as a mafia princess is protected and sheltered, even with the daily exposure to danger and violence her family has raised her with. She is off limits to him for so many reasons, but there is still a thread of attraction between them, though he is determined to keep things platonic between them. 

Violet is an interesting combination of innocent and fierce. Growing up as Chase Abandonato’s daughter, she is the public face of her family’s innocence. But her growing frustration with the public image she must project is grating on her. But she also knows that any danger she faces will be mitigated by Breaker’s presence (and hand if necessary). But then comes a situation even he can’t get her out of and a stranger’s interest in her changes the direction of her future. Following the entry of this stranger, Breaker can’t fight for her so she will fight for them. She wants a future with Breaker no matter how many times he says he isn’t good for her.

Breaker is loyal to the Campisi’s and the promises he has made to the heads of the families, including protecting (but staying away from) Violet. Though he is attracted to her, he doesn’t feel like he is good for her and does his best to push her away. But he knows things that make it more important that he not cross too many lines with Violet. 

Then Valerian enters the story and things get really interesting, as Breaker tries to back away so Violet can live the life she needs to, and Violet fights to keep Breaker in her heart. 

This is my favorite from this second generation spin off. It has all the intensity I’ve come to expect from this mafia series, but an extra layer of intricately woven story threads that had me constantly guessing and reassessing my predictions. The branches and generations of the Italian families play heavy roles as well as the increased involvement from the Russians. All these threads pull together to create an intriguing, complex story that went beyond my expectations for this book. I can’t wait to see what is in store for Ash and the others in this generation. These young adults are stepping up and though they are not running the families yet, their decisions will echo into the future.

Royal Bully
(Mafia Royals #.5)
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The prequel to the much anticipated Mafia Royals Romances…

Something dark this way comes.
He's gorgeous, mean, and mine.
He catches me dreaming about him, and then just like my dream, he decides to make me his.
I should have said no when he asked me to swear fealty to him.
The knife clued me in first.
The blood second.
And third, it was the blessing of the most famous mafia bosses in the known world as they sat around the dinner table and told me that I had no choice but to join.
Because they knew my secrets.
And running meant I was nothing more than target practice.
I said yes, because of my bully.
And he told me he'd keep me safe.
But who keeps me safe from him?

Ruthless Princess
(Mafia Royals #1)

A mafia romance about best friends turned enemies by Rachel Van Dyken, the number one New York Times bestselling author of the Eagle Elite series.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend…
I never thought my father would ask this of me, to become the second generation at Eagle Elite University, to rule with an iron fist, and to take care of anyone who gets in our way.
But ever since the incident.
Ever since Him.
There’s been a war in our little clique.
After all, a house divided cannot stand.
He’s the problem, not me.
He used to kiss me like I was his oxygen.
Now he looks at me like I’m his poison.
But we both drank it, again and again, never believing there would be a day when our love would start a war.
And our friendship would shatter into a million pieces.
Then again, the worst thing you could do in the mafia is hang on to hope that your life will be normal.
The second worse thing?
Fall in love with your best friend.
And heir to the Nicolasi throne.
January 12, 2021
April 27, 2021

Fall 2021


Rachel Van Dyken is the #1 New York Times Bestselling, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of over 90 books ranging from contemporary romance to paranormal. With over four million copies sold, she's been featured in Forbes, US Weekly, and USA Today. Her books have been translated in more than 15 countries. She was one of the first romance authors to have a Kindle in Motion book through Amazon publishing and continues to strive to be on the cutting edge of the reader experience. She keeps her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, adorable son, naked cat, and two dogs. For more information about her books and upcoming events, visit

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